Search

russian river pr blog

Nancy Birnbaum-Marketing Maven

WCBD Event Rescheduled: November 21st. Same line-up, same place!

With all the devastation caused by the recent fires across Northern California, it was necessary to postpone our October event. We hope that by mid-November, everyone will have some normalcy back in their lives, and hopefully you can join us as we welcome our special guest speakers…

TONY LINEGAR, AGRICULTURE COMMISSIONER FOR SONOMA COUNTY, WILL BE GIVING US UPDATES ON REGULATION AND POLICY THAT AFFECT US ALL IN ONE WAY OR ANOTHER. PLUS KEVIN JODREY, OWNER – WONDERLAND NURSERY WILL JOIN US.

We’ll take some time to check in and share our stories of how the fires affected our businesses, our communities, our lives. And, we’ll give thanks for what we have.

autumnal-canna-leaves

CANNABIS EDUCATION + POLICY / BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
SPEAKERS: TONY LINEGAR, AG COMMISSIONER FOR SONOMA COUNTY AND KEVIN JODREY, OWNER – WONDERLAND NURSERY
WHEN: TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 21st, 6-9PM
WHERE: C. DONATIELLO WINERY – 320 CENTER STREET, HEALDSBURG, CA 95448
[ON THE PLAZA IN HEALDSBURG, AT THE CORNER OF CENTER ST. AND PLAZA ST.]

c-donatiello-winery-logoCome and enjoy cheese and charcuterie boards, delicious wine, Canna-community and the lovely town of Healdsburg!

 

ADMISSION

Public $35 (Credit cards accepted at the event)

FOUNDING MEMBERS  FREE (+1 FRIEND FREE) BECOME A FOUNDING MEMBER TODAY! EMAIL US AT WOMENSCBD@GMAIL.COMFOR DETAILS.

INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS  $25 (+1 FRIEND 50% OFF)

Insights into Cannabis Regulation

1)      Permitting requirements now and into the future.
2)      Pesticide use and integrated pest management (IPM)
3)      Water
4)      Endangered Species
5)      Crop loss procedure for tax purposes
6)      Economic advantages of “specialty” size grows
7)      Implications of Industrial hemp

Lecture will be followed by Q&A.
Be sure to bring some cash for a chance to win in our fabulous RAFFLE!raffle-tickets-sm

SPEAKERS:

tony-linegarTony Linegar, Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer of Weights and Measures 

Professional Experience In November 2011, the Board of Supervisors appointed Tony Linegar as the Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer of Weights and Measures. He began his duties on January 3rd, 2012. Tony Linegar started his career in Agriculture/Weights and Measures as an Agricultural Inspector I with the Shasta County Department of Agriculture in 1995. He advanced to an Agricultural Inspector III in Shasta County by 2000. In 2001, he accepted a position with the Mendocino County Department of Agriculture in Ukiah as an Agricultural Inspector III. In 2002, Tony was promoted to the Assistant Agricultural Commissioner, a position he held until January 2009. In January 2009, the Board of Supervisors in Mendocino County appointed Tony as the Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer. Tony served in the role of Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer until January 2012, when he was appointed by the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors.

Education/Licenses Tony graduated from Chico State University in 1993 with a B.S. degree in Biological Science. Tony possesses eight licenses required for Agricultural Biologist and Standards Specialist as well as being licensed by the California Department of Food and Agriculture as a County Agricultural Commissioner and Sealer of Weights and Measures. In addition, Tony possesses accreditation by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) as an Authorized Certification Official (ACO) as required for certification of agricultural exports, as well as being certified by the California Department of Pesticide Regulation as a Qualified Applicator.

Professional Organizations Tony is a member of the California Agricultural Commissioner and Sealers Association (CACASA) as well as serving as Chair of CACASA’s Pesticide Regulatory Affairs Committee. Tony also serves as a Director for coastal counties on the State Board of Directors of Agricultural Commissioners, and was recently appointed to serve on the Secretary of Food and Agriculture’s Climate Change Consortium.

Kevin Jodrey bio picKevin Jodrey, Owner – Wonderland Nursery

Kevin Jodrey is one of the most well known growers in Humboldt County and is an internationally respected cannabis expert, known for improving and forwarding the modern cannabis movement. As a world renowned hunter of ganja genetics, Kev is fascinated by the search for rare, desirable, and marketable traits.

Kevin is the creator of Port Royal, owner of Wonderland Nursery, and co-founder of The Ganjier. He’s been a cannabis cultivator for decades, running his own operations and offering consulting services to the broader community. He’s spoken at universities, judged at the Emerald Cup, and consulted on cannabis related educational shows for National Geographic and A&E.

Featured in the New York Times, a pulitzer prize winning Washington Post article, countless other articles, books, and radio, and tv shows, he is at the epicenter of the Green Rush (and graces the walls of the Oakland Museum to prove it) and is guiding the industry as it transitions to legalization.


SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE!
INTERESTED IN SPONSORING OUR NEXT EVENT? PLEASE EMAIL US AT WOMENSCBD@GMAIL.COM TO INQUIRE.

Advertisements

5 things you should be doing now on social media to help your small business thrive

At least 86 percent of Americans are now Internet users, according to a recent Pew Research poll. A national survey of 1,520 adults conducted March 7-April 4, 2016, finds that Facebook continues to be America’s most popular social networking platform by a substantial margin: Nearly eight-in-ten online Americans (79%) now use Facebook. Here’s the current state of the social media landscape in America:

  • 79% of internet users (68% of all U.S. adults) use Facebook
  • 32% of internet users (28% of all U.S. adults) use Instagram
  • 24% of internet users (21% of all U.S. adults) use Twitter
  • 29% of internet users (25% of all U.S. adults) use LinkedIn
  • 31% of internet users (26% of all U.S. adults) use Pinterest

Unsure which social media platform is right for your business?

Check out these 5 tips to make sure your business is using social media effectively. And then Contact Me to find out how to get started!

1) Get on Google and Facebook first

At a bare minimum, you need to make sure that your business has an online presence on the most popular search engine and social media sites. If your business has been around a while, it probably already has a listing on Google, but you need to claim that listing. By claiming your listing on Google, you can get a jumpstart on making sure you come up when some does a Google Search for your type of business. Plus, you can make sure that your business hours and contact information are correct. Claiming the listing also allows you to respond to reviews that your customers or client may write.

2) Diversify your social media presence

Social media is always changing, but there’s a real advantage to having a presence on several different sites. Not every platform is right for every business. For instance, if your business lends itself to a more visually-oriented product, like art for instance, then you would want to be on Instagram and Pinterest. If you want to reach more business people, then LinkedIn is for you.

Your social media profiles on different sites can also help promote the other, and individual sites each have their unique advantages. Creating a YouTube page and posting a few videos is a fantastic and easy way to boost your search ranking.

3) Live broadcast a video

In addition to the wider choice of reactions to a post, last year Facebook added live video feeds. Broadcasting a live video on Facebook is comparable to having a local news crew show up at your business. A live broadcast can be the perfect way to publicize a special event or sale.

It’s best to keep live video feeds short. You’ll be able to see who’s watching in real-time and make comments as well.

4) Schedule your postings

You need to be informed about the best times to post on social media, so that you will be reaching the largest possible audience. The best time to post depends on the type of social media page you’re using.

Facebook and Twitter posts get the widest circulation in the evening, later in the week. LinkedIn, on the other hand, gets the most traffic in the morning in the middle of the workweek.

Facebook has just added the ability to schedule your posts for peak hours, so your business can still have Facebook posts going online while the office is empty. You can also get a free account on Hootsuite where you can schedule social media posts for up to three platforms.

5) Hire a social media professional to help

Managing social media takes time and expertise, especially when your business is just building social networks. Just learning about the different markets takes time, and then it can be a challenge to develop engaging and informative content that promote your brand.

Some businesses delegate the maintenance of social media pages to someone already working in the office, but this tends to result in inconsistent quality. To project a professional image for your brand, you need to enlist the help of a Social Media Professional like Russian River PR & Marketing.

Budgeting for social media also allows you to pay for advertising, which can increase the size of your following. With the right help, planning and attention, social media can make your 2018 a winning year for your small business.

russianriverpr-web

 

Cannabis Education + Policy – July 18, 2017

In keeping with the popular “Permitting” theme, our July Policy & Regulation Education night will continue the trend. We are thrilled to have as our Guest Speaker – Tawnie Logan, who will provide us with “Updates about Sonoma County and Santa Rosa Cannabis Policies.”

We look forward to seeing you on Tuesday, July 18th from 6-9pm at Remy’s Bar and Grill located at 130 Stony Point Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95401. Come early for their great Happy Hour from 4-7pm, and stay for our event!

tawnie-logan-headshotTawnie has been an outspoken advocate for cannabis farmers, and has recently announced that she has stepped aside from her role as executive director of the Sonoma County Growers Alliance after two years leading the organization through an era of profound change for California’s marijuana industry. She remains the chairwoman of the board for the California Growers Association and has accepted the invitation to be Chair of the Board for SCGA to oversee the organization’s transition into a more robust trade association.

Also on the program, WCBD-Founder, Alexa Garcia (Luma California) will bring us all up-to-date on the Sonoma County “Dirt to Dispensary” Workshops as well as the recent county workshop reviewing the permit application.

The evening will include Q&A with attendees. So bring your appetites, your questions and your good vibes! See you there!

When: July 18, 6-9 pm 
Where: Remy’s Bar and Grill located at 130 Stony Point Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95401
How: Register online – https://womenscbd.org/events/

register-now-button

Sign up for WCBD’s Monthly Newsletter at: http://eepurl.com/cxbZIv
Sonoma County’s professional women and men are invited to:

heart-shaped-bud-flavicon

BUILD YOUR BUSINESS
ACCESS RESOURCES
CREATE OPPORTUNITIES AND
INSPIRE YOUR BEST SELF

We join together in the common goal of Sonoma County to become a successful and thriving local cannabis economy while bringing social justice to those affected by the drug war and safe access of medicine for those in need.

Tickets still available! Tuesday, May 16 for a Night of Business Development with Women’sCBD!

5-16-17-flyerWCBD presents: A Night of Business Development

Presented by William Wong & Rose Chastain, CSW Business Coaching and Women’s Cannabis Business Development

Join us on May 16th, 6-9pm at Whiskey Tip in Santa Rosa.
Address: 1910 Sebastopol Rd., Santa Rosa, CA 95407

This event is designed to have you be able to produce outrageous results!

You will leave this evening having met new people and crafted a killer “Elevator Pitch” that makes it clear how you are different than every other person in this industry.
– What is special about your edibles?
– What makes your flowers the ones people should buy?
– Why use your delivery service?
– Why invest in your company?
– Why buy land with you?

These are important questions to answer and you have to answer them well.
We will work in groups and support each other in positioning yourself in the best way possible.

Come to the event and get step-by-step solutions and tools to increase your business.
Please bring your own notebook.


Food, Snacks provided and delicious drinks and cocktails available at the bar.

RAFFLE PRIZES! 50% proceeds donated to CA NORML

ADMISSION

Public – Advanced $25 / Door $35

Founding Members – FREE (+1 friend free) – please register to save your spot!

Individual Members – $25 (+1 friend 50% off)

Sponsorship Opportunities Available! Please email us at WomensCBD@gmail.com to inquire.

register-now-button-wkshp


Contact us at WomensCBD@gmail.com

Join the WCBD Facebook group at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/womenscbd/ 

Sign up for WCBD’s Monthly Newsletter at: http://eepurl.com/cxbZIv

Sonoma County’s professional women and men are invited to:

BUILD your business
ACCESS resources
CREATE opportunities and
INSPIRE your best self

We join together in the common goal of Sonoma County to become a successful and thriving local cannabis economy while bringing social justice to those affected by the drug war and safe access of medicine for those in need.

#BadAssLadyBosses Rule!

 

Zen Moment: Zen and the Art of Marketing for Good


These are turbulent times, and it takes an effort to make sense of it all.

In today’s blog I take a look at how the business and marketing community can benefit from a Zen-like approach to relate to today’s fractured and often alienated audiences.

As the Dalai Lama said,

“To remain indifferent to the challenges we face is indefensible. If the goal is noble, whether or not it is realized within our lifetime is largely irrelevant. What we must do therefore is to strive and persevere and never give up.”

― Dalai Lama XIV

Strive and persevere and never give up.

Inspiring words…

Marketing – the Bellweather of business confidence

Businesses are naturally concerned about recent events. And marketers particularly so as marketing spend is often viewed as a Bellweather or indicator of business confidence.

As the volatile stock market demonstrated today, any major surprise (or calamity, depending on where you sit) has the power to either;

A) ignite creativity

or

B) create fear and uncertainty

Zen and the Art of Marketing for Good

The world is shrinking and we’re more globally aware and connected than ever before. We should ideally use the communication channels available to us for good, and look out for ways to improve lives in the process.

“Marketing for Good” is the term I’ve chosen. By which I mean using creative, lateral and inclusive thinking to deliver effective marketing with ethical outcomes.

Education, Sustainability and Fair Trade initiatives have for some time been a way for multinationals such as Kerry Group, Unilever and Coke to demonstrate their social conscience and win favour with consumers, and smaller companies should also consider what part they can play in similar initiatives.

Here’s a quick list of some of the “Marketing for Good” trends of the past decade that spring to mind…

  1. Social corporate responsibility whereby all kinds of companies align with charities (this Huffpost article delves into the CSR topic),
  2. Contextual marketing allows brands and companies to provide real time, location-specific information and experiences (this Púca blog explores the opportunities for marketers)
  3. Exergaming is simply gaming plus exercise. Win-win! It is related to contextual marketing in terms of integrating location based information. Pokémon GO is just the beginning…
  4. Evolved Customer Experience sees public and private organisations using apps and other digital strategies to listen to, inform and empower their customers
  5. Business efficiency apps are reducing reliance on paper-based forms, fuel costs and other environmental impacts
  6. Mobile payment solutions are allowing consumers to quickly channel donations to charities

I’m hoping to see marketers continue to foster “marketing for good” initiatives that benefit the environment, socially disadvantaged and other worthy causes. The brands that do so will deservedly win the affinity and loyalty of their customers.

So what’s my conclusion?

I guess it’s simply that Marketing for Good is all about nurturing our social conscience alongside our sense of creativity, innovation and fun. I feel that as long as marketers stay positive and creative and continue to think digital, then their brands or clients will continue to thrive.

Originally published on The Pulse.

#russianriverpr #marketingzen #corporate-responsibility

 

 

Easy How To: Write a business plan that will get noticed

I found this well-written article on Shopify (the new-ish, easy-to-use way to add commerce to your website). Thanks Jessica!

“Ah, the dreaded business plan. A frightful phrase for many, the very idea of having to write a business plan to apply for bank financing or equity crowdfunding can conjure up feelings of frustration or even dread!

That’s why so many business owners put off their funding applications and procrastinate about completing their business plans, even when they know finishing the task is in their best interests.

But if you need a business bank loan to grow your retail or ecommerce business, then you can’t avoid the business plan. Fortunately, you can use an approach that’s productive, interesting, and even (dare I say it?) fun, to develop a business plan that helps you apply for financing and becomes an important tool for guiding your company’s growth.

The “Ideal Customer” Approach to Business Planning

Gone are the days of the 80-page novella with reams of meaningless hockey stick graphs and business jargon. Your business is new and innovative, and your business plan should reflect that. Start with a simple question:

Who is my Ideal Customer?

Every single other piece of content you write for your business plan should be written with the answer to this question in mind. Once you have defined the one perfect customer for your business—the one you would simply clone thousands of times if you could—then you have a foundation for your market research, your marketing plan, your operations manual, even your financial projections. With a clear understanding of what problem your business solves and who you solve it for, writing a business plan becomes an exercise in how you’re going to make your ideal customers happy.

A business plan should be an exercise in how you will make your ideal customers happy.

[Click to tweet]

Suddenly, a business plan becomes something actionable. Something you can actually use to guide your business and evaluate your progress.

It also becomes something focused, specific, and clear. It’s no 80-page tome. It’s a succinct breakdown of exactly what your business will do and who it will do it for. That’s pretty compelling.

I’ll tell you this: if you write your business plan with this focus, you will be able to excite any lender or investor who reads it.

What to Include in Your Business Plan

Even with this new approach, your business plan should still be laid out the way lenders expect to see it. I recommend starting with this general outline and customizing it to your business.

1. Executive Summary: An overview of your business plan. Summarize all the important points in one page.

2. Business Overview

a. Products & Services: What you sell and who you sell it to

b. Company Ownership/Legal Status: Who owns your company, and what percentage of the business does each owner have? Is the company a sole proprietorship, a partnership, or a corporation? How much money has been invested into the company by the owners to date?

c. Start-up Summary: How much money do you need and how will you spend it?

d. Mission/Vision: What’s your purpose for being in business? This is an important part of the story you want to share with your customers and your lender.

e. Goals & Objectives: Include at least one short-term (within year 1) and one long-term (3+ years) goal for your business, and 2-3 smaller objectives that will help you reach those goals.

3. The Market

a. The Ideal Customer: Who is your customer avatar?

b. Market Size: Discuss your overall market and how big you think it is.

c. Market Segmentation: Your products and services will appeal to a few different kinds of customers. Describe your market segments, and indicate which one your ideal customer falls into.

4. Industry Trends: What are the local and global trends in your industry? This is also a good place to talk about switching costs, suppliers, and the potential for new competitors to emerge.

5. Competition: List your major competitors along with their strengths and weaknesses. Include an explanation of the benefits they offer to buyers.

6. Marketing & Sales Plans

a. Competitive Advantage: What sets you apart from everyone else who sells what you sell?

b. Marketing Plan: What will your initial and ongoing marketing activities look like, and what’s your budget for those? How many new customers should your marketing activities bring you? How many subscribers? How much website traffic?

7. SWOT Analysis: Analyze your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. What are the best things about your company? What are you not so good at? What market or industry shifts can you take advantage of and turn into opportunities? Are there external factors threatening your ability to succeed? Add a paragraph discussing how the business will overcome its weaknesses and threats.

8. Operations

a. General Operations: What are your opening hours? What is the process for bringing on a new customer? How about getting reviews, feedback or referrals? Do you have a clear sales funnel (the path people take to become your customer)? What does a typical day in your business look like?

b. Location: If you have a location, describe it and why you chose it. If you’re choosing to do business online instead, explain why.

c. Distribution: Are all your sales direct to customer, or do you sell wholesale or through affiliate partners?

d. Suppliers: Who are the major suppliers for your business, and how did you choose them?

9. Management & Personnel

a. Management Overview: Describe your management team’s background and explain their roles in the day-to-day operation of the business.

b. Personnel/Staffing: Summarize your personnel needs here, including your hiring schedule, approximate wages, and your organizational chart. Explain what each staff member does on a daily basis. It’s your people who operate your business, so you need to explain what they do to make it tick.

10. Exit Strategy: Do you plan to operate this business forever, or eventually sell, license or franchise it? Lenders need to know how they’re going to get their money back.

11. Financial Projections

a. Assumptions: Everyone skips this part, but it’s the most important part of the financial forecasts. Explain your assumptions about revenue, sales growth, and expenses here.

b. Break Even: Briefly summarize when you expect your company to start breaking even—that is, earn enough revenue to cover all operating costs.

c. Profit & Loss: Highlight your projected net profits and explain whether they are higher or lower than the industry standard, and why.

d. Cash Flow: Explain your credit policies and offer a plan for what you’ll do if your cash balance starts to get low.

e. Balance Sheet: Briefly explain the expected debt (loans or lines of credit) to equity (owner or investment contribution) in your business, and why you chose this balance.

Know When to Stop Writing

It’s so easy to go overboard with market research and analysis. Keep it focused mostly on your ideal customer, with just a short paragraph on each of your other market segments.

In your Personnel section, you don’t need to provide complete job descriptions. In most cases, just a line or two will do. In the competitive analysis, review only your top 3-5 closest competitors; if you have many competitors, as restaurants and retail stores often do, group them into categories instead of analyzing each one individually.

Lenders don’t have time to read really long business plans, so don’t write them. Usually, a lender will review your Executive Summary and Financial Projections first, and if they like what they see, they’ll move on to review the rest of the plan. Make sure your Executive Summary summarizes your ideal customer, your financing request, your estimated loan payback period, your profit potential, and your team’s capability to make it all happen—all in one page.

I repeat—your Executive Summary should only be one page long.

And don’t try to write it until the rest of your business plan is finished. It’s always the last task you should tackle, when the plan is still fresh in your mind and the most important points are easy to recall.

When you’ve done all of this, you’ll have a concise business plan that probably won’t exceed 20 pages.

What to Do With Your Business Plan After You Get Funding

With a business plan focused on your ideal customer, you hold in your hand a powerful tool for keeping your business on track. Assuming you set clear goals and objectives in the plan, you can go back and review these to evaluate whether or not you’ve achieved them.

You can use your financial forecasts to compare to your company’s actual performance, and quickly see if anything needs to shift. And when you’re making decisions about marketing campaigns, you can review your ideal customer profile to make sure your marketing dollars are being spent in places that will resonate with the people you want to sell to.

See? A business plan can be an interesting and useful tool for your business, as well as an essential document for getting a business loan. When you see your plans actually start to manifest, you’ll be very glad you did all of that work and didn’t shove it into a desk drawer when you were done.

Originally published on Shopify Blog

 

7 USEFUL MOBILE APPS FOR SMALL BIZ SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING

About 62% of all businesses in the US have under five employees, and 76% of those small business owners consider marketing to be a major challenge. Most small business owners are hard-pressed to find either time or personnel, making it tough for them to dedicate resources to marketing. However, it’s also true that social media has been identified as a potent marketing channel for businesses of all sizes and the need to be present on social is stronger now than ever before.

With handy mobile apps, small business owners and social media marketers can manage social media marketing without much effort. Here is a list of a few extremely useful apps to simplify your social media marketing efforts.

LASTPASS

lastpass-appLastPass means last password, or the last password that someone using the app will ever need to recall, because the app stores passwords and lets users access their accounts without having to type them every single time. As a business owner, you may use multiple apps and websites that requires you to remember multiple passwords. So many of my clients have trouble with this common trouble-maker. Many of you will resort to using similar or the same password for multiple sites or programs. If you listen to the news, you’ve already heard how vunerable this can leave you. LastPass is a great way to save the time wasted on logging in and out of multiple accounts.

LastPass has a mobile version with complete features that integrates its web app, so you can create new accounts on your desktop and access them on your mobile device with ease. You do this by creating a LastPass account, downloading the app on all your devices and logging into the app on each of them. Once you have, LastPass will store passwords across your devices and allow you convenient access from all of them. It works seamlessly with your Chrome browser too.

LastPass is available as a web app and mobile app for Android and iOS devices.

PIXIZ

pixiz-appAbout 500 million tweets are sent out each day, and for your content to standout and catch your followers’ attention, you need eye-catching images.

Pixiz is a simple graphic editing software that lets you create images for social media in a short span of time. You begin by installing the app and creating an account. Then you can choose from a list of potential images & canvas sizes depending on which social media platform you intend to post your content on. The software has a collection of stock images and basic templates that you can work with. You can choose an image for your background and add text or an overlay with ease. You can also choose from a host of interesting fonts and coloring options to make your image more engaging. The editing options are very simple and intuitive. Create an engaging social media graphic in a flash, it’s that simple. Considering that the stock photos on the app look great, you don’t need to be a great designer to create graphics on the app. But if you’re like me, you’ve got tons of images that you’ve scraped together just for this!

images-on-clipboards-pixizOne you’ve created the image, you can either save it on your phone for later or directly share from the app to your social media accounts.

Pixiz is available as a web app and mobile app for Android and iOS devices.

 

QUORA

quora-appSome of the best marketing tactics that I have come across have been on Quora. The Q&A community has over 100 million active users and is just the right place to find useful information that you can use to amp-up your social media marketing efforts. The best part about Quora is that people share their actual experience, and the answers (the good ones) are very specific and usually actionable. Once you have viewed a few questions on a topic or submitted some of your own, the app intuitively begins to display Q&As related to your interests on your feed.

You can also use Quora to answer questions and build your influence in your industry. In other words, you can be your company’s influencer. To find the right questions, you need to state your area of expertise in your profile details. Once you have, the app will find and deliver questions in that area right to you. It is good to put some effort into making your answers precise and useful. Doing that will earn you “up-votes” and followers on Quora. Where relevant, you can suggest your product/service to people who are seeking them and in the process earn visibility fro your company. Make yourself the “Expert” on Quora!

Quora is available as a web app and mobile app for Android and iOS devices.

BRAND24

brand24-appOne of the ways to destroy you social media brand, is by miscalculating it. Your brand is what people say it is, and unless you are monitoring their words closely, you are miscalculating your brand.

Your audience will talk about your brand whether you want them to or not, and there is very little that you can do to control everything that they say. The best way to manage your brand name, is by monitoring it and responding swiftly. Social media marketing tools like Brand24 help with that process. You can set up “Projects” on Brand24, each with one keyword/theme that you want to monitor. The obvious keyword to monitor is your brand name. Once you have created that project, the tool will alert you of mentions as they happen, or on a daily or weekly report. The real-time alerts that the tool offers are useful because you can thank people for positive mentions and attend to the negative ones before they cause any real damage. Brand24 also has a sentiment analysis feature that sorts mentions based on the emotions associated with them, so you can deal with the more pressing ones first. The free or Demo version allows you up to 5 keywords.

Brand24 is available as a web app and mobile app for Android and iOS devices.

IFTTT

ifttt-appMost small business marketers can’t set aside the time necessary to create content for multiple social media platforms. IFTTT can help bridge that gap.

IFTTT stands for “If this, then that”. It is an app that allows you to create “recipes” for automated content posting. For instance, you can instruct the app to post your Facebook statuses to Twitter, or send you an email each time your favorite publication posts something. There are quite a few diverse recipes on the app that integrate different social media apps and tools. You can create a set of recipes to cover your content marketing efforts on social media or choose from a huge collection available from it’s many users.

You begin by choosing a “Trigger channel”, a “Trigger action” and an “Action channel”. Then you’ll need to fill out the trigger details to make you recipe specific. Say your trigger channel is Twitter, you trigger action could be “New mention of you” and your action channel can be email. So when someone mentions you on Twitter, you will get an email. Several social media marketers have listed their recipes in articles. All you have to do is find such articles on a top publication sites, and copy the recipes to the dot, and you’ll instantly and effortlessly have a powerful social media marketing plan.

IFTTT is available as a web app and mobile app for Android and iOS devices.

MAILCHIMP

mailchimp-appIf you have client/subscriber email addresses stored on a CRM or excel sheet, you can upload them on MailChimp to create an automated email campaign. Email campaigns can help nurture new leads and prompt existing customers to reorder.

MailChimp’s email marketing software is all cloud-based and comes with pre-designed templates and a drag and drop editor that makes creating emails easy. After you have created your email campaign you can schedule it to go out to the email list that you have uploaded. You can also use the app to segment your email list and target customers with content targeted at them. The software also offers analytics to track the effectiveness of your campaign. Best of all, it’s free to send to up to 1000 email addresses. You can create as many lists as you need: one for customers, one for potential customers, one for friends, and so on.

MailChimp’s mobile app is useful in managing your email lists and campaigns on the go. You can set up the campaigns on your desktop and then monitor them conveniently from your mobile device. Start you Digital Marketing Campaign today!

MailChimp is available as a web app and mobile app for Android and iOS devices.

GOOGLE ANALYTICS

google-analytics-appYou can’t optimize how you spend resources available to you unless you know what is and isn’t working for you. Google Analytics is a completely free tool that gives you useful insights, like where your traffic is coming from. The tool has traffic sources broken down to each social media platform. You can use the data to identify and boost the platform that is driving you the most traffic. For instance, if most of your traffic is coming from Facebook, you will be able to verify that fact and allocate more resources to the platform.

You can also add UTM parameters to social media posts to identify the more successful ones. Google’s URL builder can help you create unique UTMs for each of your posts. Once you have created them and set-up conversion tracking for your social media posts, you will be able to track your posts’ success. The mobile version of Google Analytics can be a quick means of tracking the progress of your social media activity when on the go.

You can access your Google Analytics dashboard on Android and iOS devices.

Of course, RussianRiver PR is here to help. If you need to learn more, need assistance with Social Media and want to learn how it can help your bottom line, please give us a call!

 

 

 

Planning your Small Biz Marketing in 2017

It’s time to start thinking about updating your marketing plan for the New Year. Not to worry, RussianRiverPR is here to help you find the best plan for your small business and budget. Happy 2017! It’s all about your plan. Do you have one yet?

Here’s a good pre-planning list from our friends at RIPL.

How do you know how effective your marketing efforts are if you don’t know what you want to accomplish?

The first step to being prepared in 2017 is to pick a goal. Make it specific and attainable. Start by reflecting on last years accomplishments and failures. There’s a lot of opportunity to learn from what worked and didn’t work for you, your business, and your customers.

Your marketing goal should be a statement of what results you want from your marketing efforts. For example your goal for 2017 could be to:

  • Achieve $500k in revenue (or overall sales)
  • Sell 75 homes
  • Get to 1000 customers in your loyalty program
  • Reach a 5 star rating on a third party site

What tactics will you use to accomplish your primary goal?

Think about the activities that will help you reach your goal. These should focus on customer acquisition, retention, and engagement. Creating awareness, generating interest, closing new sales and continuing customer engagement. Break it down – yearly, monthly, weekly, daily – to help you stay on track and reach your goals.

  • Email Newsletter to my customers (weekly, daily, monthly – depending on your customers and business)
  • Grow email list by 10 each week, 40/month, 480/year
  • Post regularly (weekly, daily, bi-weekly) to social media
  • Create 1 blog post per month
  • Grow Instagram followers by 500 each month (6,000/year, 125/week, 17/day)

Think about your target audience. . . who is your customer? What sets you apart from the competition? Consider consistent and creative messaging across all your social media, websites and customer-facing content. Video will continue to be a strong trend in 2017 across social media and marketing.

Think about your customer buying cycle. . . how do your customers find you? Decide to buy from you? And keep returning? What do you communicate to them during each of these steps or phases along the way? How are they thinking and feeling when making these decisions to purchase from you?

Answering these questions will help you come up with activities and content to achieve your main marketing goal.

How will you know success?

Measure, measure, measure and be data driven. Measuring starts with documentation. Document where you’re at now and where you’re going along the way. At Ripl, we use Google Sheets to help us stay organized and track changes week over week. Measure, evaluate, learn, and adjust!

Revisit your goal weekly or monthly and make adjustments along the way if something isn’t working or doesn’t seem attainable.

What are you waiting for? Start working on documenting your marketing goals and activities to prepare for a successful 2017!

Originally published by RIPL – http://blog.ripl.com/planning-your-marketing-in-2017/

Contact Us now to learn how easy it can be to develop a marketing plan or just get some much-needed help. Email RussianRiverPR at Gmail.com

Common Mistakes Made in an Ecommerce Business

(Originally published in the Shopify.com Blog)

Building an online business can be difficult, especially if it’s your first time. However, just because it’s your first time doesn’t mean you need to make first-timer mistakes. There’s a famous quote that says “Only a fool learns from his own mistakes. The wise man learns from the mistakes of others.”

In this post, we will look at seven of the most common mistakes new ecommerce business owners make and how you can avoid them.

In no particular order, here they are:

“If You Build It They Will Come” Mentality

They won’t. Building your business (and traffic) takes time, energy and effort. According to Internet Live Stats, the internet has about 1,202,012,086 websites at this very moment, and according to WorldWideWebSize there are 4.44 billion pages. Take a moment to think about that. When you create your store, you will be website number 1,202,012,087. How are people going to find you?

Building the most beautiful site and filling it with great products won’t make customers come. When you start a business, you have to realize that launching your store is just the first step in a great journey to building your business. There are however many steps that come after launch.

No Logo

A logo is usually the first thing a visitor sees and one of the first impressions of your online store. Most if not all ecommerce platforms will display your shop title in standard text if you don’t upload a logo yourself, but this isn’t good enough.

So why do so many people launch stores with no logos?

Usually it’s because most people still think that in order to get a logo made, they need to find a designer and spend hundreds (or thousands) of dollars. The fact is though, this isn’t true. Far from it. There are so many options available now for creating a free or very inexpensive logo that there’s no reason your shop should be using a default text logo.

No Proper About or Contact Page

A lot of store owners end up underestimating the sales potential of their About page. Have a look at your own analytics and you’ll likely find your About page is either the second most visited page or in the top three. That means this page is important to visitors.

Even though this is one of the most important pages for your visitors, many new online merchants tend to skimp on this page. Don’t.

Let’s look at some of the biggest mistakes people make on their About and Contact pages:

No Story – Who exactly are you? How did your store come to be? What’s the story of your products? How are they made? You don’t need to create an elaborate story, however, a few paragraphs that store visitors can relate to are hugely beneficial.

No Location Details – Yes, you’re an online store, but that doesn’t mean people don’t look for an address. Many visitors still want to know where you’re located and where your products ship from. For many visitors, it’s just an issue of trust, for others they want to know if they need to consider customs and duties if your products ship from another country.

Using A Generic Email Address – Yes, Gmail is great but that’s not going to cut it for your business. So many first time merchants are guilty of using a generic, throwaway email address. What does that say to customers? Take the time to set up a proper domain name (youbrandname.com) and set up proper email addresses to let your customers know you’re in it for the long haul. (This is my top “Pet Peeve”).

Not Actually Thinking About Overall SEO Strategy

Probably the most common problem with new online stores is not doing any SEO or not doing it properly. It’s not rocket science but it’s not easy either. Coupled with the fact that SEO can take a while to show any signs of success and it ends up being a complete afterthought (if even a thought at all) for most new online businesses.

The thing is, SEO is quite necessary and can be one of your most powerful tools as it can continue to bring in targeted traffic to your site, day after day after day. Unlike channels like Facebook and Google Adwords which stop delivering traffic the second you stop paying.

Can you list the top 10 keywords you’re trying to target in the long term right now? If you can’t, it’s time to actually think about your SEO and keyword strategy.

Focusing On Too Many Things

Business is hard and complicated. Imagine a brain surgeon doing multiple surgeries at one time. It would be disaster! The same holds true for building a business. Sure someone’s life isn’t on the line, but the life of your business likely is.

All too often, entrepreneurs get scattered, chasing their tails, the next shiny app or growth hacking tactic instead of finishing that they started. This leads to a scattered approach that will rarely show positive results for the business.

Building a business is hard work, however, no matter how much work you put in, the small details as outlined in this post can sabotage your efforts and hard work.

Make sure you regularly take some time to take an objective look at your store (or business), your marketing channels and your goals to make sure you’re on the right path and you’ll be well on your way to more traffic and sales for your online store (or business).

 

 

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: