Converting marketing into emergency communications

by: Charles Gaiennie on

Convert marketing tools into emergency response tools.

Website - if you have one of our content management based websites, use the News/Announcement tool to post updates on whether you are open, services you may have relating to the emergency, etc.  

If you have a secure section of one of our sites, use it to post employee advisories, whether to report to work, special assignments, etc

If you use Constant Contact, use it to post advisories and updates and be sure to re post to your web and to Facebook. 

Call us if you need help on any of these techniques

Get Out of the Board Room and Into the Chat Room

by: Charles Gaiennie on

This week's marketing minute goes out to all of the big shots - you know who you are - who have pretty much written off this social media thing as a passing fad, not worthy of their attention, the realm of their teenage daughter whose main focus is growing virtual crops and creating polls about which "Twilight" vampire she's most like. But alas, oh Great Ones, be cautious in your judgments since the truth is that social media, in the right hands, is a very powerful and relevant business tool that even grownups like yourself can learn to use.

We made the statement in last week’s Marketing Minute that success in social media is all about quality content. So the question becomes then, from whence doth quality content come? To answer that question, let’s visualize a scenario that we think will make the point.

Let’s all go to an imaginary meeting of some board of directors. In your mind’s eye, scan the boardroom table and who do you see? Is it the administrative assistants? No. (Even though we all know that without the AAs no one at the table could have found anything they needed to get ready for the meeting.) Is it the delivery drivers? No. (They’re out making money for the company right now.) It’s the big cheeses, the CEO, top managers, key investors, owners and founders of the company, and so on. And why, we playfully ask, are these particular people at the table? It’s because it is these people who have the insights and knowledge that is most relevant to the company, and, by extension, to the market in which they operate. Stated differently, it is these people who are the owners of QUALITY CONTENT.

These people are also often the public face of your company, and are the persons customers most want a relationship with. Why not consider giving them a voice through a company blog? A blog that is written with true personality makes readers feel like they know and trust you. It is, after all, these people who are assumed to have the greatest knowledge and the credibility. For example, when you get sick, whose advice do you seek, the doctor or the receptionist?

But don't just assign the blog to the secretary or the student intern. In many cases it should be the CEO writing the blog. Yes, we know the CEO's time is valuable, but so is that of your readers so don't waste it with insights that are just veneer. An enthusiastic and personable CEO bursting with insights into your industry is better advertising than you can buy.

When the CEO Shouldn't Blog
Not every CEO should have a blog. A good blog is based on candor, urgency, timeliness, pithiness and controversy. If your CEO can't commit to regular blogs that include at least four of those items, try another medium or choose another employee, or, better yet, hire an insightful and innovative PR firm. (We just happen to know of a great one right here in town.) The point is casual interaction with customers/readers, so your blog must be written in your voice and not in that of a press release or annual report!

Facebook Fan Pages, Just Get One Already!

by: Charles Gaiennie on

There has always been somewhat of a golden rule when it comes to marketing: “Go Where the People Are.” Now, I never officially heard that anywhere, but isn’t it true?!

Although I am young, there seems to have been a plain site evolution of where the big-time marketing took place. At one time newspaper and radio were the biggest and greatest forms of advertising. The next in line was television. Television became the best and most well-known form of advertising. Now, we are seeing the major shift of advertising going to the internet. All others are still around, for now J, but the trend of marketing has greatly shifted into the online spaces.

Internet advertising is so much more diverse than any other form, but it is the way to the masses. Not just to the masses, but you can narrow down to specific people and demographics. There are websites, search marketing, PPC, banner/link ads, social media, mobile, etc., etc., blah, blah. You get the point!

One of the largest segments in online marketing, and the one most talked about lately, is in the field of Social Media and Facebook. Everyone and their Momma has a Facebook account or AT LEAST knows what Facebook is. Facebook currently has over 400 MILLION people on its platform, and HALF of them get on EVERY DAY!! That is a whole lot of people in one place!

If you are in business, you must have also heard about Facebook Fan Pages. They are profiles for brands, organizations, and high profiles individuals. The problem is, so many business owners simply don’t understand what it is, how to start one, don’t have time, and most importantly… don’t know WHAT to do with it once they have one.

Another problem I am seeing is that people are asking, “What is my Return On Investment?” Maybe people were asking what their ROI was when first thinking about purchasing a phone system… but for some reason, I don’t think they were. They just knew it was an easy way to communicate, everyone has a phone, and it is easy to operate. Heeeyyy… that sounds exactly like a Facebook Fan Page can be for your business. Like I said earlier, everyone has a Facebook, it is an easy way to communicate with your customers, and it is easy to operate. PLUS as an extra bonus… IT IS FREE! Just costs your time, which you should SCHEDULE to manage so you don’t waste your valuable time on Facebook.

If you have been thinking about getting a Fan Page… Just Get One Already! Don’t make it more complex than it is! Stop asking so many questions and just DO IT! You can learn EVERYTHING about Fan Pages online. Learn how to set it up, brand it, add cool features, and market it to your clients and customers! Just follow the golden rule: “Go Where the People Are!” Communicate with your current and potential customers, ask them questions, answer their questions, communicate with them, become their resource in your field of expertise.

Do you know that BestBuy launched something called “Twelpforce” that they said was only 80% finished when they started?! BESTBUY! A huge brand like that jumped in with a little plan and took things in stride. Social Media is flexible and ever-changing. There is no PERFECT time to start. The perfect time was YESTERDAY.

However, if you feel that all of this is overwhelming and you don’t have the time, we at The W.L. Gaiennie Company can create a strategy, implement your branding, and assist you with your Facebook Fan Page. Just let us know your ideas and we will give you ours. Let us help you get your Facebook Fan Page already!

The Power of Friendship

by: Charles Gaiennie on

Does this sound familiar?

Hey. Have you tried that new restaurant in town?

Yeah. A friend from work ate there Saturday and they said it’s really good. The place was packed but the service was good and they had some really interesting things on the menu.

Cool. I think we’re going to try it tonight. Thanks.

Based on this conversation, would you be willing to give this new restaurant a try? We guess that you would, and, frankly, so would we.

But did you notice that something was conspicuously absent? Did you notice that marketing, in the traditional sense of the word is nowhere to be seen in this exchange? No $3 million-a-minute Super Bowl ad, no Hollywood spokesperson, nothing really but a casual – yet powerful – affirmation that is almost certain to result in a new customer for the restaurant.

Could there be something here? You bet there is. It’s the power of a legitimate referral, not made by you, but done on behalf of you from a trusted source. It’s called referral marketing and it is powerful stuff when done right.

So how does it work?

To begin with, you really do have to have something of value. No marketing can make up for a poor experience and, in fact, if you really don’t have something that can legitimately be referred, stay away from encouraging referrals until you do since failing to live up to an expectation is worse than having never created the expectation in the first place.

But when you do have something great, make it easy for others to share it. While there are many ways to do this, some methods clearly stand out. Email marketing, for example, is a great way to allow persons to refer to a friend. Sure, they can just hit the forward button on their email, but it’s far better to embed within the email an opportunity to forward to a friend. With Constant Contact, for example, forwarding to a friend is not only easy, but doing so allows you to collect new contacts to allow your distribution list to grow over time.

Another method is to get social. Social media by definition is a perfect medium to get others to share information about you. What you are looking for here is a Facebook fan page that is about your company. Be careful not to try to use a personal Facebook page to promote your business since Facebook frowns on the practice and may cut you off for doing so.

What the two methods have in common is the ease of making the referral and the potentially unlimited number of times a referral can be made with absolutely zero time and expense on your part. You also gain the ability to track referrals depending on the method you choose. In any case, referrals done electronically are huge and provide an effective and affordable way for you to get your message out.

So what more can we say other than, if you enjoy reading our Marketing Minute, we would be most grateful if you would, Tell a Friend.

When you’re ready to have a one-on-one conversation with a few thousand people, give us a call at 985.446.6088 or complete our request form.

Until next week. 

 

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