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Archive for 2009

Landing Page Tips – Part One

This is the first post in a series covering Landing Page tips to help you improve the performance of your campaign or website Landing Pages. Follow these tips, and see your Landing Pages generate more leads, orders and sales. Landing Page Tips 1. Send People to the Right Page If your online marketing campaigns send [...]

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Exclusive Interview with PINK’s Cynthia Good

Recently, I caught up with Cynthia Good, CEO, founding editor and co-owner of the award-winning PINK Magazine, www.PINKmagazine.com. PINK reaches more than two million professional women every year and has raised more than $60,000 for nonprofits benefiting women and girls. Before becoming an entrepreneur, Cynthia was a news anchor on television stations nationwide, created her [...]

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Managing a mommy business…with 5 simple steps!

We are women. Watch us Manage! I have people ask me, usually men, how do you do it all? How do you take care of the family, and your business, and be so management oriented?  Did you study business management in college, get an MBA? No sir, I did not even finish high school. I [...]

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Benefits of a POS System for your Hospitality-based Business

Chances are, you’ve seen a POS system in action. “POS” is an abbreviation for “point-of-sale-” the most basic POS systems calculate payment amounts and process customer payments, similar to a cash register. However, they aren’t just calculators. Most hospitality-based systems use POS systems in order to track inventory and labor costs, forecast business volumes and [...]

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The Hymn Project Finds a Niche-Part One

Do you have an idea for a great, niche product or service but think it’s already available? You may be able to start a great business with your idea. Check out this interview with Tasha Golden who helped to create “The Hymn Project,” www.thehymnprojectCDs.com. What is The Hymn Project? “The Hymn Project” is a 7-CD [...]

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Going Beyond the Website Conversion to Measure Success

A website conversion is when a site visitor takes the action that the business desires. For a retailer, this is typically an online purchase. For a B2B company, this is typically when a lead is generated through a form submission, download or call.

And there are many other flavors of website conversions as well. For a publisher, it can be Page Views (so the publisher can increase advertising rates). For a social community site, it can be Time-On-Site and participation. For a recipe site, it can be recipe printouts.

Website conversions drive business success. Measuring website conversions is useful and helps us to understand how to continually refine our website to meet the needs of our customers.

What I would argue, though, is that we need to take the next step and measure lifetime value of a customer to our business as well. If you are a retailer, you can aim to make a sale and measure your website’s success accordingly. But you should also take the more holistic view, see the potential for a lifetime of sales, and do everything you possibly can to build a long-term relationship with the person.

So, instead of constructing your website exclusively to drive a single sale, construct a process that:

  • Drives continual customer touch-points
  • Makes your brand relevant in their lives
  • Delivers benefits to your customers continually

Let’s say you sell cookies through your website. Offering a 20% discount for a purchase may drive short-term, one-time sales. But how about tying your cookies into your customers’ lifestyles rather than focusing on a one-time discount, which does nothing to build a relationship with your customer.

With cookies, you can offer different types of packages – is the customer a mom looking for a treat to include in her child’s brown bag lunch? Or is it a person looking for fun family desserts? Or is it a person looking for great gifts for family and friends? Or is it an office worker looking to satisfy afternoon hunger? Define the different ways that your cookies fit into your customers’ lives and design packages and solutions accordingly.

The mom looking for a brown bag lunch treat? Offer her a package with brightly colored, individually wrapped, mini-sized cookies for each day of the week. Offer a subscription service so that the mom is sent a new set of cookies each week. Offer a chart that matches the best type of cookie to various types of lunches.

And if you felt compelled to offer a discount?

Well, instead of a one-time discount, what if your website offered the 20% discount for an ANNUAL cookie-lovers membership instead? In this way, instead of focusing on a one-time sale and then HOPING that the customer will come back, you are building a business model on a more solid, predictable, longer-term foundation.

Within this framework, you can deliver fresh new cookies on a monthly or weekly basis. Further to this, you can offer additional, value-add specials throughout the course of the year. You can build a deeper relationship through conversations with your customers. You can provide access to an exclusive website filled with special offers, fantastic cookie recipes and a forum for their voice to be heard:

  • Offer members an exclusive opportunity to make recommendations for new cookies
  • Offer them the exclusive opportunity to taste test new recipes that are not yet available to the general public
  • Hold an exclusive cookie recipe contest, offering to sell the winning cookie

The possibilities are endless, and they apply just as equally to retail as they do to B2B, publishers and just about any other type of website.

These are just a few suggestions to help you construct a great website that drives your business growth over the long-term. If you need additional help, let me know below or at www.WebsiteMarketingNOW.com. Thanks!

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A website conversion is when a site visitor takes the action that the business desires. For a retailer, this is typically an online purchase. For a B2B company, this is typically when a lead is generated through a form submission, download or call. And there are many other flavors of website conversions as well. For [...]

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Small Business Profile: Lead411

To follow up on a previous post requesting feedback on topics and offering to highlight members of the community, I learned of the BTS Blog started by Tom Blue, co founder of Lead411— BTS stands for Business, Technology and Sales.  The BTS Blog is dedicated to discussing startups, business trends, bootstrapping, tech companies, sales and [...]

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How Someone Ripped off Our Twitter Name and We Fought Back

You’ve probably read our StartupNation advice about how to leverage the value of social media to benefit your business. (You can listen to a first and second podcast on this subject, too.) But a word of warning: What you may not know–and should be prepared to overcome–is that just like there are squatters on website [...]

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The CLOSER!

Yes, it is hard to admit that I am not a good deal CLOSER! I was having lunch with my fabulous business partner Brenda today, and her wonderful husband Tom. I was complaining to them both that I seem to be having a hard time communicating with my clients, and how I was getting frustrated [...]

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23 Google Tools for Your Website

Are you aware that Google offers a variety of tools to help you with your website performance and promotion? The pervasive search engine company has a library of information, support materials, blogs, videos and applications all at your fingertips. Here are some of the essential Google tools for your website to ensure that your website [...]

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Mass Retailers gone….MEDICAL?

While you would expect to drive down the street and see a hospital or urgent care facility in your own neighborhood; would you expect to see a medi-clinic in your local Wal-Mart?  Mass retailers like Wal-Mart and CVS drug stores have been in the medi-clinic business? Move over Mc Donald’s! Why not? In this economy, [...]

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Are You Guilty of These 3 Web Sins?

Whether you are creating a new Web site or reviewing the one you already have, there are three key factors to keep in mind. Are you guilty of these three Web site sins? 1. Visitors can’t get the information they need. This is pretty obvious, but often overlooked. It can be enticing to use fancy videos, [...]

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StartupNation on ABC News Now, helps an entrepreneur in need

Tory Johnson, frequent reporter on ABC’s Good Morning America show and anchor of the ABC NewsNow series focusing on careers asked for a little StartupNation love recently. One of her faithful fans, Natalie, of ChicSweets, asked for ideas about how to move her business forward on a variety of levels, especially in the transition from part-time [...]

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Easy Cost Savings for Small Business: Payroll Outsourcing

Effective July 24th, 2008, the federal minimum wage increases to $7.25. A few small businesses may have needed that reminder- those that process their own employee paychecks will need to make adjustments not just to wages, but to tax withholding amounts, employee savings plans, and other accounts. Businesses that already outsource payroll services don’t need [...]

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Small Business Profile: Guideposts.com

To follow up on a previous post requesting feedback on topics and offering to highlight members of the community, I learned of Guideposts.com—a site devoted to helping people find and reach their potential. This site interested me not so much from an entrepreneurial standpoint, but because of its history. The nonprofit organization was founded in [...]

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5 Killer B2B Digital Strategies

Companies that sell to other businesses (Business-To-Business, or B2B), know that there are certain aspects to their online marketing that take on added importance when compared to Business-To-Consumer, or B2C, online marketing. In order to fuel business growth online, B2B firms should explore the following five killer B2B digital strategies: 1. Speak to the Right [...]

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How Are You Promoting Your Lemonade Stand?

Over the 4th of July, I was walking around an affluent neighborhood and about every block or so, there were children selling lemonade. Lemonade Stand 1. At the first stand, the kids were yelling from a bench about their lemonade and how much it cost. They were so loud that people were running to get [...]

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Improve Website Navigation & Improve Your Conversion Rates

When people land on your website, they are typically looking for something specific. Help them find it by delivering amazingly easy navigation on your site. Good website navigation leads to new customers and increased conversion rates. Poor website navigation causes frustration and anger. Which do prefer? So, in the spirit of creating many happy site [...]

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