4 Steps for Crafting a Social Media Marketing Strategy

4 Steps for Crafting a Social Media Marketing Strategy

A whopping 3.2 billion people or 42% of the world’s population uses social media. On average, people spend over two hours of their day messaging and surfing social media networks. 

After having a positive experience with a brand on social media, 71% of people will often recommend the brand to their friends and family. On top of that, 49% of people are taking their cues on what to buy from social media influencers.

Based on these statistics, then, it’s crucial that businesses have a solid social media marketing strategy in place. Unfortunately, many business owners have no idea how to handle social media marketing. They feel confused and overwhelmed by the many tips and strategies they have heard, so they end up either doing very little with their social media accounts or doing a poor job with their strategy.

A social media marketing strategy doesn’t have to be overly complicated. Your strategy entails

  • Determining which social media channels to use
  • Promoting your channels
  • Creating a loyal fanbase
  • Measuring results with relevant metrics 

If you’re wondering exactly how to do this, read on to learn how to develop a social media marketing strategy for your business by following these four steps.

The first step is to figure out where your target audience is spending their time. A particular social network may be all the rage, but if your particular target audience isn’t using it, your efforts will be in vain. 

Based purely on the numbers, Facebook is a great place to start. With 2.41 billion monthly active users, Facebook holds the lion’s share of the social media market, particularly in the U.S. Facebook visits account for an astonishing 45% of all social media visits in the U.S.

The next two largest networks are YouTube and Instagram. In fact, data from 

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How to Boost Holiday Sales for Your Online Store

How to Boost Holiday Sales for Your Online Store

Research shows that holiday spending is on the rise. Last year saw an increase of up to 4.8% over the previous year, and e-commerce businesses are benefitting from the trend. Shoppers now embrace online shopping and 61% of consumers are willing to buy from new retailers during the holidays.

The holiday season is a great time for your e-commerce business to attract new leads while satisfying the needs of your current customers. It also presents the online e-commerce retailer with an opportunity to provide consumers with seamless experiences as they move down the sales funnel from the intent phase to the purchasing phase with personalized and perfectly timed offers. 

Over the past four years, I’ve worked with a hundred thousand different e-commerce stores. I’ve witnessed the following three strategies help increase sales year after year, and they can be utilized by your e-commerce site too.

1. Expand your product depth through the use of print on demand

In every store we’ve studied and worked with over the past four years, there comes a time when selling the same product type starts to give diminishing returns. Any time your sales go down, the chances of growth become slim. Even the most engaged audience will reduce their purchases after they’ve bought a dozen T-shirts from you, even if the new design you’ve released is impressive. Introducing new product types helps reinvigorate your audience, and this is what print on demand offers your audience. 

Whether you are looking to sell some merchandise, test a new product or sell something to a niche market, print on demand is the best way to do it. Unlike traditional print technology, print-on-demand technology has evolved to a point where there are hundreds of different products you can make with no upfront investment in inventory. 

For your

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How to Survive Accelerate Business Growth

How to Survive Accelerate Business Growth

  • Building a network of like-minded professionals helps with startup navigation.
  • Establishing strategic recruitment practices ensures high-quality hires.
  • Actively engaging your customer base safeguards service quality.
  • Hiring for values protects your company culture and mission.

When you run a small business, every decision you make has its consequences. Even the most benign decision can impact your reputation for years to come, so it only stands to reason that many small business owners feel a lot of pressure when hiring their very first employee, then their second, their third, and so on.

I can certainly attest to the pressure of hiring each new employee for Luxury Presence. In the beginning of my business, it was just me, my partner and a freelance developer. After six months, we brought on our first part-time salesperson. That pretty much set the pace for our internal growth for the next two years, as we racked up a total of nine employees. Then, the business took off, and we grew to 37 team members over the course of 12 months.

Growing the right way

That’s a lot of growth and a lot of decisions. It’s also a lot of room to make mistakes. Not that I wasn’t happy with the expansion, but growing at an accelerated rate exhausts your resources, placing even greater importance on your hiring practices. Every new hire has the potential of upsetting the applecart.

Recently, I had to figure out how to scale a sales team. We were shifting focus from product to sales, so I explored commission structures and staffing. With that came the need to hire a VP of sales, something we didn’t have. I taught myself how to build a sales team to be successful.

In the past, I’d be more on the defensive, reacting to whatever the marketplace threw

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Why SWOT Analyses Are Important for Small Businesses

Why SWOT Analyses Are Important for Small Businesses

Understanding your company’s position within your market or industry and knowing how and where you can grow is critical for any business owner. This knowledge allows you to strategically develop your company rather than wasting your efforts trying to expand into a market that doesn’t align with your business or being steamrolled by a surprise competitor.

What is a SWOT analysis?

SWOT, which stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, is a type of analysis that helps you develop your business strategy by comparing internal factors (strengths and weaknesses) against external factors (opportunities and threats). Examples of internal factors include things that you have control over and can change, like your staff or your intellectual property. External factors are things that you cannot control, like consumer trends or competitors.

A traditional SWOT analysis takes your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats and organizes them into a list that is presented in a two-by-two grid.

A SWOT analysis has four quadrants:

 

The analysis provides you with an accurate picture of what your business is currently doing well and how it can improve. “[A SWOT analysis] gives you a firm grasp of what is affecting your business internally and externally,” said Lynne Pratt, creative content director at Virtual Solutions Global. “By carefully evaluating the analysis, a business can find new ways of progressing and achieving growth.”

Why should you do a SWOT analysis?

A SWOT analysis gives you a detailed, unbiased overview of your business as a whole or a specific product or campaign. It can also help train your brain to consider every factor that can possibly affect your project or business. When you’re facing a tough issue or if you’re just unsure of your current strategy, a SWOT analysis illuminates details so you can formulate actionable plans based on each of

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Smart Ways Female Entrepreneurs Can Protect Their SMB

Smart Ways Female Entrepreneurs Can Protect Their SMB

October is National Women’s Small Business Month, a celebration of the more than 11 million woman-owned businesses in the United States and their fearless leaders. According to research conducted by SCORE in a recent infographic, 1,071 woman-owned firms are started every day. Since 2007, women have started businesses five times faster than the national average.

As more women pursue entrepreneurship, it’s important that they conduct their due diligence. They must understand which legal steps to take so they can protect their small businesses and intellectual property. There are several items all entrepreneurs must be able to cross off their legal to-do list, including covering these key areas:

  • Incorporate or form a limited liability company (LLC) to protect the business.
  • Register for trademarks to ensure exclusive rights to the marks.
  • File for necessary business licenses.
  • Obtain an employer identification number (EIN) to hire employees.
  • Determine who will act as your registered agent.
  • Keep up with annual maintenance to stay in compliance with the state.

You’ve drafted a business plan, reviewed the viability of your business idea and accessed how much capital you’ll need to start your business. Now, it’s time to protect your startup.

1. Incorporate the business.

This is one of the basic, first steps many entrepreneurs take to protect their small businesses. An unincorporated business struggles to establish credibility, and it does not receive liability protection like an incorporated formation. An incorporated business receives liability protection. This allows personal and professional assets to remain separate from each other. It also ensures that personal assets, like houses and cars, are protected in the event of an unforeseen circumstance that may negatively impact the company.

Entrepreneurs may choose to incorporate as one of several different types of business structures. Here’s a look at some of the most common, and popular, options

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