The latest from our blog
It’s not always easy to quantify how effective your marketing efforts are. Are all those tweets your sending out actually converting into paying clients? Is it worth going to endless networking breakfasts or should you start hanging out in LinkedIn groups more? What about paid-for advertising, in print and online?
The truth is that it usually takes several marketing touch points to get a cold lead to a point where you can make a sale, especially within the B2B services market and more so as the price point increases.
Last month, I wrote about why your business needs a client persona. In a nutshell, if you don’t know who exactly you’re aiming your marketing efforts at, there’s a good chance you’re going to do it wrong.
And a general segment of the population just isn’t specific enough - you need that one named person who you can picture in your head every time you’re wondering whether a tweet or a blog post or a newsletter or a sales page is relevant to your target audience.
When Lidia launched Visuable in 2015, the plan was to offer a visual marketing consultancy service, but she soon found her distinct style of photography and design in demand. So the business pivoted and now Lidia works with brands to help them create and communicate their message in an authentic way. Her clients tend to be female entrepreneurs, consultants and people who have commercialised their passion - yoga teachers, writers, hypnotherapists - as well as small businesses with a strong sense of place, such as coffee shops and independent retailers.
My first website was embarrassing. There’s no other way to describe it. I used a free Wordpress template and chose cutesy colours (soft pink and a rather sickly green) with a banner image featuring all sorts of decorative stuff from my house like yarn and colouring pencils and a Japanese fan from my first visit to Kyoto as an undergraduate.
To be fair, I was starting out as a freelance journalist and writing a lot about interiors and crafts and things, so it was more relevant than it might sound. But the point was, although I worked very hard on it, there was a definite sheen of amateurism over the whole thing.
The best way to get better at writing for your business is to practice, right? Well, not quite. In fact, the actual act of tapping on your keyboard and forming letters into words, words into sentences, and sentences into paragraphs is pretty much the end point.
Before all that, there are some key stages you need to go through to ensure that once you do reach the typing stage, you’re already well on your way to creating effective business copy that will achieve the goals you’ve set for it.
Since founding Winbox in 2013, email marketing expert Marc Woodland has become a well known face on the Bristol business scene. Named Entrepreneur of the Moment by Entrepreneurial Spark Bristol, he’s also appeared on the infamous Gary Vee show.
Winbox works with small businesses across Bristol and beyond, and Marc and his team help their clients gain open and click through rates that are usually around twice industry standards.
Do you remember the blog post I wrote on the 10 quotes about content marketing that hit the nail on the head? I looked back over it the other day and was a little ashamed to see that only two of the 10 quotes were from women (discounting the bonus quote from me).
Are there less women doing great things within the marketing industry? Not a chance! In fact, if I think about some of the people whose marketing abilities I most admire and have been most influenced by, they’re generally women.
The idea of creating a client persona is not a new one, so I’m always surprised by how many business owners haven’t gone through the process. Some feel that a broad demographic band (women aged 35-55, for example) is enough. Others say their services are suitable for everyone, which might technically be true but kind of misses the point.
Because the process of creating a client persona is not about saying you can only work with 28-year-old men called Sebastian who have beards and man buns and drink nothing but artisan coffee.
For punctuation pedants, a misplaced apostrophe is the cause of much rage. Their blood boils at the sight of this elevated comma being used in the wrong place. Personally, I try to stay mellow about it - after all, I can’t kick a ball in a straight line. Everyone has different skills, right?
But when it comes to business, there’s simply no excuse for getting the basics wrong. While the odd typo is inevitable, consistently poor spelling, punctuation and grammar will mark you out as unprofessional.
What on earth did the humble hash symbol do before social media elevated it to celebrity status? I honestly can’t remember having used it much, except to signal I was finished entering a number on a telephone keypad.
But today, the hashtag is a powerful little piece of kit in your marketing toolbox. For example, as I wrote in November’s post about brand tribes, it can unify a group of people in a way that makes them that much easier to target as a customer segment. It can also be used by organisations to generate conversation, build brand awareness and even underpin whole campaigns.