Category

Training

Is it worth me considering PR as a way of getting my name out there?

By PR - media relations, Public speaking, Training No Comments

I was asked this question within The Marketing Compass website by Walter Blackburn, who is an experienced public speaking and presentations skills trainer. His company is Presenting Success – well worth a look.

Here is my response: Yes, PR works and it is a great way of getting your name out there. If you are happy to talk to journalists and reach out to them, it can have a considerable impact on your business. PR is a great way of generating brand awareness.

When I ran a PR and markeiting communications agency, we took small ‘invisible’ enterprises and made them well known within their industry and target markets.

With regards to your business, it would be a good idea to contact the local consumer and business media in order to let them know that you are there. Virtually everyone needs to improve their public speaking and presentation skills and business owners and decision makers may well pick up on a story in their local press (for us, this would be The Maidenhead Advertiser, which is a well respected and long established weekly newspaper which runs a business section every month).

Why not build a list of media contacts with whom you could exchange emails and have telephone conversations? They may wish to interview you or they may request copy from you in terms of articles and case studies.

In the 21st century, PR fits in with social media. Many journalists use Twitter and you can connect with them there.”

Marketing advice

By Marketing strategy, Success, Training No Comments


You can get marketing advice from books, seminars and the internet. The challenge is that this advice is generic and not tailored for your business. The following list may help and I have provided a couple of ways that you can receive 1-2-1 advice, at the end.

Marketing can help you to attract more customers, increase your turnover and profitability and spend less time chasing new business, amongst other things. It can help you to improve customer loyalty and retention rates and make your business more valuable, should you ever decide to sell it.

Here is some general marketing advice:

*  Think about your marketing strategy. It is all too easy to become lost in the detail.

*  Write down your marketing objectives, starting with turnover and profitability.

* Create a marketing plan.

*  Stay focused on your objectives, no matter what happens.

*  It is a good idea to have a concise, written, marketing plan.

*  Review your plan once a month.

*  Marketing is all about customers.

*  Which customer segments are you targeting and can you describe them to me?

*  Think about how you are positioning your business, in relation to your competitors?

*  Build a brand, not just a business.

*  Make your pricing part of your marketing strategy.

*  Productise your services.

*  Decide whether you are going to do the marketing yourself, or outsource anything, i.e. website development.

*  With regards to promotional activities, are they:
a) Primarily time based i.e. your time
b) Based on a modest budget + your time
c) Primarily budget based i.e. using marketing agencies and / or marketing staff

*  Have enough people heard of you? (Marketers call this ‘brand awareness’).

*  Spend more time working on your website and in particular, its content.

*  Are you generating enough sales enquiries?

* How much time will you spend on marketing activities each day, week, month?

* How will you measure progress and success? Look at your websites stats, such as Google Analytics, at least once a month. Count the number of sales leads that you receive and find out where they come from.

My best marketing advice tip is to keep learning on a continual basis. You can do so here: The Marketing Compass

If you are looking for marketing advice, look for a consultant with a proven track record. They should be prepared to spend some time listening to you and your unique situation and requirements.

You should expect to receive specific ideas and action points that are relevant to your enterprise and resources.

Nigel Temple is an independent marketing consultant. He has helped over 3,000 enterprises of all shapes and sizes to improve their results.

You can book Nigel for a one-off Marketing TurboCharge session to review / improve your marketing results. You can email him via nigel@nigeltemple.com or call him on: 01628 773128

Windows Snipping Tool for screen grabs / screenshots

By Internet marketing, Software, Technology, Training No Comments

Rather than emailing someone with a detailed description of something on a web page, wouldn’t it be easier to sent them an image instead? Perhaps with an area of the image circled in red and / or some text highlighted in yellow?

Similarly, if you write blogs, e-books or books about software, having the ability to save screen grabs would be helpful.

The Microsoft Windows snipping tool makes it easy to select an area of your screen, i.e. a section of a web page or PDF document and copy it into an email or Word document.

You can add notes, save the snip or email it from the Snipping Tool window. Or you can use Ctrl V to paste your snip into an email or document.

You can capture any of the following types of snips:

    • Free-form snip. Draw a free-form shape around an object.
    • Rectangular snip. Drag the cursor around an object to form a rectangle.
    • Window snip. Select a window, i.e. a browser window or dialog box.
    • Full-screen snip. Capture the entire screen.

After you capture a snip, it is copied to the Snipping Tool window.

You can annotate your snip by using the pen feature.

Here are the ways to open the Snipping Tool in different versions of Windows:


Here is an article from Microsoft, with more detail:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/help/4027213/windows-open-snipping-tool-and-take-a-screenshot

 

 

Google AdWords training

By Google AdWords, Internet marketing, Training No Comments

It is all too easy to get lost within Google AdWords screens and options, isn’t it? In particular, I have noticed that the underlying strategy for many AdWords users is wrong. This means that they don’t generate as much business as they should do, for a given monthly spend.

Google AdWords does work, as long as you are prepared to either:

A. Spend a considerable amount of time learning how to set up, test, monitor and tune Campaigns, Ad groups and Ads (not to mention keyword research).

Or:

B. Pay someone to do it all for you. The challenge is that there will be a built in additional cost every month, for as long as you are running your AdWords Campaigns.

The alternative is to get some training, so that you can learn what works and what doesn’t.

In competitive markets, if you go with the crowd and produce “me to” advertising and promotion, you won’t get noticed.

I offer Google AdWords strategic advice and training for companies. In addition, this is part of NavigatorPlus membership of The Marketing Compass.

For more information, either email me, call 01628 773128 or fill in this form (please refer to “AdWords” within your message):

Marketing confidence

By Marketing strategy, Nigel Temple, Psychology, Success, Training No Comments

Nigel TempleI have noticed that the word ‘confidence’ has come up in numerous conversations recently. For example, during one of my marketing workshops, a delegate told me that they wanted to be confident when it comes to using software, communicating with their marketplace and updating colleagues.

Where does confidence come from? The simple answer is ‘knowledge’. The challenge is the exponential rise in complexity of marketing arising from the digital age. In the last century, part of my training involved visiting the firm of printers that the marketing agency I was working for used regularly. I spent a day talking to professional printers who had spent years learning their craft. I did not want to become a printer, I wanted to gain a conceptual understanding of the process so that I could liaise between the client and the printer.

Today, many enterprises do most of their marketing themselves. They probably outsource the development of their website and some other tasks. However, once it is up and running, adding new content to their website such as images and routine tasks such as blogging are usually down to them. This means that they have to become adept at using a CMS (Content Management System) such as WordPress and image manipulation software such as Adobe Photoshop. What is more, they have to become professional copywriters and get to grips with syntax, idiom, punctuation, grammar and the intricacies of webcopy layout and flow. This is before we contemplate the art and science of SEO.

No wonder that, at times, the person or persons responsible for marketing communications can feel a little daunted. The challenge does not exist in a vacuum. Our lives have become more complex in general terms. A digitised life and economy means that many people are constantly connected to the internet. Software applications, platforms,  communities and tools keep changing, don’t they? New ones arrive on a daily basis.

The Apple iPhone was launched in 2007 and smartphone and tablet usage has skyrocketed in recent years. As I travel into London, for example, it is normal for everyone around me to be glued to a screen of some type. According to Wikipedia, amongst a UK population of 65,511,000 some 68.6% or 44,953,000 people now have a smartphone.  Here is a Wikipedia list of smartphone penetration by country. Apparently, half the UK population now spends half an hour a day on Facebook. The stats roll on and on.

So what are the options for the hard pressed, busy marketer / business owner? They can attend workshops, read books, listen to podcasts and read marketing blogs. Alternatively, they can join a community such as The Marketing Compass or hire a marketing coach or marketing consultant if they would prefer 1-2-1 feedback.

Above all, no matter what is happening in our lives, we must keep learning.

Writing for the Web tips and ideas

By Copywriting, Training, Webcopy, Writing No Comments

The Marketing Compass logoHow many websites do you visit, during a normal working day? How long do you spend looking at each site? Website visitors go foraging. Information foraging is an art which people learn when they use search engines. Some may say that they are lazy. Darwin would have said: “Why waste additional energy if you don’t have to?”

Clear thinking leads to clear writing

Are you clear about:
►  Your subject matter?
►  Who you are writing for?
►  Your objectives?

In a world where many of us have become content publishers, effective webcopy writing skills are in great demand. Here are some tips and ideas for you, based on on my experience so far…

Become your reader

When you are writing webcopy, focus on the reader. Write as if you were writing for one person. Use the word ‘You’ as much as possible.

Use ‘You’ four times as often as you use ‘I’ and ‘We’.

When people read your webcopy, it will come across as more personal and engaging.

Structure your content

You have one second, so make it count.

Website visitors are busy, just like you are. They have limited time and will only give you a moment or two to convince them to continue reading.

10 years ago, I used to tell my seminar audiences that they had four seconds. Five years ago, it was two seconds. Today, you only have one second to get the readers’ attention.

What goes through their mind, both consciously and sub consciously, within a second?

“Does the design look professional?” “Is this going to be hard work to read?” “What does the headline say? Does it look interesting? Is this a solution to my problem? Is it worth reading the first sentence of the text?” “Can I easily find what I want?” “How do I contact them to find out more?”

Signpost your content

Use clear signposting. What does this page offer the reader? Begin by arresting the reader’s attention. Then keep hold of it. Start by telling them what’s in it for them.

Give reasons to read

It is a good idea to use summary paragraphs. These act as ‘advertisements’ for the next section of text.

Give them the big picture

Give the reader the big picture for what lies ahead.

Think about the home pages that you visit. Some of them are hard to understand, aren’t they?

Extracted from Webcopy Writing by Nigel Temple

Copywriting training for digital marketing communication

Marketing learning and training

By Learning, Training No Comments

During 30 years as a marketing consultant, trainer and speaker I have found that much has changed. The world wide web, search technology, the ubiquitous smartphone, Apps, and software as a service come to mind.

To a large extent, the underlying psychology of marketing has not changed as this is based on the human psyche.  As marketing is all about customers – a good place to start is psychology which teaches you about the way that people think. NLP is an interesting topic if you want to learn more about people / customers.

With regards to marketing, what should you learn? It is all too easy to get lost in the details, so you should study strategy. For example, is your enterprise going for market share or rapid profitability? Are you preparing new services / products? Is brand awareness increasing? What is the optimal promotional mix? Are you receiving your fair share of sales enquiries and sales? Your marketing strategy should be encapsulated within a written marketing plan (see Marketing plan training).

If you are writing your own content, you can increase the speed at which you write and the quality of your content via copywriting training.

Learning to use software properly can save a considerable amount of time. In addition, you will discover how to get the best out of the features that are available. See WordPress training and MailChimp training for example.

I read marketing books; magazines (the monthly magazine from the Chartered Institute of Marketing is very good); websites; e-newsletters; and blogs. I also attend marketing workshops and listen to webinars. I now also listen to marketing podcasts (when I am ironing!)

If you would like to learn more about marketing you are welcome to join us at The Marketing Compass.