Posts Tagged ‘brand’

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Ahhh, Twitter

Reasons to Embrace Twitter for your Business

Ahh, Twitter. Many of us love it, some of us despise it and a vast population of us don’t know much about it.

Here are three trending articles that explain how to use Twitter to your business’s advantage. Of course, the Alliant National marketing experts stand ready to help you get started, as well.

A smart, well-played response on Twitter can go a long way toward reinforcing or elevating your brand.

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If used correctly, Twitter can be a great marketing tool for your business. Before using Twitter to help your business, here’s everything you need to know.

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If you’re just starting out with Twitter, this guide will show you how to craft a winning strategy. If you’re already using the platform to grow your business, jump to our section on smart Twitter tips for business.

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What You Should Know to Avoid PR Fiascos

PR fiascos can decimate a brand and/or business.

Business leaders, and anyone representing the face of that business, must be aware of how their words and actions can impact that business.

The bottom line is: don’t be stupid. While it seems trite, those three words really get to the crux of avoiding PR nightmares.

  • When one thinks of social media influencers, who comes to mind? Is it a group of the most highly-followed social media stars with millions of followers or is it someone more approachable and relatable, with a smaller, yet immensely dedicated following? If it’s the latter, they are likely micro-influencers. Read More
  • An emerging trend has entered the ecommerce marketing arena since such social media channels as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube became increasingly popular. Micro-influencers, have successfully settled in the world traditionally ruled by the Kardashians and eventually gained more value for marketers. Read More

Garner local media attention for your business: Part One

And, positive media attention leads to increased awareness of your business. And that leads to more business opportunities. And those lead to business growth and increased sales. And, who wouldn’t want that? If you are like most community businesses, you likely hire and promote people, sponsor a local school’s sports team, donate to community charities (food banks, disaster relief, cancer support groups, etc.), celebrate business and employee milestone anniversaries and have employees who have exciting extracurricular activities (marathon running, world travel, tiger-taming, etc.). Here are four tips for turning these everyday occurrences into positive, and lucrative, media attention for your business. Create a template for press releases. Create a general press release template, to make it efficient and easy for crafting an announcement about your company. You may want multiple templates, such as a “new hire” announcement, a “charity support” announcement, etc. Press releases have general guidelines you should follow. Creating a template assures you’re following those guidelines without re-creating the wheel each time you make an announcement. And, bonus! Your team at Alliant National can guide you in creating templates. Know your local reporters and build relationships with them. Make it a point to know the editors and reporters of your local news media team. Depending on the size of your community, this team may include a news or radio station, small community/neighborhood paper, or your area’s main publication. Get to know this team, send all press releases to them and invite them to cover your company’s special events, such as celebrations and charity fundraisers. Send them pictures, too. Reporters love pictures. Be mindful of opportunities. Be mindful in your daily activities by always thinking, “Is this something of interest in my community that the media would cover, and would it help portray my business in a good light, potentially creating more opportunities for my company?” Make these practices a habit. Don’t be a “one and done” press release company. Designate a responsible and detail-oriented person on your team to manage press releases/media relations (it’s not as complicated as it sounds) for your business. You should be sending press releases for newly-hired employees, milestone events, charitable endeavors and other newsworthy events. One additional note: Keep in mind Alliant National can be a tremendous resource to you in getting started and staying active with your local media relations.
We’re here to help our agents grow. To schedule a digital marketing consultation, please email us.

Is your Linkedin page open for business, and why does it matter?

You do a good job of promoting your business, right? You have a website, place ads in publications that your target market is likely to read and you support your community through key sponsorships.

You have a strong cadre of clients, influencers and prospects because you’re a great networker. So, why do you need to create and maintain a professional profile on LinkedIn?

Is this social networking thing ever going to go away?

It’s not going away, and LinkedIn is a fabulous tool for your business networking. If you utilize only one online network for your business, make it LinkedIn.

But, why?

LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world, that’s why. Your network is using it, your competitors are using it, your prospective employees are using it, your local media is using it, and you better be using it, lest you fall behind.

Here are the key steps to creating your LinkedIn presence:

  • Create a strong profile. Tap into your marketing team’s writing skills to create a professional summary of your skills and description of your business. This is an opportunity to promote your business and establish yourself as a thought leader within your business. Use your resume to list your job history, education and highlight industry and community organizations in which you participate. Be prudent in listing any organizations that are personal.
  • Establish a presence. Once you’ve created a strong profile, begin building connections. Here’s a shortlist of people you need to invite to connect with you: coworkers, former coworkers, everyone in your network, former college friends (again, with prudence). Also, you’ll receive lots of invitations to connect with other professionals. Be sure to connect with them. Avoid “spammy” looking connection requests. They are not in your best interest.
  • Build and maintain relationships.
  • Scroll your LinkedIn news feed to stay abreast of your connections’ news. They’ll post when they change jobs, when they receive awards, have articles published, etc. Congratulate them. And, be sure to post your own news. This is an opportunity to grow relationships … relationships that may someday lead to new business.
  • Help others learn about you and your company. LinkedIn is a terrific recruiting and marketing tool. Encourage your teams to use it.

One additional note: educate yourself on the various security features of your LinkedIn account to mitigate unwanted email, connection requests and various other barriers to your privacy.

And, just like that, you’re a LinkedIn user.

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How to harness influencer marketing techniques to grow your business

Influencer marketing is a powerful tool for marketing and growing your business. If you aren’t already utilizing this method of marketing, you’re missing a big opportunity.

And, hopefully you don’t have the mindset that, “I’ve done great so far without it, why start now when it may just be a fad?” Influencer marketing is here to stay!

Influencer marketing has been here for centuries, but in other forms. Referrals and customer complaints are influencer marketing. The art of influence elicits changes in thinking or behavior.

An influencer is someone who has the power to change our perception and behavior.

Because social media is now mainstream, influencer marketing is everywhere. Customers don’t have to go looking for referrals. Referrals (and other influencing content) are everywhere.

So, what’s the best way to use influencer marketing to grow your business?

Here are several ways to increase influencer marketing within your business:

  • Know the influencers and build relationships with them. Influencers include “influential” people within your community, such as prominent bloggers and local non-competing business people. The influencer’s audience should be the same audience you are trying to reach.
  • Offer valuable information (contributed article, tips, etc.) to the influencers, asking them to consider sharing the content on their blogs or other social media. The key is to make it pertinent information for the influencer’s audience, and not “salesy” content.
  • Ask your satisfied customers (who, by the way, are influencers) to review your business on Yelp, Google and Facebook. They love you, so be sure they share their love for you. The goal is for prospective customers to see these reviews when they are researching and making purchase decisions.
  • Ask customers to “check-in” on Facebook when they visit your office. This is a great method for growing your business’s popularity on Facebook. Consider offering a small monthly prize ($25 gift card to local restaurant) via a random drawing from all people who’ve checked in over the past month.
  • Engage with your clients via social media. This is a great method of personalizing your service and further integrating into your community. Be cautious of sharing, liking or commenting on any potentially objectionable content. Keep it clean!

One additional note: you should avoid paying influencers to market your product, as paid endorsements lose credibility with buyers.

Follow these tips and you’ll be practicing influencer marketing! It’s not rocket science. It just takes a conscious effort, a plan and a common-sense approach.

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