Tuesday, February 17, 2015

12 Secrets of the Human Brain to Use in Your Marketing

12 Secrets of the Human Brain to Use in Your Marketing [Infographic]

by VerĂ³nica Maria Jarski

Knowing how the human mind processes information and images—and putting that knowledge to use—can help you become a more engaging and effective marketer.

Here's a look at some fascinating facts about the human mind, from a marketing perspective.

Did you know that the human brain processes emotions far more quickly than rational thought? "Emotions process input five times faster than our conscious brain," according to the following Emma infographic.

Our brains also really love images. "Our brains process images 60,000 times faster than text," states Emma. "We comprehend and remember pictures with text more than text alone."

To get more facts about the human brain to help you imp

Read more: http://www.marketingprofs.com/chirp/2015/27058/12-secrets-of-the-human-brain-to-use-in-your-marketing-infographic#ixzz3S11d9eZn

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Why Hire a Professional Marketing Firm? Reason #31: Connections

It's true, everyone knows someone. But, when it comes to the growth and marketing of your business, just like when you were looking for a job or trying to find clients, it's true when they say "it's all who you know." A good agency and good agency leadership is well connected not only the media contacts and marketing services providers (video teams, printers, database vendors, caterers, swag producers and so on and on), but perhaps more importantly to potential business, government and other influencer connections. A good business understands to whom it wishes to reach out to, and can find an agency or agency leadership skilled in those circles of influence. Having these types of connections is another reason why every business (even the ones that "do it all in house") should have an agency they value and trust. It's smart networking, and particularly in the professional services realm, having professional connections and word of mouth remains the best source of new business.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Why Hire a Professional Marketing Firm? Reason #17: Objectivity

In our continuing series on understanding some nuances and reasons to hire a professional marketing firm, today we're going to focus on objectivity. In the efforts of marketing, all too often businesses and organizations can get caught up in their own culture and language. And, while that is indeed important to have, what is critical from a marketing standpoint is translating your business to addressing the wants and needs of your customers or clientele.

And, oftentimes, like looking in the mirror with your nose pushed up to it, it can be very difficult to see the true picture. Having an agency can offer solid objectivity based on the simple notion of we provide "X" and these are the potential customers for "X" so here's how we should position this. Good agencies are more focused on their clients client, and will be honest when the company is saying, doing or projecting something not likely to engage or get a certain type of client to act.

This objectivity allows a good agency to take a step back, employ trusted and sound marketing principles, even test those if necessary, and provide solid strategies and recommendations that will most likely succeed. Also, if you're the owner of the business, having an objective look at internal marketing staff and practices may be quite enlightening in learning perhaps better, more efficient or smarter ways to execute a given marketing strategy.

A good agency is a must have for every business, but often is a critical partner in the SMB space where there is little margin for error and where you may not otherwise be able to afford the very best and brightest "in house." Good counsel is always a smart thing, so seek a trusted agency partner that you value for their honesty and objectivity.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Content is Only Smart Marketing When Someone Actually Reads It

by Rodger Roeser

Content marketing is an excellent way to inexpensively establish your people, services and your overall brand as relevant in the market place. Unfortunately, content marketing is often just self serving blather that speaks more to corporate gobbedly gook rather than the true intent of content marketing – creating relevant content to those publics with whom you wish to relate. So, good content marketing truly is about knowing thy audience. Whether a speaking engagement, a writing assignment, a video or infographic, social media or good old fashioned advertising, a keen understand what is interesting and what will motive your target public to action is critical. But, where do you get that type of information.

Fortunately, information on consumers is everywhere, and most savvy marketers know they have access to such things as claritas, scarborough, nielsen, and literally dozens of other sources that can provide the most detailed information about consumer habits. While rather expensive, these types of services are readily available for purchase and are a treasure trove of consumer information. Most media outlets also have access to this type of information, and when considering making a media buy, this type of information is used to gain access to detailed demographic data.

And while great for larger type businesses and consumer goods, these are not great in the B2B market place, and in most cases out of the reach of small businesses simply because of cost. So, the smartest and least expensive ways to garner data are two fold – quantitative and qualitative research. Survey your customers or clients often and reward them for taking the survey. You seem this commonly among restaurants and chains. Also, each quarter randomly select 5 – 10 actual customers or clients to sit in for a “round table” meeting on what they like and what they feel could be improved about your business. Most current customers have and will have striking similarities to one another, so combining data from a round table with data from surveys and you have an excellent, albeit, basic view of the likes, patterns, wants and needs of your customer or client base.

Also, depending on your type of business, you may reasonably surmise that if you are an auto mechanic and vast majority of your clients are driving luxury cars, they likely own a home, have a family, that career is important to them and they may enjoy traveling. This type of information can be particularly valuable when creating custom publications or even newsletters with content that would be enjoyed by your audience. Remember, just because you’re a financial advisor, that doesn’t mean everything you write about needs to be financial in nature – it should reflect other things a customer or client would enjoy. After all, the greatest content in the universe is of no value if no one reads it.

And most likely, if you’re like most businesses, folks don’t like your newsletter. Be honest. Look at the metrics of the newsletter. Survey often. Have specific calls to action in your content, because after all, are you trying to educate? Or are you trying to sell more widgets? Measure what’s important, not how important you sound when writing something.