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There are a million different ways you can market your business on and offline. Although that can be a good thing, it’s becoming more and more difficult to be seen and remembered by consumers. Because of this, it’s important to create a clear, concise marketing strategy for the overall success of your business.
So, what is a marketing strategy?
A marketing strategy is your business’s overall roadmap. Running a business without a marketing strategy is like driving with a blindfold on.
Think of it like this: if you don’t know where you’re going, how will you know when you’ve got there?
Creating a clear plan for your marketing strategy will give you direction in nearly every decision you make in your business.
The key to a successful marketing strategy is a marketing funnel. Creating a marketing funnel will help you organize and implement your marketing strategy, allowing you to visualize your customer’s purchasing journey from start to finish.
At Ajax Union, we use a proven 3-step process to create strategies that work.
Step 1: Strategy
Step 2: Assets
Step 3: Execution
Read this article on How Ajax Union Creates B2B Marketing Funnels That Drive Business. to understand how each step plays a vital role in the success of your marketing.
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So you’ve already discovered the value of webinars. These online seminars are an incredibly effective way to communicate with your target audience. They’re ready, able and eager to hear what you have to say – what an awesome upsell opportunity!
Before you dive right into your next presentation, take a look at this quick cheat-sheet of tips to help you deliver the greatest webinar the Internet has ever seen.
*Prepare to be BLOWN AWAY*
- Include a picture of yourself with a short bio on your first slide. This builds trust and adds a human element.
- Start speaking right away: if not, visitors will think something is wrong with their audio or they logged on at wrong time… #awkward.
- Start talking off a prepared script: this prevents stutters, stumbles and lost train of thought.
- Engage, engage, engage: ask questions, encourage comments, create prompts, start a discussion! If not, guests WILL space out.
- Focus on telling stories about how people use the product, service or idea that you’re selling.
- Include a quick poll: how many trucks in your fleet? Are you in the NYC area? How many products do you deliver in a month? Ask your audience to respond in the chat section.
- Get people to take a specific action. Download a handout, Like us on Facebook, raise your hand if you want me to email you a special something.
- Create a follow-up sequence, like another webinar, email campaign, etc. Always end with a “What happens next?”
- Give the participants an opportunity to share the webinar. Use a hashtag. Offer an incentive if they do! (like a mini contest)
- HAVE FUN! If your webinar is boring, it’s guaranteed that you won’t have visitors for your next one. Keep it light, engaging, informative and short. Attention spans are short – use every second of your guests’ time well!
When’s YOUR next webinar? Send us an invite! Until then, comment below with tips we may have missed, or email your questions about the cheat sheet above to firstname.lastname@example.org. Looking forward to hearing you slay your next webinar!
D.H., Marketing Support: Hi Joe! Let’s get straight to it: What is ABM?
Joe Apfelbaum, CEO of Ajax Union: ABM, or Account Based Marketing, is a new methodology best used by companies looking to gain more revenue by targeting the RIGHT accounts. You can have 100 accounts you service, but just 3 of those clients can account for 50% of your revenue. Imagine if you can close just 3 more of those big-bucks accounts: you’ll double your revenue while spending half the money, time and effort! This is GAME CHANGING!
DH: It is! But who should be using ABM? Ecommerce websites? B2B companies?
JA: Any company with accounts that have a large average order. If you have a potential client that you know will spend a significant amount with you, you would invest marketing dollars proportionate to the amount they’ll spend, right?
DH: Right. If I know a particular retailer will spend $10k a month with me, I’d be willing to spend up to $1,000 a month to target them in my advertising.
JA: Exactly! So any company that can afford to target these specific accounts should already be using ABM. Once you build your ideal “persona”, or characteristics of your ideal lead, you can start crafting personalized campaigns just for them.
DH: Amazing. Can you give an example of ABM working its magic in the real world?
JA: Sure. Here at Ajax Union, we work with a logistics company that services about 1,000 companies every month, while 10 of those clients accounted for 80% of their revenue! Perfect ABM playing field. Our goal is to help this company determine exactly what they’re looking for in a client, find potential leads who fit that criteria, and get those leads into their sales funnel. We’re finding more and more of those leads every day and targeting them in our campaigns, keeping them piping hot for our client to close on.
DH: Sounds like a no-brainer to me.
JA: Me too. And all our clients would agree.
DH: I’m sold! But if I wanted to start using ABM for my business, where would I start?
JA: It’s a simple, three-step process.
STEP 1: Build your list of ideal potential clients. Your criteria could be where they’re located, how much they’re likely to spend, what their corporate structure looks like or anything else you believe would make them an “amazing” client.
STEP 2: Come up with a strategy to target each potential lead. Did their CEO ever like you on Facebook? Create a post all about his business and how great they are. Open up the floor for meaningful conversation!
STEP 3: Get them to KNOW you, TRUST you and LIKE you. It’s as simple as guiding them through the funnel. (Unsure what I mean by funnel? Check out this infographic). Educate them about your business, nurture them into a hot lead and, most importantly, add value to their business. That’s what builds trust and gets leads to raise their hands.
DH: So why should B2B companies work with Ajax Union to craft an ABM strategy?
JA: Amazing question. Ajax Union is one of the only agencies NATIONWIDE to exclusively service B2B companies while specializing in ABM support. We successfully run ABM campaigns to help our clients maximize their ROI. Just ask our clients what working with Ajax Union has done for their business: social proof is all you need!
DH: Is there anything you can offer me if I’m not quite ready to go all-in?
JA: Sure. Check out our new technology stack, B2Bx. This monthly subscription tool puts the power of the Internet to work for your business by keeping you informed of how visitors interact with your site and your sales team. We’ve seen 10x increases in conversions – it’s seriously mind-blowing. Request a free demo so we can talk about it in person!
DH: Thank you so much, Joe! If anyone reading this has more questions about ABM, B2Bx or Ajax Union, where should we direct them?
JA: My pleasure! You can leave a comment below, shoot us an email or visit our site. We’d love to get to know you and help you make money!
When it comes to social media channels, over 70% of people in the United States have at least one profile on social media. New users are constantly joining the virtual world on various platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat. We all know social media allows us to connect, share and communicate with others that hold similar interests and social circles.
Businesses of all backgrounds are capitalizing on social media’s popularity. With ever-expanding opportunities to find their ideal customers, social media bridges a very intimate gap between the consumer and the seller, connecting with them in relatable, specific and organic aspects. How can a business wade the waters between sales-forward advertising and establishing lasting relationships? The answer is 2 words, Brand Advocacy.
What Is Brand Advocacy?
Brand advocacy is about pooling resources together, such as people with a large fanbase and following, to share a brand, product or message on their social channels. In other words, it’s a way to spread the love with those who would otherwise miss out or look past the opportunity when presented to them. By sharing a message with fans who trust and interact with you, the results are of higher quality. People who leave comments and product reviews on a company or host site like TripAdvisor, Yelp and Houzz are indirect advocates. They are sharing honest feedback without an incentive.
How Does Brand Advocacy Function?
Brand advocacy is a successful organic way to gain results for a new startup company, feature product or a simple blog post. You don’t need to wait on promoting something important until your page reaches your fan goal of 50,000 followers (which of course takes longer that expected). Instead announce it to your employees, family and friends. Ask them to share the post or create their own content to discuss what you want to share. Send them a link to leave a review on a third party site. It’s amazing to see how far one Facebook post or tweet can travel. It just might even go viral!
Find Your Brand Advocates
First, you must identify what kind of content or information you want to share with the virtual world. Once that is mapped out, it’s time to do some digging. Find people with large followings on social media who share an interest in what your business or startup has to offer. Connecting with people in your niche is the most valuable, so everyone can benefit from the relationship. You can also reach out to top customers, employees, family and anyone in between. Go all out; you can never have too many friends on Facebook and followers on Instagram.
Everyone Loves Candy
The last step is providing an incentive. Of course asking for favors is an acceptable method, but the best brand advocates are ones who feel loyal to you and understand that they are appreciated. Offering them a complimentary service, gift certificate or treating them to a nice dinner, are all modest ways of making a trade without putting a price on it. Sending an email with a redeemable coupon code to anyone who rates your brand or leaves a product review is another viable option. The little steps go a long way with building up brand awareness and solidifying the brand persona.
When it comes to adding value to any startup or business, both large and small, brand advocates can be very influential without the wasteful advertising costs. Add in an element of surprise to your customer service, like putting a small gadget into every delivery or shoot a behind the scenes video and send it to your email lists.
Real Brands, Real Brand Advocates
Give people something to talk about. Make them brand advocates without even asking. And be sure to stay active on all social channels (especially on Twitter and Snapchat) to scout out natives who can support you and join the community. Remember, happy people are the ones who spend money and keep you in business. #StartAdvocating
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