Viral Solutions -- Your Personal Chief Marketing Officer -- Digital Marketing and Business Strategy

Viral Solutions -- Your Personal Chief Marketing Officer -- Digital Marketing and Business Strategy

By Thomas von Ahn
On this podcast, we talk about marketing strategies and tactics. Many of our podcast episodes will cover strategic marketing (segmentation, targeting, positioning, market orientation, branding, and offering development), but we will also discuss tactical marketing (Facebook advertising, email marketing, Google AdWords, SEO, and more)

Our mission is to help you double the size of your business by using time-tested, proven marketing strategies and up-to-date marketing tactics.
Available on 7 platforms
How Does SEO Work? OFF-Page SEO Tutorial for Small Businesses (Part 2)
You’ve optimized your web pages and posts for SEO. You’ve properly placed your keywords, improved your site structure, and ensured the readability of your content. So, why isn’t your site ranking on page 1 yet for your main keywords? If you’ve dotted your I’s and crossed your T’s when it comes to on-page SEO and you’ve seen some improvement in your rankings but still aren’t where you want to be, it is most likely because you’ve been neglecting the other side of SEO for small business: off-page SEO. On-page and off-page SEO go hand in hand, and you can’t expect to get amazing results simply by doing one or the other. In a recent article, we outlined the best practices for on-page SEO. In this article, we will focus on off-page SEO for small businesses. Let’s get to work… How Does SEO Work? The Off-Page Elements You Need to Know
17:05
March 15, 2019
How Does SEO Work? An ON-Page SEO Tutorial for Small Businesses (Part 1)
SEO can seem like an enigma these days, and it’s difficult to keep up with the $64,000 question: How does SEO work? But make no mistake, you can’t expect your website to be seen without it. Too many small business owners create a website and then expect it to automatically bring in leads. It doesn’t work like that. The good news is that small businesses absolutely can play in the SEO game. They can even outrank large corporations if they have the right SEO strategy in place! Let’s get one thing clear… Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of abiding by certain rules and requirements laid out by Google (and other search engines) for the purpose of generating organic website traffic. Now, what is organic is often perceived as being easy and natural; however, organic traffic only comes in easily and naturally after you put in a ton of hard work and planning. And there is no simple formula to follow because every business is different. A business that has more competition than another business will require more time and hard work to reach first page results than another less competitive niche. But, enough of the doom and gloom. Organic traffic is something every business should work to achieve, and once you start getting results from it, you can expect continued success as long as you continue the work. There are some cut and dry techniques you can build into your marketing strategyto get the rankings you desire, and that’s what we’re going to dig into here.
15:40
March 14, 2019
Why and How to Leverage Subscription Services to Boost Profits and Expand Growth
Marriage? Unpredictable. Health? Unpredictable. Kids? Unpredictable. Business revenue? Unfortunately, still unpredictable. Whether you like it or not, few things in life can be predicted. This is especially true with your business revenue. Though you can estimate earnings based on past data, market demand, and future sales, there is no guarantee that what you earn will come anywhere near your projections (it rarely does). Walk into the Shark Tank and tell the investors you are projecting $10 million in revenue this coming year. If earnings estimates were so predictable, every Shark would jump right on the investment, duking it out with each other in the process. Instead, they drill the contestants on every single business figure until they can find something that gives them a glimmer of hope that the investment will pay off. Go back into the Shark Tank and tell them you already have thousands of paying monthly subscribers. Now, the conversation goes a completely different way. WHY Is the Subscription Business Model so Lucrative? The subscription business model is not a new concept. Nowadays, you can subscribe to anything from healthy food and designer shoes to beauty products and beard oil. Subscription services have also been a business model used by the service industry for decades. Think cable, internet, phone, and utilities. But, subscription services have exploded in the last decade with businesses selling consumables at a faster rate. In Q1 2018 alone, 18.5 million Americans visited at least one subscription site. The subscription model is attractive mainly because it funnels in revenue monthly, which can remove some of the burden you may carry with constantly finding new customers to buy your products and services. Sure, even with a recurring revenue model, you will still need to find new subscribers. But every new subscriber has the potential to bring in long-term value—revenue that could continue month over month, year over year.
19:04
March 9, 2019
Marketing Theory without Execution: An Idea with No Follow-Through
An ongoing debate exists in the marketing industry that begs the following question: Is it more important to devise a marketing strategy or to execute actions to achieve your goal? There are good arguments all the way around this debate, but when it comes down to it, the answer is really… neither. You simply can’t be successful without either one. The problem, however, is that many companies, consultants, and marketers do a lot of “theory” and talking, without taking it beyond that. They can sit around and discuss all the latest marketing tactics and even try to put them in place, but in the end, it’s all for naught if they don’t develop a solid strategy and execution steps to make it work for their business. It’s like school—you can sit in a classroom and learn all the information and theory that is taught to you, but what good is it unless you can apply it in real life? We all know this, but as marketers, we forget that it works the same way. Understanding theory is helpful, but you need to know how to develop a strategy and execute that strategy to actually see results. From Marketing Theory to Strategy & Execution Successful marketing is really a 3-part process that involves following sound marketing theories, creating a detailed strategy, and executing that strategy. Let’s look at each of these steps in more detail. Follow Sound Marketing Theory Marketing theory is the science of marketing. It’s the “rules” and guidelines we follow. It’s the methods we use to form our strategies.
14:36
March 7, 2019
How Can You Overcome Implementation Paralysis? A Look at Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019 – Part 2
If you’ve ever attended a truly great conference, you know how easy it is to get swept up in the magic of it all. Connecting with like-minded people from all over the world… Getting to see your industry idols in person… Walking away with a notebook full of new ideas… But then you return to work the following week, and reality sets in. Your internal monologue may sound a little something like this: “There is NO way I can apply everything I learned to my business right this second—at least not effectively. Why should I even try?” You’re looking at it all wrong, Negative Nancy… At this year’s Traffic & Conversion Summit, we were treated to a number of eye-opening presentations from some of the best minds in the marketing industry. And in addition to the fact that content marketing is (and will likely always be) key, we learned an especially valuable lesson…
11:24
February 28, 2019
Why Is Content Marketing Important? A Look at Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019 – Part 1
“You know it’s all about the content, ‘bout the content, ‘bout the content.” Did you read that to the tune of “All About That Bass” by Meghan Trainor? If not, go back and read it (or sing it) again… because that’s the point we’re trying to make. Content marketing is everything and everywhere. After day 1 and 2 of the Traffic & Conversion  Summit 2019 in sunny San Diego, it was clear that the major player in marketing is content. But content marketing isn’t just about copywriting—it’s every piece of information on your website. So let’s look at… What is content marketing? Why is content marketing crucial? How can you keep existing customers coming back by leveraging quality content? But, take note. All of these methods will never work IF, as a business owner, you don’t put your customer first. You might have the best product or service available in your industry, but if your customers don’t feel heard, they will never listen to you. We must be willing to step outside of our thoughts and beliefs about our products in order to grow.
16:41
February 26, 2019
Characteristics of a Good Salesperson in 2019
There is no way around it: To have a highly successful business, you need very dynamic salespeople. But what exactly are the characteristics of a good salesperson—especially in 2019? In this blog post, we are not going to skirt the issue but instead get right down to it with the following statement… If you are successful in business, we’d be willing to bet money that when you look for a new salesperson to join your team, you are seeking a mirror of yourself. Admit it. You want a salesperson who possesses your particular qualities—the qualities that have made you the success you are today. We understand this urge and think it’s a good one. You don’t want to kid yourself, and you shouldn’t be swayed by fancy pedigrees or certificates when you start interviewing candidates for sales positions in your company. What Patrick Collison, CEO of Stripe, says on Twitter totally resonates with us. “Before you make an offer to someone, think about whether you’d like to have 10 times as many people like them in your company.” That’s a good point of reference. You really do have to be absolutely taken with the salesperson you hire and wish you had 10 of them. However, in your heart of hearts what you really want is a mini-me who possesses the following qualities that you and all other successful business owners possess: Driven to Succeed Goal Oriented Confident Passionate Self-Reliant Focused Open-Minded Cognizant of Human Nature Capable of Leadership As a successful business owner, don’t you agree that the qualities listed above are ones you personally possess? Now let’s dive a little bit deeper into the characteristics of a good salesperson in 2019.
17:33
February 22, 2019
How to Do Market Research: A Guide for Beginners
You just launched a new product that you invested a lot of time and monetary resources into creating. A total of 5 emails, 10 ads, and 3 promos later, your marketing team is chugging down cold ones at your local pub to drown out your dud-of-a-product sorrows. We’ve got good news and bad news… The bad news is that this is all your fault. The good news is that it is fixable. In fact, it is entirely preventable. Did you know you can actually predict how well your products will do? No crystal balls. No wishing on a star. Just good ol’ get-your-hands-dirty market research. Want to skyrocket your growth? Stop leaving money on the table so your competitors can swoop in and steal the profits. Dig into market research methods and stop relying on guesses and hunches, and instead, start planning your business growth instead of hoping and praying for it to happen. You are better than that. Let’s talk about how to do market research… What Is Market Research? Why Is It Important?
26:01
February 21, 2019
360-Degree Marketing – Part 2: How to Create a 360-Degree Marketing Campaign
360-degree anything is pretty much always a good thing. It signifies a complete picture, a unified solution, an all-encompassing result. In terms of marketing, it indicates a campaign that has left nothing on the table and therefore converts every lead possible. In Part 1 of this article, we took a deep dive into 360-degree marketing and looked at what it is and the 9 key components to include in your campaigns. Now, let’s take a look at why this type of marketing is worth pursuing and how to create a 360-degree marketing campaign yourself. Why a 360-Degree Marketing Campaign Is Worth Doing A 360-degree marketing campaign overcomes numerous hurdles faced by companies in today’s marketing landscape. The consistency of a 360-degree marketing campaign sets companies apart because it creates such a cohesive and solid customer experience. It improves return on investment because companies can stop wasting time on the wrong leads as they nurture targeted customers in a way that creates raving fans. There are also a number of ways that a 360-degree marketing campaign can be used within a company:
16:26
February 15, 2019
360-Degree Marketing – Part 1: What Is It & 9 Key Components
Social media. Email. Google ads. SEO. Content marketing. PR. Direct mail. Lead nurturing. Traditional advertising. Webinars and seminars. Apps. Websites and landing pages. The list could go on and on as there are no shortage of ways to reach a customer these days. But to be effective marketers, we can’t look at each of these marketing options on their own. Integrating them into a 360-degree marketing campaign is what makes a company stand out and claim victory in today’s market. What Is a 360-Degree Marketing Campaign? Probably without even realizing it, you have experienced time and time again the effectiveness of 360-degree marketing campaigns. And the fact that you didn’t even notice it proves how well it was executed. Maybe you notice a poster or billboard for a new pair of shoes and then you hear an ad for the same shoes on the radio; you spot an ad for them in your Facebook newsfeed, and then you receive a postcard with a coupon for them in your mailbox. At that point, you’re salivating to buy them, so you go to your computer to pull up the landing page listed on the postcard, which is specifically designed for that campaign. After you make your purchase, you begin to receive emails from them for similar shoes and accessories you also want to own. This is the magic of a well-thought-out 360-degree marketing strategy. It feels like the company is everywhere, and the more times you see their ads, the more you want what they are offering. A 360-degree marketing campaign takes integrated marketing strategies to a new level, with the goal being to cohesively deliver an offer consistently across all touchpoints, platforms, and devices at the right time, in the right place, and with the right message. This holistic approach ensures that every possible interaction with a prospect or customer is meaningful. It means that when your target market sees a tagline to a campaign on social media, they will also see it when they visit your website or when they receive an email from you.
14:18
February 14, 2019
Infusionsoft by Keap: What You Need to Know
When a company takes a step back, it can sometimes be a huge step forward. That’s what happened on January 29, 2019, when Infusionsoft announced they are offering a new, much more basic product. But let’s take a step back ourselves. Infusionsoft’s announcement also explained that they have been rebranded as Keap—a change that depicts their commitment to simplifying growth for small businesses. In fact, their new name and logo is all about growth, from the arrow-like “K” of the logo, which signifies upward movement, to the color green, which indicates growth. As CEO and co-founder, Clate Mask, explains, Keap is a play on words that demonstrates their mission to help small businesses “keep going, keep serving, and keep growing.” Mask told a personal story during a recent interview for Entrepreneur Magazine about his struggles with starting Infusionsoft and how difficult it was to keep going when the money wasn’t there. Especially for his wife, there was constant worry about whether they could survive, and the rebrand speaks to the essence of grit and tenacity that small business owners must have to succeed. Now a highly successful company, Infusionsoft led the way over a decade ago with their CRM and sales and marketing software. If you are a user of Infusionsoft, and even if you are not a user because it offers way more than what you need, then you know the amount of marketing automation power it holds. Now, with the rebrand to Keap and with the introduction of the new Keap product, they have expanded to a new market, serving small service providers that haven’t had the funds or means to use their fully loaded automation software. Clate Mask stated, “We discovered small service providers waste time juggling five to seven tools just to book appointments, send communications, provide quotes or collect payments. That is 50 hours a month that could be spent servicing more clients, growing the business or at home with family.” 2 Product Options: Infusionsoft by Keap vs. Keap
08:54
February 11, 2019
Sales Psychology: What You Need to Know About B2B Selling – Part 2
Tapping Into the Psyche of B2B Consumers In Part 1 of our series on the psychology of B2B sales, we discussed the importance of understanding how B2B buyers think. In Part 2 of our series, we will be digging even deeper into the subject as we show you how to tap into the actual psyche of B2B consumers and learn about B2B buyer behavior. How should your salespeople approach prospective B2B buyers, and what psychological tactics should they use to understand said buyers’ pain points and desires? What drives them to make a purchase? What motivates them? We find delving into the psyche of the B2B buyer to be a fascinating study in human behavior. If you can truly begin to understand B2B buyer behavior and psychology, your company will be well on its way to bigger sales success. Below, we’ve highlighted a 3-step process that you can use to determine what makes a B2B buyer tick so your company can make more sales.
15:56
February 8, 2019
The Future of B2B Sales – Part 3: Why B2B Social Media Is Imperative to Sales Success
If your company is in the B2B sphere, you may believe that marketing on social media is not for you. You are not alone in your thinking. This article from Forbes states… “The first reaction to social media marketing by B2B companies is often doubted — until they see the increases in lead generation and even brand new sales channels that sprout from these efforts. The reality is that not being on social media is hindering your growth” The 5 reasons why B2B companies should not ignore social media are as follows: It helps in tapping into your customers’ emotions It allows you to remain present in your customers’ minds without being invasive It promotes your thought leadership It gives you the chance to gain your customers’ trust It allows your company to leverage video content As you can see, if you are not yet on social media, the time for your B2B company to begin is now. But where do you start, and what social media channels will deliver the greatest results? The following statistics show which social media channels B2B marketers are using:
09:09
February 6, 2019
The Future of B2B Sales – Part 2: The Importance of Analyzing B2B Website Data
If you are in the business of selling your product or service to other businesses—business to business sales (B2B)—understanding the behavior of your website visitors is one of the most crucial aspects of your sales success. How else can you know what your visitors’ intentions are if you are not plugged into the behavior they exhibit while they are on your website? That’s why we want to show you the best tools and tactics for monitoring website visitor behavior and how to take advantage of the data you collect to improve your B2B sales. This article from Influence and Co. is a great resource to get you started if you are not already tracking your website visitors or want to increase your understanding of how to effectively do so. Here is a quote from that article:  “If you’re not tracking your visitors, then you (and your bottom line) are in for a world of hurt. Forty-two percent of B2B marketers agree that the biggest barrier to their lead generation efforts is a lack of data. Understanding how visitors and leads interact with your site can give you incredibly rich data to help optimize your design, improve your content strategy, and generate leads.”
17:06
February 1, 2019
Company Branding—Why It’s Crucial and What Assets to Consider
We’ve said it before, but it’s a message that bears repeating: Company branding is important for all businesses, regardless of size or industry. It offers you the chance to communicate the values and characteristics that define your business. It allows you to pull customers in rather than push them toward making a purchase. It gives you the opportunity to develop loyalty among your customers.   By creating a strong brand that’s recognized and revered by those in your target audience, you can encourage raving fans that buy from you again and again—satisfied customers who trust you and are happy to recommend your business to others. However, although company branding can go a long way toward building up your reputation and increasing sales, it’s also important to remember that you won’t be able to accomplish this feat overnight. Branding is about more than just creating a logo. It’s a process that involves building awareness and encouraging loyalty. It’s about optimizing every facet of the customer experience, from your website layout to your facility’s signage to your communication with customers. And when all of these elements are in harmony—having received the time and attention they deserve—that’s when you have a strong brand that you can utilize in your marketing efforts. Think about some of the most popular and successful companies today… Apple. Coca-Cola. Google. FedEx. Amazon. What do they all have in common?
19:25
January 30, 2019
Marketing Strategy – Part 2: What Your Marketing Is Likely Missing
It’s the start of a brand new year, so by now you should have your marketing strategy planned out and ready to fire for the next 12 months. Is your strategy built on rock-solid principles that will withstand market fluctuations and industry shifts? Are you convinced you will leave the year better off than you entered it? Hopefully, the answer is “yes.” But, if not, our marketing strategy article series can help you put the pieces together. We recently gave you a crash course on some of the most important fundamentals of strategic marketing that fuel business growth. Without a firm grasp of these principles, you will fight an uphill battle—and the hill will get steeper and steeper as you climb. If you missed any of the pieces in this series, here they are again: Learn how to be market oriented, relying on data instead of hunches, which will always steer you wrong. No one knows what your customers want more than your customers. Discover how to conduct qualitative and quantitative market research effectively to understand your audiences’ goals, problems, and desires. Learn the principles of segmentation and discover how to focus on a tight segment of people who possess similar characteristics. Learn how to choose a winning segment to target. Discover the art of market positioning here and here so your message will be meaningful to customers and allow you to outperform your competition. Lastly, understand how all of these pieces fit together to form a solid, unshakeable marketing strategy. We started our discussion of marketing strategy in Part 1,where we talked about the 3 strategic questions you must ask and how the purchase funnel can lead to greater leads, conversions, and revenue. Below is our final piece of this series, wherein we will discuss how to set strategic objectives, determine budgets, and create SMART goals that will guide you to success. Let’s get to it!
27:04
January 23, 2019
The Future of B2B Sales – Part 1: How the B2B Landscape Has Changed
If there is one thing all small business owners can agree on, it is this: The internet is drastically changing the way we do business. If your small business caters to other business owners—what is known as B2B (Business to Business)—and you have been in business for a long time, then you are a direct witness to the way the B2B landscape has shifted with the introduction of the digital age. Where before your sales successes were made up of the traditional types of B2B sales strategies—such as direct mail, walk-in customers, cold calling, and meeting with prospective buyers—it has become imperative that you also have an e-commerce presence. There is no way around it: People, including your B2B clients, like shopping online. However, we must point out that just because you will be selling online, you and your salespeople need not panic. As stated in “The Future of Selling B2B Online,” an article from Inc.com, “The Internet is not making salespeople obsolete; it’s making them even more important.” The article also discusses how pundits have been saying for decades that the internet would make salespeople obsolete, but Inc.com says the pundits had it all backward.
12:33
January 18, 2019
Bridging the Gap Between Online and Offline Sales to Accelerate Your Business – Part 3
In Part 1 and Part 2 of our series Bridging the Gap Between Offline and Online Sales to Accelerate Your Business, we discussed the difference between these spheres and how to get back to the basics by embracing simplicity. In Part 3 of our series, we will tackle another crucial element of bridging the gap between offline and online sales: understanding which tools are best for you as a business owner to keep track of sales and the most important tools your sales and marketing teams need to help them do a better job of selling and reporting. Of course, there will be some crossover between online and offline sales and the tools you need if your company does both. If your mind-set up to this point has been that there is a great divide between offline and online sales, this article from Digital Commerce 360 will most certainly change your mind. In the introduction to the above-referenced article, this important fact is stated… “Online and offline experiences are no longer either-or when it comes to retail strategies, and we can tie that directly to evolving consumer preferences and innovative technologies that merge the two concepts.” Although the article from Digital Commerce 360 proves that offline and online sales are already merged, you can still never discount the tried-and-true staples of offline selling. In this article, One Click Lindsey lists and explains some of the best offline marketing ideas. A few of these offline marketing tactics include passing out your business card, attending trade shows, and good-old door knocking (or canvassing as they call it in the world of sales). If you are in the business of selling offline, we urge you to take advantage of the 35 offline marketing ideas listed in the above article. When you match that effort offline with the following tools you need for online sales, you can’t help but have a winning combination.
16:08
January 16, 2019
5 More Digital Marketing Tactics That Will Give You an Edge in 2019—Part 2
In Part 1 of this article, we outlined 7 digital marketing trends that will help you stand out in 2019. In Part 2, we are offering 5 more tactics, this time focusing on those that center around content. Let’s look at these content marketing trends now…
09:43
January 11, 2019
7 Digital Marketing Trends That Will Give You an Edge in 2019—Part 1
The ultimate key to marketing is making sure you aren’t falling into a comfort zone. As soon as you get comfortable with the digital marketing tactics you are employing, the trends shift, and if you aren’t on top of them, you’ll be left behind. At the same time, it’s impossible to implement all of the latest digital marketing trends into your business. That’s why we feel the best approach is to choose the ones that will help you stand out amongst your competition. We’ve cut down the clutter and outlined 7 digital marketing trends for 2019 that will give you that edge. Here they are…
10:45
January 9, 2019
Marketing Strategy – Part 1: What Your Marketing Is Likely Missing
We’ve been on a pretty wild (and in-depth) journey recently. We gave you a crash course on the marketing principles that have guided the world’s most successful companies for decades. Hopefully, by now, we have answered most of your strategic marketing questions. We taught you how to be market oriented and always rely on the data instead of hunches and “gut” instincts. You learned how to conduct qualitative and quantitative market research to understand your audience, their desires, their goals, and their problems. We then discussed segmentation and taught you how to cut the audience “pie” to focus on a tight segment of people who possess similar characteristics. Next, we taught you how to choose a winning segment to target and then position yourself in your market to become meaningful to customers and gain a competitive edge.   We know it was a LOT to grasp, but there is one more thing we need to discuss, and it very well may be the MOST important part of this entire series. Even if you execute all of these pieces successfully (market orientation, research, segmentation, targeting, positioning), your chance of success is still LOW if you do not understand how they fit under the umbrella of a high-level marketing strategy. If you act on tactics without being guided by a top-level strategy, you will encounter trouble in the future, regardless of how your sales look in the short term. What’s the difference between tactics and strategy?
25:57
January 4, 2019
Market Positioning – Part 2: How to WIN the Race and Attract More Customers
Do you want your brand (and not your competition’s) to be at the forefront of your customers’ minds? If you aren’t segmenting, targeting, and positioning yourself, you will never be able to convince your target to buy from you, especially if your competitors have already developed a solid positioning strategy and infiltrated your market… You need to position yourself correctly to outperform your competition and win over your customers. Welcome to Part 2 of our 2-part series on market positioning. In Part 1, we defined what market positioning is and how to create a strategy that clearly defines your positioning statement. We also discussed how to showcase your company to the market so you can outperform your competition. In Part 2 below, we will further define the nuances of effective positioning and discuss how you can use your brand identity as your greatest competitive advantage.
24:50
January 2, 2019
Market Positioning – Part 1: How Do Your Customers Perceive You?
It’s you vs. your biggest competitor in a fierce battle to win over your customers’ minds. Your weapon is your positioning sword, and whoever has the sharpest, most powerful sword will come out victorious in the end. Are you confident you will be the victor? Wait…do you even have a positioning sword? If you aren’t positioning your company effectively, well, there isn’t much of a battle here. You might as well turn around and go home—that is, if your competitor doesn’t slay you first. If you want to gain a competitive advantage and get your brand message into the hearts and minds of your customers, you have to get into the trenches and position yourself effectively. Let’s talk about positioning… Now we realize that positioning is not exactly a glamorous topic to learn about nor something you want to talk about at your next neighborhood BBQ.
19:20
December 28, 2018
Real Estate Marketing Tips: How to Grow Your Following- Part 2
In a recent article, we provided 10 online real estate marketing ideas that have been proven to bring in more leads and loyal followers. In this article, we are providing 10 additional tips so that you can really stand out and be the go-to real estate professional in your neighborhood and beyond. Here Are 10 More Real Estate Marketing Tips for Online Success
13:35
December 27, 2018
Real Estate Marketing Tips: How to Grow Your Following- Part 1
As a real estate professional, you want to move properties quickly, but standing out online in the real estate market isn’t easy. Plus, with digital marketing changing with the speed of light, it’s hard to know what will work best. These tried-and-true online real estate marketing tips are the best place to start… Try These Real Estate Marketing Tips for Online Success
13:35
December 21, 2018
Bridging the Gap Between Online and Offline Sales to Accelerate Your Business – Part 2
As a business owner, if someone were to ask you what your biggest challenge is when it comes to sales and marketing, what would your answer be? When approached with this question, the majority of business owners had this reply: The need for more simplicity. It is ironic that, when once we were all on fire about technology and business owners wanted to make sure they were using the most cutting-edge software and apps to help accelerate their business, now the watchword of the day has become simplicity. In Part 1 of our series, “Bridging the Gap Between Online and Offline Sales to Accelerate Your Business – Part 1,” we discussed how to more seamlessly integrate the 2 worlds of sales: online and offline. In Part 2, we are going to address the challenge of getting back to the basics and simplifying your sales and marketing process to more effectively accelerate your business. In our age of technology, with new ways of tracking sales and collecting data appearing on the horizon on a daily basis, it can become overwhelming to salespeople and often hinder their sales process. Your salesperson has one thing on their mind: making the sale. A seasoned salesperson knows intuitively when to move forward with a lead and when to back off, and ultimately when to accept defeat. If you were to ask them what they wish would happen, they would likely say they wish they could just be left alone to do their job. What throws a wrench in the works is often the great divide between online and offline sales and the conflicting mind-set of your sales team and marketing team. Your salespeople can often begin to feel like a hamster on a wheel—their sales process clogged by reporting, data collection, and other technology. Whereas, your marketing team is eager to work new leads using all of the technology and digital resources at their command. We like to call this “too many cooks in the kitchen.” Here is a great example: Your salesperson mans a booth at a convention. They gather leads—some leads the salesperson wants to protect and hold—but the leads are also required to be entered into a database for tracking and marketing follow-up. Of course, the marketing team is gung ho about reaching out to the new leads with emails and Facebook pixel retargeting. However, marketing must understand that the salespeople do not want their leads to receive redundant or irrelevant emails, SMS messages, etc., so the tool that must be used is a very robust CRM (e.g., Infusionsoft) that allows sales to track leads and indicates to the marketing team what leads they should work, without each other coming across as a pest to the prospect. The above situation is the number one “beef” with salespeople—that marketing bothers their leads. Yes, marketing thinks salespeople do not enter their leads in a database/CRM so that marketing will not pester their leads. Both are correct, yet both are wrong and are acting off ego. This is why the sales manager gets frustrated with a lack of pipeline facts.
15:33
December 19, 2018
How to Create a Compelling Brand with Character Diamonds
Have you ever met a raving fan? Maybe you are one yourself. You know—a person who is so gung ho about a sports team that they can’t stop talking about them. They go to every home game, and they buy all of the team’s paraphernalia. The same could be said about raving fans of a band and even a business brand. When business branding is done right, it creates raving fans, and then people line up to buy. Just look at Apple, for example. Talk about raving fans! But branding isn’t easy. It’s not just a logo and it’s not just a name. It’s the essence of a company—the character traits that make the company unique—and it’s what the company stands for. If your company has a personality of its own, that’s when it has successful branding. But that’s a tall order. How do you turn your bland brand into a powerful personality? For most people, that thought is pretty overwhelming. If your brand is not relatable, it will be ignored and considered irrelevant. If it doesn’t show a vulnerable quirk, your strength isn’t recognized. If it doesn’t make an impact, it doesn’t draw people to it, and it doesn’t compel anyone to buy its products or services. If you want to create a brand that compels people to become raving fans, you must turn your business into a character they can relate to and resonate with. The Character Diamond provides an easy way to bring your brand to life, and in this article, we’ll explain how it works. Why Are Character Diamonds Valuable? Ryan Deiss, cofounder and CEO of DigitalMarketer.com, discussed the importance of using Character Diamonds in branding during his presentation at HYPERGROWTH 2018. He explained that a company that has no soul hires a celebrity to become the soul of their business because they have no personality of their own, so they need to borrow it. And he went on to explain that the story of your brand is the best type of marketing, but it’s the characters that we really love and even crave. That’s why a successful brand is a fictional character. The “character” of a business brings life to it and gives it a personality that people want to be around.
14:14
December 12, 2018
Bridging the Gap Between Online and Offline Sales to Accelerate Your Business – Part 1
If someone approached you asking about the difference between online and offline sales, what kind of answer would you give? How would you explain the psychology between the 2? Or were you even aware that there was a difference in the approach? If your answer is, “I haven’t got a clue,” you aren’t alone. Most business owners don’t know because they’ve never been taught—much less provided resources about how to begin selling and building a brand online. It’s an entirely different animal than the offline world. As leaders in the world of e-commerce and experts with decades of experience in face-to-face sales, the Viral Solutions team often notices that businesses are not meeting their full potential simply because they do not understand the massive difference between offline and online sales. To grow your business to the heights you dream of, it is imperative that you have an online presence and that your sales and marketing team understands the differences between online and offline sales—as well as the psychology of each one. To help your business accomplish these tasks, let’s talk about a major problem we often face… When a business that has always sold strictly offline decides it’s time to have an online presence—which is crucial in today’s technological climate and can really accelerate your business if done right—they think they can use the same marketing and sales tactics that they have always used offline. This does not work. It is backward, in fact. When a business that has never had an online presence asks us to build their website, they often request we frame it around themselves… While this may be true, it turns prospects off. In the online world, it should never be just about you. Your potential clients want to know how your product or service can benefit THEM. Unlike selling offline, when it comes to online sales, providing facts and information is your primary goal. You can’t simply place yourself in someone’s view by showing up. You have to earn every click and every view—in one way or another.
11:28
December 5, 2018
Sales Psychology: What You Need to Know About B2B Selling – Part 1
It’s fair to say that the majority of successful, sales-focused professionals have 2 important things in common: Their thirst for knowledge Their desire for self-improvement If you count yourself among this elite group of individuals, we know this post will provide insights as to what makes people tick and how to leverage what we know about human behavior to boost your sales numbers. The gist of the post is understanding the mind of B2B (business to business) clients and how important that ultimately is to your personal success in the B2B selling niche. As a professional in the B2B sphere, if you have been in the game for any decent length of time, then you are aware of how important it is to understand the mind-set of your B2B customer. To be successful in the job, you must make learning the psychology of B2B selling one of your main priorities. It’s also vital to understand the difference between selling in the offline world versus the online world, as well as the fact that a salesperson’s best friend is a CRM—points we’ll discuss in more detail in future blogs. It is well worth noting that B2B selling is a different animal from B2C (business to consumer) selling. If your sales niche has been B2C, and you are transitioning into B2B selling—even though you may have been a huge success in your former role—you will be doing yourself a big favor if you take on the attitude of a novice. That’s how big of a difference there is between the psychology of a B2C customer versus that of a B2B client. Think of yourself as Michael Jordan, going from basketball to baseball. You’re a skilled athlete switching from the court to the field, understanding that it’s a whole different ball game and having to adapt to a new format and set of rules… To back up our above statement, this article from Forbes titled “Differences in Selling B2B and B2C” points out key differences between B2B selling and B2C selling. B2B selling includes the following aspects that are in direct opposition to B2C selling: A longer decision-making process A greater number of involved stakeholders A lengthier relationship Smaller lead pool Different type of product knowledge
12:11
November 28, 2018
Creator Studio: The New Social Media Management Tool for Facebook
These days, it can be tough to keep up with your Facebook Pages. After all, there’s a lot going on, and it can be cumbersome to try to keep tabs on what content is performing the best. This is especially true if you have multiple Facebook Pages to manage. Heck, there are probably even features in Facebook you don’t even know about because there’s just too much to keep track of. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could somehow monitor all of your Facebook content and Pages from one place and be able to determine exactly what your audience wants and how your Pages are performing? You’re in luck! There is a new social media management tool that does just that, and it just so happens to be free! It’s the new Creator Studio, which is kind of like Facebook’s own version of Meet Edgar. Integrated Social Media Management for Facebook It may seem overwhelming at first, but when you take a little time to get to know Creator Studio, it will save you a lot of time and money. What it does is integrate all the tools you need to manage your Facebook Pages, including posting, monetizing, and measuring content across all of your pages. With Creator Studio, you’ll be able to better measure your pages’ performance, streamline and simplify your Facebook management, monetize videos, and use enhanced creative tools. How to Access this New Social Media Management Tool To access Creator Studio, log in to your Facebook Page, click on Publishing Tools, and then click on Creator Studio under the Tools section. Creator Studio Features & How They Work Now, we’ll walk you through all the different features within Creator Studio, so you can grasp what it can do for you and start using it to streamline your Facebook Page management.
10:21
November 23, 2018
Market Targeting: How to Avoid Havoc and Target a Winning Segment
It’s the holiday season and you forgot to wear your stretchy pants to dinner. The mental debate begins. Is the I’m-not-hungry-but-I-want-it piece of pumpkin pie worth the ensuing discomfort? Your pants are saying, “Don’t do it,” but your mind can’t resist the temptation. There goes your top button… and the rest is overeating history. Marketers have the same overindulgence problems when working with their segments. They want to target more segments than they should, but succumbing to this temptation can be much more detrimental than mere belly discomfort—it could cost them growth and future revenue. What Is Market Targeting and Why Is Overindulging on Segments so Dangerous? In this recent article, we introduced the STP marketing framework, which essentially represents segmenting, targeting, and positioning. We discussed segmentation in detail and introduced how targeting is related. Here is another look at the STP diagram:
15:49
November 21, 2018
Multi-system Chaos: When Marketing Technology Is Too Much of a Good Thing
It’s hard to keep up with the ever-changing stream of technological advances in business. If you added up all the marketing technology software and subscriptions you use in your business, you’d probably be surprised by the number. Let’s look at what some of them might be… You have your shopping cart, your website and all the various plugins or apps you use on it, your project management systems, your bookkeeping software, your graphic design software, your content management systems, social media posting software, conference call and webinar systems, note apps, and chat tools… and we’re probably still missing quite a few. These tools are invaluable time-savers. Or are they? Honestly, it’s debatable, and here’s an example of why: Within each of the tools we mentioned above, it’s very likely that you have marketing technology systems that…
16:21
November 20, 2018
Multi-system Chaos: How to Minimize Your Marketing Tools
Are you feeling overloaded by all the different marketing tools your company is using? Do you feel like it’s turned into too much of a good thing? Most companies are feeling the same way. It’s called multisystem chaos, and it’s a real problem. When you keep seeing articles such as 41 Must Have Digital Marketing Tools to Help You Grow and 58 Best Marketing Tools to Build Your Strategy in 2018, you start to wonder how you’ll cut through all the noise. The time it takes to weed through and choose the marketing tools you will use in your business alone is a major time-killer. You can learn more about multisystem chaos and the pros and cons of marketing technology in Part 1 of this article. In Part 2, we are going to provide some tips for reducing that chaos. Examples of Marketing Tools You Might Want (or Not Want) in Your Marketing Tool Kit The number of marketing tools we use as marketers is astounding. Here’s a quick dive into the different types of software, apps, and tech most businesses are using on a daily basis…
10:09
November 16, 2018
Market Segmentation: How to Increase Your Sales by Decreasing Your Market Size
You launched your products and you researched your target audience. This means you are ready to market, right? Not necessarily. Are you planning on sending the same ad, the same emails, and the same communication to your entire audience? If so, you may be headed down a destructive road of dismal sales and wasted money. Marketing is not easy Look, we know that full-scale marketing (done right) is a bit complex, especially for newbies, but it’s not our fault. The reason marketing is so complex is because your customers are complex. If we lived in a world of copycat robots, this marketing stuff would be a lot easier. Customer complexity is inevitable. Every single company on the face of the planet has to deal with it. If a company tells you otherwise, they likely don’t do any market research. The research is what uncovers the behavioral, attitudinal, demographic, and psychological complexity that exists even within the same target audience. How do you manage that complexity? You can take the “easy” way out and target your entire audience exactly the same way (while putting your company in jeopardy of underperforming and eventually failing). Or, you can take a little time to understand segmentation, which we will discuss in this article. We understand you…
25:42
November 9, 2018
Market Orientation & Research: Leaving the Darkness and Stepping into the Light – Part 2
Are you market oriented? If so, you are in a good position to grow. Companies that are more market oriented enjoy higher profitability, superior sales growth, customer retention, and new product success. What happens if you’re not market oriented? Well, let’s just say you could become irrelevant in a highly competitive marketplace and face an uphill battle when you try to scale and meet customer needs. If you don’t know what market orientation is, in Part 1 of this 2-part article series, we laid the groundwork for market orientation and why being market oriented is critical for long-term success and competitive prowess. In Part 2 below, we will dive into the application of market orientation, which is market research. Here’s a quick review: When you are market oriented, you realize that your assumptions about your consumers are 100% wrong and that you need to consult market research to move forward with a solid marketing strategy. Let’s get into a little more detail on what market research is and how you can use it to “level up” your company and profits.
33:57
November 8, 2018
Common Social Media Video Mistakes
Video is a huge part of any digital marketing strategy, and this is particularly true for social media advertising. Video has been the single strongest force in online marketing and advertising for most of this decade, and it’s only becoming more and more popular with every passing year. At Viral Solutions, our social media marketing services include helping you optimize your use of video across all your platforms. There are a number of basic mistakes that inexperienced folks in this area might make – let’s go over a few of the most common, plus how to avoid falling into any of these traps.
07:10
November 5, 2018
Developing a 360 Degree Marketing Plan
The concept of a 360 degree marketing plan refers to a marketing campaign that reaches customers at all possible points of contact. Successfully putting together such a plan is important because it enables you to maximize the chances of finding new potential customers and engaging them in a wide variety of ways. Viral Solutions focuses more specifically on a 360 degree marketing plan, in which a company uses all of the resources at its disposal to reaches prospects and customers at all possible points of contacts. Are you being consistent with your marketing strategy and tactics? Successful marketing takes both discipline (strategy – a written plan) and execution (tactics – the people and the tools).
18:36
November 5, 2018
Market Orientation & Research: Leaving the Darkness and Stepping into the Light – Part 2
Are you market oriented? If so, you are in a good position to grow. Companies that are more market orientedenjoy higher profitability, superior sales growth, customer retention, and new product success. What happens if you’re not market oriented? Well, let’s just say you could become irrelevant in a highly competitive marketplace and face an uphill battle when you try to scale and meet customer needs. If you don’t know what market orientation is, in Part 1 of this 2-part article series, we laid the groundwork for market orientation and why being market oriented is critical for long-term success and competitive prowess. In Part 2 below, we will dive into the application of market orientation, which is market research. Here’s a quick review: When you are market oriented, you realize that your assumptions about your consumers are 100% wrong and that you need to consult market research to move forward with a solid marketing strategy. Let’s get into a little more detail on what market research is and how you can use it to “level up” your company and profits. Market Research? Who’s Got Time for That?
33:57
November 2, 2018
Market Orientation & Research: Leaving the Darkness and Stepping into the Light – Part 1
If I asked you which one of the 2 CEOs below has a better chance of reaching target customers successfully and selling more product, which person would you choose? A Harvard MBA graduate, or An unschooled twenty-something: If you answered #1, you are wrong. If you answered #2, well…you are also wrong. You can’t actually arrive at an answer without asking each party more specific questions. You see, when it comes to knowing your market, paper degrees won’t tell you a thing about what your consumers want. The best marketers are those who can admit they actually know NOTHING about their customers. We call this concept market orientation. Market orientation is the first step to constructing a solid long-term marketing strategy. When you’re market oriented, you realize that you need research to learn about your customer instead of relying on assumptions and hunches (which are almost always wrong). In a recent interview, Mark Ritson—professor of marketing at Melbourne Business School, consultant, and writer for Marketing Week—weighed in on marketing strategy. By his reckoning, he estimates that “around 80% of marketers, and in some countries 90 [percent], literally have no idea what the hell they’re doing” as it relates to marketing strategy. Most companies are just not market oriented. Are you market oriented? Read on to find out…
43:33
October 20, 2018
The Ultimate Guide to Running Successful Flash Sales – Part 2
What if we told you that you had only 24 hours to get 100 product sales or else we would bankrupt your business and take you for everything you’ve got? Before you pinch yourself to wake up from your nightmare, this scenario may not be as grim as you think. What would you do in this case? We would recommend running a flash sale. Flash sales are exciting little sales events that pack a super HUGE punch. Running a flash sale could potentially generate a 35% lift in transaction rates and bring in new and return customers to your business. But, here’s the thing…
55:05
October 4, 2018
The Ultimate Guide to Running Successful Flash Sales – Part 1
Ever get run over while making a mad dash for the last deeply discounted video game your son had to have for Christmas? If so, it likely happened on Black Friday, the biggest flash sale day of the year. Flash sales cause people to do crazy things—camp out overnight outside stores, scavenge last-minute coupons, and plan their shopping trips like top-secret Navy SEAL operations. For consumers, this is a small price to pay with such deep discounts as a reward. For you, the payoff can be even greater. Successful flash sales can generate a 35% lift in transaction rates, not to mention bring in a horde of new customers to your business. But profits aren’t guaranteed. You have to execute flash sales correctly to reap the benefits. And that’s exactly what we are going to teach you how to do today.
37:15
October 1, 2018
Millennials and Brand Loyalty: What You Need to Know
Think back to when you used to go grocery shopping with your mom… Did she walk into the store with her list in hand, scanning the shelves for specific logos? (Right now you’re probably nodding your head yes.) If so, odds are she (and others in her generation) continue to shop in this manner—opting to buy from brands that are familiar and trusted. However, this doesn’t seem to be the case for every generation with spending power…of which there are currently four primary groups: Baby boomers Gen Xers Gen Yers (commonly referred to as millennials) Gen Zers On average, baby boomers and Gen Xers tend to be the most consistent of the bunch, staying true to what they know and exhibiting high rates of brand loyalty. And since Gen Zers are just barely on the cusp of adulthood (and probably don’t have a ton of extra dough to spend just yet), that leaves…millennials. So, let’s take a closer look at this much-talked-about group.
11:30
August 29, 2018
Maintaining a Strong Visual Brand on Social Media
Here’s a question you may not ask yourself every day… Do you have a strong visual brand on social media? If not, you’re wasting a perfect opportunity to inspire and engage your audience. Plus, you’re missing out on the chance to solidify your position as a business your customers can easily identify and trust. Some business owners still think that just being on social media is enough. But any marketer worth his or her salt will tell you that’s totally false. The fact is that if you don’t create a strong visual brand, you’re not doing everything you can to extend your reach on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, or whatever platform your target audience is using… https://viralsolutions.net/maintaining-a-strong-visual-brand-on-social-media/
18:27
August 28, 2018
Lead Nurturing 101 - How to Boost Your Conversion Rates
Lead campaigns without nurturing are a lot like faulty pool floats. A lot of effort goes into blowing them up, yet a few small pinholes will have you huffing and puffing with absolutely nothing to show for it (except maybe a dizzy spell). Let’s compare this to your lead campaigns. You throw heaps of money, time, and resources at generating more leads, but if you aren’t nurturing them, you are simultaneously losing many of them as quickly as they came in. Even if you are generating leads regularly, most will fall right through those holes if you are not nurturing them. It’s time to close up the holes so you can reclaim those leads and make your marketing dollars work for you. Enter lead nurturing. Lead nurturing follows your leads far beyond the initial acquisition and keeps working them all the way until the sale, thereby increasing conversions. What Exactly Is Lead Nurturing? https://viralsolutions.net/lead-nurturing-101-how-to-boost-your-conversion-rates-and-your-revenue/
24:25
August 16, 2018
Why Facebook Mobile Advertising Continues to Be a Powerful Tactic
Last month, it was reported that ad spend on Instagram jumped 177% during the second quarter of 2018. This is significantly higher than the increase in ad spend for its parent company, Facebook, which only saw a 40% boost in the same time period. So, what gives? Well, advertisers have started to see the value of expanding to other, “smaller” platforms (in comparison, anyway) such as Instagram and Pinterest. As more and more people begin using these platforms, it makes sense to meet them there. Does this mean advertisers should pull back from Facebook? https://viralsolutions.net/why-facebook-mobile-advertising-continues-to-be-a-powerful-tactic/
19:59
August 16, 2018
Important SEO Questions to Ask
At Viral Solutions, we’re proud to offer a wide range of SEO and PPC services to all our clients in Wisconsin and nearby areas. These areas, as part of our overall services, help us both protect your brand and develop a great comprehensive marketing strategy to increase business in important areas. We’re extremely confident in our SEO services – so confident, in fact, that we welcome being compared to other similar digital marketing companies in this space. Any good brand manager should always be doing this kind of comparison before hiring SEO pros like ours. In part one of this two-part blog, we’ll go over some of the questions you should be asking a digital marketing agency about their SEO. https://viralsolutions.net/important-seo-questions-to-ask/
12:09
August 16, 2018
How to Prevent Hiring the Wrong People
Hiring the wrong people will severely limit the potential of your business, especially if your team is on the smaller side. In fact, it’s not inaccurate to say that the success of your business hinges just as much on the people you have as the quality of product or service that you have to offer. So how can you make sure that you’re not hiring the wrong people for your small business? Here are some tips: https://viralsolutions.net/prevent-hiring-wrong-people/
04:07
August 7, 2018
How to Minimize Expenses While In the Startup Phase
When you’re just getting started with your small business, you most likely don’t have a whole lot of money to throw around. This means that it’s extremely important that you keep your expenses to a minimum across the board, at least until you’re able to get additional funding or reach a certain level of sales success. Here are a few of the best ways that you can make spending cuts in the early phases of your business: https://viralsolutions.net/minimize-expenses-startup-phase/
04:55
August 7, 2018
How to Measure the Success of Your Mobile App
Mobile applications are becoming the dominant source for digital interaction. App usage comprises 52 percent of digital media engagement, and four out of five minutes spent on a smartphone are spent using apps. With the rapid growth of mobile apps, you need to be able to evaluate how well your app stands out among competitors. Quantifying success can help both with internal project planning and attracting advertisers and investors. Below are a few metrics to measure your mobile app success. https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-measure-the-success-of-your-mobile-app/
04:34
August 7, 2018
How to Make Your Small Business Look and Feel Big
Just because you’re a small business on a limited budget doesn’t mean you have to look like one. There are plenty of ways that you can make your small business look and feel big so that you can impress potential customers and set yourself up for greater success. https://viralsolutions.net/make-small-business-look-feel-big/
05:05
August 7, 2018
How to Make Connections in the Workplace
If you are able to make genuine connections with your employees or coworkers, you’ll find you’ll be better able to overcome challenges as a team and grow both as an individual and as a company. Of course, making lasting, deep connections is about more than water cooler small talk. Here are a few strategies that can help you to build meaningful connections in the workplace: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-make-connections-in-the-workplace/
03:10
August 7, 2018
How to Make All Criticism Constructive
When you spend your life in the business world, you’re going to occasionally encounter some criticism from your customers. It’s understandable that you want to avoid criticism as much as possible, as nobody wants to hear what they’re doing wrong. However, this criticism can wind up being extremely important to the company you’re representing. As a result, it’s actually important to encourage customer criticism, rather than to shy away from it. Here are three simple steps that you can take to help turn all of your criticism into a constructive thing for your company: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-make-all-criticism-constructive/
04:48
August 7, 2018
How to Lose Respect as a Leader
When you’re the leader of a small business, respect is difficult to gain and easy to lose. Even if you think that you’re doing a great job of building and commanding respect, there are certain things that you might be doing that could undermine your ability to effectively lead your team of employees. These ‘things’ may not be as obvious as you might imagine. The list of habits that lose respect is obvious, but the actions and characteristics that cause them may not be. Here are a few of the biggest ways that people in leadership positions lose the respect of their employees: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-lose-respect-as-a-leader/
07:07
August 7, 2018
How to Kick Off a Content Marketing Campaign
One of the best ways to get the word out about your business and to increase the effectiveness of your overall web marketing campaign is to engage in content marketing. This refers to the creation of original content that you place online, whether it be video content, written content or otherwise. Content marketing helps you to build engagement with your brand and, eventually, increase sales conversions as well. But how do you set yourself up for success as you get started with your own content marketing campaign? Consider these tips: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-kick-off-a-content-marketing-campaign/
05:44
August 7, 2018
How to Keep Your Employees Happy with Their Jobs
It’s basically common sense: happy employees make for a better company. While you can’t exactly force anyone to be happy with their work, there are definitely some steps that you can take as a leader to ensure that you’re making your business conducive to happiness. Here are some of the best ways you can do exactly that: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-keep-your-employees-happy-with-their-jobs/
04:42
August 7, 2018
How to Keep Your Clients Accountable
If you are in the business of mentoring or counseling other individuals or organizations, whether it’s for marketing, IT or otherwise, you might have occasional issues with keeping your clients accountable. It’s a common issue for professionals in these fields—it can be a challenge to keep clients engaged in between your sessions with them. It’s also a very understandable issue, as it’s extremely easy to get caught up in the busyness of everyday life and the routine of the work day. However, if your clients aren’t staying engaged between sessions or following the steps you’ve laid out for them, they aren’t going to find success, which means they’ll wind up being unhappy with your services. Keeping them engaged and accountable is key to keeping your clients happy. Here are some tips for how you can do exactly that: https://viralsolutions.net/keep-clients-accountable/
04:45
August 7, 2018
How to Keep the Entrepreneurial Spirit Alive in Your Company
One of the most thrilling aspects of starting a new business is the idea of venturing out into uncharted territory and taking risks that may or may not pay off. It’s a scary yet exhilarating period of time for many business owners. But once you’ve achieved a certain level of success, it’s easy to let that entrepreneurial excitement slip away, and when it does, you could lose some of the motivation that’s kept you ticking to this point. So how can you continue to act like an entrepreneur even when your company is already well established? Here are some tips that will help you to keep the entrepreneurial spirit alive: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-keep-the-entrepreneurial-spirit-alive-in-your-company/
04:23
August 7, 2018
How to Establish More Credibility as a Business Owner
As a business owner, it’s extremely important to establish some credibility with your targets as it means your message you put out with your brand will be much more reliable and persuasive. Your credibility will give you much greater influence in bringing in new customers and in the types of tips, advice and information you provide through your website, blog and social media. Here are five different ways that you can become more credible in the eyes of potential customers: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-establish-more-credibility-as-a-business-owner/ [MAY 2014]
03:10
August 7, 2018
How to Encourage Word of Mouth Marketing
While it’s always important to engage in marketing through a wide variety of channels, there will never be another form of marketing more powerful than word of mouth. If you can get people to start talking about your business and recommending it to others, you’ll much more easily bring in new customers and encourage longer, more lucrative business relationships. But how do you get people to start talking about your business in the first place? Here are some tips that should help you to encourage word of mouth marketing: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-encourage-word-of-mouth-marketing/
05:19
August 7, 2018
How to Empower Your Employees
One of the best ways to ensure that your employees are motivated and producing great results for your business is to give them a sense of empowerment. Employees should never feel as though they’re just trudging along and have no control over their work. But how do you foster a sense of empowerment within your business? https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-empower-your-employees/
04:56
August 7, 2018
How to Design Your Office for Success
Sometimes how productive you are individually and as a company is affected by more than just the people you have working there, or the kinds of motivation you use as a leader to spur on your team. You might be surprised at just how much of an effect the physical workplace itself can have on the quality of work that you do. There are ways that you can redesign or reorganize your workplace to better set yourself up for success. https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-design-your-office-for-success/
05:23
August 7, 2018
How to Define Your Competitive Advantage
As the owner of a small business, it’s important to understand what it is about your products, services or processes that makes customers want to choose you. This is referred to as your competitive advantage. When you can figure out how to gain a competitive advantage within your industry, that’s when you’ll really start to see some growth as a business. Every business desires to be the top competitor in its industry or niche, but only those that are able to take a good introspective look at their organization are able to figure out how to get to that position. What is it that you do better than anyone else, and how can you make sure that people know this about your business? Here are some different areas of your business that you can look at to find your competitive advantage: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-define-your-competitive-advantage/
04:20
August 7, 2018
How to Deal With Your Fear of Failure in Business
As a new entrepreneur and the owner of your small business, it’s completely understandable that you still have some element of a fear of failure. You may have taken the initial plunge by actually getting the business started in the first place, but growing that business is an occasionally frightening task. So as you seek to grow your business (and yourself as an entrepreneur), how do you deal with that fear of failure? Here are a few tips: https://viralsolutions.net/deal-fear-failure-business/
05:24
August 7, 2018
How to Build (and Keep) Momentum With Your Business
If you can count on anything in the business world, it’s that nothing will ever stay the same for very long. This is one of the biggest challenges you’ll have to face as a business owner; if your business environment is constantly changing, how can you stay adaptable and continue building momentum through all of these changes? Here is a brief list of tips on how you can keep the momentum going through any changes that come your way to achieve your goals: https://viralsolutions.net/build-keep-momentum-business/
04:35
August 7, 2018
How to Break Bad Business Habits
One of the most common ways that business owners lose their passion for their work is by getting sucked into a variety of bad habits that really inhibit the types of success they can achieve. You might not even realize that you have these habits, because the process of making them habitual is very slow and gradual. But the fact is that many businesses that aren’t achieving their full potential are likely being slowed down by at least one or two bad habits. https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-break-bad-business-habits/
04:08
August 7, 2018
How to Boost Creativity in Your Business World
The biggest successes in business often start as one small spark of creativity. But sometimes it’s easy for us to get bogged down by the mundane, day-to-day details of our work, and we don’t get the time to step back, brainstorm and take a look at the big picture. So how can you boost creativity in your business? https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-boost-creativity-in-your-business-world/
05:47
August 7, 2018
How to Better Your Chances of Going Viral
Anyone who has engaged in any form of internet marketing knows how big it can be for a video, article, image or other type of content to “go viral.” It’s a big example of the snowball effect; as one person shares your content, they allow more people to see it and share it, and it can all happen extremely fast. This can have a huge impact on your brand recognition. Unfortunately, there’s no single tried and true method for betting your content to go viral. But there are ways that you can increase your odds. Here are a few tips: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-better-your-chances-of-going-viral/
05:11
August 7, 2018
How to Become More Resilient in the Business World
As you’ve no doubt heard many times before, failure is inevitable in the business world. The truly great leaders are the ones who are able to pick themselves back up and become better because of their failures. But how do you cultivate this type of resilience in yourself? Is it something you’re born with, or is it something that you can learn? https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-become-more-resilient-in-the-business-world/
07:40
August 7, 2018
How to Be More Productive With Your Email
If you’re not careful, email can quickly turn into a huge time suck that saps a lot of your energy and productivity. One study indicates that reading and responding to email makes up about 28% of the average person’s work week! That’s an absolutely staggering figure. Fortunately, there are ways that you can improve your email productivity and reduce that number. Here are some tips, so you can be more productive with your email: https://viralsolutions.net/productive-email/
04:16
August 7, 2018
How to Be More Engaging on Social Media
Have you ever noticed that some people have a knack for conversation? They know just what to say and when to say it. They know when to be quiet and let others talk. They ask the right questions, and they’re generally fascinating to be around. Others gravitate toward them and enjoy their company. In short, these conversationalists are engaging. Those same conversational skills are transferable to social media. In fact, “engagement” is one of the most important metrics of social media success. You have to be engaging. With that in mind, let’s look at how you can use conversational skills to be more engaging on social media. Below are a few tried-and-true conversation tips and how they can be applied on social media: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-be-more-engaging-on-social-media/ [JUL 2014]
05:09
August 7, 2018
How to Be a Better Listener
It’s certainly important in the business world to be a good talker, but one could argue that it’s far more important in business (and in life) to be a great listener. True leaders know that active listening is a valuable skill to have, and practice certain skills to make sure their colleagues or employees know they are listening to and care about what they’re saying. Here are some tips on how you can be a better listener in the working world: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-be-a-better-listener/
05:10
August 7, 2018
How to Add Social Media Icons to Email Signatures
Adding social media links to your email signature file is a fantastic way to remind your contacts to connect with you on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or any other social network of your choice. While you could simply add the URLs to your signature file, using social media icons is much more visual and instantly recognizable. Here are a few ways to do it: https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-add-social-media-icons-to-email-signatures/
04:05
August 7, 2018
How Social Media Marketing Can Get You In Trouble
At this point, it’s a pretty widely accepted fact that if you’re not using social media in your marketing efforts, you’re well behind in the world of advertising. Creating a community through these social networks is one of the best ways to get people engaged with your brand and to get the word out about what’s happening within your company. However, it’s a double-edged sword; as easy as it is to better connect with your customers through social media, it’s just as easy to have a colossal screw up. With this in mind, we’ve compiled a list of some of the ways that social media marketing can get you in trouble if you’re not careful. Be sure to avoid these practices! https://viralsolutions.net/how-social-media-marketing-can-get-you-in-trouble/
05:46
August 7, 2018
How is Your Business Limiting Creativity
If you hope to have success as an entrepreneur, you’ll need to be able to consistently come up with new ideas or new spins on old ideas to keep your business on the cutting edge. Innovation is a major part of separating yourself from the competition. To have that innovation that’s so important, you need to do everything you can to inspire creativity in your workplace. However, there are so many businesses that unwittingly stifle the creativity in their offices. Here are some of the most common attitudes that limit the creativity within businesses: https://viralsolutions.net/business-limiting-creativity/
05:26
August 7, 2018
How is Snapchat Changing the Way People Use Social Media?
Snapchat offers a unique opportunity to connect through brief, relatable encounters that can help forge an emotional connection between customers and your brand. While some social media is used to convey important information, Snapchat prioritizes the ephemeral and encourages organic and unique content. https://viralsolutions.net/how-is-snapchat-changing-the-way-people-use-social-media/ [SEP 2015]
04:10
August 7, 2018
How Do You Find Your Purpose in the Work World
Many of us have had an existential crisis over our purpose at some point in our lives. One day, you might have a sudden epiphany that you don’t like what it is you’re doing, or that you feel like you should be doing something with more meaning. But how exactly do you go about finding your purpose? Chances are, your purpose is at the intersection of the following factors: https://viralsolutions.net/how-do-you-find-your-purpose-in-the-work-world/
06:05
August 7, 2018
How Do Great Leaders Lose their Momentum?
Chances are that when you’ve been in business for long enough, you’ve seen at least a couple great leaders suddenly lose all of their momentum, and their once-promising project takes some gigantic leaps backward. Unfortunately, not everyone is able to consistently stay motivated enough to continue achieving their goals and making headway with their business. But what’s the cause of this? What is it that suddenly makes great leaders lose their momentum and their edge? https://viralsolutions.net/how-do-great-leaders-lose-their-momentum/
05:14
August 7, 2018
How a Fear of Failure is Damaging to Creativity
The brainstorming process is really an amazing thing. We sit down, spend some time racking our brains to come up with a truly unique and exciting idea, and when we finally find it…we get afraid. Surely you’ve had this experience before—you come across an idea so bold and creative that the prospect of actually having it come to fruition frightens you. And you’re not frightened so much by the idea itself, but the prospect of failure as you attempt to turn that idea into a reality.
05:27
August 7, 2018
Here are a few of the most common reasons businesses fail
Latest episode of Viral Solutions -- Your Personal Chief Marketing Officer -- Digital Marketing and Business Strategy
07:50
August 7, 2018
The Slap in the Face to Time Management
Are you feeling overwhelmed with the endless to-do lists, activities, and of the other crazy thoughts that are running in your mind? Do you have the, I “have to” do this, syndrome with your daily activities. Only to feel even more drained the instant the words float out of your mouth? Well, this article may just very well be the wake up call to help bring some overdue perspective to your monotonous to-do list. A few short paragraphs may even empower you to shift your time management, to a more time and energy saving “choose to” framework that fits you. https://viralsolutions.net/v-choose-slap-face-time-management/
06:25
August 7, 2018
Evaluation of the “Holiday” and IHOP’s Marketing Approach
Perhaps your social media newsfeed is flowing with #NationalPancakeDay updates. Last night might have been breakfast for dinner kind of night to honor such a holiday. Whether you celebrate the holiday or not, it is interesting to review the history of the holiday and evaluate IHOP’s marketing approach to sharing the love of pancakes and social responsibility. https://viralsolutions.net/happy-national-pancake-day-evaluation-of-the-holiday-ihops-marketing-approach-to-sharing-the-love-of-pancakes-through-social-responsibility/ [MAR 2015]
07:13
August 7, 2018
4 Strategic Seeds to Grow Your Clients Garden
Grow Your Customers, Build Your Business: 4 Strategic Seeds to Grow Your Clients’ Garden A customer is the most important visitor on our premises, he is not dependent on us. We are dependent on him. He is not an interruption in our work. He is the purpose of it. He is not an outsider in our business. He is part of it. We are not doing him a favor by serving him. He is doing us a favor by giving us an opportunity to do so. – Mahatma Gandhi. Take a moment and let those words sink into your heart, soul, and passion for doing business. Ask yourself, “do I put the customer first, and respect the opportunity to serve him before the needs of my own?”. In today’s self-centered culture of doing things, many organizations fail to truly serve the customer. In doing so, they also fail themselves.
08:36
August 7, 2018
Goal Setting for Small Business Growth – The What, How, Why, and When
Over 80% of 300 small business owners surveyed in the 4th Annual Staples National Small Business Survey identified that they don’t keep track of their business goals (Vander Bos, 2010). Moreover, 77% have not achieved their vision of their organization. Pevenstein and McElwee (2013) continued this investigation with an additional survey to identify the detail of how limited to inadequate goal setting impacted small business, respondents identified: 83% of small business owners are responsible for organizing, planning, and rolling out initiatives within their business. 69% wished they could focus more energy on working “on” the business rather than “in” the business. Where do you fall in these statistics? Are you with the majority that doesn’t track or achieve your goals? Are you with the majority that hasn’t reach the full potential of achieving your overall organizational vision? https://viralsolutions.net/goal-setting-small-business-growth-springboard-growth/ [OCT 2014]
07:18
August 7, 2018
Get over your bad day
Get over your bad day by surrounding yourself with what is more important. The reality of a bad day is that, even though you may work alone, you’re not alone. Your bad day only gets worse as it impacts those you serve. So get over it now! Move on to what’s more important. Stop digging in that open wound. Your bad day is not the end of the world and I don’t care how bad it is. But it will be if you don’t do what those entrepreneur idols of your do. I know – though love. So your WordPress site keeps getting hacked with spam comments. Spending hundreds of dollars on a Facebook boosted post that failed isn’t the worst thing. I know you lost a customer and they even said they don’t like you – big whoop! All that just exploded in front of your very eyes is not the end of the world. https://viralsolutions.net/get-over-your-bad-day-by-surrounding-yourself-with-what-is-more-important/
08:31
August 7, 2018
Get Insights into Your Tweets with Twitter Analytics
Did you know that Twitter has an analytics tools? It’s not on by default. You’ll need to first get access by implementing Twitter Cards. Once activated and approved, you’ll gain access to Twitter Analytics which includes several dashboards. https://viralsolutions.net/get-insights-into-your-tweets-with-twitter-analytics/ [APR 2014]
05:02
August 7, 2018
Fundraising Mistakes Commonly Made by Entrepreneurs
Getting fundraisers off the ground is an important step for entrepreneurs with brand new business ventures. However, given that many new entrepreneurs don’t have a whole lot of experience with fundraising for businesses, it’s easy to understand why they’d be likely to make certain kinds of mistakes. Here are some of the fundraising mistakes most commonly made by entrepreneurs: https://viralsolutions.net/fundraising-mistakes-commonly-made-entrepreneurs/
04:47
August 7, 2018
Fun Ways to Engage on Facebook
Ever feel as though you’ve run out of ideas on Facebook? It may feel that way, especially if you’ve been doing it for a while. However, there’s always something to talk about! Keep your Facebook page fresh by using these fun ways to engage your followers. https://viralsolutions.net/fun-ways-to-engage-on-facebook/ [May 2014]
08:18
August 7, 2018
Finding Success as an Entrepreneur without Supporters
The founder of Alibaba, Jack Ma, recently made headlines when he basically said: “If you’re poor at 35, you deserve it.” That’s a pretty inflammatory statement, but beneath that statement he actually had a lot of good advice and relatable stories for young entrepreneurs. He talked about how family and friends tried to convince him that his idea wouldn’t work, and that he was more likely to fail in his endeavors than create something sustainable. And what young entrepreneur hasn’t been there before? https://viralsolutions.net/finding-success-entrepreneur-without-supporters-believers/ [Oct 2014]
06:07
August 7, 2018
Find Success by Constantly Reinventing Yourself
A new study by SAP shows that one of the biggest concerns of employees everywhere is becoming obsolete or having their position somehow changed. Whether you’re the owner of a small business or an employee at a large corporation, it’s important that you are flexible and have the ability to consistently reinvent yourself to avoid becoming obsolete. Here are some ways that you can prepare yourself to accomplish this: https://viralsolutions.net/find-success-constantly-reinventing/
04:27
August 7, 2018
How to Get People Talking About You on Social Media
By now, most people understand the kinds of benefits that an effective social media marketing campaign can have for their company. They also have an understanding of the kinds of content that they should be sharing on their pages to reach out to their customers. Where companies often have problems, however, is actually building up a significant amount of buzz surrounding their social media platforms to the point where they’re actually seeing substantial growth in followers. https://viralsolutions.net/get-people-talking-social-media/ [JAN 2015]
04:17
August 7, 2018
How to Get Most of Your Work Done Early in the Day
One thing you’ve likely noticed about some of your more successful friends or colleagues is that they tend to be the kind of people who accomplish a lot in the morning, often getting most of their work done by noon. This might seem laughable to those of us with insanely busy schedules, but if you plan out your day and stay focused, you have a good chance of getting a majority of your work done before you even have to take your lunch break. https://viralsolutions.net/get-work-done-early-day/
04:59
August 7, 2018
How to Get More Subscribers to Your Business’s Blog
It’s always a good idea to optimize your blog for search engines and to try to get links from other sites and through social media, but what’s really worth its weight in gold for a blogger is a subscription. Subscriptions mean guaranteed views to your new posts, and people who subscribe are more likely to regularly share the content that you post. If you want to go platinum, make sure your blog has freemium offers that are impulsive! https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-get-more-subscribers-to-your-businesss-blog/ . [MAR 2015]
05:44
August 7, 2018
How to Get More Referrals from Your Network
So you’ve put together a network of people that know about and maybe even have worked with/shopped with your business. Great! But how can you start getting more referrals out of people who are already in your network so that you can expand the size of that network and reach out to new potential clients or customers? https://viralsolutions.net/get-referrals-network/
04:00
August 7, 2018
How to Deal With Your Fear of Failure in Business
As a new entrepreneur and the owner of your small business, it’s completely understandable that you still have some element of a fear of failure. You may have taken the initial plunge by actually getting the business started in the first place, but growing that business is an occasionally frightening task. So as you seek to grow your business (and yourself as an entrepreneur), how do you deal with that fear of failure? Here are a few tips: https://viralsolutions.net/deal-fear-failure-business/
05:24
August 7, 2018
How to Better Reach Out to a Niche Market
One of the best ways to find loyal customers in the early stages of your company is to successfully tap into a niche market. Too many small businesses try to be too many things at once when they’re just getting started. Narrowing your focus on a specific niche allows you to better target your marketing messages toward people who are actually likely to be interested in what you’re selling. https://viralsolutions.net/how-to-better-reach-out-to-a-niche-market/
04:24
August 7, 2018
How Dynamic Search Ads Are Changing
It’s important for business leaders to keep up with the ever-evolving world of Google’s AdWords. It’s one of the major platforms that any business with a digital marketing plan needs to understand. Changes to Dynamic Search Ads (DSAs) are the search engine giant’s latest way for businesses to reach more customers. The idea behind DSAs (Dynamic Search Ads) is that they fill in the gaps where your keywords might not have covered. This can save advertisers time by allowing them not to fill in every keyword possibility. Automatically generated headlines will show how your product closely links to the user’s keyword search. DSAs are also intended to increase traffic by gaining users who are searching using different keywords. For example, maybe the user typed “dog grooming New York” and your “dog grooming NYC” page comes up. Below we discuss three major ways Google is changing its popular program. https://viralsolutions.net/dynamic-search-ads-changing/ . [APR 2017]
05:38
August 7, 2018
How Do You Find Your Purpose in the Work World?
Many of us have had an existential crisis over our purpose at some point in our lives. One day, you might have a sudden epiphany that you don’t like what it is you’re doing, or that you feel like you should be doing something with more meaning. But how exactly do you go about finding your purpose? Chances are, your purpose is at the intersection of the following factors: https://viralsolutions.net/how-do-you-find-your-purpose-in-the-work-world/
06:05
August 7, 2018
Honest Criticism Can Be Invaluable to a Business Owner
One of the most common mistakes that leaders make within a business is surrounding themselves with “yes men,” people who agree with everything they say simply because they’re in a position of authority. What you really need to be focused on as a leader is surrounding yourself with people who aren’t afraid to tell you what they think. While you might not always like what they have to say, their advice could be exactly what you need to hear. It’s so easy to close ourselves off to this kind of advice. For many of us, we’ve worked to get to where we are in our careers from a very young age, and during that time we’ve probably relied on ourselves and our own hard work to find success. While it can be kind of a shock to the system to get some harsh criticism of our work, having those experiences can make us better. https://viralsolutions.net/honest-criticism-can-invaluable-business-owner/
07:41
August 7, 2018
Google and Twitter are Now Partners. What Does This Mean?
In February, Google and Twitter reached an agreement that would give Google complete access to Twitter’s stream of posts. While the details were not ever officially released about how Google planned to use Twitter’s content, most people were able to connect the dots pretty easily. The idea seems to be that Google will include tweets in search engine result pages to provide real-time search results, but we can’t be certain yet. https://viralsolutions.net/google-and-twitter-are-now-partners-what-does-this-mean-for-marketers/ [AUG 2015]
03:33
August 7, 2018
Google AdWords: Know Your Competition
In this part of our Google AdWords series, we continue looking at some of the most common and problematic mistakes people make when using AdWords. Too many entrepreneurs do not understand what they are doing wrong when it comes to their AdWords usage, and it’s our goal to help them get the most possible out of their AdWords investment. Here are the two mistakes we are focusing on this week. https://viralsolutions.net/google-adwords-series-know-your-competition-and-properly-direct-your-customers/
04:58
August 7, 2018
Google AdWords Series: Ad Positions and Ad Copy Quality
Today in our fifth and final installment of our series about the most common Google AdWords mistakes and how to avoid and/or resolve them, we focus on a pair of issues that surprisingly get overlooked quite often: not testing optimal ad positions, and writing low-quality copy for your AdWords advertisements. Let’s take a closer look. https://viralsolutions.net/google-adwords-series-ad-positions-ad-copy-quality/
05:19
August 7, 2018
Google AdWords Series: Using the Right Keyword Groups and Matches
Google AdWords is one of the most crucial tools for small business owners to optimize their digital marketing. However, many entrepreneurs jump into using it without a full understanding of what they’re doing. Google AdWords, when used strategically and correctly, can be an outstanding tool in your arsenal to help draw more attention to your website and generate new sales. Best of all, it’s a rather inexpensive digital marketing option, and you can get it set up quickly and easily. https://viralsolutions.net/google-adwords-series-using-right-keyword-groups-matches/ [Feb 2017]
07:43
August 7, 2018
Google AdWords Series: Unrealistic Expectations and Negative Keywords
Last week, we began a series discussing some of the most commonly made mistakes by entrepreneurs who use Google AdWords. Each of the mistakes we will discuss throughout this series is both surprisingly common and potentially catastrophic, but also more than reparable. Here are the two mistakes made using Google Adwords we are focusing on this week. https://viralsolutions.net/google-adwords-series-unrealistic-expectations-negative-keywords/ . [Mar 2017]
06:28
August 7, 2018
Getting Press for Your Small Business
Once you’ve got your small business established, it’s good to get the word out through as many avenues as possible. However, it’s not as simple as sending off a few email blasts to news outlets and waiting for them to come and publicize you. It takes a proactive approach to advertising and an understanding of the effectiveness of the methods available to you to find success in this area. Here are some ways that will make it easier for you to reach out and connect with the press: https://viralsolutions.net/getting-press-small-business/
04:55
August 7, 2018
Getting Great Employees for Your Small Business
It can be a tough sell to get great, qualified employees to jump aboard a small company that is still in its start-up phase. You don’t have as much money to offer as other larger companies, or the same types of perks and benefits, so you shouldn’t even try to compete in those areas. There are, however, certain selling points that small businesses have that larger ones don’t. Here are a few points of emphasis to talk about when interviewing potential employees for a small business: https://viralsolutions.net/getting-great-employees-small-business/
04:14
August 7, 2018
Get Financially Principled!
What is the reason you work? Is it for the money? If you really ponder that question, the answer is “no.” None of us are working for money — we’re really working to buy ourselves time, which is what money allows us. Time is what we really want! The more money we make the more time we create. As a small business owner, time is our asset and money morphs into leaves flying by our eyes. Small business owners then increase marketing, increase staff and increase revenue to rake those leaves into a pile. Only to have them blow away again. What are we doing wrong? With the help of Alan Williams and Peter Jepson, I found a set of financial principles that they have trademarked, taught for decades to help all of us as small business owners achieve our goals. I would like to share those principles with you! https://viralsolutions.net/get-financially-principled/
14:59
August 7, 2018
Four SEO Practices You Can Stop Wasting Your Time On
As search engines become more sophisticated their algorithms are prioritizing quality content, forcing site managers to keep up with SEO. The good news is these changes are focused less on complex algorithms, and more on creating a relevant user experience. Here are four SEO tricks you can quickly forget. https://viralsolutions.net/four-seo-practices-you-can-stop-wasting-your-time-on/ . [Sep 2015]
03:52
August 7, 2018
Forcing Yourself to Believe in Yourself
Have you ever felt like you aren’t qualified or capable of running a successful business? Throughout my career I’ve seen so many business owners that could have achieved even greater levels of success if they’d just had a little bit more confidence in their abilities. The thing is, none of us start off a business feeling like we’re completely capable of turning it into a success — it’s just something you sort of pick up along the way. The ones that do succeed, though, understand that there are ways you can set yourself up for success so that believing in yourself becomes a whole lot easier. Here are a few ways you can overcome your self-doubt as an entrepreneur: https://viralsolutions.net/forcing-yourself-to-believe-in-yourself/
05:15
August 7, 2018
Five Characteristics of Good Feedback
Feedback is crucial for helping employees grow, but simply mentioning the word can make some people defensive. Feedback is often confused with criticism, causing employees to tune out advice and potentially straining relationships. Sometimes the most well-intentioned advice can sound like judgment when presented incorrectly. Make sure your feedback is effective by following these tips. https://viralsolutions.net/five-characteristics-of-good-feedback/ [Aug 2015]
03:57
August 7, 2018
Financial Tools For Successful Small Business Owners
Helping overwhelmed small business owners duplicate themselves so doing business is fun again is the daily duty of all the staff at Viral Solutions. Christine Kelly and I have been doing just that for decades. However, growing revenue and being profitable do not always go hand-in-hand. We’ve grown from a two-person local operation to a multinational client centered firm with a very talented and diverse team. Efficiently measuring our financial performance helped make this growth possible. https://viralsolutions.net/financial-tools-for-successful-small-business-owners/ [Jul 2015]
06:03
August 7, 2018
Facebook’s New People-Based Advertising Making Waves
Facebook has been at the forefront of marketing innovation for quite a while now, and a new advertising technology it’s been working on has been garnering a lot of attention within the industry. https://viralsolutions.net/facebooks-new-people-based-advertising-making-waves/ . [Nov 2014]
03:11
August 7, 2018
Facebook Launches M, its Version of Siri
Mobile search just got a little easier for a few hundred Bay Area residents selected to test Facebook’s new intelligent personal assistant, M. Much like Siri and similar virtual assistants, Facebook M helps users answer questions and complete tasks. Unlike its predecessors, M is able to actually complete tasks for the user. Rather than merely suggesting nearby restaurants, M can book reservations as well. M is powered by artificial intelligence and uses natural language to interact with the user, but it has a secret weapon: a team of actual people who ensure all tasks are completed. https://viralsolutions.net/facebook-launches-m-its-version-of-siri/ [Sep 2015]
03:59
August 7, 2018
Everyday Habits of Great Leaders
First, it is important to refresh our understanding of leadership and the styles that form around those definitions. A leader is a person who influences a group of people towards a specific result. It is not dependent on title or formal authority. (Elevos, paraphrased from Leaders, Bennis, and Leadership Presence, Halpern & Lubar.) Over the years the philosophical terminology of “management” and “leadership” have, in the organizational context, been used both as synonyms and with clearly differentiated meanings. Debate is fairly common about whether the use of these terms should be restricted, and generally reflects an awareness of the distinction made by Burns between “transactional” leadership (characterized by e.g. emphasis on procedures, contingent reward, management by exception) and “transformational” leadership [Burns, J. M. (1978). Leadership. New York: Harper and Row Publishers Inc.] https://viralsolutions.net/everyday-habits-of-great-leaders/ [Oct 2015]
07:25
August 7, 2018
Essential Business Building Skills: #1 Learn to fail
Failure is a process and a key component in our ability to learn, it is a key element as well in our ability to build a sustainable business and an element of a great beginning every time it happens. Learning from failures is one of the essential business building skills. As an entrepreneur and the owner of your small business, it’s completely understandable that you still have some element of a fear of failure. You may have taken the initial plunge by actually getting the business started in the first place, but growing that business is an occasionally frightening task. It requires you to take on risk and hire talent that can make you feel inferior. Relax, failures are rarely catastrophic. https://viralsolutions.net/essential-business-building-skills-learn-to-fail/
09:01
August 7, 2018
Essential Business Building Skills: #3 Learn how to negotiate
In business, negotiation is about the give and take process where two parties are seeking common ground in order to reach an agreement or to settle a mutual concern. Negotiation in business takes pace in banking (lines of credit), investor relations (equity stake), contracting (bidding) and product delivery (transference of assets). Negotiating is an art. It is getting what you want or need at a favorable price. It is absolutely critical to the success of your business. Effective use of negotiation in business is a core leadership skill. However, some believe that effective negotiators in business are adversarial and hostile. Those who believe that tell you to just say yes to a deal and forget about negotiation. We could not disagree more! The ability to negotiate effectively is critical to the success of your business. https://viralsolutions.net/essential-business-building-skills-3-learn-to-negotiate/
12:17
August 7, 2018
Essential Business Building Skills: #2 Learn the art of selling
The most important subject you can study is sales. However, many of the smartest small business owners and startups avoid learning it, and some of the best colleges shun teaching it. Selling is a critical skill because, like it or not, everyone has to sell to succeed. “Here’s the truth: a mediocre performer who knows how to sell will ALWAYS beat an exceptional performer who doesn’t. And an exceptional performer who also knows how to sell ALWAYS beats out everyone else.” ~ Geoffrey James, Editor of Inc You could have the greatest business model ever, but if you can’t get anyone to buy what you offer, that’s a problem. It could be that there isn’t a viable market for what you offer or it could be your sales skills are lacking. Learning the art of selling is an essential phase of small business success. Selling, motivating, moving, persuading and influencing others is not innate. Great salespeople have certain qualities and beliefs. https://viralsolutions.net/essential-business-buildi
09:18
August 7, 2018
Engaging Your Audience - Understanding how to segment users
Marketing your list can be a push of a button today. However, it shouldn’t be! You know you need to segment your list by interest and numerous demographics. Whether your marketing efforts use email or mobile sms, it is important to also segment those who engage in your content by their engagement state. Users respond differently based upon their real-time engagement level with your message. In this post, we will discuss the basics of segmenting your valued list of contacts by engagement state and the best messages to send each and every one of them. https://viralsolutions.net/engaging-your-audience-understanding-how-to-segment-users-by-state/ [Apr 2105]
17:53
August 6, 2018
Email Messages to Have in Your Arsenal
While many people in the business world tend to spend too much time on email, there are certain types of messages that you should never cut out of your routine. These types of messages range from being motivational to personal, and every one of them has its own unique benefits. https://viralsolutions.net/email-messages-to-have-in-your-arsenal/ [Jul 2014]
05:17
August 6, 2018
Email Marketing Benchmarks Your Company Has to Meet
Typically, you’re only competing against yourself. But not when it comes to email marketing. Then it’s crucial to meet specific Email Marketing Benchmarks. It’s the only way you’ll know if the tactics you’re currently using are reaching your customers effectively. If they’re not, then it might be time to mix things up and find new ways to reach potential clients. MailChimp has analyzed its 15 million users and found click rates and conversion rates for a variety of industry types and sizes. Typically, B2B companies have a slightly higher click rate and conversion rate than B2Cs. If you’re seeing substantially lower numbers compared to your competitors, it’s time to change tactics. Here are some ideas for how to better approach email marketing and hit those benchmarks. https://viralsolutions.net/email-marketing-benchmarks-company-meet/ [Apr 2017]
05:59
August 6, 2018
How to Use Content You Already Have to Maximize Leads
You invest a lot of time and money into creating quality content – that’s why you’re reading this, and it’s why we wrote it. Here’s what typically happens: write a stellar blog post, it’s featured on the first page of your blog, it’s promoted on social media for a few days, and then nothing. That great content was probably just as relevant to today’s customer as it is to next week’s, and they may not find it. It’s estimated that as many as 75 percent of marketers only use their content one time. Here’s how to continually promote your most effective content to build new leads. https://viralsolutions.net/effective-content-use-content-you-already-have-to-maximize-leads/ [Sep 2015]
04:58
August 6, 2018
E-commerce QuickBooks Integration
People who are neck deep in the e-commerce game know the struggle. Managing customer information, keeping inventories up to date, tracking sales, shipping packages… this list seems endless. And that’s just with a single sales channel! If you’re selling your products and services on your website and are also taking advantage of the billions of dollars’ worth of revenue up for grabs on Amazon or eBay, the amount of data you need to dig through to run your business effectively can be suffocating. Still, with over 3 billion people accessing the internet today, the volume of sales made online are set to speed up, not slow down. How are you supposed to keep up? https://viralsolutions.net/e-commerce-quickbooks-integration/ [Apr 2018]
14:43
August 6, 2018
Easy Ways to Improve What Your Customers Say About You Online
For better or for worse, what your customers say about you online could wind up having a really big impact on the way that people see your business. The last thing that you want is for a few negative reviews to scare people away from giving your products or services a shot. Fortunately, it’s surprisingly easy to get people to say nice things about you online. Here are some strategies that you can implement to improve what your customers are saying about you: https://viralsolutions.net/easy-ways-improve-customers-say-online/ [Oct 2014]
04:37
August 6, 2018
Don’t Listen to People Who Tell You It’s Time to Quit Facebook
I recently read an article on LinkedIn that suggested it may be time for businesses to step back from Facebook and focus their marketing endeavors elsewhere. The author cited regular changes in algorithms, decrease in overall reach and a poor bottom line as reasons that people may consider pulling the plug. However, I couldn’t disagree more with her conclusion that it may be time to quit Facebook. https://viralsolutions.net/dont-listen-people-tell-time-quit-facebook/ [Sep 2014]
07:49
August 6, 2018
Don’t Let First Impressions Determine Your Hirings
From the time we’re kids, we have the importance of first impressions hammered into our brains. And it’s definitely true that first impressions are extremely important, especially in the business world. However, when you’re looking for great talent, especially when your business is still in its early stages, it’s important that you go deeper than surface level when evaluating potential employees. Otherwise, you could be severely hampering your hiring process. Here are a few steps you can take to reduce the “first impressions bias” in your hiring process: https://viralsolutions.net/reduce-first-impressions-hiring-bias/ [Aug 2014]
05:32
August 6, 2018
Don’t Always Say “Yes” to Clients
One of the first things people are taught when entering the business world is that the customer is always right. But this is definitely not true. In fact, there are some situations in which you should feel completely comfortable saying “no” to your clients. Here are some situations that may call for a “no” answer: https://viralsolutions.net/dont-always-say-yes-clients/
07:58
August 6, 2018
Do You Need a Time Management Action Plan?
Do you feel like your workday is out of control before it even begins? If you spend your days keeping up instead of getting ahead, bad time management could be the culprit. Too often our consultants find business owners overwhelmed by excessive detail work. Adhering to a few time management principles helps to avoid these situations. Consider a time management “overhaul” if you can identify with one or more of the following statements: https://viralsolutions.net/do-you-need-a-time-management-action-plan/
10:28
August 6, 2018
Do Wacky Photos have a Place in Your Social Media Plan?
No doubt, wacky photos get plenty of likes, shares, and comments, making it tempting to post them on your social media pages. While silly pictures are great for engagement, they’re not necessarily relevant to your business or your audience. So, how can you use them to your advantage? https://viralsolutions.net/wacky-photos-place-social-media-plan/
04:42
August 6, 2018
2017 Digital Marketing Changes to Watch
It’s probably no surprise that major platforms are changing the way they do things in 2017. Evolution is the name of the game for digital marketing. With the flurry of updates and conversions, it’s difficult to know which digital marketing changes are important and which you don’t have to worry about. Here’s what we think are some of the major shifts top players are making. https://viralsolutions.net/2017-digital-marketing-changes-to-watch/ [Apr 2017]
04:47
August 6, 2018
Digital Marketing Budgets - How CMOs Spend Theirs
Imagine that the success of your business hinged on you finding a small brown thread in a five-foot-high pile of dirt. Strange scenario, yes, but that’s what it can feel like sorting through the large heap of marketing tactics that big-time companies are using, and figuring out which ones will work for your business—without gobbling a large chunk of your revenue. What marketing tactics should you focus on? Which one will cost the least but move the needle the most for your business? Do you even need to spend a lot of money on digital marketing? Do you need to spend any money at all? What are CMOs of top companies throwing their marketing budgets at? Marketing executives are not going to spend big marketing bucks on tactics that don’t work (who would, right?). https://viralsolutions.net/digital-marketing-budgets-how-cmos-spend-theirs-and-why-you-should-care/ [Apr 2018]
15:23
August 6, 2018
What is Your Customer Value Optimization Strategy?
Wow! Next week CEO, Christine Kelly is going to the Traffic & Conversion Summit 2015 in San Diego, CA. In preparation for this amazing learning and development session, Viral Solutions is aiming to provide relevant, real-time, and rockstar information to help you and your team nail your digital marketing efforts. To aid in this experience, this post is designed to help you understand the foundation of digital marketing, customer value optimization. As such, the remainder of this post will discuss what, why, how, and when aspects of customer value optimization. https://viralsolutions.net/digital-marketing-customer-value-optimization-strategy/ [Feb 2015]
09:23
August 6, 2018
Difficult Customers - Know When to Call it Quits
When it comes to dealing with difficult customers, when is it best to bite your tongue and when is it appropriate to tell a cantankerous client to “talk to the hand?” Although business dictates that the customer is always right, frankly you know sometimes the customer isn’t right for your business. Read more to find out when to cut your losses and begin building less contentious – and more profitable – business relationships. Not every customer is easy to deal with. Just about any business owner has had their share of clients who make unreasonable demands are indecisive or who just take up too much time. https://viralsolutions.net/difficult-customers-know-when-to-call-it-quits/
05:03
August 6, 2018
Developing a 360 Degree Marketing Plan
The concept of a 360 degree marketing plan refers to a marketing campaign that reaches customers at all possible points of contact. Successfully putting together such a plan is important because it enables you to maximize the chances of finding new potential customers and engaging them in a wide variety of ways. Viral Solutions focuses more specifically on a 360 degree web marketing plan, in which a company uses all of the online resources at its disposal to reach out to new potential customers. Here are some types of those resources that go beyond your company’s website: https://viralsolutions.net/developing-a-360-degree-marketing-plan/ [Mar 2017]
07:38
August 6, 2018
CRM Maintenance in Infusionsoft - Duplicate records and unique identifiers
While teaching, coaching, educating Infusionsoft users and subscribers, voluntarily four times per month in four different cities, I have come to appreciate the problems, misunderstandings, and implementation challenge entrepreneurs and small business owners have getting Infusionsoft to do what they want it to do. The software is incredibly powerful, however, that power brings with it a need for structure, strategy, and discipline – just like your accounting software, just like your WordPress site and our daily lives and commitments to others. Recently, I wrote an article called “What Infusionsoft Can’t Do“. This article brought to light what many of us as small business owners know but... https://viralsolutions.net/crm-maintenance-in-infusionsoft-duplicate-records-and-unique-identifiers/ [Sep 2017]
16:42
August 6, 2018
Creating Marketing Personas for Social Media
A marketing persona provides insight into your audience. They are used to make demographic information more “real.” Marketing persona’s personify your customers, making it easier for you to speak their language and build campaigns that resonate with them. As with other marketing initiatives, consider developing marketing persona’s for your social media projects. https://viralsolutions.net/creating-marketing-personas-for-social-media/ [Apr 2014]
05:01
August 6, 2018
Creating and Sharing Your Own Images
No doubt, images are popular on social media sites. In fact, two of the most popular sites, Instagram and Pinterest, are dedicated to image sharing. Sharing images on your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest pages can increase engagement with your followers. In addition, images are more likely to be shared. While the Internet is filled with images that you could conceivably share, creating and sharing your own images can set your business apart. https://viralsolutions.net/creating-and-sharing-your-own-images/
05:26
August 6, 2018
Creating an Engaging Social Media Contest
Social media tools make it easy for just about anyone to create a social media contest but not all contests are successful. The more engaging your contest, the better. After all, users will want to share the contest with their networks — which means more exposure for your brand. Use the tips below to create an engaging contest on social media. https://viralsolutions.net/creating-an-engaging-social-media-contest/ [Jun 2014]
05:39
August 6, 2018
Creating a Voice for Your Social Media Sites
If you run a small business page on Facebook and other social media sites, your “voice” and brand messaging is likely fairly consistent since you’re the only one interacting with your followers. However, what happens as your business grows? You may find it helpful, if not necessary, to have other employees answer questions, post status updates, and tweet on behalf of the company. In order to ensure consistency, you will need to develop an official voice for your social media sites along with specific guidelines for your team to follow. https://viralsolutions.net/creating-a-voice-for-your-social-media-sites/ [Jun 2014]
06:26
August 6, 2018
Creating a Healthy Work Environment With Your Spouse
There are a lot of people who will tell you that it’s impossible to go into business with your spouse. It’ll ruin your relationship, they say. Well, I’ve tried this – no it didn’t work. Not because of the relationship, it didn’t work because of other factors. Factors that are present with any business partner or close employee that is a family member. While it’s true that spending so much time together, especially in such a volatile atmosphere, does have the potential to place some level of strain on your relationship, there are ways that you can be smart about it so that you can both achieve success with your new endeavor. It doesn’t have to be a negative experience. When it is so intense and your work is your passion, this can be healthy, if you understand the underlying pressures. Here are some of the keys to creating a healthy work environment with your spouse: https://viralsolutions.net/creating-healthy-work-environment-spouse/
08:28
August 6, 2018
Conversion Rate Optimization Mastery powered by Digital Marketer
As a business owner, becoming an expert in conversion rate optimization (CRO) will surely give you a leg up over the rest of your competition. Unfortunately, most business owners or marketers simply don’t understand what makes for CRO success. When it comes to testing and optimizing pages and offers, many marketers either don’t test at all, only begin testing if they see low conversions, or only test what others have told them they’re “supposed” to test. If you wish to create meaningful sales and lead increases, then you must be more proactive with your CRO, and that means implementing proven processes to tell you exactly what to test, and when. https://viralsolutions.net/conversion-rate-optimization-mastery-powered-digital-marketer/ [Mar 2017]
02:24
August 6, 2018
Content Curation for Your Facebook Business Page
Keeping your business Facebook page filled with relevant, interesting content is essential in keeping your audience engaged. Most page owners use a mix of text-only, photo, video, and linked content status updates. Each type of update has its place in the mix. Sharing links to interesting articles, reports, and other forms of content is a form of content curation. When done properly, curating content for a Facebook page is an effective way to demonstrate your expertise. What is content curation? https://viralsolutions.net/content-curation-facebook-business-page/ [Aug 2014]
04:45
August 6, 2018
Constructive Criticism Can Strengthen Your Work Relationships
We always are told that “honesty is the best policy,” and yet when it comes to the business world, we so often try to shy away from the truth in hopes of preserving our relationships with our colleagues and employees. However, there is a lot of reason to believe that constructive criticism can actually strengthen your work relationships if you handle it in the right way. https://viralsolutions.net/constructive-criticism-can-strengthen-work-relationships/
04:27
August 6, 2018
Communication Mistakes to Avoid in Your Business
Everything in your business revolves around good communication. Whether it’s sales, marketing, customer service or finances, it’s important that everyone within your company is constantly on the same page and feels connected with you and with the other departments in your business. When it feels like there’s something wrong with your communications practices, it’s imperative that you take instant action to correct them. https://viralsolutions.net/communication-mistakes-avoid-business/
06:01
August 6, 2018
Common Small Business Financial Mistakes That Can Be Easily Avoided
You’ve probably heard the statistic before that approximately a third of all small businesses will go out of business within their first five years. Many times, that’s because they’ve poorly managed their finances. There are some financial issues that are beyond a business owner’s control, but you’d be surprised at how many times businesses fail because of completely avoidable financial mistakes. https://viralsolutions.net/common-small-business-financial-mistakes-that-can-be-easily-avoided/ [May 2015]
03:57
August 6, 2018
Common Mistakes That Could Ruin Your Mobile App
Today, smartphone and tablet users spend much more time using mobile apps than they do surfing the web on mobile browsers. It makes sense for your company to investigate the idea of creating a mobile app, if you have a good plan for how it can improve the customer experience. https://viralsolutions.net/common-mistakes-that-could-ruin-your-mobile-app/ [Sep 2015]
03:03
August 6, 2018
Common Misconceptions about SMS Marketing
The SMS/text messaging market hasn’t been explored by businesses nearly as much as other forms of mobile marketing. Therefore, it’s not particularly surprising that there are a lot of misconceptions related to the process out there. Here are a few of the most common misconceptions about SMS Marketing, as well as the truth behind them: https://viralsolutions.net/common-misconceptions-about-sms-marketing/ [Oct 2015]
03:44
August 6, 2018
Common Misconceptions about Lead Quality in Marketing
One of the most important steps to developing a mobile marketing campaign is to find quality leads. However, while every organization is likely to have different methods to find and categorize its leads, there are a few common misconceptions that could hamper your company’s lead organization. https://viralsolutions.net/common-misconceptions-about-lead-quality-in-marketing/
04:34
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | Not using a multichannel marketing approach – Part #9
Businesses with an ecommerce focus often downplay the effectiveness of multichannel marketing by only using digital marketing channels. MultiChannel marketing allows the ecommerce business to reach its prospective or current customer in a channel of their liking. This supports the brand by showing the prospective customer that the brand is everywhere which in turn shows the company as being trustworthy, broad in scope and loaded with people they can relate to. Multichannel marketing enables the customer to choose the method of engagement rather than the marketer. Consumer choice is a beautiful thing! https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-not-using-multichannel-marketing-approach-part-9/ [Apr 2017]
08:11
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | Not investing in paid marketing channels – Part #6
Paid channel marketing is on fire and cannot be ignored. The online marketing environment is now almost entirely paid-to-play. Unfortunately, many ecommerce businesses are too scared to take the plunge and do not view online advertising (pay-per-click, search engine marketing, etc.) as an investment. In 2016 digital marketing agencies reported that 44% of their clients were increasing budgets and 7% were decreasing their investment in paid channel marketing. https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-not-investing-channels-part-6/ [Feb 2017]
06:14
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | No Perceived Value – Part #5
In this series we are discussing what this digital marketing agency, Viral Solutions, has witnessed over the years when it comes to mistakes made by businesses with an e-commerce presence. So far we have written about buyer personas, written strategic plans, understanding buyer decisions and more. In this article we are moving on to perceived value, also called a value proposition or unique selling proposition. https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-no-perceived-value-part-5/ [Feb 2017]
11:48
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | No Competitor Research – Part #7
The more successful your ecommerce website becomes, the more competition you create. That is a basic fact of business. Your recourse is to out think them, out market them and outwork them. You must know your competitors marketing strategy as well as your own. Your organic search rankings can be improved by having such knowledge which in turn will enhance the performance of your ecommerce website. Most business owners have an SEO strategy. The common mistake ecommerce businesses make is not understanding their competitors SEO strategy. https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-no-competitor-research-part-7/ [Feb 2017]
09:18
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | Lack of Strategy, Goals or Action Plan – Part #2
Ecommerce has become a $2.0 trillion dollar platform, with expectations for it to double in 2020. While digital commerce experiences massive growth it is still less than 10% of all retail sales. With this massive growth comes a set of unique problems. With all the technology at play the gurus are still dealing with an imperfect platform. This is evidenced by a recent research report that shows shopping cart abandonment averaging 69%. Armed with that information you should know that your ecommerce platform is critical to your survival. https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-lack-strategy-goals-action-plan-part-2/ [Jan 2017]
08:25
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | Lack of remarketing – Part #8
Behavioral retargeting is a form of online targeted advertising by which online advertising is targeted to consumers based on their previous internet actions. Remarketing helps you reach people who have visited your website or used your app and abandoned their cart. Previous visitors or users can see your ads as they browse websites that are part of the Google Display Network, or as they search for terms related to your products or services on Google. https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-lack-of-remarketing-part-8/
11:26
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | Don’t talk to real buyers – Part #4
Hopefully by now you’ve researched your customer from a demographic basis and created your ultimate buyer persona. Afterall, creating a buyer persona has been used by marketing firms for decades and has been an effective digital marketing tactic for many years. A customer avatar helps you develop products and services your targeted market needs, which sites you compete with and the technologies they use among many other factors. In our Viral solutions digital marketing blog we’ve written many articles about how to design and create content that is tailored to your target audience and in your ecommerce platform write product descriptions that appeal to the same. We hope you have at least three such buyer persona’s on file – but not more 😉 . https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-dont-talk-real-buyers/ [Feb 2017]
10:43
August 6, 2018
Common eCommerce Mistakes | Content Planning – Part #3
It has been well reported, here and on numerous digital marketing blogs, that content is one of the many keys to drawing an audience into your brand. The internet as a whole is loaded with content, opinions and educational resources. Content marketing is a great tool for communicating with your audience. Every great ecommerce web site contains excellent content and that rarely happens by accident. For many of us, it is easy to expound on beliefs with our words and talk about ourselves and our wares. Producing and publishing content is more than education and news reporting. Understanding this fact is the difference between a fun blog, an opinion laiden editorial versus content marketing that feeds SEO, Social Media Marketing, Lead Generation and eMail Nurture Campaigns. https://viralsolutions.net/common-ecommerce-mistakes-content-planning/ [Jan 2017]
16:07
August 6, 2018
Click and Mortar - Managing Complex Multi-Channel Marketing Conflicts
Click and Mortar firms face a managerial challenge: falling prey to channel conflicts. Many marketing pundits have long recognized these conflicts occurring when a product can take several paths to get to the consumer. In addition, traditional sales people can take issue with the lack of integration with the internet sales channels within a Click and Mortar business model. https://viralsolutions.net/click-mortar-managing-complex-multi-channel-marketing/ [Nov 2014]
08:56
August 6, 2018
Website Items to Check Before Launch
Whether you’re launching your business’s website for the first time or you’re completing a major overhaul, it’s important that you do your due diligence in making sure it’s completely ready before you put it live. The last thing you want is to run the risk of having a clunky, ineffective website on the internet for even just couple days. Here are three of the biggest categories that you should concern yourself with before launch: https://viralsolutions.net/website-items-to-check-before-launch/ [Jun 2014]
04:12
August 6, 2018
Characteristics of a Successful Entrepreneur
Entrepreneurs are a unique brand of person. After all, it takes a certain amount of courage and ingenuity to start up your own business. But it takes more than that to keep it running successfully after you’ve gotten through the initial start-up phases. What are the main characteristics of a successful entrepreneur? https://viralsolutions.net/characteristics-of-a-successful-entrepreneur/ [Jul 2014]
04:57
August 6, 2018
Change Management - Step 1 Creating a Sense of Urgency
Jim Rohn, Author & Entrepreneur, stated “without a sense of urgency, desire loses its value.” Urgency by definition is “importance requiring action.” Dr. John Kotter, Harvard Business School Professor and Entrepreneur, created the Change Management Process (CMP) used by professionals, consultants, and entrepreneurs around the world. The first step of the Change Management Process [CMP] is to establish a sense of urgency. The purpose of this post is to discuss what, why, and how to create urgency. https://viralsolutions.net/change-management-step-1-creating-a-sense-of-urgency/ [March 2015 - by Katie Doseck - Carpen, Ph.D. MBA]
08:11
August 6, 2018
Certified Content Marketing Specialist
Among the various certification courses available through Digital Marketer is Content Marketing Mastery, which allows you to become a certified content marketing specialist. You’ll learn how to drive quality traffic from platforms like Google, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn and more! Certified Content Marketing Specialist Powered by Digital Marketer. This course gives you a step-by-step plan for turning your content into free, organic, sustainable traffic for your website. https://viralsolutions.net/get-certified-content-marketing-mastery-course/
03:08
August 6, 2018
Celebrate Your Customers with a Customer of the Month
Everyone loves to be recognized. After all, it’s fun to be in the spotlight for a few minutes. Businesses have long celebrated their customers by posting photos of them on bulletin boards at their places of business. Many have taken the traditional photo board or customer of the month photo to their social media sites to good effect. Many featured customers will then “share” their honors with their own networks, resulting in increased exposure for the business. https://viralsolutions.net/celebrate-your-customers-with-a-customer-or-fan-of-the-month/
05:43
August 6, 2018
"Busyness" in Business: It’s Overrated
We live in a culture that thrives on being busy. In fact, you’ll often hear people brag about just how busy they are every day. But it’s important to note that “busyness” doesn’t necessarily correlate with success, or even getting things done. In fact, when you get extremely busy with work, it actually becomes easier to let things fall through the cracks, because you don’t have the time to take a step back and analyze the progress of your business. https://viralsolutions.net/busyness-in-business-its-overrated/
04:01
August 6, 2018
Business Relationships | You and me, we made a vow
Creating authentic business relationships that matter, are rarely fostered from within the bounds of social media. The kind of business relationships that morph into personal friendships, growth as a human being, and – wait for it – maybe a mutually beneficial financial transaction, flourish when you have a keen eye for observing the smallest details. As small business owners and entrepreneurs, our passion to meet the needs of our clients should drive us to achieve such a status. https://viralsolutions.net/business-relationships-you-and-me-we-made-a-vow/ [Aug 2015]
11:12
August 6, 2018
Business Advice for Young Entrepreneurs
Many of the world’s most successful businesses were founded by young men and women with barely any “real world” experience. So if you’re a student or in your 20s and have a business idea, don’t let your age stop you from going for it! Here are some tips that have helped many other young entrepreneurs find major levels of success with their business endeavors: https://viralsolutions.net/business-advice-for-young-entrepreneurs/ [May 2014]
04:55
August 6, 2018
Building Your Professional Social Presence
Business professionals use social media in several important ways including lead generation, customer engagement, and professional networking. Building your own professional network may or may not revolve around your business. In fact, it may revolve around your personal brand instead of your business. In either case, building a professional network is different than building a following of prospects and customers. Use the tips below to network with your peers, industry leaders, and other business professionals. https://viralsolutions.net/building-your-professional-social-presence/
04:59
August 6, 2018
Building Links in a “Boring” Industry
Some industries are much better suited to fun and creative marketing than others, featuring content that’s easy to share. Building backlinks is important for driving online traffic but can be hard in an industry with a niche audience, like in B2B marketing. https://viralsolutions.net/building-links-in-a-boring-industry/
07:32
August 6, 2018
Building Confidence – One Day at a Time
Need some help with building – or just re-awakening your confidence? A great way to start is by keeping a confidence diary. You’re good at what you do. You know it. Sometimes in this world of “NO” it’s an easy thing to forget. https://viralsolutions.net/building-confidence-one-day-at-a-time/
05:17
August 6, 2018
Authority Content Series: Building a Reputation via Content Curation
Welcome back to our Viral Solutions series on creating authority content. Last week we discussed how to develop high-quality original content as a way to establish yourself as an authority in your field. However, not all of the content you share has to be original. You can position yourself as an expert through strategic sharing of pre-existing content created by other respected businesses and entrepreneurs in your field in a process known as content curation. https://viralsolutions.net/authority-content-series-building-reputation-via-content-curation/
10:25
August 6, 2018
Building a Reputation on Facebook
Online reviews have become increasingly popular – and important – in recent years. In fact, most Internet users regularly read and use online reviews. Online reviews hold a lot of weight with consumers and influence buying decisions. They are effective in large part because they serve as both social proof and as a personal endorsement. With sites such as Angie’s List and Yelp, businesses can no longer afford to sit passively on the sidelines. The time has come to take a proactive approach to building your online reputation, and Facebook can play a prominent role in your strategy. Below are a few steps to take to start building a reputation on Facebook. https://viralsolutions.net/building-a-reputation-on-facebook/
04:34
August 6, 2018
Branding Series: Greater Focus on Branding by CMOs Equals Emphasis for Small Businesses
Today as we wrap up our seven-week branding series, we are going to focus not on specific branding strategies, but one of the biggest reasons why it has become so important to put all of the information we have discussed into use. More than ever before, Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) are focused on building strong brands for their companies. According to the most recent CMO Survey from Fuqua School of Business at Duke University, CMOs this year expect to allocate a significantly larger portion of their budget toward the brand building. https://viralsolutions.net/branding-series-greater-focus-on-branding-among-cmos-makes-it-a-necessary-point-of-emphasis-for-small-businesses/
06:44
August 6, 2018
Branding Series: Elements of a Strong Branding Strategy
Last week in our Viral Solutions branding series we discussed how you can research your target audience to get a better idea of the kind of brand image that will resonate with them. Now it’s time to talk about the strategy itself. How can you be sure the branding strategy you have developed will actually help your business achieve its goals? Here are a few elements that are characteristic of a strong branding strategy. https://viralsolutions.net/branding-series-elements-strong-branding-strategy/
07:28
August 6, 2018