Want to know what your customers are thinking or want?

The beauty of the Internet is it provides an opportunity for live, two-way conversations between you and your customers.  One easy way to get your customer’s opinion and thoughts is to do an online survey.  An easy and inexpensive (free) tool to use for creating an online survey is www.surveymonkey.com  They have templates, great FAQ’s, samples and tutorials.

September 12, 2008 at 2:35 am Leave a comment

A robust resource for starting and growing your business

Intuit has a great online business resource for small businesses.  JumpUp.com – The Place to Start a Business    There is information on everything from the basics of starting a business to marketing, taxes, financing, what to charge and more.  The forums are active with discussions on venture capital, going green, women in business, accounting advice, how to get your business online..

You can join the community and post your business and start online networking with other business owners.

September 9, 2008 at 4:50 pm Leave a comment

How can adding a White Paper increase my business?

One marketing component getting more attention lately is the White Paper. A White Paper is a report or article about a specific subject with a solution to a problem.  Adding a White Paper to your Web site is an easy way to add relevant content and reinforce your site as a source for information on your particular subject. It is also a way to encourage customers to sign up.  As an example a carpet cleaning company could write a White Paper on the best way to remove stains from carpet. They could post this article on their site or offer it as a benefit to signing up for their e-newsletters.  A helpful site for more information on White Papers is http://www.stelzner.com/copy-HowTo-whitepapers.php   www.MarketingWhitePapers.net

September 8, 2008 at 6:18 pm Leave a comment

Design options from around the world

I ran across a new site that I think is a valuable tool for design projects – http://www.crowdspring.com/  They are a source for small design projects to full scale sites, branding, print and logos.  The concept is different than many of the freelance design sites.  You place a project for bid and the designers actually do comps and designs.  You get to pick from a completed design.  The designers are from all over the world so you get a wide variety of styles.

August 14, 2008 at 4:46 pm Leave a comment

Keys to a successful Internet marketing plan

Discussion abounds on what is the key ingredient to a successful Internet marketing plan.  I think the key ingredient is to know your customer and understand their needs.  Once you have this information you can apply it to all of your online marketing components.  
Start with your Web site. Put on your “customer’s hat” and look at your site through their eyes.   Does your site meet their needs?  If the customer is looking for information is it easy to find? If they want to find your phone number and address are they listed on every page of your site?  Write down the top 5 things you think your customer wants when they get to your Web site and see if your site is meeting their needs.  Ask a couple other people who have not been involved in working on your Web site to review your site and go through the 5 needs of your customer.  Make any necessary adjustments to your site to make sure it is meeting your customer’s needs.  
Once you have your site tuned  and adjusted to meet the needs of your customer  it is time to focus on making sure your site meets the needs of the major search engines. Most of your customers are going to begin their search for a product or service using one of the top three  search engines, Google, Yahoo and MSN. If your Web site is optimized properly you have a better chance of having a high ranking on these search engines and increased visibility during customer searches.  For a detailed description of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) visit http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Search_engine_optimization&oldid=236452622
There are a variety of resources available to help you optimize your Web site. Google offers some free tools to get you started – www.google.com/websiteoptimizer 

August 4, 2008 at 6:20 am Leave a comment


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