BarnRaisers


9 signs it’s time to resign a client 0

Posted on September 26, 2016 by Rob Petersen

resign a client

The decision to resign a client is an emotional and stressful experience, but it’s inevitable and an important milestone for any businesses.

Because it teaches if a relationship isn’t going to be profitable both parties, it’s isn’t going to be sustainable.

You will probably rationalize why you should keep it going in the short term, but not letting go is cheating your business of clients who love you and value what you do for them.

How to know when it’s time to stay or let go? Here are 9 signs it’s time to resign a client.

  1. FINANCIAL: Your client is not paying on time for the work being done. The cash flow of any business is the easiest area to become a problem very quickly. Any growing business will have growing overhead; so financial imbalance is serious. In most cases, a little reminder gets the job done, but if not, rethink the relationship. This is the easiest and most obvious sign to spot.
  2. COUNSEL: All client relationships are based on providing quality input, objective points-of-view and candid counseling. If your client asks you for your opinion but doesn’t listen; or, even worse, stops asking or doesn’t care about your advice, stop spending your time and your staff’s time trying to help them.
  3. OVER-SERVICE: All good service providers over-service clients. But if time spent on the client is consistently and significantly greater than planned, too much time to one client can have a negative impact on the services to other clients. By continually over-servicing a problem client, you risk hurting the relationships that help you most.
  4. DIRECTION AND BRIEFS: When a client isn’t clear with direction, it creates unrealistic expectations and fails to adhere to agreed working targets and strategies. If a client cannot decide what they want, it’s difficult for a business to understand what they are working towards. The consequences invariably lead to more time, more doubt, less innovation, and diminished outcomes.
  5. EXPECTATIONS: Though you may have done a good job of delivering on the agreed-upon scope of work, there are times when you just can’t make your client happy with the results. They continue to expect things that are either unreasonable or well beyond what the budget warrants. You should always try to manage this from the onset of the relationship, but sometimes expectations can never truly be kept in check. If that’s the case, it could be time to just walk away. Sometimes the relationship simply isn’t salvageable and the time and energy spent on trying to keep it alive would be best served on other clients or pursuing new ones that are a better fit.
  6. INCREASING DEMANDS: Demanding clients can be good – if they force you to produce your best work. But if all the demands are about unreasonable deadlines, changes they’d like you to make after you’ve met every specification or scope creep, it might be time to let the client go. Just let them know that you won’t be able to meet a certain deadline or do the additional work and apologize. In cases where you can’t let the client go: negotiate. Whether its deadlines or a general demanding behavior, find a way to state your case and negotiate.
  7. DISRESPECTFUL: The only real assets you have to sell are your services, creative ideas, and your people. If your client lacks professional courtesy or is in any way disrespectful to your team, then you owe it to them to resign the business. You gain incredible currency from your team when you defend them to a client, especially because they are care and are most likely doing a very good job.
  8. CONTINUAL ORDERS: The client continually orders you to make decisions you don’t agree with. Worse yet, if you agree to do them and they don’t work, they blame you for bad decision-making. Don’t let yourself get into this situation. Stand up for your beliefs, values and move on.
  9.  BE DIRECT, PERSONABLE AND GET OUT: Time is likely to be your company’s most valuable resource. And if your time and your employees time is being taking for granted, or worse, regarded as having little value, don’t waste it any longer. Be direct, to the point and take the next step.

Here is a simple but effective way to resign a client who have become a problem.

[Name] — We believe your company is going to achieve great success. We wish you the best.

We also believe another company is going to be a better fit for you and your specific needs.

As of [date], our company won’t be able to assist you with [what you do] any further.

Below is what you can expect from us between now and [date]. Thanks for your understanding.

[list of action steps]

We wish you the best success.

You may not know immediately if the steps you have taken are worth it. You may not know for some time. But, if they were made from principles, they are likely to be not only be the rights steps but pay dividends in the long term. For you, your employees, your bottom line, your company’s future and your well-being.

Do this signs help you decide when is the right time to decide a client?

7 big ways to do microtargeting by thinking small 0

Posted on September 18, 2016 by Rob Petersen

microtargeting

Microtargeting is a marketing strategy that uses consumer data and demographics to identify the interests of specific individuals or very small groups of like-minded individuals and influence their thoughts or actions.

Marketers see the most success in microtargeting when data helps them know their target audience so well the messages get delivered through the target’s preferred communication channel. And when they are most likely to act.

How to do it? Where to do it? Who’s doing it well?

Here are 7 big ways to do mircrotargeting by thinking small.

  1. TARGET MOST READY TO ACT WITH LONG TAIL KEYWORDS: Amazon, Apple and Google are pushing us into voice search. 60% of searches now come from mobile devices according to Hitwise. ComScore says that by 2020, 50% of all searches will be voice searches. Voice activated searches are longer. They tend to be three-to-five keywords in length, and questions. Phrases like “where to buy honda motorcycle parts near me” or “how to get honda oem parts” are examples. Why pursue long-tail keyword targeting. 88% of consumers who search for a local business on a mobile device call or go to that business within 24 hours according to Nectafy.
  2. FIND YOUR FANS WITH FACEBOOK ADVERTISING: In 2013, Facebook forged partnerships with data brokers including Epsilon, Acxiom, and Datalogix. These companies have access to trillions of data transactions each year. Facebook advertising is based on finding the audiences that are most likely to become your fans or your customers. You can target Facebook users by: 1) Recent purchase behaviors, 2) life events, 3) custom audiences (e.g. job function, income, zip code, website behaviors) 4) lookalike audiences and 5) layered audiences (behaviors, demographics, and geo-location data to reduce your audience to as little as one person). Facebook for Business is one of the most powerful microtargeting tools.
  3.  GEO-TARGET WITH GOOGLE ADWORDS: Paid search ad can be served in your neighborhood instead of nationally and for a small fraction of the cost. Google Adwords can be targeted by: 1) City, state, country, region, 2) DMA (designated market area), 3) ZIP code, 4) radius around a point and 5) location extension targeting. With geo-targeting, you won’t squander your ad budget on wasted clicks from people who are outside your target area, and you’ll increase the chances that the people clicking on your ads are actually eligible to receive your products and services.
  4.  KNOW TIME TO TARGET WITH GOOGLE TRENDS. By tracking when and where people are searching Google, Google Trends shows how often a particular term is searched. For example, for a company with a product related to the flu, flu symptoms and flu treatments, Google has been able to predict  for these terms outbreaks of influenza before government agencies do. Google Trends has made it easier to track the path of a flu virus. If Google Trends can help target at the local level where and when the flu is most active before the government, imagine what it can do for your business.
  5. TAP INTO AN INFLUENCER: A-list celebrities do not come cheap. Advertising dollars might be better spent best spent on hyper-targeted marketing and social media personalities. An example of the latter is Shoes of Prey’s collaboration with Blair Fowler. Shoes of Prey is a customizable women’s shoes business, They tapped Blair Fowler, a 16-year-old beauty video blogger, or “vlogger”, to host a giveaway on the style guru’s YouTube channel. The result: a permanent 300% uplift in sales. The firm cleverly leveraged the distribution and trust Fowler had with her fans to drive eyeballs and engagement at scale. To-date, the video has received 750,000 views and nearly 30,000 comments.
  6. DEFINE BOUNDARIES WITH GEO-FENCING: You can build a virtual “fence” around a geographic location (for example, an office building or sporting arena) and serve ads to people on their mobile devices whenever they are within a certain radius of that location. Geo-fencing is a feature in a software program that uses the global positioning system (GPS) or radio frequency identification (RFID) to define geographical boundaries. Using this type of targeting is a great addition to many types of online advertising advocacy campaigns to reach the majority of your intended audience in a unique way.
  7. DON’T FORGET SOCIAL NETWORK SEARCH FUNCTIONS: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and all social networks have a search function; that is, their own individual search engine. You can use to find people who is talking about the topics that matter most to you and who is in a location now where you are targeting. They are an invaluable research tool, data source and opportunity for promotion. And they are free to use.

Microtargeting is research, data collection and marketing all working together against a well defined niche achieving bigger results for a much smaller investment.

Do these ways convince you of the power of microtargeting? Could your business benefit?

What is link building and 25 ways to build better backlinks 0

Posted on September 12, 2016 by Rob Petersen

 

link building

Link building is the process of acquiring links from other websites to your own.

Building links is about quality over quantity. SEO experts say there is little doubt that if you get high-quality links to your website, you will rank higher than competition and get more traffic to your website.

That’s because good link building sends a positive signal to search engines you are an authority in your niche. Link building creates new relationships. Building links should naturally go hand in hand with other online marketing activities.

How do you make this better link building happen? Michael Peggs, Founder and Chief Content Creator at Marccx Media, has some ideas and he’s summarized them in the infographic below.

Here are 25 ways to better link building.

  1. SUBMIT YOUR SITE: There are many credible ways your site with registries in your field, area and relevant experts. For example, you can submit your site:
    • For feedback
    • To local business directories
    • To blog aggregators
    • To blog directories
  2. FIND FORUMS AND CONVERSE IN COMMUNITIES
  3. ALWAYS BE COMMENTING
  4. REACH OUT TO BLOGGERS
  5. GUEST BLOG ON POPULAR SITES
  6. START A BLOG AND BOOKMARK IT
  7. SUBMIT YOUR BLOG
    • To document sharing sites
    • To eBook directories
  8. SHARE ON SOCIAL MEDIA
    • Update your Google+ Profile
  9. CHECK OUT AUDIO SHARING SITES
  10. INVEST IN INFOGRAPHICS
  11. CREATE A CUSTOM IMAGE
  12. LIST YOUR LOGO
  13. ASK QUESTIONS
  14. ANSWER QUESTIONS
  15. HELP A REPORTER OUT
  16. GIVE BACK AND GET LINKS
  17. BUY EXPIRED DOMAINS
  18. RECLAIM LINKS
  19. INTERLINK

Building links is an effective process, especially when you work at it and make it work with your normal marketing activities.

Do these ways give you some ideas how building better links can work? Are there any other you have used that have been effective and you recommend? Do you need a partner to help your business with better link building?

We’re grateful to Michael and Marccx Media for this infographic.

link building

 

50 astounding facts about mobile search behaviors 0

Posted on September 05, 2016 by Rob Petersen

mobile search behaviors

  • 60% of searches now come from mobile devices. (Hitwise)

That’s based on mobile search behaviors in 11 key categories and associated queries analyzed by Hitwise. The company examined hundreds of millions of online search queries across PCs, smartphones and tablets between April 10 and May 7, 2016. Here’s how it breaks out by category.

Screen-Shot-2016-08-03-at-11.25.26-AM-800x307

But mobile surpassing desktop is only one fact about our mobile search behaviors. Here are 50 other astounding facts about our mobile search behaviors.

  1. 95% of mobile users use their device for mobile search (MarketingLand)
  2. 94% have found a need to call a business directly when searching for information on their smartphones. (Google and Ipsos)
  3. 89% of participants admitted to searching for a local business on their smartphone once a week or more with 58% searching at least daily.  (Mediative Spotlight)
  4. 88% of consumers who search for a local business on a mobile device call or go to that business within 24 hours. (Nectafy)
  5. 88% of all “near me” searches occur on mobile devices with those mobile searches growing at 146% year over year. (Google)
  6. 81% of conversions (defined as store visits, calls or purchases) triggered by mobile search occur within five hours. (Google)
  7. 80% of local searches on mobile phones convert. (SearchEngineLand)
  8. 80% of smartphone owners use their device in stores to shop. (Google)
  9. 76% of smartphone searchers have used a store locator or location extension in search results to help them find and visit a local store. (Neilsen)
  10. 75% of purchases from mobile search take place in a physical store (Neilsen)
  11. 74% of mobile users will wait 5 seconds for their site to load before abandoning it (MyCustomer.com)
  12. 74% of mobile bookings are made for same-day check-in. (Hotels.com)
  13. 73 percent of mobile searches trigger follow-up actions. (SearchEngineLand)
  14. 73% of consumers find mobile websites load times to be too slow and 74% say they will leave the site after waiting 5 seconds or more. (Meditative Labs)
  15. 72% of click-to-call conversations lasted longer then 30 seconds. (Google and Ipsos)
  16. 70% of mobile searches lead to online action within an hour. (iacquire)
  17. 70% of mobile search conversions happen with 5 hours. (SearchEngineLand)
  18. 69% of Marketers believe that their website is currently mobile-friendly. (gShift Study)
  19. 66% of time spent online retailing is done through smartphones or tablets. (comScore)
  20. 63% of Americans who researched their travel options digitally used a mobile device. In 2016, 73.0% use a mobile device to research a trip. (eMarketer)
  21. 62% of organic searches display different results on desktop vs. smartphone. (Bright Edge)
  22. 61% of smartphone users are unlikely to return to a mobile site they had trouble accessing and 40% visit a competitor’s site instead. (Google)
  23. 61% of mobile users are more likely to contact a local business with a mobile site (Google)
  24. 60% of mobile users expect a website to load in less than three seconds. (Gomez)
  25. 57% of mobile users won’t recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile website. (CMS Report)
  26. 55% of digital marketers stated that they do not currently track mobile rank data. (gShift)
  27. 55% of mobile data usage is video. (Cisco)
  28. 53% of mobile searches have local intent. (Meditative Labs)
  29. 52% of travelers who book trips via digital means will do so using a mobile device. (eMarketer)
  30. 52% of mobile searchers say they find the click-to-call button useful. (Google and Ipsos)
  31. 50% of mobile queries in travel, restaurants and autos result in a purchase. (MarketingLand)
  32. 50% of local mobile searches result in store visits (Google)
  33. Location-related mobile searches are growing 50% faster than mobile searches in general. (Inc.)
  34. 45% of users 18-29 use mobile search daily. (iacquire)
  35. 48% of people who do research on a mobile device start with a search engine. Search is the most common starting point for mobile research.  (Google)
  36. 48% find it extremely important to be able to call the business when they are about to make a purchase. Click-to-call is seen as most important for mobile searchers in the purchase phase. (Google and Ipsos)
  37. 40% of mobile searchers use Google Click-to-Call. (Google and Ipsos)
  38. 40% of mobile searches happen between 6pm and 12pm. (MarketingPilgrim)
  39. 40% of mobile searches are conducted while users are watching TV. (iacquire)
  40. 40% will choose another result if it is not mobile friendly. (iacquire)
  41. 36% of mobile searchers have needed click-to-call when researching an item or service. (Google and Ipsos)
  42. 36% of mobile searchers indicated they would be more likely to explore other brands if click-to-call was not available when required. (Google and Ipsos)
  43. 33% of searches on a smartphone occur right before a consumer visits a store. (Source: Google)
  44. 33% of people who do research on a mobile device start with branded websites. (Google)
  45. 33% of all mobile searches on Google are related to location. (Inc.)
  46. 32% of consumers wish mobile websites were easier to navigate through the purchase process. (Meditative Labs)
  47. 30% higher Click Through Rate for searches on mobile devices than desktop. (State of Search)
  48. 26% of people who do research on a mobile device start with branded apps. (Google)
  49. 18% of local searches lead to sales. (Source: Google)
  50. 3X higher conversions for people who search a business on their mobile device vs. desktop. (iacquire)

The key takeaway is not how big mobile search now is or how fast it is growing. But consumer expectations when they do mobile search and the rewards for companies that have a strategy and plan for delivering on their mobile search behaviors.

The infographic below show how to go about optimizing your company’s search present for mobile SEO.

Are these facts surprising to you? Does your company need help navigating your customer’s mobile search behaviors?

mobile search behaviors

8 bad marketing automation practices to stop doing now 0

Posted on August 28, 2016 by Rob Petersen

marketing automation

  • 49% of companies use marketing automation.
  • 55% of B2B companies use it (emailmonday)

Marketing automation refers to software automating marketing actions. It’s used to automate repetitive tasks such as emails, social media, and other website actions. It’s a case where technology makes tasks easier.

But does easier make it better? Although the numbers say half of companies use marketing automation, do they use it well or badly?

How to tell? Here are 8 very bad marketing automation practices.

All of these, unfortunately, have happened to me. Have they happened do you?

1. LAUNCH RIGHT INTO THE HARD SELL: On the internet, it’s hard to make yourself approachable. How to do it is provide thoughtful content your audience values without asking for anything; rather, you explore common interests until your prospect is ready to buy. This is called social selling. Yes. It takes time. But it delivers a prospect who feels they know you and is more ready to take action. Here’s what not to do.

marketing automation

2. BRAG BEFORE KNOWING YOUR AUDIENCE: The best thing to do when sending a message to someone who doesn’t know you is show you understand them. The worst thing is brag about yourself. Here’s a good example of the latter.

ma_1-resized-600

 

3. BELIEVE CLEVERNESS COVERS UP YOU’RE A PEST: More is not better with marketing automation. If someone hasn’t taken any action, they’re either not interested or not ready. A very bad idea is bugging somebody like this:

marketing automation #3

4. USE GENERIC SUBJECT LINES: Your first chance, and probably only, to make a good impression is the subject line or headline of your content. Here is a sampling of subject lines from emails I’ve recently received: “It’s finally here,” “I want you back,” “As per my last email,” “After checking your services,” “Am I still welcome here?” All have been generated by marketing automation. Why would anyone open any of these?

5. SET IT AND FORGET IT: Although marketing automation makes tasks easier, it can also make tasks much less compassionate. This is especially true in social media. Below is an automated Tweet from the journal American Rifleman, which is associated with the National Rifle Association. It was pre-set to forget. But it went out as details surrounding the tragic shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, CO were being released. The respond below the NRA Tweet was not set to forget.

marketing automation #5

marketing automation - nra

6. NOT ENABLING SOMEONE TO UNSUBSCRIBE: The CAN-SPAM Act is a law that establishes requirement for commercial messages, gives recipients the right to have you stop emailing them, and spells out penalties for violations. The law states:  “Once people have told you they don’t want to receive more messages, you must honor a recipient’s opt-out request within 10 business days.”

7. TURN A DRIP CAMPAIGN INTO A DOWNPOUR:  A Drip Campaign s a method used in direct marketing to acquire customers through repetitive marketing actions. It involves sending marketing information to prospects repeatedly over longer periods of time in order to nurture prospects or leads. After once opening an email generated by marketing automation, I received the response below in less than an hour. Obviously, something I won’t do again.

marketing automation #7

 

8. DON’T BE A SORE LOSER: To anyone who uses these bad marketing automation practices, my guess is you are not seeing any success. If you’ve ever written an email like this, you’ve come to the point where you have to seriously evaluate your use of marketing automation.

marketing automation #8

Do these examples of bad marketing automation practices help which what you should and shouldn’t do? Have any of these every happened to you?

  • About

    BarnRaisers builds brands with proven relationship principles and ROI. We are a full service digital marketing agency. Our expertise is strategy, search and data-driven results.



↑ Top