How to Ruin Your Facebook Page!

Tips to Prevent Damaging Your Social Media Reputation

Having your business present across multiple social media networks is absolutely necessary in this day and age of marketing. With that in mind, many companies jump on the social media bandwagon without fully understanding how to properly utilize these sites. Here are some social media practices to avoid (unless you want to ruin your Facebook page!):

Abandoning Profiles For Long Periods of Time

Despite the importance of social media sites, they tend to hit the backburner very often when more urgent and crucial tasks are constantly at hand. Updating your profile on a regular basis is vital to maintaining a stable social media presence. On top of that, you probably don’t realize how many times a day your social media sites are visited. If your company has a Facebook page, it’s going to show up on the first page of any search engine so remember to keep a steady schedule of updates.

Repetition, Repetition, Repetition

Posting multiple variations of a twitter update in a really short period of time won’t bring you more traffic… it’s just going to annoy people. As a result, you may lose followers. There’s nothing wrong with automating your tweets as long as it’s done with careful consideration.

Neglecting to Remove Spam

As you build a following on your social media networks, you’re bound to get hit with spam in the form of comments. Be sure to moderate the comments on your social media sites as that spam can turn away potential clients.

Selling Without Engaging First

The purpose of social media networks is just that, to network. You’re interacting with others, learning and establishing your brand. Don’t treat your profiles like a sale ad in the Sunday newspaper. You build value to your products and services by developing relationships through your interaction. When you start throwing up prices, it deters the value of what you’re offering.

Quantity Over Quality

Social media isn’t a popularity contest. Having 100,000 followers on Twitter won’t do anything but hinder the focus of your content. It’s more beneficial to direct your brand towards a manageable group that’s easy to interact with. A target audience will make your social media sites a better outlet to illustrate your message.

SOURCE: JD Rucker, “How to Use Social Media to Bum Out Your Customers in 2011”   http://www.flowtown.com/blog

Creative Insight: Picking the Brain of FBD2’s Design Team

“It’s All About The Eye Candy”

Last week, my lovely fiancée and I were browsing a local wine shop determined to pick out something new that we would both enjoy. Before I continue with this story, it’s imperative that I tell you I’m far from the wine connoisseur, so my future wife had quite the advantage over me. She was basing her selection on her knowledge of wine styles, reviews and varieties she had tasted before… I was judging my buying decision based on the label artwork. Classy eh?

While you’re probably laughing at my method, I wanted to tell this story to prove a point about the visual aesthetic of marketing. A large portion of the world thinks and responds to visual stimulus (not just us designers either.) When you put forth a strategic creative effort towards the presentation of your product, you’re not only demonstrating what sets you apart on a visual level, but you’re also giving that product an opportunity to attract a wider audience, even one that may be inexperienced with what you’re offering.

By applying this concept, a number of vineyards were able to put out a product that even a wine novice would be intrigued to purchase… yes, I’m referring to myself. What it comes down to is that it’s all about the eye candy. Don’t be afraid to go the extra creative mile with your marketing. A visually interesting design will always put you ahead of the competition.

Scott Bykowicz is the Marketing Coordinator for FB Displays & Designs  Inc. as well as a Graphic Designer on their creative team.

NEVER Answer The ONE Question Prospects Always Ask (If You Want Clients)

Whether you’re exhibiting at a trade show, attending a networking event or simply sitting down for a consultation with a prospective client, there’s a two-part question that’s bound to come up. The first part is always the good part; “I’m interested in working with you.” The second part of the question is where things get complicated; “How much do you charge?”

By answering this question on the spot, you will most likely lose the client. If their only focus is price, then it’s obvious they have no concern for the value of what you’re offering or the results they’ll achieve by working with you. People tend to buy in three ways: by emotion, by results and by value. They have to understand the value of what they’re purchasing otherwise, their buying decisions will revolve around the sticker price.

Instead of giving your rates on the spot, invite your potential client for a one-on-one conversation at a later date where you can explain your products or services and how their value will be beneficial to them. This initial meeting is also where you’ll be able to ask vital questions and learn about this potential client. You’ll also be able to get to the bottom of their problems and explain what solutions you can offer. By doing this, you’re illustrating the value of what you’re offering and giving the client a sense of relief towards their troubles. At this point, your products and services will basically sell themselves!

SOURCE: Fabienne Fredrickson, The Client Attraction Mentor, http://www.site-reference.com

The Dark Side of Coupons

In times of economic hardship, you’ll notice many companies first strategic action is to start circulating an abundance of coupons and promoting constant sales. They’ll also use any outlet they can to get the word out whether it is through e-mails, printed materials, newspapers or any other channel of media. Discounting prices may work in the short term, but they can be extremely harmful to a brand in the long run.

While a company’s initial coupons will bring in customers for some immediate sales, they’ll also train them to believe the company’s regular prices are too expensive. In doing this, the customer might eventually stop doing business with that company unless they have a coupon. This can become a huge problem for any brand when you have to sell your product at a constantly discounted price, and thus resulting in very little profit. So what is the point? Do you want your company labeled as a “Discount Business”?

It may seem like the perfect solution during times when the economy is rough, especially when the competition is utilizing the same tactic… it’s simply peer pressure and no brand should have to buy into it. Stick to your “culture” and business model.

In lieu of offering discounted prices, focus on what sets your brand apart and what you offer that appeals to your clients. Providing efficient customer service and spreading a clear message with your branding will benefit your business so much more long term than any coupons ever will.

Source: Laura Ries “Ries’ Pieces”, http://www.ries.typepad.com

3 Additional Reasons You Know You Need a New Trade Show Booth

4. Your booth isn’t drawing in customers.

A sure sign that your exhibit needs some redesigning is when you notice show attendees walking right past your booth without even taking a second glance. With any trade show display, you only have 3 seconds to grab your audience’s attention so it’s important to ensure your exhibit is going to make a strong visual impact. If you’re unsure of what exactly you need to change, then you may want to consult with your trade show display company to ensure your next event is a success!

5. The exhibit you have is too small or the traffic flow isn’t working.

Your booth may turn away potential customers if it appears too crowded. You should allow space for visitors to view your products without bumping into each other. This was all help increase your traffic flow as show attendees will be able to easily navigate your booth.

6. Your trade show booth can’t accommodate the technology you’d like to use.

Technology is always a great feature to include in your exhibit to peak interest from attendees and help you stand out against your competition. Some of the more common options include product videos, computers with interactive touch screens, Wii gaming systems or even photo booths. Incorporating interactivity into your booth is a great way to gain interest in your products or services and help generate leads.

Source: Kelli Cathelyn, The Trade Show Network Marketing Group

Positive Thinking = Positive Results

It’s unlikely that most people can go through a single day without being plagued by stress. When things go awry, even the most miniscule of dilemmas can put someone in a negative state of mind. Focusing on the negative can be extremely detrimental to anyone’s outlook on business or on life in general. It’s surprising though what can happen when a person starts replacing that negativity with positive thinking. A positive mindset is one of the most powerful tools a person can possess and as soon as that optimistic way of thinking is in place, the sky’s the limit. Here are some ideas on how to infuse positive thinking into the workplace:

-Even when roadblocks get in the way, keep an expectation of positive outcomes. Before you start any project, create a list of reasons why you should be optimistic towards it and look over that list whenever you start feeling doubt and negativity.

-Always assign a meaningful purpose to mundane tasks. “A CEO once saw a hospital janitor enthusiastically mopping the floor. The CEO asked how she found so much joy in her work. The janitor replied, I’m creating a clean, safe environment that helps the nurses and doctors make people healthy.”

-Use confident language. When you use negative phrases, you’re actually strengthening the possibility of negative outcomes. By utilizing positive language, you’re not only maintaining better control over your communication, but you’re also focusing on positive results to your goals.

-Tackle your worst problem first thing every day. By accomplishing this, the rest of your concerns will seem small and you’ll increase your positive energy.

-Always create a plan for dealing with the absolute worst case scenario of any project. Once you have that in place, smaller, more likely scenarios will seem easy to get through.

-Maintain the patience to wait for results and don’t take any kind of delays to heart. They rarely have anything to do with you. If your boss hasn’t gotten back to you about your work, it’s possible that they haven’t had the opportunity to review it yet.

-Think positively about past successes. Many times, people will focus on what went wrong in past scenarios. Concentrating on the positive factors that influenced a success will be more beneficial then learning from a failure. Apply the elements from that success into future projects.

-Belief drives optimism. Trust in yourself and you will find that you are your greatest support system.

Source: Scott W. Ventrella (Positive Dynamics), http://www.bottomlinesecrets.com

Top 3 Reasons You Know You Need a New Trade Show Booth

1. Your customers always recognize you because your booth has stayed exactly the same for the past five years.

If you exhibit with the same booth year after year, don’t be surprised if you’re not drawing any new traffic. An overused booth will reflect an outdated message and the last thing you want to do is bore your potential audience. Make sure to update your message regularly to attract the attention of show attendees.

2. The photos you used are now dated.

If the photos in your booth consist of people from past years, you may have a problem. Be selective when utilizing photographs as they have the unfortunate power of becoming dated rather quickly. If your company is investing in a booth that will be used over many years, consider an area on the display for interchangeable graphics.

3. You’re launching a new product/service.

When introducing a new product or service line, it’s important that your booth reflects it. It wouldn’t make sense to introduce a new line when your booth illustrates previous products and services (your target audience will more than likely walk right past you.) If you don’t want to redesign the entire booth, at least include new graphics promoting the latest information.

Next Week: 3 More Reasons to Update Your Booth

Source: Kelli Cathelyn, The Trade Show Network Marketing Group