Online Marketing Strategies


Just like a physical brick and mortar business, online business also requires brand marketing strategies for making a positive image of your product or your service. One needs to realize that branding is in fact much more than simply creating a logo for your company and making use of a specific color scheme.

Brand marketing strategies are decided while keeping in mind the purpose and image of any business. Having a brand for your company will help the people to remember your company in comparison to those companies that make use of a common name.  Brand marketing strategies will help your target customers easily distinguish between your purpose and company focus. There will be a greater probability for them to turn towards your business if they are already aware of what your company is all about. Thus your company will be well recognized as a result of the brand marketing strategies. Even if your customers have never had any dealings with you, they will still be able to recognize you and your company. All this is possible because you have established a brand identity for yourself. The moment they need your product or your service, your company will surely be the first that will come to their mind.

By making use of brand marketing strategies you can also retain customer loyalties.  People can bond easily with brand identities. What they really need is quality service or a quality product from someone they can easily trust. In the case they are satisfied with your product or service they will refer their family, friends as well as associates to you depending on the level of their satisfaction.

Customers are quite brand-aware these days. Certain brand names are generally associated with superiority and a number of people opt to purchase these brands only for this particular reason. Once a consumer has actually decided to buy a product or service of a particular brand, then they are actually willing to get it at a much higher cost.

Your company will have a superior brand image by making use of suitable brand marketing strategies, and as a result your customer will forget about your competitors. In order to create a successful brand image for your company the key factor is to make sure that set yourself apart from you competitors. Identifying your competitors’ weaknesses as well as strengths is very important. This can prove to be an asset that can surely help to portray your company in a positive manner.
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An Online Marketer’s Guide to Audience Engagement


By Brian Neese

Effective content is crucial for audience engagement. Companies are increasing their content marketing efforts, according to Smart Insights, creating a more competitive environment for online marketers.

  • More than 90 percent of companies are utilizing content marketing in 2017
  • 75 percent of companies increased their content marketing budget in 2016
  • 43 percent of companies increased staffing levels of their content marketing departments

Despite these figures, Smart Insights reports that approximately half of all content marketing strategies are not integrated with the rest of the business strategy. Add in the potential of marketing being in the “age of content shock” — or how the exponential increase in content production could result in content consumption increasing slightly and then inevitably plateauing — and it’s easy to see how the stakes have intensified for marketers.

With the right audience engagement strategies and tools, online marketers can create valuable content that overcomes “content shock.”

Online Audience Engagement Strategies

Create High-Quality Content

Quality is the most important aspect for content, whether it’s a blog post, infographic, video or podcast. Content should be unique, targeted and, according to Kissmetrics, “easy.”

  • Easy to Scan: Take layout into account for pages and articles. Readers tend to scan instead of read pages, so use appealing typography and visual images to catch individuals’ eyes, which will cause them to read more. Content with relevant images receives 94 percent more views than content without relevant images.
  • Easy to Interact With: Create interactive elements such as quizzes, polls and online chat.
  • Easy to Load: A one-second load delay can drop conversions by 7 percent. Minimize bounce rates and maximize readers’ happiness by improving site speed. Minimizing image files and investing in a content delivery network can help.
  • Easy to Share: “Social sharing is, to a great extent, the highest level of engagement that there is,” Kissmetrics says. Try to integrate social media buttons to content pages to make this a simple step for visitors.
  • Easy to Monetize: Advertisers are struggling to turn a profit due to problems like few solutions for making money from mobile users and interruptive ads that have led to the increased use of ad blockers. One effective way is to integrate contextual ads into content, which automatically provide relevant and engaging banner ads.

Develop an Authentic Personality

Create content that aligns with your brand’s personality. For some companies, this means a fun, quirky style, while for others it means a more direct, concise approach. The Content Marketing Institute offers 10 tips for adding more personality into content.

  1. Tell a good story to draw readers in, offering entertainment value while matching the purpose or mission of your content.
  2. Elicit an emotional response to appeal to readers’ emotions.
  3. Ask rhetorical questions to get readers thinking, instead of merely being fed information.
  4. Use formatting like good paragraph spacing, bold type, italicized fonts and lists to make content pleasing to the eye.
  5. Widen your vocabulary for more personality (but don’t overdo it).
  6. Be interested in your topic, which allows your enthusiasm to be contagious to readers.
  7. Read entertainment content to become a better writer.
  8. Include fascinating facts to support why people read: to be entertained and to learn.
  9. Write like you talk to communicate clearly and avoid jargon.
  10. Build suspense to leave your reader hanging on your every word.

Integrate a Timely Communication Strategy

Produce content on a regular basis to keep your blog, social media accounts and other content marketing channels fresh. Give your audience a reason to come back with new content, and remember that it is important to be seen in your audiences’ social media feeds and by search engines.

Use Social Media Effectively

Social media is a natural landing spot for your content. For each channel, you should ask some key questions that tell you the purpose of the channel, goals for your audience (do you want them to share, comment or register for something?), what type of content your audience wants, the right tone and how often you should post.

The content you post, as well as your tone and frequency, will look different for LinkedIn and Twitter, for instance. Evaluate how you’ll appeal to your specific audience on each channel and leverage the channel’s best practices.

Focus on Targeted Outreach

Find other places where you can place your content. From a guest post on Forbes to a sponsored infographic on a leading personal blog in your niche, there are opportunities outside of your channels that provide potential. Developing relationships with influencers in relevant topics can be a powerful strategy for getting your brand seen.

Utilize User-Generated Content

Ask for your customers and audience to participate in building content. You can run campaigns that call for pictures on social media, user-created videos that feature your brand and more. These types of opportunities can help motivate and engage your target audience better by getting them involved actively.

Track Impact of Engagement

Identify metrics on your website, social media accounts and more to gauge your effectiveness. Performance indicators not only inform what your return on investment is for your content marketing campaigns, but they help reveal ways you can improve. Track your success and test different things to capitalize on your ideas.

Online Audience Engagement Tools

Audience engagement tools offer an ideal way for marketers and small business owners to track engagement and/or communicate with customers. Here are some of the top audience engagement tools.

  • HubSpotThis social media tool allows you to develop a content calendar, automate posts and see a wide variety of data for your accounts. It’s one of the most popular tools of its kind for businesses of all sizes.
  • Zendesk: Improve relationships with your customers through this could-based tool. This customer service software and support ticketing system lets you gather customer feedback and address questions and requests for help. It is fully scalable.
  • IntercomIntercom is an integrated customer messaging application that has live chat, customer engagement and customer support features. It integrates with several platforms and tools, thanks to its flexible APIs.
  • MailChimp: Automate your email marketing campaigns for content efforts and more with MailChimp. You can schedule emails, use email templates, set up auto replies and track the effectiveness of your campaigns.
  • Outbrain: Outbrain is an advertising platform that places your content on premium websites. It produces 200 billion recommendations for consumers each month.
  • TweetDeck: This social media tool for Twitter lets you schedule tweets and track where your brand, industry or specific topics are mentioned.

Pursuing a Career in Marketing

Grace College’s online business programs provide students with the knowledge and skills needed to positively impact an organization. Graduates are prepared for entry-level and advanced marketing roles, as well as management positions and other opportunities for advancement. These faith-based programs apply biblical values to coursework.

Grace’s fully online bachelor’s degree in business administration focuses on the skills and tools graduates need to adapt and excel in the business world. This GOAL (Grace Opportunities for Adult Learners) program is designed for students balancing personal commitments while pursuing an education. It is priced substantially below most degree completion programs and can be completed in as little as 16 months.

The fully online MBA provides students with a strong foundation in marketing, accounting, finance and human resources as well as coursework in entrepreneurship. This program can help graduates pursue leadership opportunities in business.

The fully online master’s in nonprofit management equips students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in marketing communication, applying technology, creating and training staff, raising funds and improving efficiency within an organization.

The post An Online Marketer’s Guide to Audience Engagement appeared first on Home Business Magazine.

Source: Home Business

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Disclosure And Why It Is The Law!!


Financial statements are the backbone of a complete financial report. In fact, a financial report is not complete if the three primary financial statements are not included. but a financial report is much more than just those statements. A financial report requires disclosures. This term refers to additional information provided in a financial report. Therefore, any comprehensive and ethical financial report must include not only the primary financial statements, but disclosures as well.

The chief executive of a business (usually the CEO in a publicly held corporation) has the primary responsibility to make sure that the financial statements have been prepared according to generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and the financial report provides adequate disclosures. He or she works with the chief financial officer or controller of the business to make sure that the financial report meets the standard of adequate disclosures.

Some common methods of disclosures include:

–Footnotes that provide information about the basic figures. Nearly all financial statements require footnotes to provide additional information for several of the account balances in the financial statements.

–Supplementary financial schedules and tables that provide more details than can be included in the body of the financial statements.

–Other information may be required if the business is a public corporation subject to federal regulations regarding financial reporting to its stockholders. Other information is voluntary and not strictly required legally or according to GAAP.

Some disclosures are required by various governing boards and agencies. These include:

–The financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has designated many standards. Its dictate regarding disclosure of the effects of stock options is one such standard.
–The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) mandates disclosure of a broad range of information for publicly held companies.
–International businesses have to abide by disclosure standards adopted by the International Accounting Standards Board.

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What Is Financial Window Dressing?


Financial managers can do certain things to increase or decrease net income that’s recorded in the year. This is called profit smoothing, income smoothing or just plain old window dressing. This isn’t the same as fraud, or cooking the books.

Most profit smoothing involves pushing some amount of revenue and/or expenses into other years than they would normally be recorded. A common technique for profit smoothing is to delay normal maintenance and repairs. This is referred to as deferred maintenance. Many routine and recurring maintenance costs required for autos, trucks, machines, equipment and buildings can be delayed, or deferred until later.

A business that spends a significant amount of money for employee training and development may delay these programs until the next year so the expense in the current year is lower.

A company can cut back on its current year’s outlays for market research and product development.

A business can ease up on its rules regarding when slow-paying customers are written off to expense as bad debts or uncollectible accounts receivable. The business can put off recording some of its bad debts expense until the next reporting year.

A fixed asset that is not being actively used may have very little current or future value to a business. Instead of writing off the un-depreciated cost of the impaired asset as a loss in the current year, the business might delay the write-off until the next year.

You can see how manipulating the timing of certain expenses can make an impact on net income. This isn’t illegal although companies can go too far in massaging the numbers so that its financial statements are misleading. For the most part though, profit smoothing isn’t much more than robbing Peter to pay Paul. Accountants refer to these as compensatory effects. The effects next year offset and cancel out the effects in the current year. Less expense this year is balanced by more expense the next year.

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