Small Business Marketing Tips

How to Manage Your Own Marketing Department


Marketing departments can be expensive for startups and small businesses. Because it is vital to ensure your business is visible and accessible to the right people at all times, many small businesses tend to go beyond their budgets on marketing departments.

For those who aren’t familiar with the industry, it may seem overwhelming to get started. But with these helpful tips from Keetria, you can be on your way to managing your own marketing department.

What Are “Channels” in Marketing Terms?

Companies use marketing channels to send out their messages to consumers. Marketing channels are essential in order to reach as many customers as possible with a particular message.

Marketing channels can be both offline and online. They can include anything, from phone pole advertising to email marketing. For email marketing, for example, consider using eye-catching subject lines and include content that addresses consumer needs.

It is important to select the channels that best suit your brand and business model. To get the best feedback, you should test several different channels at once. These channels can be used to direct your marketing department efforts.

What Is “Messaging” in Marketing Terms?

Many industries use messaging in marketing. It describes the communication your company has with customers. This type of communication is meant to keep customers trusting you and to encourage them to take the next step in their conversion or sales journey.

It’s much more than simply communicating with customers. It’s about creating meaningful messaging to influence customers’ behavior over time. It’s also about getting the customers excited enough so that they take action via the channels you provide.

How Can You Tell if Marketing Worked?

Did your marketing campaign work? Marketing department can be complicated, especially when you are trying to reach new people. You can use five methods to assess whether your marketing campaign is successful.

  • Traffic to websites has increased
  • Increase in social media interaction
  • Always positive feedback from clients or customers
  • Sales or conversions increase
  • Value your own feedback

Effective Marketing Strategies

Marketing campaigns are crucial to any company’s success. Marketing strategies are essential to growing your customer base. You can get help from a professional marketer if you need it. Here are some tips for those who want to do it on their own.

Find Your Target Market

Before you can create a marketing campaign, it is important to identify your target audience segment. You can identify your target market’s needs and provide the products or services they need by conducting market research.

Protect Yourself

The Marketing Department doesn’t count for much if you fail to safeguard your customers’ financial information (as well as your own). So make sure you’re implementing tough measures to protect your business – and your customers – against cyberattacks. With new strains of malware and viruses popping up constantly, routinely updated patches are a must if you want to safeguard financial information from hackers, as well as facilitate data recovery.

Create a Marketing Budget – Marketing Department

Before investing in any marketing strategy, you should create a Marketing Budget. The campaign should be considered for how many people it will reach, how often it will appear, and how long. If you’re launching a new product, a marketing budget will help you stay within your means.

Use Different Types of Media

Social media is one of the best ways to market your product. You can reach millions of people through social media, and they will share your content easily on their profiles. This will generate a positive buzz around your business.

Different media types, including pictures, videos, and text posts, can be used to increase engagement on social networking sites.

Keetria is an entrepreneur, business consultant, and lifestyle wellness coach with 16 years of public relations expertise working with some of the world’s leading brands, media personalities, and entertainers. If you have a question or would like to work together, don’t hesitate to reach out!

The Ingredients Necessary for a Successful Brand Makeover

brandmakeover You’ve likely seen a makeover montage on TV or in the movies before. An ugly duckling (usually a woman, sadly) is taken through a variety of wardrobe changes, hairstyles and other beauty training, usually emerging as a beautiful swan after the process is complete. On the big and small screens this process is hackneyed, but it’s something that can be extremely useful in the world of branding.

Giving your online brand a makeover is no small feat, especially if your brand is well established. Just remember – if the big dogs of business can reinvent their brand image, so can you.

Attracting Different Customers

Sometimes a brand matures or finds a new purpose in the business world. This isn’t bad marketing – sometimes it’s entirely necessary. No matter the reason, it can be hard to take on a new consumer demographic, especially if you want to include a broader audience without completely alienating the original consumers.

The solution here is to isolate the pain point most experienced by your newly desired buyer. Once you discover how to sell to this demographic, you’ll more easily discover how to brand yourself accordingly.

Reestablishing Brand Voice and Personality

Think about one of your favorite companies that has been around for at least 30 years. Do you think their brand voice was the same in the 90s as it is now? Even going back five years can show you a drastically different brand voice a business once held. Times change, and so must a brand’s personality and voice.

A big catalyst for this change is usually culture itself. Think about the year 2016 and how it is extremely shaped by pop culture and global headlines. The way a business speaks reflects that change, and your business must too.

A brand voice and personality doesn’t have to lose professionalism, however. Just because you’re aware of trends and current times doesn’t mean your company has to tweet and post like the average millennial on Twitter. Establish a voice that’s personable and a personality that is friendly and you’ll do just fine.

Upgrading Visuals

Many businesses need to be forced into 2016. What gives away their anachronistic ways? Namely their website and visuals. You can always spot a business that’s anti-modernism based on what their website looks like, and that’s a crowd an innovative business doesn’t want to be lumped in with.

One of the easiest ways to give your brand a makeover is to upgrade your website. Current site designs are minimal and svelte; they retain function while cutting out the fat. How does your current website stand up to the trends of today?

Competition Analysis

If your competition is undergoing a brand makeover, you may want to consider doing the same. Businesses that rebrand themselves introduce themselves to a new spotlight, and you could be left in the dust if your competition beats you to the punch.

Do your research. Does your competition have flaws? If so, what are they? When you compare your own company to your competition, who wins and in what areas? How can you fix this problem? Once you answer these questions, adjust your brand accordingly.

SOB 101: Using Google Hangouts to Build your Business

What is now known as the ultimate tool to poke around the sphere of everyone on the web and get to know them better, Google Hangouts can boost your business. Some of the best aspects are the way in which it incorporates with YouTube, truly the number one portal that anyone goes to for streaming video. Businesses that are both located in the same building have massively enjoyed the ability to open a quick hangout and making sure that ideas are correct, enjoying the added feature of video as a quicker way to convey ideas. Even as modern and virtual as chat and text have become, the ability to really gauge someone’s facial expression who you are doing business with is priceless. Especially in the realms of sales and pre launch development, knowing that a client truly feels comfortable with what is happening is key.

Elements outside of the one-on-one realm:

There are differences between Google Hangouts that vary from a one on one Skype or other medium driven video chat. Let’s say that you are a business who’s major function and selling point is creating infographics. As the conversation progresses, a client or potential user could bring up a question, and you can even throw up the question on the screen. This is part of a very organic process, as conversations between developers, sales people and potential customers can spur buying signs out of even the most apprehensive individual.

When someone can log into Google Hangouts and see a “forum” of sorts instead of a hardcore sales pitch, they may make a decision to follow your business or idea for awhile before they actually make the decision to transact with you on the long term. Some have been a bit shy to jump on the Google platform because of what it takes just to keep up on Facebook and Twitter, but the rewards for those working it dutifully are absolutely there, and the network still ranks 2nd among many who have prowess in the scoring of media avenues.

Letting a prospect know you’d like to “hang out”

While some thought this aspect of Google Hangouts would only be beneficial in the personal coaching realm or beyond, there are so many instances where it just makes sense. Sometimes within the confines of contracts, raising capital and putting the finishing touches on a work project, the face to face connection can help. If you are dealing with a dynamic individual who shares your vision and is there to help you grow, hangouts can help you achieve what you need to in the long run. Having your own hangout in place can really help position your brand. Quite possibly one of the biggest benefits for any business about Google Hangouts is the free information at hand. You can learn about SEO, reaching your target market, hear success stories from a much more personal avenue, and always be a constant beacon to others looking for the same type of targeted knowledge.


Creating a sense of Urgency for Your Product; making sure the Purchase is prompt


Why the rush?

In any climate, there will always be a desire to get the customer to want to buy the product offered quickly. Your main objective as someone who is offering a product is to create urgency to purchase so the desire does not go away. One thing that cannot be stressed enough is the amount to which consumers are bombarded! You may be offering something that is of complete relevance, and even on the verge of trendy (a great attribute), but if the buyer decides to procrastinate, they may forget they were going to make the purchase altogether. If what you are offering is of true quality, there are most likely buyers out there that are ready, but are just dragging their feet.

Marketing genius Zig Zigler even said once that “no hurry” was one of the tragic downfalls (or obstacles) hindering a great product’s sales results. Once a certain window of time filters its way through the sand dial, you may be headed down the wrong path to create emotion. One statistic that is incredibly relevant as far as the online realm is that 55% of all local searches are done with intent to buy. Therefore if you are in the business of having a purchase portal or shop online, it is always a great marketing move to give incentive to the first respondents, and lay the objective out well as a reward or freebie. In this age of hurried customers, it is always going to be beneficial to have proper search engine optimization as well, to be on the first page of search engines for the 55% of those shoppers who ARE ready to buy.

Some of the best Ways to create sought-after urgency

Finding out what really ails, or pains, your prospect is of grave importance. Whether it happens through demographic research, even taking note of comments on blogs, or seeing where your competitors are taking strides, you’ll be thankful when you master this task. It seems that only in the medical provisions or health fields that you would take to this practice, but one must look deeper. Areas like grocery stores, fashion, and auto manufacturing can all benefit from finding out what ails and pains your prospect; whether it’s long lines, lack of compassion, or poor customer service. One marketing guru on his blog tells us that “If you take fifty prospects at any given time, only one of them a month is really ready to buy”. Now, that may sound extreme, but people have a lot of different avenues that their money trickles down to.

Fear of loss as a motivator can work for you, although it may not be the same as the old trick of simply stating you have “limited supplies”. This is where you may use your advertising medium to ask the prospect questions, such as if they could live without certain amenities or durable goods. Using urgency on the day your product actually launches is also of incredibly high value in the marketing realm. It can be difficult to track results without metric software (and quite a bit of luck), but there are also tier sets of urgency that work well with restaurants, vacation destinations, or even merchandise like t shirts. You can state that the first ten buyers get the product at one price, the next 15 at another price, etc.

One thing that most buyers know is that they do not want an infomercial barking at them and making the sense of urgency so dire that it deafens any other of their senses. Yes, it can be done effectively, but digital marketing and of course tactics like Pinterest campaigns with colorful infographics are more appealing with the savvy users of today. One real challenge these days can also be discerning whether or not you have done something wrong in your campaign and urgency creation, or if you are just dealing with yet another dip in buying confidence.

There are basic fundamentals such as back to school and other seasonal marketing bandwagons that occur, and it is definitely getting harder than ever to gauge where these lines overlap into just sheer luck and consumer splurging. Although the infomercials of yesterday can be a rough guideline to creating a sense of urgency, there are plenty of mediums to do so. Once you can accomplish them proficiently, you will see an immediate reward; in the form of coveted (and potentially repeat) new revenue.

Email Marketing Newsletters; Fine Tuning Elements of a Necessary Outreach Tool


There is a lot to be said for the Email marketing newsletter, and a lot of fables that surround its existence. Some quickly categorize the email newsletter as a tool that only reaches consumers who are already buying the product but this is not the case.

Once you have a great content writer and designer who can work up the copy, don’t pretend that it is blasting out to deaf ears. It is hard to pinpoint sometimes who is reading it and what response it is generating, but as long as you are covered in other areas like YouTube videos and social media, it can generally be a good idea to send out newsletters. Stores like Guitar Center and Musician’s Friend claim good response from the tool; and use it to attach special promotions as well. Here are quick pointers to keep a newsletter fresh and relevant.

Do not make unsubscribing difficult

Many designers are tempted to put unsubscribe buttons and info way at the bottom of the page; all this does is keep people on the list who don’t want to be. It is ok to lose a few casualties in the trenches of the marketing war, and yes, the folks you do lose sometimes come back. The number one reason is if your product or service is irrelevant at the moment, and then someone comes into their life that needs it. Definitely make unsubscribing as painless as possible.

Study and follow the laws

Depending on where you are, you may have to put “advertisement” in your title line, even though some of this has changed. The CAN-SPAM laws are the most widely known to research off the bat; it is a true nightmare to get your company blocked off of providers and blacklisted in other ways. It usually has to start with a customer making a lot of noise, but there definitely are risks involved. It is much better to do just a bit of research before hurriedly sending out your next batch, the laws can change frequently regarding the basics of “what you send and who you send it to”.

Gauging how well you are reaching out

There are some good metrics out there to measure exactly what happened on the last batch of emails or newsletters, and they can really pay off so you fine tune your craft. A service known as Campaign Monitor helps you sort out the response rates among other stats once you are done sending for the week or month. Some of the important things to track on an email campaign are:

Forwards: see if anyone sent your content to their friends

Actual conversion: those who followed through, went to your website or offering and somehow took you up on what you are selling or providing

Click rates: shows curiosity level aroused, the recipient opened the email and at least clicked a link, and have been steered in the right direction

Open rates: how many people opened the email and scanned quickly or read it

Tweaking the appearance of the letter

Many letters look very intimidating to create even for the best designer. They almost literally jump, dance and sing right on the page! There are colors and designs that are safe for certain kind of niches, but this is where you really need to have an extensive meeting with the team before you get started. If you look at a newsletter for a steakhouse, it is very robust, brown and red, and may have close-up photos of new meal offerings. If you are doing a clothing, crafts or boutique store you can achieve a kind of “sensible Sally” feel by just using circles and bright lollipop themed colors. Placement is key, however, and you really need to tweak the copy before it is ready.

Blue and black colors work well for dsl and cable tv themed offerings, as blue fonts are a good choice for technology and IT fields. Many newsletters are successful because a company that you would not picture being animated in the least creates a cartoon character and involves them in the newsletter/update emails. If really done right, this can generate a lot more curiosity clicks then just a hard copy with dull information.

Remember Domino’s Pizza’s “Avoid the Noid” character? There are many reincarnations of this type of lovable icon, and customers sometimes cannot resist their appeal. The things that can be done with newsletters now are so modern, so deep and enriched, that when you reach a customer’s smartphone with your email they will also tinker, scroll and click. That is exactly what your company wants, and with a little preparation, you can jazz up a newsletter to be anticipated, instead of: well, you know…. Put in a not so useful place.