Volunteering Can Be Good for You AND Your Business
There has been a lot of ugly press lately about the differences between personal and charitable giving, between what a “community organizer” is versus just a person who gets stuff done in their community. I have to say that I am far less interested in any of those drummed up political arguments than I am in hearing why people chose to be involved in their communities, usually in ways that do not seem to profit themselves.
I never did any charitable or political work until after I had kids. I think it was all about me up until then; once my daughter came along I realized that if I wanted to see the world I wanted for her, I was going to have to be a part of making it happen.
I started donating to Samaritan House, a local charity that shelters victims of domestic violence. Once I had one in pre-school I wound up getting involved in PTA, ultimately winding up being PTA president, twice. I then was asked to work on Mark Warner’s campaign for governor. From there I was asked to chair and plan multiple charity events and auctions. And it just never stopped after that.
How does summer treat your business?
I am told by many of our clients that they track several changes to their receivables, contracts, etc. during the summer months. That is not unexpected. A HVAC client has had a really rough winter with it being so mild, so he is delighted with the idea of a hot sticky summer and lots of AC calls, repairs, and installations…not to mention the generators that sell like hotcakes during hurricane season.
Realtors, for whom we handle many sites, also tend to see a sharp spike in business during the summer month, for obvious reasons. And since we live in a tourist town, the local restaurants also usually see increased business as well.
But what if your business does not have a natural uptick in the summertime? How should you be using your most precious resources, your time and money?
Maximize Current Efforts for Online ROI
What are your current marketing efforts? Are they working? You don’t want to take anything away from those efforts to grow your online marketing presence, right? Good news; you don’t have to. There is a lot you can do to maximize your current offline efforts using free or very inexpensive online tie-ins.
Believe it or not, “Direct mail is still a very effective method of marketing, as a matter of fact it is still has one of the highest response rates of all marketing and it is forecasted that between now and 2014 the direct mail industry as a whole will see an increase in business every year.” ~ http://throttle-media.net/tag/traditional-marketing/
How can you use this knowledge online? For starters, direct mail should always feed into your website. In fact, any print marketing; local newspaper ad, postcards, door hangers, should consistently drive new visitors to your website. Always add your website address and your social media accounts to your print marketing.
8 Things NOT to do on Facebook
My internet marketing firm spends all day online. I personally spend a great deal of time on Facebook for business reasons, and have a large and varied friends list. This blog post will help you steer clear of bad etiquette on Facebook.
1. Stalking on Facebook is just as inappropriate as in real life. If you are commenting on and/or liking EVERYTHING that someone posts, that is a form of stalking.
2. Punctuation matters; there is nothing as aggravating as having to mentally insert the missing and or corrected punctuation while I am reading a post. Slow down, and have some respect for your reader.
Yes, Small Business CAN Play with the Big Boys!
The Internet has leveled the playing field for small business in many ways, even with larger companies having the advantage of big bucks. Large advertising dollars can pay for expensive pay-per-click campaigns, expensive social media contests with expensive prizes and expensive tie-ins with other forms of advertising.