3 Tips to Improve Your Email Marketing Effectiveness

Here are two email stats which reinforce the role of high value email as part of your mix; people who buy products via email spend 138% more than those who didn't receive email offers, and 44% of email recipients made at least one purchase last year based on a promotional email.



Based on this good news, here are 3 strategies for improving the performance of your email;



1. Use Consumer Behaviors to Personalize Email



According to Listrack, "If significant attention is given to email content development, companies can begin to see better results":




  • 90% of online shoppers find it helpful to be alerted when frequently purchased items go on sale.



  • 72% are willing to receive more emails if they feature weekly sales, top sellers and new products.



  • 84% of online consumers who signed up to receive promotional emails want emails to contain products relevant to their purchasing history.



  • 69% are willing to share personal preference data in order to receive emails more relevant to them.






This is in line with ERDM VoC research findings contained in our ebook "5 Ways to Use Human Data to Drive Deep Engagement" , in which we noted that:


  • Truly personalized communications motivate customers to provide increasingly deeper levels of information and increases their willingness to engage in interactions.



  • If a consumer feels as though a company is making no effort to understand them, or is only using their information to sell them something, they perceive their marketing as being "value-less" and not worthy of their time.






2. Increase Open Rates with Compelling Subject Lines



A recent analysis of five million emails by the email management service Baydin found that a typical email user gets 147 messages a day and deletes 71 of them (48%). So, finding ways to grab attention is essential.



Marketing company Influitive used creative email subject line to develop an emotional tie to a new product launch for a B-to-B campaign that took big risks and netted big rewards . The company decided to take the risk of an attention grabbing subject line because it fit in with the analogy they were making about building relationships. According to Jim Williams, Vice President of Marketing, "If you can relate some arcane B2B pitch to some personal thing,...then I think you've done a good job as a marketer." The quirky campaign, used the subject line "So I'll pick you up at 7?" And, had a headline stating, "Don't make referrals awkward." It then discussed Influitive's recently launched referral automation solution product.



The company received 10 times the number of normal replies. Results of this email campaign include: 25% open rate (Influitive's highest) and 2.3% click through rate.



3. Use Email To Engage With Relevancy



According to the DMA's National Client Email Survey 2014 , a 760 percent increase in email revenue came from segmented emails. The trend is now for marketers to move away from generic messaging and meet consumer demands for relevancy by engaging in more targeted and personalized communications.



Jewlery company Alex & Ani engages with customers throughout their journey, from email to onsite, from social to in-store, and beyond. Through the use of abandoned cart emails the company saw a 73% lift in monthly email revenue and 36% lift in monthly revenue. They sent an initial email message and then followed up a few days later with another email, starting to integrate recommended products based on the customer's known interests or products that other customers recently purchased. The company serves messaging to individual consumers based on increased degrees of interest on specific products, leading to increased conversion rates.



Recommendations for Enhancing Email Value




  • Develop highly targeted, engaging and relevant messaging that presents recipients with a reason to open and act.



  • Use time sensitive offers. They create urgency to act.



  • Integrate your email with other media touch points and events.



  • Develop email messaging around consumer history, preferences, and purchases. When recipients get emails that truly "speak to them" engagement soars.






Consumers -- both BtoC and BtoB -- are email weary and wary. To drive engagement, emails must contain value and relevance. Use purchase, behavior and interaction data to craft email messaging that is welcomed.



Featured on CustomerThink.com.



Ernan Roman is the president of Ernan Roman Direct Marketing Corp, (ERDM).



Business Feed :


Who Really Controls Wall St. And Why It Matters

The following post is the second in a two-part series on finance and global poverty. You can find part-one here. In part-two we'll be looking at the human power behind finance.



2015-03-31-1427822158-7983533-sacreddebt.jpg

Illustration by Joel Rosenburg







In 1996, a young Princeton anthropology graduate named Karen Ho wanted to understand the culture of Wall St, so she became an investment banker.



She signed on to work with the investment group Bankers Trust through a college recruiting seminar and soon found herself working alongside bankers from Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs, and JP Morgan.



While interviewing her colleagues, she had an interesting realization. Both investment bankers and those who protest their actions seemed to be telling a surprisingly similar story. Activists she knew from college spoke about big banks as borderless, all-encompassing, all-powerful forces that had achieved total dominion over markets. Ho recalls that the investment banks offered nearly the same narrative:



As employees, we were constantly told how global we were, and we believed it. We didn't just have offices, we had global offices; we did not just understand markets, we had global market access and the capability to exploit all markets.





Ho realized that while social critics relied on this narrative for its simplicity and dramatic flare, investment banks used it to convince investors of their own limitless capabilities. The difference was that bankers knew it was just a story.



In her interviews, Ho found that executives at the world's top investment banks were actually very insecure about their reputations as "global" powers. When she asked for details about an institution's involvement in certain countries, it often turned out that their presence consisted of no more than a fax machine in an empty office, rented mostly to maintain "a particular global image."



While the bankers worked hard to keep up this image, Ho saw that their true power was derived from individual relationships:



[S]enior management spoke endlessly about how

'the hardest thing to earn is relationships,'

'money is about reputation and relationships,'

'money is 'client-driven,''

and

'if you are good to your clients, money is never an issue.'





Ho discovered that though the world's largest financial institutions formally assigned "agency and responsibility to the market," their real power came from social networks and a strong public reputation. In short, our financial systems depend on us.



No, Really!



In theory, we all agree that our financial systems are human-made, but in practice, it's a little more complicated. We tend to feel that our financial and economic systems have grown powerful beyond our control. We've lost faith in our own ability to effect change and a sort of hopeless cynicism has crept into its place. It's true that the inequalities of our financial systems are drastic, but as Karen Ho learned, a completely fatalistic outlook is not only inaccurate, but ultimately supports those at the top.



We have to remember that the same banks responsible for so much of the financial strife, confusion, and crisis that we discussed in part-one, are guided by social forces.



The same also holds true for our public financial institutions. While studying the International Monetary Fund's tech systems, Microsoft's head researcher, Richard Harper, accompanied accountants on an IMF "mission" to an unnamed developing nation. He found their processes for agreeing on statistics and lending conditions to be "bound up with and immersed in social practice," and was concerned that "though the raw material of those processes may be wholly mundane, agreeing to count them may make them seem sacred."



This persistent misunderstanding of financial systems as somehow sacred has become a broader part of our culture.



Sacralized Systems



In part one of this series, we remembered the medieval clergymen who used their religious power to acquire wealth. The current head of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis, may have been thinking of this unfortunate history when he recently spoke out against policies which treat our financial and economic systems as sacred:



Some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system ... We end up being incapable of feeling compassion at the outcry of the poor, weeping for other people's pain, and feeling a need to help them, as though all this were someone else's responsibility and not our own.





When we believe our financial systems are beyond our control, we neglect our responsibility to those most impacted by its flaws.



So let's get back to the question posed in part one: are dreams of reform -- like Podemos' guaranteed income -- a possibility?

In strictly economic terms, yes. A recent University of Barcelona study on basic income for Catalonia found it to be "not only desirable but also feasible."



What matters is political will.



In the past, with enough public support, even dreams of massive debt cancellation from organizations like Rolling Jubilee and The Committee for the Abolition of Third World Debt have been realized.



For instance, Rolling Jubilee's dream of debt forgiveness is based on the historical concept of Jubilee. In the recurring cultural practice recognized by several religions and ancient civilizations, all debts were cancelled in a beautiful acknowledgement of the sacredness of life over the power of money.



The Committee to Abolish Third World Debt also offers historical precedents for its international debt cancellations. One powerful example notes that after World War II, The Allied Powers offered Germany significant debt forgiveness along with more flexible lending conditions than most developing nations receive today.



Thou Shalt Not Exclude




We began this two-part series with the story of medieval illiteracy and inequality. But literacy in itself did not end the massive inequalities of the middle ages. It was simply a tool that enabled commoners to see through a sacred facade and recognize the truly human foundations of the ruling class.



Today we need to recognize the same. The financial systems that support the few and powerful are not set in stone. Persistent inequality is not a naturally occurring phenomenon, not a sacred order, but a human invention.



As Pope Francis suggests, we can build financial and economic systems that will ensure rather than endanger human rights:



Just as the commandment "Thou shalt not kill" sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say "thou shalt not" to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills.





If we refuse to let the complexities of finance complicate basic human rights, if we recognize that all financial institutions and economic systems are deeply human, maybe we can recognize what is truly sacred: our responsibility to take care of one another.



Nathan Albright is the Community Discourse Coordinator at Nourish International



Business Feed :


McDonald's under EU scrutiny for tax rulings in Luxembourg


  • Unions charge US fast food chain with avoiding about 1bn euros in taxes

  • EU investigating other US multinationals’ tax arrangements


McDonald’s tax affairs in Europe are under scrutiny by European Union officials after labour unions accused the US fast food chain of failing to pay its dues, a person involved in the issue said on Tuesday.


EU antitrust regulators have asked Luxembourg for information on its tax rulings, according to sources. Neither the EU nor Luxembourg would immediately confirm the enquiries.


Continue reading...



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GoDaddy Out to Lose Bad-Boy Image

By Shira Ovide And Telis Demos A decade ago, GoDaddy Inc. ran Super Bowl ads featuring scantily-clad celebrities to attract consumers looking to buy Web addresses. Now, as the company launches an initial public offering of shares, its future will depend on its ability to attract aspiring entrepreneurs like Joymarie Parker.Ms. Parker, a 27-year-old marketing analyst, last year started a network for young professionals called Joblogues. She turned to GoDaddy in December to buy Web addresses and to run Joblogues’ online presence.While pleased with GoDaddy’s customer service, she has encountered technical problems with the service and has begun researching alternatives.She says she is glad to have so many options and believes it is “inevitable” she will take her business elsewhere when her two-year GoDaddy subscription runs out. Ms. Parker’s ambivalence shows the promise and the pitfalls for GoDaddy as it tries to navigate from Internet bad-boy to trusted small business partner. Customers recognize GoDaddy from its risqué TV ads, company executives acknowledge, but the firm wants to earn their business for an unglamorous job: making small businesses more productive.GoDaddy’s image makeover is part of the plan behind the IPO, according to people close to the company. The skin-baring commercials with Bar Rafaeli, Danica Patrick and others are gone. Instead, a Super Bowl ad in February showed a business owner working at his desk while everyone else was watching the game.The other part is telling the world that GoDaddy doesn’t just sell Web domains. It wants to help its 13 million customers get a website running, and then sell them additional services like company-specific email addresses, bookkeeping software and e-commerce tools.It is potentially a more lucrative business, but also one with many rivals jostling for mom-and-pop businesses like Ms. Parker’s. Whether GoDaddy can remain relevant as scores of tech firms pursue a similar approach remains an open question.GoDaddy became the go-to provider of Web addresses, known as domains, thanks to the marketing strategy of Bob Parsons, who founded the company in 1997. The company’s first Super Bowl ad in 2005 featured a woman who wore barely-there clothes raising a ruckus at a mock congressional hearing. Mr. Parsons kept a blog to draw attention to what he said were racy versions of TV ads rejected by the networks. “As long as they know we’re GoDaddy.com and they can type it into their browser, that’s all I’m after,” Mr. Parsons told The Wall Street Journal in 2007.Shifting the Scottsdale, Ariz., company’s brand identity now won’t be easy, said Allen Adamson, chairman of the North America region for branding firm Landor Associates.“It’s hard to go from something edgy and trendy and outrageous into what’s necessary to succeed in a [business-to-business] world,” Mr. Adamson said. Mr. Adamson had trouble citing corporate brands that pivoted successfully from naughty to respectable.GoDaddy declined to make executives available for interviews, citing regulations for companies with pending IPOs. In IPO documents, the company said there “can be no assurance that we will succeed in repositioning our brand, or that by doing so we will grow our total customers, increase our revenue or maintain our current high level of brand recognition.”Mr. Parsons in 2011 agreed to sell a majority of his firm to three investors. He and the investment trio of KKR & Co., Silver Lake and Technology Crossover Ventures will continue to control GoDaddy after the IPO. The company is seeking to sell up to $418 million in shares. The private-equity firms aren’t selling any of their stakes. After Mr. Parsons sold a majority stake, a new board hired Chief Executive Blake Irving, a former Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo Inc. executive known as a savvy overseer of technology products.Mr. Irving’s arrival signaled a new era in which GoDaddy sought to improve what some officials saw as outdated technology. The company hired experienced technology hands and opened offices in Silicon Valley and the Boston area to attract high-caliber talent. Since 2010, spending on operations has more than doubled, a faster pace than GoDaddy’s revenue growth over the same period.Perhaps a bigger change—and the one on which GoDaddy is hitching its fortune—is the shift from selling Web domains to providing a more extensive range of services.The company increasingly has pitched add-ons like website hosting, or running the computers that keep a company’s website online. GoDaddy also sells email addresses customized to a company name, digital security features, and versions of Microsoft Office software tailored for tiny businesses. A GoDaddy service calls Get Found automatically creates listings on Facebook, Yelp and other digital spots where people look for business information.Sales of the newer GoDaddy services have grown at least twice as fast as domain sales and have fatter profit margins. Continued growth in customer sign-ups plus the new services have pushed up average annual revenue from each GoDaddy customer to $114 in 2014, from $93 in 2012. Still, GoDaddy generates more than half its revenue from domain sales.While GoDaddy tries to hook small-business owners on its suite of services, rivals are following a similar playbook. Two companies that help small businesses design and run websites, Wix.com Ltd. and Squarespace Inc., also advertised during the Super Bowl this year. Their ads embraced star power, featuring former NFL quarterback Brett Favre and actor Jeff Bridges, respectively. Technology companies increasingly are targeting small businesses, hoping to turn mom-and-pop operations into a foundation for growing their own businesses. Hopefuls include payments company Square Inc., e-commerce tools provider Shopify Inc., and online-marketing firm Yodle Inc. Shopify and Yodle are planning IPOs this year, The Wall Street Journal has previously reported.So far, public investors have embraced only tepidly the idea that small businesses are a big opportunity. Shares of small-business domain seller Endurance International Group Holdings Inc. are up 58% since their first day of trading in 2013, while shares of Wix, which went public in 2013, are up 12% since then.Investors are pricing these firms at lower valuations than other Internet companies. Wix trades at about five times revenue, and Endurance at about four times. That compares to average of eight times revenue for companies in the Bessemer Venture Partners’ Cloud Computing Index, which mostly consists of companies that provide Web-based services to big firms. GoDaddy is aiming to go public at just 2 times revenue.GoDaddy and others say the small-business market is big enough to accommodate a wealth of entrants. “It’s misunderstood,” said Endurance CEO Hari Ravichandran. “Having multiple players means the space is growing well.” Write to Shira Ovide at shira.ovide@wsj.com and Telis Demos at telis.demos@wsj.com



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Wheaties: Andy Varipapa's bowling tricks, 6

















Andy Varipapa was a Champion bowler in the 1940s. We felt it would be fitting for Andy and his "Grandpa Strength" to represent the Wheaties brand in a series of TV spots, originally aired during the Professional Bowling Association's National Championship on ESPN.


Creative Director: Andy Thieman

Copywriters: Andy Thieman, Mark Skeba

Producer: Clint Allen

Edit: ThreeVolts

Voice: Hobe Harden

Published: March 2015







via Business Feeds

Wheaties: Andy Varipapa's bowling tricks, 5

















Andy Varipapa was a Champion bowler in the 1940s. We felt it would be fitting for Andy and his "Grandpa Strength" to represent the Wheaties brand in a series of TV spots, originally aired during the Professional Bowling Association's National Championship on ESPN.


Creative Director: Andy Thieman

Copywriters: Andy Thieman, Mark Skeba

Producer: Clint Allen

Edit: ThreeVolts

Voice: Hobe Harden

Published: March 2015







via Business Feeds

Wheaties: Andy Varipapa's bowling tricks, 4

















Andy Varipapa was a Champion bowler in the 1940s. We felt it would be fitting for Andy and his "Grandpa Strength" to represent the Wheaties brand in a series of TV spots, originally aired during the Professional Bowling Association's National Championship on ESPN.


Creative Director: Andy Thieman

Copywriters: Andy Thieman, Mark Skeba

Producer: Clint Allen

Edit: ThreeVolts

Voice: Hobe Harden

Published: March 2015







via Business Feeds

Wheaties: Andy Varipapa's bowling tricks, 3

















Andy Varipapa was a Champion bowler in the 1940s. We felt it would be fitting for Andy and his "Grandpa Strength" to represent the Wheaties brand in a series of TV spots, originally aired during the Professional Bowling Association's National Championship on ESPN.


Creative Director: Andy Thieman

Copywriters: Andy Thieman, Mark Skeba

Producer: Clint Allen

Edit: ThreeVolts

Voice: Hobe Harden

Published: March 2015







via Business Feeds

Wheaties: Andy Varipapa's bowling tricks, 2

















Andy Varipapa was a Champion bowler in the 1940s. We felt it would be fitting for Andy and his "Grandpa Strength" to represent the Wheaties brand in a series of TV spots, originally aired during the Professional Bowling Association's National Championship on ESPN.


Creative Director: Andy Thieman

Copywriters: Andy Thieman, Mark Skeba

Producer: Clint Allen

Edit: ThreeVolts

Voice: Hobe Harden

Published: March 2015







via Business Feeds

Wheaties: Andy Varipapa's bowling tricks, 1

















Andy Varipapa was a Champion bowler in the 1940s. We felt it would be fitting for Andy and his "Grandpa Strength" to represent the Wheaties brand in a series of TV spots, originally aired during the Professional Bowling Association's National Championship on ESPN.


Creative Director: Andy Thieman

Copywriters: Andy Thieman, Mark Skeba

Producer: Clint Allen

Edit: ThreeVolts

Voice: Hobe Harden

Published: March 2015







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FCA Canada investigating alleged workplace harassment at Windsor Assembly Plant

Windsor Assembly Plant

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Canada is currently investigating reports of alleged workplace harassment that occurred at the Windsor Assembly Plant, which a union representative describes as racist in nature.






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Evraz invests $200M in Regina facility, creates 40 new jobs

hi-852-evraz-plant-regina-f

Evraz is planning to invest $200 million in its Regina, Sask. facility, the company's largest single investment ever.






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Amazon Introduces New Product Everyone Thinks Is A Joke, Confirms It's Real

Less than 24 hours before April Fools' Day, Amazon unveiled its newest innovation to extract money from your bank account: the Amazon Dash Button.



The gadget bears the logo of your favorite brands -- Tide laundry detergent or Maxwell House coffee, for instance -- and sticks directly onto a flat surface in your home. When you run out of the corresponding product, you just push the button and a refill is dispatched to your house.



Twitter users wondered if it was a prank, but the company assured us it's not fooling around.



"Yes, it is real," an Amazon spokesperson said of the Dash Button.





PURCHASE, CONSUME, PURCHASE, CONSUME, PURCHASE, CONSUME





A wide range of products from paper towels to cat food are available with the Dash Button. But it's only for Amazon Prime members, meaning plebs will have to stick to the crushingly slow method of opening an app on their pocket-sized miracle computer to order fresh garbage bags. (You do need a smartphone to set the device up, however, according to the Dash Button website.)



Perhaps to allay concerns that tykes could repeatedly slam on a Dash Button to send a torrent of Huggies to your front door, the device will register only the first press until the item is delivered.



Best of all, the buttons are free, presumably because they'll help you spend vast quantities of money on Amazon.



If you simply must have it, you can ask for an invitation here.



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How This D.C. Clinic Wants To 'De-Medicalize' Abortion

“Abortion. Yeah, we do that.”



That's one of the advertising slogans used by Carafem, an abortion clinic opening this week in Washington, D.C. The clinic plans to approach abortion as a straightforward part of women's health care, hoping to make the procedure a streamlined process that is easy to access.



Carafem will provide the abortion pill to women who are less than 10 weeks pregnant. Patients will be able to book appointments -- offered on evenings and weekends, as well as during weekdays -- through an online portal or via a 24-hour hotline manned by multilingual staff members. The clinic also promises a short procedure time of around one hour, and a lower-than-average price point of approximately $400 for an abortion.



carafem

Image via Carafem.com









Terminating a pregnancy with the abortion pill involves two steps. Patients take the first pill, mifepristone, which stops the embryo from growing and detaches it from the uterine wall. Between 24 and 72 hours later, they take the second pill, misoprostol, which causes the uterus to contract and expel the embryo. Carafem patients will take the mifepristone pill at the clinic after undergoing tests and speaking with a doctor, then be sent home with the misoprostol pill. Staff members will follow up with each patient to ensure that the termination was successful.



Chris Purdy, the president & CEO of Carafem, told The Huffington Post that he came up with the idea for the clinic around 18 months ago, after returning from 20 years working for family planning programs in Turkey, Ethiopia and Indonesia. Purdy was shocked to find that it was still so difficult for many women in the U.S. to access abortion care. He worked with Melissa S. Grant, a former Planned Parenthood director who is now Carafem's vice president of health services, on a model to provide early-term abortion services that reduce some of the barriers women seeking abortion commonly face, and make the experience less clinical.



"We wanted to make the experience one that was more caring and more kind," Purdy told The Huffington Post. "Very professional, focused on the quality of care, the woman and her experience."



Grant told HuffPost that they hope to "de-medicalize" the procedure as much as possible, providing "non-judgmental and unapologetic care." The pair has worked to eliminate some of the intimidating sights, noises and smells of a traditional doctor's office. Patients will speak with medical staff one-on-one in small, comfortable rooms devoid of intimidating medical equipment. As much of the testing and preliminary work as possible will be carried out in one room, rather than moving the patient from place to place within the clinic. And, while staff members are fully briefed on security and safety procedures, the abortion clinic will look no different from any other office.



“It was important for us to try to present an upgraded, almost spa-like feel,” Grant told The Washington Post.



Grant and Purdy stressed that they wanted women who visited the clinic for an abortion to be completely educated on each step of the procedure, and to feel comfortable and supported throughout. Grant emphasized the clinic's focus on "the language that we use, the welcoming policies and procedures that we put in place, and making sure that if a woman needs additional time with a doctor, she has it."



Ultimately, their hope is to demonstrate a new standard of care for women seeking abortions.



"There is a myth that abortion clinics are lonely and scary places," Grant said. "That doesn't have to be true."



Business Feed :


10 Ways to Grow Your Business Using Social Media

Even if you've been living under a rock for the past 5 years, you should still know or have heard how important social media is to the life of your business. A huge percentage of business owners are still hesitant to add social media to their marketing strategy. Whether you're controlling your social media or not, your business is already being talked about by your customers. It's time to join the conversation.






Here are 10 ways to grow your business using social media:






1) Stop living in denial






First thing first, social media is here to stay. According to a recent study by BIA/Kelsey, 74.5 percent of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) reported using social media to promote their businesses -- more than any other category of media. Your competitors are already using social media to win over your customers, engage with their customers and to grow their business. If you're a little more social savvy and have an active social media presence, remember to always stay ahead of the curve by learning and adapting to all the quick changes in social media.






2) Join the conversation






Social media will continue to be the driving force for businesses that want to effectively interact with their customers in real-time. When a customer has a complaint, question or praise about your business, they will voice it on their social network of choice. It's your job to make sure you're identifying the networks your customer spend their time and seek to actively engage and create conversations with them.






3) Stay true to your business






Business owners always ask, what should I be posting or saying on social media. The short answer is to stay true to who you are and what your business stands for. Customers can tell when you're faking it and will not engage with you. Stay true to the message and content you post. Follow the 80/20 rule when posting on your channels. 80 percent of the time, focus on other messages and content that's not directly about selling but relates to your industry, business and target audience. The other 20 percent should be about your services, products, offers, sales and discounts. You might also find that you create the most buzz and sales because of the 80 percent. Not being sales pushy, will open your business for more engagement, sharing and interaction from your customers.






4) Be in the know






Social media is changing quickly. Something that's the hot topic today might not be the same tomorrow. Being in the know will give you a leg up on what to plan for and how to use change to help your business grow and stay ahead of your competitors. In the ebook, the big buzz of social media changes, it explains all the changes that happened in social media during 2014, that you can use as social media blueprint. This is a great resource to help you create a more strategic marketing plan for 2015. Download the book here.






5) Choose the right channels






Using the right channel is essential to creating a two-way conversation with your customers. Most importantly, you do not need to be on every social network. Find out where your customers spend their time, and where people talk about you the most, and utilize those specific channels to invest your time and energy. It's better to master 3 channels, than being inconsistent on 6 channels.






6) Create a plan






Creating a strategic approach to how you manage your social media will save you lots of time and resources. First you should create a weekly schedule that you will evaluate monthly to determine what's working and not working. The weekly schedule can be as simple as saying, on Mondays, I will focus on this and on Wednesdays, I'll do this. With a weekly schedule in place, you will know exactly where to put your focus. Second, create a content and event calendar. Use that to list all upcoming holidays and special events related to your business and build content around that information. The more you post, the more you'll discover which content, timing and frequency is right for you.






7) Develop a crisis plan






Being prepared in the time of a social media crisis can be the difference in making a bad or a good reactive decision. Knowing exactly what to do when a customer uses derogatory words to bash your business on social media, as well as how to control a social media blunder caused by your own actions, will keep you sane. Develop the plan, share it with your staff and document the process. Taking these steps will help everyone in your business that handles social media, marketing and PR to be on the same page.






8) Developing multi touch points






To grow your business effectively, it's recommended to use multiple touch points of your social media and digital strategy to achieve a specific goal. If your goal is to drive online sales to an ecommerce website, you need to use each touch points effectively. On Facebook, start by investing in "Like" ads to grow your fan page with targeted consumers. Do this by launching the ads and target people that live in the country, state or city you sell your goods or products, choose the target audience of who is and will be buying your product and then use 'interest' by selecting potential consumers that follow your competitors or show interest in the type of goods or products you're selling. This will effectively grow your page with real potential consumers.The content you now post on your page will be a lot more interesting to your audience because they can relate to it. This will significantly increase your brand awareness. Next is to activate your fans to customers.






Now that you have the right people on your page, your next step is to post your products on your page with a very clear call to action driving them to that exact product checkout page on your website. Use a high quality photo, write a short and enhanced description of the benefits of that product with a link to buy it. After you post it on your fan page, use the boost ads to increase the visibility of that post from 4% to over 50% of your fans seeing it. So what you've done is, picked the exact audience you wanted, engage them with related content and then serve them with products that they will want to buy. That's a win-win situation, and that's only on Facebook. Now do a similar approach on Twitter. You'll see how quickly you grow your sales. There are other touch points to include that can activate your sales, including email marketing, retargeting ad campaigns and search ads. At Sociallybuzz, these are the things we do for our clients.






9) Make a great impression






Making a great impression on social media requires two parts: visuals and text.






Visit each social media profiles and make sure that avatars, cover photos, bio and profile info is up-to-date and complete. A completed profile shows professionalism, cohesive branding and a signal to visitors that you're serious about engaging.






Customers should feel proud about sharing your content and social profiles with their friends.






10) Don't be afraid to delegate






If your business is starting to grow fast and you're out growing your in-house social media and digital team, the next move is to hire an outside social media or digital company to help take you to the next level. Doing this will require you to do your homework on the company you hire to make sure they understand your voice and can talk the talk. They must understand your culture and target customers, and most importantly know how to nurture, engage and sell to them. This is a very important step in moving forward and will require you to trust that company you hired. Don't hire them, then set it and forget it. Create an open line of communication that includes bi-weekly meetings/calls, transparency of your goals, your contribution and monthly insights showing the progress of these efforts.






Change in social media is inevitable and it will come whether you accept it or not. In conclusion, I want to share a book on change with everyone. I read this book for the first time about 6 years ago and it was a vital part of launching Sociallybuzz. I continue to read or listen to the audiobook every chance I need a reminder of why accepting and predicting change is important. The book is Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson.






This blogger graduated from Goldman Sachs' 10,000 Small Businesses program. Goldman Sachs is a partner of the What Is Working: Small Businesses section.



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Karmashock: Phase 3




Thieves know better than to try.



Advertising School: Miami Ad School, San Francisco, USA

Art Director: Christiane Sawadogo

Illustrator: Tadeus Putra







via Business Feeds

Karmashock: Phase 2




Thieves know better than to try.



Advertising School: Miami Ad School, San Francisco, USA

Art Director: Christiane Sawadogo

Illustrator: Tadeus Putra







via Business Feeds

Karmashock: Phase 1




Thieves know better than to try.



Advertising School: Miami Ad School, San Francisco, USA

Art Director: Christiane Sawadogo

Illustrator: Tadeus Putra







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Facebook Wants Your Businesses On Messenger

033015 businesses on messenger


Your small business may already use Facebook to keep in touch with customers.


And the ubiquitous social media platform is getting ready to introduce a way for your business to contact them there directly in all new ways.


Facebook recently unveiled Businesses on Messenger. It’s set to be formally launched soon, the company’s website reports.


The Businesses on Messenger app will allow your company to contact customers in a variety of ways — and in a place where they’re clearly spending a lot of time.


On the company’s official Developers blog, Facebook Product Manager Lexy Franklin writes:



“Businesses on Messenger enables things like the following: during the checkout flow on a business’s site, a person can choose to start a conversation with a business, receive updates from that business on things like order confirmations and shipping status updates, and ask the business free-form questions about the order, receiving quick responses.”



Franklin also writes that there are now 600 million users on Messenger.


The chances that some of them are your customers are pretty good.


It’ll be a few weeks until Businesses on Messenger is officially launched but until then, here’s how Facebook is telling us it will work:


If someone makes a purchase on your website, they can opt to receive notifications of the transaction through their Facebook Messenger app. That includes shipping updates, too.


This allows you to connect with your customers in a one-on-one way. And Businesses on Messenger keeps each conversation organized. That way, you and your customers can maintain that one-on-one connection.


Businesses on Messenger allows you the ability to customize those types of messages. The message that initially connects your business to your customer can showcase the item they purchased, the size or style, and the cost.


Future updates can track the shipment until it arrives at its destination and eventually when it arrives to your customer’s door.


These personalized notifications are sent right to your customer’s Messenger app and come from your business.


Normally, your customers would get confirmations on orders and shipping from third-party apps, and would have to manually check shipping statuses.


Businesses on Messenger is going through a trial phase with two of Facebook’s first partners in this venture, Everlane and zulily.


Facebook is also working on partnering with live chat platforms. Currently, the social site has a deal in place with Zendesk. This allows your business to have one-on-one conversations with prospective customers, too.


Through this and future partnerships with live chat providers, Businesses on Messenger will allow companies to send and receive text messages and photos with customers.


Even more, Businesses on Messenger can be set to send push notifications to a customer’s mobile device. These are the notifications that overlay any current activity on a user’s smartphone, even their lock screen.


These types of notifications will put your business’s interactions your customer front-and-center and impossible to miss.


Right now, Facebook is recruiting businesses that want to use Businesses on Messenger. On the service’s main page, there is a sign-up form for those interested in participating.


Image: Facebook


This article, "Facebook Wants Your Businesses On Messenger" was first published on Small Business Trends







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Facebook Wants Your Businesses On Messenger

033015 businesses on messenger


Your small business may already use Facebook to keep in touch with customers.


And the ubiquitous social media platform is getting ready to introduce a way for your business to contact them there directly in all new ways.


Facebook recently unveiled Businesses on Messenger. It’s set to be formally launched soon, the company’s website reports.


The Businesses on Messenger app will allow your company to contact customers in a variety of ways — and in a place where they’re clearly spending a lot of time.


On the company’s official Developers blog, Facebook Product Manager Lexy Franklin writes:



“Businesses on Messenger enables things like the following: during the checkout flow on a business’s site, a person can choose to start a conversation with a business, receive updates from that business on things like order confirmations and shipping status updates, and ask the business free-form questions about the order, receiving quick responses.”



Franklin also writes that there are now 600 million users on Messenger.


The chances that some of them are your customers are pretty good.


It’ll be a few weeks until Businesses on Messenger is officially launched but until then, here’s how Facebook is telling us it will work:


If someone makes a purchase on your website, they can opt to receive notifications of the transaction through their Facebook Messenger app. That includes shipping updates, too.


This allows you to connect with your customers in a one-on-one way. And Businesses on Messenger keeps each conversation organized. That way, you and your customers can maintain that one-on-one connection.


Businesses on Messenger allows you the ability to customize those types of messages. The message that initially connects your business to your customer can showcase the item they purchased, the size or style, and the cost.


Future updates can track the shipment until it arrives at its destination and eventually when it arrives to your customer’s door.


These personalized notifications are sent right to your customer’s Messenger app and come from your business.


Normally, your customers would get confirmations on orders and shipping from third-party apps, and would have to manually check shipping statuses.


Businesses on Messenger is going through a trial phase with two of Facebook’s first partners in this venture, Everlane and zulily.


Facebook is also working on partnering with live chat platforms. Currently, the social site has a deal in place with Zendesk. This allows your business to have one-on-one conversations with prospective customers, too.


Through this and future partnerships with live chat providers, Businesses on Messenger will allow companies to send and receive text messages and photos with customers.


Even more, Businesses on Messenger can be set to send push notifications to a customer’s mobile device. These are the notifications that overlay any current activity on a user’s smartphone, even their lock screen.


These types of notifications will put your business’s interactions your customer front-and-center and impossible to miss.


Right now, Facebook is recruiting businesses that want to use Businesses on Messenger. On the service’s main page, there is a sign-up form for those interested in participating.


Image: Facebook


This article, "Facebook Wants Your Businesses On Messenger" was first published on Small Business Trends







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Amazon's strange new Dash Button for impulse-ordering: 'Indeed, it is real'

Amazon-button

For a few minutes on Tuesday, it seemed like Amazon might actually have a sense of humor.


The online shopping giant announced a new hardware product called the Dash Button. It's a little hook, decorated with the name of a household brand, which customers can place on the wall and tap to automatically order (or more likely re-order) a specific product.


This may seem, to some, to be an excess of convenience. Few people have complained, as of yet, about the laborious walk to a laptop where they have to sweat and agonize over Amazon's "one-click" shopping button. But for those weary souls who are tired of having to pull out a smartphone and go through the motions to order more Tide detergent, the cavalry has come Read more...


More about Amazon and Business





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Who cares if Jack White or Nicki Minaj gets more money for music?

Tidal-daft-punk-beyonce

A row of obscenely rich musicians stood awkwardly on stage together on Monday as Alicia Keys quoted German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche to reveal Tidal, the streaming music service bought by Jay Z.


"Without music, life would be a mistake," she said quoting Nietzsche. (The philosopher, who wrote frequently about asceticism and who might have been surprised to find his words associated with the world's wealthiest musicians, also said "the mother of excess is not joy but joylessness.")



It was a surreal scene that only got weirder. After Keys had finished a rollicking speech about a better service for artists and fans, each of the musicians signed a "declaration of independence" and then... stood there. Nobody seemed to know what to do next. Jay Z poked his head backstage as if to ask "What next? The group stood there for a few more moments before the lights came down, and it was time for all of them to file off the stage Read more...


More about Streaming Music, Business, Media, Music, and Tidal





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Images: How to Find and Choose High-Impact Photos


find-good-photos


Ever throw your hands up in frustration when it comes time to look for an image for your latest blog post?


Let’s start with the bad news: a terrible stock photo is worse than no photo at all.


The good news? There are more free stock photos available now than ever before!


But you have to know where to look. And you need to understand a little about image licensing, like the difference between free, royalty-free, and Creative Commons license terms. Or else that photo you use could land you in legal trouble.


In this episode of Hit Publish, host Pamela Wilson shares the best image tips from some of the people responsible for choosing images for our Copyblogger blog.


Listen in to host Pamela Wilson, plus Demian Farnworth, Robert Bruce, and Jerod Morris discuss:



  • What exactly “royalty-free” and “Creative Commons” means, and how knowing the difference could keep you out of court

  • How to “borrow” someone else’s esthetic sense if you feel like you don’t have any of your own

  • The crucial extra step you need to take when using certain “free” images you find online

  • Our favorite stock photo sites and how to use what you find there


Click Here to Listen to

Hit Publish on iTunes

Click Here to Listen on Rainmaker.FM


About the author

Rainmaker.FM




Rainmaker.FM is the premier digital marketing podcast network. Get on-demand business advice from experts, whenever and wherever you want it.





The post Images: How to Find and Choose High-Impact Photos appeared first on Copyblogger.






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Cablevision To Reportedly Bid $1 For New York Daily News

Cablevision may be ready to make real estate mogul Mort Zuckerman an offer for the New York Daily News as early as this week, Reuters reported Tuesday.



The amount Cablevision is reportedly willing to pay for the foundering, almost 100-year-old tabloid? One single dollar.



According to Reuters, the television company's offer would be based on the Daily News' recent financial woes. Amid declining circulation, the paper reportedly loses some $30 million per year and invested $150 million in a printing press.



Last month, in a memo to "stunned staff," Zuckerman announced that he had hired an investment bank and would begin looking for a buyer for the tabloid.



“A few weeks ago, we were approached about our potential interest in selling the Daily News,” he said. “Although there were no immediate plans to consider a sale, we thought it would be prudent to explore the possibility and talk to potential buyers and/or investors.”



Zuckerman purchased the Daily News for $36 million in 1993 along with former partner Fred Drasner, and also serves as the chairman and editor-in-chief of U.S. News & World Report.



Cablevision, which is headed by President and CEO James Dolan, already owns the daily New York tabloid Newsday. The New York Post reported in February that the company was on a short list to buy the Daily News, but that shareholders were "looking to get out of the newspaper business rather than add to it."



The New York Daily News did not immediately respond to a request for comment.







Business Feed :


How and Why You Should Bring Kids into the Workplace

Balancing work and family while trying to climb up the corporate ladder is kind of like the old carnival trick where the performer keeps plates spinning delicately atop long, narrow sticks.



In order to keep the plates from falling and breaking, the carnival worker becomes a part of a never-ending cycle of frantic plate management.



Throw being a single parent into the balancing act of trying to have a home life when you're tethered to your cell phone or working late but still trying to be home for dinner and you might as well plan on buying a lot of new plates.



Long before I occupied the corner office, there was a time when I was a single dad to my two children and an up-and-coming executive for a large corporation. When the demands of being a single parent required me to miss a day or two at the office, I could feel my superiors pondering the age-old question: "Is Gabriel a parent or a corporate executive first?" The answer of course, was both.



Being good at one made me better at the other.



Forward-thinking executives and companies understand that for an employee to be fully engaged, they need to feel things are secure at home just as they know that for an employee to feel things are secure at home, they need to feel secure at work. The two are inextricably linked.



Employers are beginning to see the light and rather than making employees choose between project deadlines and taking care of their kids after school, we are helping them to keep those plates all spinning in the air at the same time.



One of the ways we're doing this is by welcoming kids into the workplace.



As a CEO who has moved my company in this direction, I can tell you that employee retention is up, productivity is up, office morale is up and yes, profits are way up. That said, the experience of this transition has given me some key insight for anyone else considering this move.



1. HAVE GUIDELINES

You can't have a free-for-all. You need guidelines. Will children be welcome every day or just during school breaks and holidays? What times will they be allowed in the office? Are all ages welcome? What process will you use to keep track of how many children are in the office in the event of a forced evacuation, like a gas leak, fire, or killer clowns from outer space?



By making these decisions ahead of time, you provide structure and limits as well as send a subliminal message to your employees the management team has thought long and hard about how best to make this work.



2. BE CONSISTENT

If you're going to let kids in the office, enforce the rules evenly. Everyone's child is equally important and the rules have to be applied to everyone. In other words, there should be no special treatment for your kids or the kids of your favorite employees.



3. HAVE A PLACE SET ASIDE FOR KIDS

Is there an old storage room that isn't being used or that can be emptied out where you can hook up a TV? Is there an open space in the office where kids can be kids? Maybe there are some empty desks children can play video games at, or the older ones can do homework.



Find a space for the children to be, and you'll find that more often than not they will stay in that general area and not really be much of a disruption to the flow of the office.



4. DON'T CRY OVER SPILLED MILK

This I mean literally.



Kids are going to be kids. There will be spilled milk and stuff will get knocked over. Unless your office is the antiquities basement at the Smithsonian, this is not the end of the world. Don't make it out to be.



By right-sizing your response, children will respect you and your team and your employees will too. Besides, there has never been a parent who has ever reacted well to another adult reprimanding their children.



Let us be the generation of CEOs who stop asking the question of where an employee's priorities rest and accept that as we ask our employees to do more and more, that it's entirely reasonable to provide an environment in which they can.



Business Feed :


Net-a-Porter founder in line for €64m payday from Yoox merger

Deal brings together fashion credentials of Natalie Massenet and financial savvy of Federico Marchetti to create ‘world’s biggest’ online luxury fashion store


A former Tatler journalist, who launched an online clothing retailer selling designer clothes from her Chelsea flat, is in line for a €64m (£46m) payday after her Net-a-Porter business was snapped up by an Italian discounter.


Yoox Group, an internet store which sells out-of-season and end-of-line luxury fashion at knock down prices, has agreed to a €3.2bn merger with Net-a-Porter which sells high-end brands ranging from Alexander McQueen to J Crew.


Related: Net-a-Porter merger with Yoox: marriage of very different high-end fashion sellers


Today, we open the doors to the world’s biggest luxury fashion store


Continue reading...



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HSBC's attempts to clean up US business practices are falling short, report says

A 1,000-page report by the US Department of Justice to force HSBC to operate to higher standards is not improving the way it does business fast enough


HSBC is expected to be told this week that its attempts to clean up the way it does business are falling short of the standards required by the US authorities.


A 1,000-page report by a monitor installed by the US Department of Justice to force HSBC to operate to higher standards shows that Britain’s biggest bank is not improving the way it does business fast enough. The monitor was appointed following the bank’s record-breaking $1.9bn (£1.2bn) fine in 2012 for laundering money for Mexican drug cartels, terrorists and pariah states.


Continue reading...



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Oil storage crisis may be averted by U.S. car drivers

Oil Glut Full Tanks

Refiners, spurred by high profit margins, are rushing to buy crude and churn out more fuel in response to an unexpectedly swift rise in U.S. road travel and that may avert a crisis in storing U.S. oil.






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