Do you often say there are not enough hours in the day? Do you often wonder where the time has gone? Do you regularly think that you have achieved very little in your working day? By making a few small changes you can greatly change the way you work and how much you can achieve in a day.
There are lots of things that you can do to help improve your productivity but these 10 top tips are a good starting point:
If you need help in your business to allow you to be more productive with your business Marketing then please get in touch with Sunflower VA.
WHO IS YOUR PERFECT CUSTOMER?
Do you run a B2B company? In other words, is your product or service more suited to other business owners as opposed to consumers or the general public?
Have you already linked up with them on LinkedIn?
When were you last in touch with them?
If you are not sure about any of the above, we will help you paint a picture of who your ideal customer is. You’ll likely have other types of customers, but focus on the ones that you enjoy serving, and who you want more of and then our 3 stage connection building process will help you link up with them by using a tried and tested process that works.
We run regular Workshops at Jubilee House which will explain how to get the best out of LinkedIn and how to effectively reconnect with your connections.
Our Workshops are offered at the introductory price is £59 p/p inclusive of VAT. To enquire about latest dates please get in touch
I recently had a meeting with a financial adviser who belongs to the same local networking group as I do. We were having coffee and getting to know each other, and when we started discussing social media for business, I said: “Don’t even try to sell on social media; it doesn’t work”.
He looked at me and I am sure he was thinking “If I am not selling my products and services, then why bother with social media.” I know this sounds strange but product and service sales rarely happens directly from social media. Don’t switch off, keep reading…
Have you been posting on Facebook for some time about your business and are currently getting no likes or comments? Those posts probably contain wording such as buy today or buy one and get one half price. The reason you are getting no likes is because people are happy to buy when they find something that meets their need, but they do not like being sold to. Think about yourself when you’re in a shop… the sales person comes up to you and asks if you need anything? Your response is “No I’m just browsing” and you can’t get out of the shop quick enough.
What we also know is that social media can be a powerful tool for your business, if you use it correctly. Let me explain…
1. Help people — Instead of thinking about selling your product or service to someone, think about helping them buy. Many people go to Facebook and/or Google searching for information about what you do. After searching Google for possible options, many people will then go to Facebook and post a status such as “looking for recommendations”. If your profile is set up to lead people to your business page, you can lead people to your business simply by responding to their post.
2. Getting Social — Even though you are in business it’s OK to get social! What you are doing here is building awareness around what you do and who you are! Facebook made the big algorithm change last year so they prioritize “people” posts over “business” posts? People are on Facebook and other social media platforms to connect with others. It is OK to get personal! I love dogs and holidays and so I share images of me out walking my dog or lovely pictures of somewhere I’ve visited. So I have lots of conversations around dogs and holidays. In the background my social profile is still available to view and I’ve attracted fans because they are interested in my content and some have eventually become clients.
3. Entertaining — Make your fans or followers want to come back for more! This can be anything from posting a funny GIF to a viral video - mine are usually related to my dog or puppies! I have started to share these to my pages simply to entertain my audience. Life isn’t all about work - Your potential customers don’t think about work or shopping all the time! Maybe they are on Twitter that day looking for some entertaining posts. Posting an inspiring quote, a cute puppy video or a funny ski video can be exactly what they are looking for. Again, your posts continue to link to your business account and so you are indirectly making them aware you exist without directly selling to them.
These are just 3 ways you can use social media to build awareness about you and your business, particularly if you are a service business. When using these techniques ensure you apply the 80/20 rule when posting about your business. For every 4 posts helping, entertaining and educating, you can mention or recommend your product or service in context.
So with all the above said, why use social media at all for business?
At the end of my conversation with the financial adviser, he asked me how then I could measure the ROI of social media. How can he “track how well his posts are working” in reaching new clients? This is a whole new post relating to data and I'll explain more another time.
In simple terms, this is where the strategy bit comes in! I’ve already said that selling rarely happens directly from your social media platforms. That’s because you need to combine your social media marketing with email marketing and your website!
#DidYouKnow Surveys show that email has a median ROI of 122% — over 4 x higher than other marketing formats including social media, direct mail, and paid search. Therefore when you focus on taking your fans and followers off of social and into email leads, you can grow your list, nurture that list, make offers and turn leads into clients!
Good luck with your online marketing! Need help – just get in touch with SunflowerVA today!
School Holidays for many working parents means taking time off work to spend it with your family, others will be trying to organise school holiday childcare.
For small businesses owners and particularly the self-employed, trying to manage the school holidays can be a difficult time as you are trying to manage your business whilst making yourself available for your family.
Our tops tips will allow you to get the right work life balance, allowing you to spend time with your family over the holidays whilst being aware of what needs to be done in terms of your work.
Our 5 Top Tips:
If you need help in managing or moving forward your online marketing over the summer holidays then get in touch with Sunflower VA – your Virtual Marketing Assistant.
So you have decided to start a new business, you have done your market research and now you are ready to build your new website.
Before you start these are the things you need to consider
You have identified your target audience and so will you use the website to:
Remember, what you want your website to accomplish and what will your visitors require from your new website may differ. You may be concerned about the visual aspect of your site and your visitors may just want to find information quickly.
Consider the content you will need to support the objectives of your site and how you feel it should be best presented. Look at your competitors sites and get a feel for what looks and works best.
Put yourself in your customers shoes! Try to understand what will make them want to visit your website and what will encourage them to return. You need to make your customer’s journey effective and efficient.
There is some information you must display on your website as a minimum. All companies in the UK must clearly state the company registration number, place of registration, registered office address. A common place to put this information is in the 'About us' or 'Legal info' page of the site - it does not have to appear on every page.
Planning Your Website
Before you decide on which platform to build your website, start with a blank piece of paper and create a diagram or wireframe to show the structure of your website. This diagram should include the content, navigation and layout of the web pages. You can use drawing packages such as Word, Powerpoint or Illustrator to create your wireframe which will allow you to amend them as your vision develops.
Once you have created your wireframe show it to friends or customers who are a representative of your intended audience and get their feedback. Their comments can then be quickly added into your wireframe which will then form the template for your new website.
Technical website design considerations
There are several technical issues to consider when designing your website.
You will have to design webpages that can be displayed by many different browsers. Common browsers include Microsoft Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari and Google Chrome. If you use a pre-designed website template you may find that they have already been tested on these web browsers.
Not all internet users have high speed access, so connection speed should also influence your webpage design.
Too many images or rich media (such as video or audio) will slow down the speed at which your webpage loads. Generally, pages should load within eight seconds or less to keep the attention of your visitor. If your pages download slowly, your users will probably move on to another site. Slow download speeds may also impact negatively on your search engine ranking.
The Equality Act 2010 makes it illegal for a website provider to discriminate against a disabled person by refusing to provide a service that is generally available, providing a service of a lower standard, or failing to comply with a duty to make reasonable adjustments.
Making websites accessible
There are many adjustments you can make to your website to make it easier for disabled people to use. For example, your web designer should attach a text description to every image and link on the site. This means that blind users, who rely on a browser that reads out the contents of the webpage, can hear a description of what an image is and where a link will take them.
Designing your website
When designing your website, plan a theme and structure that will hold all the pages together. Many of the FREE website builders provide templates to allow you to continue your chosen brand throughout your website.
Create a common theme of colours, fonts, graphics and page layouts. Simplicity and consistency in your visual design can be the most effective way of presenting your online brand.
Plan to create a unified look for the various sections and pages of your site, so that the users are aware that they are moving around within a single site as they move from page to page. Use templates to create a common page layout across your site.
Don't be afraid to use white space or blank areas in your webpage design. Good use of white space can help define areas of your page and can be used to structure and separate content. A lack of white space can give the impression that the page has too much content and this may encourage your website visitors to log off your website.
You will have already developed your brand or image and so ensure this is incorporated into your website design.
Hierarchy of information
Don't make users navigate through too many layers of the site to find the information they want. A standard navigation bar that is in the same place on every page enables the user to move quickly through the site. Again, many website templates allow for a menu bar to be shown across the top of each page.
Optimise Your Website
Once your website is live, you should continue to optimise it and it make it more accessible to search engines such as Google. This SEO Best Practice document from Weebly provides top tips on how to improve your SEO.
Finally, if you are in the process of setting up your own business and you need help in building a Weebly Website please get in touch with Sunflower VA today. If you were specifically looking for a Wordpress Website then we would suggest you get in touch with local Kenilworth Web Design Agency