i7 Marketing Blog

Feb 17

How Is Your Small Business Using Social Media For Customer Service?

According to a November 2014 survey published in January 2015 about consumer behaviors toward multi-channel customer service conducted by AYTM.com on behalf of M2Talk.com, social media is the least popular customer service tool used.

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Feb 04

Understanding Yelp for Your Small Business

Welcome to the dawn of a new era where everything that is done on social media is trackable; analyzed more than ever before; and can be paid for in order to increase or improve results.
Yelp was in the center of customer review websites last year, and we want to tackle those concerns and clear any doubts you may have in order to help you make wise decisions that will determine whether what people say about your business online is creating a need among your audience to purchase your services.

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Jan 20

Small Business Branding Through Events

“If your brand doesn't support social causes, it's missing out on a huge audience.” – Matt Petronzio

If last year taught us anything, it reminded us that everything keeps changing all the time, some things faster than others; and that adapting to the change can take some time, and that adaption must be done sooner than later if you want to remain relevant. Sometimes your business or you as a business professional will be forced to change something about your business or the way you conduct business simply because trends have overtaken your industry and have upgraded it to a new level of difficulty or added more obstacles for you to avoid.

In order to brand your business better, you have to adapt to certain trends, or raise awareness in such a way that will reach hundreds, thousands, and millions of people across the US and around the world. According to Mashable, 90% of Americans are more likely to trust brands that support social issues. Consumers knew brands support a certain cause before, but never like they can know now. Today there are businesses that are growing around certain social issues or make a very public announcement that they donate a part of their earnings to certain organizations that help make other people’s lives better.

This way, a word about your business can spread widely through social media and people who may be interested in that cause will become your customers even if they don’t have need for the specific product you’re selling, they will be your ambassadors as a force for change.

In 2012 Constant Contact published research that showed 77% of business were using social media to promote their events, and they noted that another 14% are going to do so in 2013. Today, most every business that is sponsoring an event is promoting it through social media. Brands engage their audience mostly on Facebook concerning the event itself, but Twitter is close behind. Furthermore, many attendants at an event will tweet live from the event using an event-specific hashtag that makes it easy to search for the event and everything about it in real-time. Add to this live broadcasts that some events also have as an option and you have an even wider audience that is talking about it in real time and is telling the world about it at the same time.

Hosting or sponsoring an event is not just for big brands. Even if a big brand is creating/hosting an event, it doesn’t mean you can’t participate, or be present, or be part of the creating process. But as a small business or startup you can support your local community by sponsoring or hosting various events in your town, which also allows you to gather with other local businesses around the same cause or purpose that will show your local consumers that you care about your community, and that you want to not just sell them products, but also make their lives better or happier.

Now combine a social cause and an event, and you will not only raise awareness about that cause, but you will also bring in other people who may be more interested in a concert or a conference built around your industry or product. Now just imagine all those people together in one place, gathered around the same goal, enjoying themselves, promoting the cause, and live-tweeting about everything they’re seeing and experiencing to the entire world.
So make it a goal this year to sponsor an event or a cause that will raise your brand awareness, show what you are passionate about, and meet your customers needs.

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Dec 22

Three Marketing Practices to Win Social Media In 2015

New Year’s is right around the corner and you’re probably wondering what you can do to help your business gain a better reach online and on social media. Well, we could write about all the accomplishments and improvements in social media, or updates to search engines that occurred this year, but it would take too long and you will only need a few tips to get the year started.

John Wieber writes for Business2Community and he lists five things you need to know to be better at social media in 2015. Here are three tips we think are the most beneficial to any small business or startup.

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Dec 16

Things You Need to Know This Holiday Season

The holiday season is in full swing and big brands and small business alike are all taking this time to give great deals, offer great service, and provide an awesome experience. And if you’re not one of those, it’s still not too late to join in. Remember that holiday season is a great time to impress new customers, affirm your relationships with current ones, and have a great time buying and selling gifts for loved ones.

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Dec 09

Keys to Monitoring Your Social Media

If you’re a small business owner who is also doing his own marketing and social media postings, you are always looking for ways to see where your company’s name is mentioned, who is looking for your services, and who is talking about something related to your industry. Subscribing to newsletters and publications takes care of the last part, but when it comes to social mentions, that can sometimes be a messy business, especially because you have other things to worry about at the same time, one of which is keeping your business afloat and getting those sales.

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Dec 02

Search Engine Wars – Yahoo vs Google. Which is best for you?

Search engine marketing is still a better marketing option than social media. Of course, social media is a great way to connect with your audience and address their needs and concerns. But what social media doesn’t do is allow users to search for you and your products and services in a quick one-stop shop. Search engines do that, and most people often need immediate listings for all shops, including contact information, reviews, and price listings. Search engines list the best results within seconds, allowing you to check all the results and make your decision within moments. But this post isn’t about social vs. search engines. It’s about search engines you should focus on in your marketing efforts.

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Nov 25

3 Things You Need to Know Before you Take Your Small Business to Social Media

Why would you want to brand your business on social media? Because your consumers are there. It’s important to remember that social media is a way to market online, and also to make your business, products, and/or services more personal to your consumers or potential customers.

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Nov 17

3 Things Not to Do on Social Media

A recent interview Entrepreneur.com did with a few other experts shares some things not to do on social media, specifically Twitter.

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Sep 03

How to Individualize your Marketing Message to Reach Your Audience

Our goal here at i7 Marketing is to ensure that your business is reaching its maximum potential in connecting with your current customers as well as reaching new ones. Over these next few weeks we are sharing our approach to marketing that make up our seven pillars of marketing – thus i7 Marketing. Last week we shared our first pillar on how to identify your marketing strategy and goals. This week we move toward the marketing message that needs to be created.

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