These two kinds of pages on LinkedIn certainly both have their uses, but it's important to keep the differences clear in your mind. A good way of looking at this is to think about how Facebook does things: a business page and a personal page are two different things. A LinkedIn company page is like Facebook's business page, while a profile is more like a personal page.
Regular customers are the sign of a successful business and something to be proud of. Many businesses build relationships with clients that last years or even decades. But can you become over reliant on current customers? Yes you can. As your relationship with a repeat customer grows, and the value of their orders increases, this has an inevitable impact on your business. Most successful SMEs fall into this pattern after a few years, with a large proportion of business being concentrated in a handful of large contracts. This can enable SMEs to streamline their operation and cut back on marketing costs. However the strategy has some risks:
The majority of prospects will arrive on your website from a search engine. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) works to improve your company's organic ranking with Google and other providers, making you stand out more and bringing more customers to you. Pay Per Click advertising (PPC) is a more direct approach, where you pay for better search engine visibility – such as the "Sponsored Links" you'll see at the head of a Google results page. Let's look at how the two options compare.
You may currently have an office or shop, which oversees all your business operations and the distribution of your products to customers. However if you are wanting to find ways to increase your sales quicker, reduce your business operating costs and increase profit margins for your business, an ecommerce website is an effective way forward for you.
The Internet is a powerful platform providing a broad awareness of e-commerce websites. There are millions of people searching the internet everyday, looking for products and services. Online shopping is increasing year on year and is being seen as a convenient method to purchase products, where you can also buy at any time in the day.
LinkedIn lets you publish two types of written content directly to the platform. Articles are long-form pieces that let you show your expertise in a relatively in-depth way: articles can often run to over 1,000 words. LinkedIn blog posts are usually shorter and more anecdotal, though still professional in tone. They'll appear to your connections via their newsfeeds.
Offers and incentives can be a great way to help replace the 5% - 10% of your customer base that every small to medium sized business loses each and every year. Whilst the profit margin can sometimes be slightly smaller, offers stimulate repeat purchases from existing customers and attract a new set of loyal customers which in the long run is highly beneficial!
You may have often thought of the following questions when setting aside funds for marketing efforts:
- How much money should I spend on marketing?
- What percentage of my turnover should I put into the marketing budget or spend on marketing?
All companies need to engage in marketing activities if they want to succeed long term – you can’t rely on referrals and chance enquiries to deliver predictable growth. However, for busy SMEs with stretched resources it can be difficult to decide whether to task your marketing activities to in-house staff or to hire a professional agency. Let's look at the pros and cons of each option:
Many businesses rely on consumer data to reach new audiences, using a generic marketing approach in the hope of making a few meaningful connections. While this strategy may have yielded results in the past, today’s consumers are continually bombarded by marketing messages; whether in-store, online or via the media. With so many channels vying for attention, it’s easy for your message to get missed, filtered or blocked. Over 37% of internet users already use ad blockers, so the content you display in other areas must attract and engage with your customers. Unless your marketing activities are highly focussed to reach and connect with a predetermined target audience, you could be wasting time and resources, as well as destroying the value within your data.
Goal setting is essential for measuring success (or failure) in marketing. Without goals, a campaign risks drifting off target without achieving anything of substance. In this introductory article we discuss how to set the right type of goals for your marketing campaign.