Having an email list allows any business to keep in touch with their existing customers and build new relationship with potential ones. The list includes the names and emails of people who agreed to receive weekly newsletters or those who want to keep up to date on the latest company sales, promos and events.
Now, if you’ve been to a lot of expos, conferences, and business events as a vendor you know that attendees are potential customers waiting to be tapped in. And unless you get them to your email list, they’re worth nothing to you.
Make sure that you’re getting the most out of every live event you’re attending. Following are some tips on how to do just that:
1. Prepare the signup form. Make sure that you have signup sheets on the table where you’re displaying your products. A sheet that says that this is for your weekly newsletter or any email campaign you have.
2. Make use of dead time. Make the signup process convenient and make good use of dead time.
While you’re explaining something to potential customers, don’t let them just stand there. Let them jot down their info on your signup sheet. Or if you’re ringing a sale and wrapping the purchase, don’t let your customers stay idly waiting, hand them the signup form. This makes the whole process efficient and effective.
3. Only include necessary fields. If you only need names and emails to build your list, then don’t ask for anything else. Here are some items/fields you shouldn’t miss on your sheet:
4. Follow up. This is very important. After the event, make sure that you add the details of your new subscribers in your database. They should receive an email asking them to confirm their subscription.
This has to happen within a day or two when the event is still fresh on their minds, this way they can easily remember what it’s for and who it’s from.
Over to you..
Any more tips you want to add? Please share them to MACsWomen community by commenting below.
Social media marketing still confuses many. Some business owners are still clueless as to why they are not getting the results they projected to get, even with enough resources allocated for their social media campaigns.
If you’re as confused as they are, you have to take a look at these 5 social media mistakes you may be guilty of committing:
1. Waiting too long to respond on comments and queries or not responding at all. You just don’t post something to create a conversation; you have to be a part of that conversation.
Remember the famous quote “Justice delayed is justice denied”? Well, that goes the same with your comments and replies. You need to address queries and reply to comments as soon as possible, otherwise you lose a huge chance to engage your audience in a longer, and possibly, interesting conversation.
2. Your posts are too one-sided and boring. Stop being too self-promoting. Nobody wants to be associated with someone full of self-promotional hype.
The entire purpose of establishing your presence on social media is to interact with your audience, and you can’t do that if all you care about is posting links to products and services.
3. You’re discouraged with the early results of your social media activities that you decided just abandon your profiles. Or maybe you’re just too busy with other accounts you decided you have no time for more. Or maybe you were too confused when you set up your profile.
So that you get what I mean, take a look at this: @TimeWarnerCares created this for customer support, I guess. But then for whatever reasons, they abandoned it and created a new one @TWCableHelp . Again, they abandoned the second profile and finally settled with @TWC_Help .
4. Neglecting to address comments from one unsatisfied customer. With social media, the ripple effect is huge. You’re better off addressing negative feedbacks and comments than ignoring them.
5. You failed to moderate your social media accounts. Because of the extensive audience reach social media can provide, some started to abuse it. Spammers using dummy accounts are everywhere.
Moderate your social media profiles – delete the spam comments, address the negative feedbacks, and provide corrections for users providing incorrect information about your brand or business.
Over to you..
Do you have a social media marketing campaign in place? Did you check whether you are committing the 5 mistakes stated above? If so, how do you plan to address them? Please share your opinions and comments below.
Customer satisfaction is one area of business that you literally can always improve upon. In particular, owners of small businesses often depend heavily on excellent customers service availability in comparison to larger corporations. great customer service is also about knowing how to handle problems, responding to and resolving issues—something at which agile small businesses can often excel. If fantastic customer satisfaction is your goal, then read further to see what tips we here at MACs Women think will get you there. Here are three simple things you can do to increase your customer satisfaction.
1. Remember the Golden Rule.
The Golden Rule, if you do forget what it is, is always treat others the way you would like to be treated. We all most likely learned this at some point in our lives, and probably have followed it to some degree. But the Golden Rule can be applied to business relations as well! Ask yourself this: if you were a customer at a small business similar to your own, how would you like to be treated? Analyze your answer, and ask your team the same question. By creating a general outline of what you and your team think of as desirable customer service, you can begin to provide exactly that.
2. Set up a focus group.
Invite a random group of your customers to chat about your customer service. This can be either an in-person discussion or an online conference session. Make them feel at ease and ask them their opinions about your various customer service practices. Whatever you do, don't defend, justify or argue with your customers. Just ask questions and take good notes. Follow up with a sincere ‘Thank you for your time!’
3. Communicate clearly and respond quickly.
Communication is the key to success in both business and personal relationships. Customers will become dissatisfied if they cannot efficiently obtain answers to their questions or complaints. Quick and accurate response to customer complaints, whether in person, by telephone, or through email, removes frustration and increases customer satisfaction. These simple communication strategies will ensure that your customers know what to expect when dealing with your business.
A small business relies heavily on customer service to drive sales and succeed. With excellent customer service and satisfaction, your business will keep their customers happy on a long-term basis, which is often the key to the success of a business. Happy customers will continue to patronize your business over long periods of time, which is crucial. Follow these tips to increase your overall customer satisfaction!
What have you done to increase the satisfaction of your customers? Do you have any tips that you swear by as a business owner or customer service representative? Let us know in the comment section below!
Why would you want to build your email list when you can get more than enough traffic from your Facebook account, or Twitter, or from the ads you’re running on Google? You don’t want emails, you want page visits, which can then be converted to REVENUE! Yes, at the end of the day, you want revenues, not a list of email addresses.
In today’s digital market, it is wise for every business owner to remember that email marketing is more necessary than ever!
Don’t focus your efforts on social media marketing alone
Social media marketing is great because it puts your business directly in front of people who are interested in what you have to offer. It’s a free platform where customers and business connect and build relationship.
But here’s the catch..
You don’t have any hold whatsoever on your Facebook fans or Twitter followers. They could be gone anytime. One algorithm change and POOF! There goes the fan-base you’ve been working so hard to build.
Here are some more reasons why businesses shouldn’t abandon their email list:
1. People have emails even if they’re not on social media.
2. When someone subscribes to your newsletter, this means that they trust you.
3. People check their emails at least twice a day.
4. People find it harder to ignore a new inbox item than a new status update or tweet.
5. Email is more personal and professional.
Social media marketing, blogging and other forms of digital marketing out there can help grow your community. In fact, you shouldn’t let your email marketing stand on its own.
You can use social media to steer visitors to the opt-in page to your site. Conversely, your emails should contain links to your social media profiles so that people who are more comfortable connecting via social media can connect and converse with you there.
For businesses, social media can greatly expand your marketing reach, promote your brand, and spread the word about your product or service. There are, however, correct and strategic ways to use this social media to your business's advantage.
Social media use can confuse even the most experienced businesswomen. Unfortunately, these seemingly simple mistakes can cost major corporations an average of $4.3 million a year. When using social media to expand your small business, avoid these common mistakes to save time and money!
1. Don't focus on the number of followers you have.
Instead, focus on the level of engagement of your current followers. An engaged follower is someone who comments on your statuses and likes your posts. Having 75 highly engaged followers is much better than having 200 followers who never interact on any of your social media platforms. Why is this important? Because engaged followers are more likely to buy your products and support your company. So how do you engage people? Ask questions and respond to comments. Post pictures. People enjoy seeing photographs and are likely to share them, making your social media efforts that much more visible. Share content that your users will enjoy, such as industry news or relevant tips, and not just information about your products or services.
2. Don't make all your posts about you.
Yes, interaction on social media does increase awareness of your company and brand. However, doing too much of this will turn off some of your followers. Posts that take an approach of “this is the consumer problem and here’s how our product can fix it” are acceptable from time to time, but don’t let this kind of content become constant, unabashed self-promotion. Post about other topics you think your followers will be interested in, such as current business events, business tips, or interesting infographics. Social media content that has value to your followers will gain and engage more followers than posts that are only about your business, service, and products.
3. Don't automate everything.
Automatic posting apps can be helpful for posting content during non-business hours, but doing this too often can make your business seem impersonal. You need to keep your online persona for your business likable and approachable, so it is recommended that you mix automated posts with human engagement. This will lead to more trust among your followers and potential followers.
4. You don't keep track of your statistics.
Focusing and tracking your social media analytics will improve your knowledge of your followers and how they are engaging with your social media accounts. If you feel like you are too busy to take time out of your day to keep track of this, hire someone to do it for you. Learn what time of day your customers are most active and what types of posts attract the highest levels of engagement. This will help shape your overall social media strategy and will make your business's social media presence better.
Avoiding these common social media mistakes will help your business solidify your online presence and strengthen your overall social media strategy. Building a strong social media presence will better market your brand and service.
What do you think is the most important social media mistake to avoid? Let us know by posting in the comment section below.
Do you find yourself dreading deadlines? Or that you have to work late and into the wee hours of the morning to be able to meet them?
As a business owner it is essential that you know how to manage your time and stay organized so that you gain control of the tasks at hand and devote your time to projects that can positively impact the growth of your business.
Following are some tips on how to manage your time more effectively:
1. Always have a to-do list. The secret to having an effective list is to jot down the most important tasks first. The list will help you keep on top of things so that you don’t forget to work on the most crucial tasks.
If you have a large project you’re working on like a “Social Media Campaign”, make sure you breakdown the project into specific, actionable items like daily “Facebook status update” or “10 daily tweets”.
2. Set personal goals. Personal goal setting will help you have a vision to work toward to. When you have a goal, you’ll be more responsible in managing your priorities and time to get there.
3. Learn to manage your distractions. IM chats, phone calls, checking your social media accounts, all these little distractions prevent us from achieving your work rhythm, which is the seemingly effortless work we do when we’re 100% focused on a task.
4. Don’t take on too much. Know your limit and learn to delegate tasks. If you already have your plate full, learn to delegate tasks. Taking on too much is not an efficient way to work, and it can force you to produce rushed, sloppy work.
5. Avoid cramming. Some people get an adrenaline rush when they see a pile of papers on their desk or when they know that the deadline is just hours away. Although some claim that they tend to work fast and much more efficiently when they’re cramming, this is something that needs to be avoided.
Cramming can lead to a lot of stress and sloppy work.
Over to you..
How about you, how are you trying to manage your time? Please share your thoughts and comments below.
You received an email all in CAPS with multiple exclamation marks at the end of every sentence. It’s from one angry customer complaining about a defective product or an order not delivered on time.
Or maybe you got a call from an unhappy client threatening to withdraw and move her business elsewhere.
It can happen to the best of us.
Following are some tips to ensure that you’re dealing with unhappy customers the best possible way:
1. Switch to a customer service mindset. Once you receive complaints, the first thing you must do is to immediately adjust your mindset from that of a business owner to a customer service representative mindset.
This means that you abandon all defensive thoughts like “it’s not your fault, it’s your customer’s”, “your client is just too picky”, or “your customer made a mistake”. All that matters right now is that your customer is unhappy and you have to make sure you’re doing the best you can to solve the problem.
2. Empathize. Again, stop being on the defensive. Acknowledge your customer’s feelings. A simple “I apologize you didn’t like the mockup design” should do. Take note you’re not saying it’s your fault, you’re saying that you acknowledge the fact that the customer is not satisfied with your work, which would help calm their down.
3. Identify the real problem and listen actively. Once you’re customer has calmed down, have a sit down and find out what causes the problem. Start with a neutral statement such as “Let’s go over what happened” or “Kindly tell me why you’re upset.”
Let your client tell the story and listen attentively. Don’t settle with answers like “I just don’t like the design!” Get specifics and always ask for examples.
4. Present a solution. Now that you know what your customer wants, as long as it’s reasonable, go the extra mile to satisfy him/her. Offer to re-do the design or go back the drawing board when necessary. It’ll be worth your while. An unhappy customer can hurt your reputation and can badly affect your business in the long run.
5. Follow up. After your revision, get your client’s feedback promptly. More often than not, they’ll be satisfied with it. Whenever you can, send her a gift certificate or give her a discount on her next purchase.
6. Learn from what happened. The very last thing you should do is to reduce the risk of the same situation ever happening again. Go back to what caused the problem in the first place and make sure that it’s fixed immediately. Identify similar problems and address them as well.
Every business owner, at one point in their entrepreneurial career, will have to deal with angry and unhappy customers. This is an inevitable part of the game, and it’s never easy. But if you know what to say and what to do, you’ll not only save the situation, but end up with a better understanding of your customers’ needs, which in turn will lead up to a better and positive customer relationship.
The first few waking hours can affect your mood the whole day. A bad morning can result in a bad day. On the other hand, waking up in the morning full with good vibes can leave you energetic and inspired throughout the day.
Here are 5 ways on how to develop a healthy and better morning routine:
1. Wake up to a happy song every day. Waking up to happy song, rather than the usual beeping of your alarm clock, can help you start your day right.
2. Get your things organized the night before. Spend a few minutes before you go to bed to organize your to-do list for tomorrow. You don’t have to list down every single thing you need to do the entire day, just write down the things that need your most attention. This way you wake up the next morning knowing what to do, and what to do first.
3. Turn your phone off before you go to bed. Also, make sure that you place your phone somewhere out of reach. This eliminates the temptation to open your email, check your inbox, and browse through Facebook and other things that will take precious minutes off your sleep.
4. Have fun with your beauty routine. Your morning is more exciting if you enjoy picking out your outfit, putting your makeup on and doing your hair. Knowing that you look good will certainly put you in a good mood not just in the morning but all throughout the day.
5. Make your bed before you leave for work. Leaving your room clean and tidy give you a sense of organization which can have a positive impact on your disposition the entire day.
Over to you..
What’s your morning routine? Do you think your morning routine has a positive impact on your performance at work? Share your thoughts and comments below.
In today’s post, we’ll tell you how you can train your VAs so that you are ensured that they are working efficiently and effectively.
But before we jump in to the training tips, there’s one important thing you need to remember: So that expectations are managed and met, be clear as to what tasks your VA should be handling. Of course, the tasks and scope of the tasks may change over time, but that’s something you and your VA should be discussing again in the future.
Now, here are the training tips to make your VA more productive and effective:
1. Invest time. If you want your VA to think and work like you do, then you have to bring him/her to that competency level.
If you can’t really train your virtual assistant yourself the entire time, you can utilize online training programs that can provide the necessary training modules for your VA.
2. Prepare audios and videos. Again, if you’re too busy to train your VA personally all the time, you can just create a training video or audio to improve the skills of your virtual assistants. Or you can give them links to free training audios and videos online.
3. Be clear with your task assignment. Once you think your VA is ready to start to work, provide him/her with a list of tasks. Be clear as to what the daily deliverables and weekly deliverables should be. Go over it at least twice with you VA to ensure that you’re both on the same both on the same page.
4. Give feedback. As the employer, it is your job to keep track of the progress of your VA, or lack thereof. If your virtual assistant is doing a great job, some words of appreciation will keep him/her motivated even more. On the other hand, when something is amiss, you have to point it out. A good VA will figure out something to rectify the error and make things right.
5. Stay connected. In a work-setting where you and your VA are physically thousands of miles apart, communication is as crucial as ever. Communication helps you to avoid misunderstandings and thus lead to a better work relationship.
Your days of wearing multiple hats simultaneously – business owner, internet marketer, content writer, etc – are over. With the help of well-trained virtual assistants, you can start delegating tasks so that you can focus on the core aspects of running your business.
Interruptions come in many forms – your boss checking on you, a colleague stopping by for a short chat, a phone ringing, an email notification, etc. The more you are interrupted while working, the more drained you feel and the higher your stress level becomes.
Interruptions are unpredictable and, most of the time, they are out of your control. Although you can’t altogether stop interruptions from happening, here are some steps you can take so that they are kept at the bare minimum:
Customize your email notifications. Every time you hear the ‘ding’, you just can’t stop yourself from checking your email. To minimize distractions, configure your email settings so that you only receive notifications when you get high-priority emails like that from your supervisor.
Set a schedule for interruptions. It’s smart to let your colleagues know that you are not to be disturbed during particular hours.
Before you dive into your work, ask your colleagues whether they need something from you. Tell them that you’ll be working on a project for the next few hours and that if there’s something they want from you, they’ll have to approach you before you start working or after.
Set your status to busy. If you are required by your boss to go online on Skype, but want to minimize IMs from colleagues, you can set your status to busy. Or you can just inform your boss that you’ll go invisible and that you’re online whenever he/she needs you.
Wear noise-cancelling headphones. Office activities can really be a distraction. You can’t help but get distracted with a rowdy officemate especially if you’re working in an open office space.
Wearing headphones can help drown out office chatter and, at the very least, will make colleagues think twice before interrupting you.
If your work day involves a string of interruptions and you’re starting to feel stressed because you’re not getting anything done, then it may be high time to send people the busy signal and put up that ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign.