Filtering by Tag: Business/Finance

Small Business Online Marketing Plan (Restaurant)

Having run a small business we know how essential it is to develop a useable marketing plan. It doesn’t matter how fancy and detailed the document is – if it isn’t easy to execute – you get lost in daily operations and your business doesn’t grow. Having an online marketing plan is as easy as talking to customers about your product and services (you are good at this yes?) but instead of talking, you are writing.

When you get a small business website from Kilted Chaos we use a tool that makes it easy for you to add content – what we would call a “post” - to your website. It really is no different than using a word processor; there’s a small learning curve as you deal with things like tags and images – but basically – adding content to your website will be as easy as creating a new flyer, adding an item to your menu or writing text for an advertisement.

We’ve been on a restaurant kick for the last couple of weeks so let’s see how adding new content can drive a restaurant’s digital and physical marketing:

1/ Every week write a new post about a different menu item
2/ During that week, reduce the price of the menu item by 50%
3/ Have on-table flyers promoting the item with a photo, price reduction and your website details
4/ Encourage diners to comment on the website – every week 1 commenter will win a free entrée
5/ On payment hand every diner a business card with the web address on the front and comment competition details on the back.

This is amazingly simple to do and to manage. The only time consuming thing is to produce the on-table flyers – but it’s definitely worth it in order to drive awareness of the menu, create customer generated content on your website and bring diners back. If you have 100 menu items – there’s 2 years of online marketing – already planned out!

A couple of points to remember: When you write the post – don’t just describe the dish – get someone you know who absolutely loves it to talk about why it is so good – make the description so tantalizing that people have to try it. Also, take your time to produce a good photograph of the dish – you’ll get better at this over time – but a simple camera phone with a good background can suffice – make it look appetizing – if it looks crap – don’t post it.

Quick and dirty sure but amazingly effective and you’ll be astonished by how much you learn about your menu. This approach can be used by any type of business and modified depending on what products and services they offer. Want to get started? Contact Kilted Chaos now and we’ll show you how.

E-Mail Marketing

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I still speak to business owners who believe that if they can only get a big enough mailing list, they’ll be rich.  The last stats I heard were that the pill spammers were hitting a level of 1 purchase from every 12.5 million emails sent.  If you know a hosting company that will blindly send out 12.5 million emails with no questions asked – well – English probably isn’t your first language.

Kilted Chaos recommends that you only email customers that have chosen to give you their email address.  The idea of blasting your message to as many people as you can is absolutely short term and counter intuitive to growing your business.  E-mail is the best way you have to communicate your message to your customers.  E-mail is not a conversion tool – it is not a way of getting new customers – it is a way of keeping existing customers.  Once you wrap your head around that – everything is easy.

We strongly recommend that you use a 3rd party to manage your email campaigns.  Sure if you know what you’re doing, understand the implications of the CAN SPAM act and know how to throttle your server – go ahead.  We prefer to pay a few bucks to a company that will deliver our campaigns professionally on trusted servers and who handle   the whole sign up, subscribe, and unsubscribe malarkey.

Companies that we have worked with and can recommend are:

AWeber Constant Contact Emma Campaign Monitor

Of course, if you need help contact the Chaos team here.

Making Social Media Easy for Small Businesses

Social Media is many things

but in essence it is about Information: it is about how information is created, how it is distributed and shared and how that information causes things to happen.  The information that we’re talking about at Kilted Chaos is Information about your business.

When we talk about creating accounts with services such as Twitter, Flickr, Disqus, Facebook and Gmail, we’re talking about setting you up with services that will enable you to create and distribute information about your business – they’ll also help your customers create and spread information about you too. We’ll talk with you and agree on an avatar, a visual image that will be the same across all sites where you have a presence – your “digital footprint,” if you’re a one person business, this will probably be your smiling face!  We’ll agree on a company statement that will work for each network.  We’ll help to ensure that as you expand your online presence, your message remains clear and easily recognizable.

We talk about making it Easy for the small business owner and in our book – making it easy is saving you time.   None of the above is rocket science and you could no doubt do it yourself – but we can do it a hell of a lot faster than you – we’ve been doing this for a while. If you’re new to Social Media and Social Media Marketing – you might want to start here: What is Social Media What is Social Media Marketing

For an easier introduction to how Social Media works check out the following 4 minute video.  To see how it can work for your business, contact the Chaos team here.

Small Business Owners – It’s easy to be found

So you run a small business – maybe it’s a restaurant or a store, maybe you offer a service like an accountant or a plumber. You know a little about online marketing, you might even have a website that hasn’t been updated since you paid an SEO consultant to get you on the “front page of Google!” You’re good at running your business but think you don’t have the time or budget to market yourself properly online. different2

HELLO – It’s 2009 – things have changed.

It is easier now for people to find your business than it has ever been – the development of tools such as blogs, texting, smart phones and yes, Twitter have resulted in a stream of information that is constantly being updated and accessed by your competitors and your customers. If your business competition is within 20 miles and you don’t have an updated dynamic website, then you are going to lose to the business owner who does.

Click here to read more on how small business owners can effectively use Twitter – this post is less about what it does and more about how you can do it. We know as small business owners ourselves that incorporating a new system into daily business operations is a challenge. If it isn’t easy to do then it gets put on the sidelines like many other things.

Kilted Chaos’ approach to social media and online marketing is to make it as easy as possible. We deliver budget conscious yet professional websites that integrate with your social media marketing. We then show you how easy it is to create a business oriented Twitter stream and encourage you to write occasionally about your business – and that’s it. That’s all you need to start with.

If you get hooked and find that investing more time in social media marketing is improving your bottom line (and we think it will) then we’ll show you how to take it further. Contact us.

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