Using Segmentation Strategy to Connect With Your Customers on a Deeper Level

People want to be treated as individuals catering to their thoughts, beliefs, likes, dislikes and so on. Using mindset segmentation can help you create a stronger bond to your customers. You’ll get some great ideas to help you implement a strategy of your own from a recent post at MarketingProfs.com.

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Boost Your Business Intelligence

When running a small business you wear many hats. It can be a struggle to maintain and follow through on everything you need to do to grow your business. Here’s an infographic that provides you with some great information to increase your “business intelligence.”


Boston University Online

How Branding Debt Ratios are Determining Factors in Your Brand’s Success!

Over many years a business’s brand accumulates dreaded branding debt. The more branding debt accrued the bigger the challenge to come out from

The Branding experts, Branding Debt

The Branding experts, Branding Debt

under it’s weight and move your brand forward. The more branding debt you own the harder it is to differentiate yourself and grow your marketshare. If you haven’t figured it out yet, “Branding debt” is real and it’s damaging your company from the inside AND out. Branding debt is all the negative things that is dragging your company down.

Branding debt can include but is not limited to:

•Image inconsistencies.
How many times have you seen one sign on the building, another different one on a sign or vehicles, and yet another different logo on the web and stationery. An inconsistent identity confuses your customers. Sometimes it looks like entirely different companies.

•You’ve been reduced to a commodity.

You’ve aligned yourself so close to the sales leader in your category, you’ve reduced your brand to commodity – selling on price.

•Internal communications lacking.
You’ve allowed your staff to keep abreast of company news through the rumour mill. They hear directly from management so little, they’ve lost trust it what they say.

•Corporate culture.

The cultural well is poisoned. Staff are disenchanted with company direction and are hungry for solid leadership.

• You’re a follower brand.
Your brand follows at the heels of the competition falsely believing that if it’s good enough for them, who are you to change up things.

• Failure to engage the competition.

Your brand is lacking the confidence to stand for something, being content with the mediocre.

•What is your brand?

Failing to define your own brand and exploiting it’s uniqueness.

• False differentiation.
Failing to see the true differentiator, excepting that it is the low hanging fruit such as employees.

•Using a crutch.
Looking at a re-brand as changing the logo and slogan. Lipstick on a pig. These changes do nothing for the fundamental branding debt you are carrying.

•Paying down branding interest and hoping the branding debt principal will take care of itself.

This is a wish and a prayer. Succumbing to this strategy will send confusing messages to your stake holders.

•Lack of Confidence.
How many entrepreneurs don’t see themselves as the experts they are. They fail to center attention on their achievements and benefit from the attention.

•Discrepancies in brand values.
Not living up to your brand values or even compromising them adds to your branding debt.

Just like financial debt, branding debt is a liability. Knowing how much branding debt your company can withstand, will help you to determine what resources are needed to put your brand in a healthier position. Your branding debt ratio allows you to compare your debt to your branding assists. What items are contributing to the success of your brand and how much debt is holding it back. A brands goodwill is defined by its branding debt. Through proper analysis a bread with 10 brand assets and 4 brand liabilities could be said to have a branding debt ratio of 40%. This important ratio is the benchmark or limit that will allow your brand to thrive or suffer. The strength of your brand will best determine if a high ratio is sustainable or not. The stronger the brand the higher the branding debt ratio it can withstand. If the brand is weaker a lower branding debt ratio is all it could support. If the weaker brand has a high branding debt ratio then it is much harder to sustain negative market conditions and that results is a loss of market share. Branding debt ratios are common sense. The more things your brand is doing wrong directy infringes on its ability to succeed. More assets than debts means the brand could withstand some devastating blows that a weaker brand would succumb to. Like financial debt, branding debt is best when there is very little of it.

Reap the Benefits of Using The Cloud In Your Business

Running a small business has so many things to consider to be profitable. Keeping expenses down is just one of them. By using The Cloud rather than expensive hardware, you can save money by keeping your data in The Cloud which also allows you and your team to work together seamlessly on projects. These are just a couple things utilizing The Cloud can help you with, to learn more read How the Cloud is Reshaping Small Business Productivity.

Reap the Benefits of Using the Cloud in Your Business

Why Are You Afraid Of Me?

I’m seeing more and more of this -especially on tech sites. On the contact us page all they offer you is a form so that they can qualify you. What I don’t see is anything about where they are located, what they’re phone number is etc. For me, I want to know where you’re from. No particular reason -I just like to know. Sometimes you’re near other companies I know.

It concerns me that you don’t want to divulge that information. God forbid I actually call before you vet me. Already I can see that dealing with these hidden companies shows that they are all about their convenience not yours.

It is a pet peeve of mine, but I think it speaks to authenticity in a brand. I would bet that one of their brand values is service. They understand the word, not the effort that goes in to making service part of their corporate culture. If I was to somehow find their phone number what do you think the chances are you’d find a live body answering it?

Great service is not convenient it’s expected. Every little thing you do to diminish service is one step walking away from you. There are manufacturing companies in my region who have replaced live contact at the front door with a telephone and a directory. How’s a new customer to feel when they are forced to sit in a cold little seat searching a tacky directory to hale their contact to recover them from the vestibule?

Both of these examples are from the front end of the business. Both initial contact points. Sometimes saving a few dollars or being closed to connecting personally are small ideas that can cost you a huge amount of money in the long run.

Or it could just be me. I’m guessing a lot of professionals resent these tactics. Are you willing to bet
your brand on it?

Amplify Your Content Marketing With This Free Blogging Planner

You know the saying. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Planning however doesn’t come easily for some. Not sure about you, but I was never taught how to plan in when I was in school, which is rather unfortunate, but no fear. One way to start is with a good planner.

Now we all have our favorites so it’s OK to continue using that. I use BlogEnergizer’s planner because content marketing is an integral part of our business and the planner is geared towards that. It also has useful information how to make the planner work best and gives you simple but effective productivity tracking and social media checklist tools built right in.

The digital copy is free for download. They also have print copies available and for a very short time, there’s a 30% off coupon for print copies. It’s all right there on BlogEnergizer itself. Check it out.

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What Makes People Buy, Buy More, And Buy Often

This is the million dollar question isnt’ it? We all want need people to buy or our businesses will die. Although we know more or less why and what triggers a sale, especially when we know our customers well, but understanding general trends can help us too.

This infographic gives you some pretty interesting snapshots based on a shopper survey. One of the things I find really interesting is the percentage of people who won’t share about their purchase on social media. Just because social media is hot and you can doesn’t mean that it works.

That reflects my own online shopping behavior as well. I always felt uncomfortable sharing what I just bought because there are things you just don’t want to broadcast. On top of that, it’s a little scary putting out these fine data about yourself out there for any stalker to piece together. There is only one exception to this. That’s when I’m offered a discount for sharing or some other incentive. Even that it’s a maybe, but it does increase the chances of sharing.

What do you think of the data in this infographic?

Infographic – Understanding eCommerce consumers this holiday shopping season.