Month: May 2020

Digital Branding

4 Essential Tools to Streamline Your Workload

A high level of productivity is what workforce management expects from their employees in the modern-day workplace. Business owners have set the bar high because they are forced to keep pace with the unique demands of their customers. If a business fails to meet the needs of customers, then chances are, it will fall behind the competition.

To take an edge over the competition, it is essential that employees know how to tackle a heavy workload. But a majority of people struggle to get everything done when it comes to managing an ever-growing to-do list. There are days when employees find it hard to manage a constant stream of tasks that demand their attention.

If you are struggling to complete all of your assigned tasks, then here is good news for: there is a variety of effective tools out there that can help you to streamline your workload. Below is a list of some of these tools; so let’s take a look!

Hootsuite

Are you a budding entrepreneur? If yes, there is a good chance that there is already a lot on your plate and you are unable to manage the workload on your own. Well, this is exactly where Hootsuite steps in!

In this digital age, it is, without a doubt, essential to promote your brand on social media. But we can’t deny the fact that uploading posts to different social media sites can be a nerve-wracking, time-consuming, and cumbersome task. Therefore, you can consider relying on Hootsuite to save your precious time.

This app enables you to create and schedule social media posts on different social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Just take the time to sync your account of Hootsuite with your social media accounts, and you will be able to schedule your posts.

Hootsuite also helps you keep track of brand mentions in addition to scheduling posts on different social media channels. With this app, you can make sure that your official social media accounts are active even when you are busy dealing with other projects.

Asana

Chances are, you find it hard to organize your work and looking for an app where you can manage the different projects. Well, there is no need to look further as Asana is right here to make the lives of you and your team better and less stressful. It is a project management tool that comes with an array of features that enable you and your team to track their work.

What makes this exceptional is the fact that it comes with incredibly easy to use, simple, yet effective user interface. With the help of this tool, you can easily set to-dos and create tasks- you can organize all of these into projects. Not only that, this app also enables you to assign different tasks to your team from within the app.

With this tool, you can keep your whole team on the same page by adding reminders and monitoring tasks. You can even check the status of the tasks. You will certainly find Asana useful to manage or working on a team project.

Teamweek

If you are in search of a project planning tool, then your search ends here! Teamweek is a great tool that leaves no stone unturned in giving you a clear overview of what different team members are working on this week.

This app plays a vital role in assigning work evenly among your employees. This simply means that there will be less pressure on your team which will eventually lead to smoother team operations. What’s more? You can access this tool from any device using high-speed internet.

Wunderlist

Do you find it hard to organize your own tasks? If yes, then Wunderlist is here to your rescue. It is an easy-to-use task management tool that plays a vital role in managing your projects, plans, and other tasks.​

What you need to know is that you don’t necessarily need to be a genius to use Wunderlist. This app manages to constantly notify you about important tasks and projects. All you have to do is take the time to write it down in the app, sit back and relax because Wunderlist will now be in charge of reminding you about all the essential tasks.

With Wunderlist, creating to-do lists has become easier than ever. Make sure you make the most of folders to group related lists. The best thing about this app is that you can not only set due dates but add reminders to those lists as well.

Not only that, you can also add notes and reminders through the Wunderlist app. This app allows you to share lists with colleagues and communicate with your team. If budget is your main concern, then you can opt for this app’s free version. You can also sign up for its premium option to gain access to more features.

Wrapping Up

No matter how overworked and overwhelmed you are, the aforementioned tools will help you better manage your workload. Not only that, these you can rely on these tools to have more free time in the process and combat stress in no time.

Digital Branding

5 Reasons Web Designer is Better Over Templates for Websites

There are a number of variables that come into play when you want to make your business achieve the results you desire. One of these variables is the website. A majority of the sales and interactions of the business world now happen online. A company can not get very far these days without having a proper business website. Your website is the face of your company on the internet and the only means of interaction between you and your customers. There is a whole list of reasons for not relying on a template to save costs. Let’s take you through some of the most prominent reasons that will completely take you away from ever using a template.

Uniqueness

A website designed by a trusted designer will always have a unique aspect to it which a template can never provide. The design will be original and customized for your business model only. If you ever select a template for your website you will be able to find hundreds of similar designs on other sites. Your website needs to stand out and saving your money by using a cheap template will never let that happen.

Target audience

A web designer always studies and understands the type of audience and customers you want to target. The designer will make the website in such a way that it appeals to your target audience the most. Every successful business is known to work on its target audience which only happens once you stop diverting resources to the people who won’t take interest in what you have to offer. A template can not provide you with such a service.

Efficiency

Using a template means you are displaying your products and services in a pre-set format instead of designing it on your own. A web designer does exactly the opposite of what the template does. The professional will showcase your products and services in the most effective manner. Tim Hebel of Beanstalkwebsolutions.com says you only have eight seconds to get the attention of someone visiting your site, so it needs to have interesting media, a prominent headline, and a large call-to-action button that is tempting to press. Without having such elements on your website you can not expect a lot of sales from it.

Utility

Almost all the templates you find on the internet have been designed and put there at some point in the past. This means that most of them are not updated to synchronize with the latest devices and gadgets out there. A professional web designer, on the other hand, will make sure that the website is able to run smoothly on every device possible.

Maintainance

You might save some money in the beginning by using a template instead of a qualified designer but after a while, your website will require changes and additions. These updates for your website will be complex and you will require professional help for this. In the end, you will anyway land up at a web designer’s doorstep, asking for help to maintain your website.

While deciding on important factors like a website for your business, you should never be stingy. Getting a website made is a one-time process and you should take out a budget for a professional web designer to make it.

SaaS Branding

A Comprehensive Guide to SaaS Branding

Too many SaaS business owners do not see branding as a crucial segment in the early stages. Especially when there is app development in progress and the business has yet to start growing.

There is one simple assumption that makes them oblivious to the importance of branding — they think that a good product will sell itself. They believe there is no need to invest in marketing campaigns or branding, and all other things that help build a strong company image and name.

However, that assumption is very wrong. And it can be fatal too. If there is no recognizable brand, even a trailblazing app will struggle.

Of course, you can always look for an already established SaaS business for sale, a recognizable brand that already makes a considerable profit. That will save you a lot of time and effort.

But if you’d like to start your business from scratch and build your own brand effectively, you can start so today by taking in as much as you can from this guide.

Before we start — what is branding really?

Branding can be described as an overview of what your target customers think about you and your offer (service/product).

This is the image your company has in the world, and it applies both to how your rivals and your customers see you.

However, when you delve deeper, it is fair to say that branding is a bit more complex. It also includes how the management and team players see and think about the company, its processes, motivation, and beliefs.

This is exactly why you should have your brand in mind before you start creating your business website and other marketing materials. It is this image that will separate your business from other rivals offering similar services or products.

Hence, it is reasonable to say that your brand is a mirror of what customers see and think about your company. And, logically, your goal should be to have a beautiful image in their eyes.

A strong name — a strong brand

The SaaS industry is growing at the speed of light and soon enough it will become difficult to find a unique company that is somehow different from the rest.

Well, the first step towards uniqueness is definitely your domain name. There are quite a few branding benefits of various domain names and extensions.

That is why it is important to learn what the cheapest domain names bring to the table contrary to the more expensive ones. For example, some people think that only an expensive domain name is a good one, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Also, know that there are hundreds and hundreds of extensions that you can use. These range from specific ones such as .TECH, .STORE, and .PRESS to the more general ones including .ONLINE, .WEBSITE, and, .SPACE.

The benefits of a good domain name for branding are quite significant. 

  • Firstly, a domain name tells your customers whether you are forward-thinking or not.
  • What’s even more important is that it helps you interact with a niche market. You are most likely dealing with a specific audience and that is why you should create specific domain redirects that point customers to what they want.
  • Finally, since people’s first contact with your business is your domain name, this makes the name an important factor when it comes to your identity. In other words, the message your brand name communicates is what most customers will see first.

Position

It is important to create a strong sense of what your products offer to the world. Additionally, that needs to be communicated in a way that differentiates it from all other available products.

First, it is important to explain what problems your service/products are solving. This is the act of positioning.

For instance, you could be helping teams become more efficient and avoid bottlenecks when communicating with each other (Trello, Basecamp, and so on).

A good position statement is not there only to place your product in the minds of your users but also to let you define your target audience and differentiate yourself from your competitors. This will also ‘vouch’ that you are on a path where every action is ‘on brand.’

Any decision you make will place you closer or further from where your competitors are located. That is why it may be useful to envision your product’s position as a location on a map.

Utilize emotions

No, you are not taking advantage of anyone’s feelings.

When marketing your SaaS, you have to be able to capture people’s attention fast. This will make them interested in your brand and that means that they will want to know more.

Your branding has to resonate well with your customers’ needs, aspirations, and emotions. That will help your company create a connection with people and build loyalty over time.

See what works best for you. For instance, most companies are used to seeing positive, benefit-oriented imagery and copy that highlight the pleasure to be gained from a product. But, this wasn’t the path for one industry giant — Basecamp.

In 2016, Basecamp changed their visuals to a cartoon drawing of a customer with her hair on fire being chased after by notifications, calls, and emails. Oh, they also tripled their prices.

This wasn’t something people were expecting to see. But, it was captivating and in the end, it worked.

Smart, right?

Social proof needs to be a part of your marketing toolkit

Social proof and testimonials are everywhere nowadays. That, above everything else, is a clear sign of how powerful this marketing tool is.

The most effective testimonials describe real scenarios and situations. These talk about problems your products solve and you need to add them to your arsenal.

For a start, you could start gathering testimonials. These can be conversation transcriptions you have with your customers or direct quotes from them.

Then, you could also introduce quick surveys.

For instance, when sending a survey, ask questions such as:

  • How did our product change your operations?
  • Is our product helpful?
  • How does our product help you get on with your work?
  • How would you feel if you stopped using it right now?
  • Would you recommend it to anyone?

When doing this kind of marketing, be sincere, and post honest answers. If your social proof seems staged, well, you have failed.

Add an element or two of reality by guiding your customers to highlight the elements of concern they had before they bought your product. When you clear out all the doubt, you win.

Conversational marketing as a cornerstone

If you haven’t heard of it, conversational marketing is a fresh approach to doing business online. The buyers are moved through marketing and sales funnels by using the power of one at a time questions.

But, why should you care about that? How can conversational marketing help you promote your brand?

Well, first of all, you need conversational marketing to ensure that you are providing value. Since this method revolves around messages, you should think about how your messaging platform can deliver content in a personalized and engaging way.

The customer experience should be thought out well and the messages need to align with other marketing efforts.

However, do not forget that you should avoid automating too much. Since the point is to provide a private messaging service (with the aim of increasing the number of personalized interactions with customers), you shouldn’t overdo it with chatbots.

Having technology at your disposal does not mean that you absolutely have to use it. The messaging platform is reserved for the more fluid, back-and-forth, or Q&A interactions. Do not let the customers feel that you are trying to sell something to them.

When a customer realizes that the goal is to have a product sold to them, your brand will look like it is just trying to take advantage of an honest conversation.

So, make sure to use this method but use it carefully. As you do this with more and more customers, your brand shall grow.

Legal Branding

Workplace Sexual Crimes – How To Protect Your Employees And Your Reputation

Unlike other criminal offenses, sexual assaults behold a stigmatic reputation in society. They are not considered as a crime against the law, but rather against humanity. Perhaps, these crimes can take several forms including rapes, demeanor, or objectionable display.

Moreover, sexual crimes are not associated with any particular place or gender. That being said, victims of such crimes can also be found in offices and commercial spaces. A boss harassing her secretary for sexual favors or a woman using her sexuality to accelerate progress in an organization are some common workplace sexual crimes.

However, it is not only the victim that has to suffer the brunt of social stigma. In fact, the organization’s reputation is also tarnished by such crimes.

Gender Selective Recruitment Is No More A Choice

For several reasons, companies prefer hiring a specific gender over the other. For example, male janitors are usually preferred for cleaning tasks in the men’s facilities. Likewise, for office kitchens and cafeterias, women employees are given preference over male candidates. Although such preferences are a company’s sole discretion, once it is established that the company is involved in a sexual crime such preferences no longer remain a choice. In other words, candidates start applying selectively, and even more so, there may be a reduced flux of applications for any job openings in the company.

Peers May Also Be Affected

One of the hardest blows that any brand could expect if an employee is found guilty of sexual assaults is reduced business. Here, the business would formally refer to the number of customers for a brand and the subsequent revenue it generates from them. Of course, people would not prefer to endorse products from a brand that cannot check sexual crimes among their employees. As the experts from Belenlawfirm.com explains, brands should invest in criminal defense attorneys who can help restore their image among their peers. There may be chances of false allegations from the plaintiff or the victim. An experienced lawyer would either help completely overrule the allegations or suggest a corrective course of action. Subsequently, it would help establish the brand’s image as a responsible employer. And therefore, mitigate the risks of losing peers.

Evidently, such declines in the workforce and peers for a business would mean nothing else than doom for the brand. However, these risks can be mitigated if brands could implement certain rules and regulations to check any such crime.

Encourage Employees To Come Forth

Most of the time, either the victims of the crime do not come forth or the companies suppress their voice to do so. Any such incident could only encourage defaulters and the wicked to commit more such crimes. Before the situation gets any worse, it is best to check and rectify the errors. And one way to do this is to encourage the employees to come forth and raise their voices. In fact, it is even better to file a complaint with the authorities on both fronts- the legal system and the company.

Educating The Team To Be Collective

Another way to keep a check on sexual crimes is by educating the employees about gender equality. Needless to say, when people treat their fellow employees with the same respect, the chances of any such crimes are quite low. In fact, it is even better to educate the employees about thinking of themselves as a single unit, a team. When people think of others as cognitive parts essential for their own growth and development, they are more likely to respect other’s likes and dislikes. And of course, any such act is only a crime when there is no mutual consent.

Implementing Penalties & Punishments

Most importantly, companies must implement penalties and punishments for offenders. Although the companies cannot punish physically, they can still charge severe social punishments for the offenders. In fact, several companies do not entertain any indecent act in the office premises which may offend either any gender or community.

When a brand stands up against any offense or a crime, it reinforces the brand’s hold over the market. For example, if a clothing brand starts hiring differently-abled models to promote their products, they may induce a sense of natural beauty amongst their buyers. It would only bring in positive results for the brand. Similarly, when a brand stands against sexual assaults and crimes on their premises, they propagate the idea of a safer working place for all genders.

In the end, there’s no single victim to such crimes, but several others also bear the impact of wrongs done by someone.

Digital Branding

Google Voice and the Alternatives

Google Voice is a phone service provided by Google and is a great alternative to traditional landlines with different benefits within the three different pricing plans. Whether for business, or for personal use, there is a Google Voice plan suitable for everyone.

Aside from Google Voice, there are other alternative phone services similar to the Google service. Here, we will break down the top Google Voice alternatives and how they compare in terms of pricing and other features.

Google Voice

Before comparing Google Voice to its alternative, we must discuss Google Voice in terms of its pricing and features per pricing plan. Google Voice offers three different pricing plans: the Starter, Standard, and Premier.

Starter Plan

The Starter Plan with Google Voice costs $10 per user per month. This is the most basic plan and all features in this plan are also available in the Standard and Premier plan. The Standard plan supports a maximum of 10 users from 10 different domestic locations and no international locations. Other features include free domestic calling, unlimited SMS, voicemail transcription and more.

Standard Plan

The Standard plan with Google Voice costs $20 per user per month. This plan supports an unlimited number of users, at an unlimited number of domestic locations and no international locations. The Standard plan includes everything within the starter plan and additional features such as desk phone support and eDiscovery technology.

Premier Plan

The Premier plan with Google Voice costs $30 per user per month. This plan supports an unlimited amount of users at an unlimited amount of domestic and international locations. The Premier plan includes all the same features of both the Starter and Standard plan with additional features such as advanced reporting and data regions.

Grasshopper

A popular alternative to Google Voice is Grasshopper. Generally, Grasshopper is more expensive. Similar to Google Voice, Grasshopper also has three different pricing plans to choose from: Solo, Partner, and Small Business.

Solo

The Solo plan costs $29 per user per month. This plan is inclusive of 1 phone number and 3 extensions. Additional features include voicemail transcription, call forwarding, and business texting.

Partner

The Partner plan costs $49 per user per month. This plan allows for 3 different phone numbers and 6 different extensions. Additional features are the same as in the Solo plan.

Small Business

The Small Business plan costs $89 per month. This plan is good for 5 different phone numbers  and unlimited extensions. Additional features are the same as in the Solo plan.

Ring Central

Ring Central is another popular alternative to Google Voice and is great for both large and small businesses. There are 4 different pricing plans: Essentials, Standard, Premium, and Ultimate

Essentials Plan

The Essentials plan costs $19.99 per user per month. This plan allows use for up to 20 users and includes unlimited calling, texting, voicemail transcription, team messaging, and document sharing. These features are also available in the other plans.

Standard Plan

The Standard plan costs $24.99 per user per month. This plan is good for an unlimited amount of users and includes everything in the Essentials plan. Additional features include unlimited internet fax, unlimited audio conferencing and even integrations with other services such as G Suite.

Premium Plan

The Premium plan costs $34.99 per user per month. This plan includes everything included in the Standard plan as well as additional features such as single sign on, call recording, and up to 8 digit extensions.

Ultimate Plan

The Unlimited plan costs $49.99 per user per month. This plan includes everything in the Premium plan and also includes device status reports and alerts, as well as unlimited storage.

Whatsapp

Whatsapp is another popular service that caters to simple phone service needs. This app is free to use and is available via mobile app and computer application for Windows and Mac. While Whatsapp does not have nearly as many features as the alternatives, it is a great simple phone service for quick and simple tasks.

Conclusion

There are many alternatives to Google Voice. Each VOIP service offers different features to accommodate varied personal and business needs.

When it comes down to it, we have to look at affordability and features. All services offer great features but for a much higher price than Google Voice, and while Whatsapp is free to use, it does not have half the features that Google Voice does. Google Voice is a great phone service in terms of features and pricing.

Digital Branding

How Does SEO help to improve your Brand Awareness?

Just making a website is not enough. You need to show it in search engine results in order to have visitors and sales. A website without search engine optimization is like a shop in a far plunged area where nobody bothers to visit. They say if you want to hide something from the world, keep it on the second page of Google search results. The first organic search result receives a 32.5% traffic, the 2nd sees 17.6% and the 7th only gets 3.5%.  This shows if you are on the 2nd page, you get less than 1% of the overall traffic and you are dead if you don’t appear even on the 2nd page.

SEO helps improve everything, traffic, sales, and brand awareness. For example, if you are a tyre brand in Dubai or an SEO firm in Jeddah and appear on top for the keywords “Tyres in Dubai” or “SEO Jeddah” which have the most monthly search volume, you are going to have maximum organic traffic, higher chances of maximum conversions and high brand awareness. High visibility imprints a brand name into customer’s minds. It tempts customers to believe that you are the best in the field and hence can be trusted. This is the reason brand awareness has become synonymous with SEO.

Ways SEO can Help Boost Brand Awareness                  

A well-thought-out SEO campaign will go a long way in boosting brand awareness. The following techniques which are all part of SEO can make your brand known globally.

1. Link Building

Link building is an integral part of SEO and a proven way to further brand awareness. Quality backlinks contribute to search engine rankings which increases the brand visibility. They also market your brand to the audience of the back linking sites. For example, gaining a link from Reddit or Entrepreneurs through a guest post will not only high rocket your rankings but also advertise your brand to the thousands of daily users of these websites.

2. Adopt Referrals

Customer referral is a good way to acquire new leads. Customers share about the things that they buy or the newest places they visit. Use the few people who have tried your product to spread the awareness message. You can award them for bringing business to you in the form of discount coupons. This reduces your marketing cost too. Big companies like PayPal, Dropbox, and Uber use this strategy which highlights its importance.

3. Create Guest Content

There is no denying the fact that content plays a key role in SEO. Creating extremely useful content and sharing it on other relevant blogs with a mention of your brand will expose your brand to new audiences. This is great for targeting online readers. If the content educates, consumers will recognize your brand.

4. Use Infographics

Some online searchers prefer images and graphics over blogs. Infographics are colorful displays that you can use to grab the attention of customers. The advantage is that infographics are shareable online. If your infographic has interesting credible statistics and nice looking images, it will go viral in no time bringing in a whole lot of new links.

5. Invest in PPC

Pay per click is a great advertising model you can use to get leads online. Even if the customers don’t click on the ads they will see your brand name in the search results. Reminding your customers of your brand again and again on different platforms is the way to get it known. All big brands invest in PPC.

6. Run Social Media Contests

Being on social media along is not enough. You have to be active and one way to do this is to run contests. Ask your followers to share specific links about your brand and offer a prize to people with the most likes, comments or shares.

7. Seek Local Partners

To get to the top, start from where you are. Form partnerships with local entrepreneurs (this is particularly useful for local businesses) and sponsor seminars, festivals and charity events. This is the key to establishing local dominance.

8. Publish on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a platform that you can use to establish your brand online fast. You can’t ignore this platform if you are in the business to business space. Build a blog with active followers. Post useful content regularly with unique headlines and use profile banners.

9. Hire Influencer Marketers

Influencers, people who are well known and can help significantly in promoting your brand.  Since they already have huge followings and their words are trusted, getting them recommend your brand will do wonders overnight. You can even form partnerships with them if they complement your business.

Bottom Line

SEO is crucial for brand awareness. There are so many ways directly or indirectly related to SEO that you can use to enhance your brand awareness. The above mentioned ways are not only sneaky but easy to implement – exactly what you need to take your brand to the next level.

Legal Branding

How Drug Charges Can Impact Your Personal Brand and Your Life

Possession of illegal drugs most often is a misdemeanour that can carry a jail term depending on the severity of the offence. Distribution of illegal drugs or possession with intent to distribute illicit drugs, on the other hand, is a serious criminal offence that can lead to long sentences behind bars. All in all, any type of drug-related charge has the potential to damage your reputation and affect your life negatively. Let us take a look at how drug charges may affect you and what to do about it.

Permanent criminal record

Drug-related offences can range from possession of marijuana to the sale and distribution of hard drugs like cocaine and heroin. Such offences, commonly referred to as Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS) offences, will certainly affect your life negatively. Remember, a criminal record after the charges will be available to anyone to see, including your potential employer.

Thus, the criminal record could show up anytime you are looking for a job, and the potential employer does a background check on you. That will probably reduce the potential employer faith in you and is likely to deny you the opportunity to get the job.

Job loss

Drug charges have the potential to render you jobless if you were working. Most employers will, quite often, ask you for a good conduct clearance certificate from the government authorities. If you have drug charges and a criminal record in turn, you will likely be denied the clearance certificate. This can potentially lead to the termination of your current employment that will impact you and the people depending on you

Revocation of your driver’s license

You can also lose your driver’s license owing to a drug-related charge as a mandatory suspension for such offences has become a standard legal outcome. The driver’s license suspension after you are charged with drug trafficking or possession can be indefinite or definite depending on the laws. With no driving license, you might also lose income or potential employment. You will certainly struggle to fend for yourself and your family.

Dented reputation

If you have been charged with a criminal offence, irrespective of the outcome, criminal allegations can lead people to question your reputation and also your credibility. The consequence of having your reputation at stake due to allegations can go well beyond your personal life. It can affect your professional relationship with others. Your personal brand is damaged, a feat that is difficult to reverse. Again, a damaged reputation will limit the capacity to earn an income. It can also lead to broken relationships with your family and relatives.

Wrap up

If you have been charged with a drug offence, you ought to know that this has the potential to impact your life negatively. You can have your career and source of income terminated. It can also deny you opportunities to get a job as potential employers are keen to look at your history. Worse even, criminal charges emanating from drug-related cases have the potential to damage your reputation and land you in jail! That is why it is essential to seek help from an attorney who can help fight the charges and help protect your rights.

Digital Branding

Branding Strategies That Can Propel Small Businesses

Branding may sound like a big word for small businesses. But believe it or not, the smaller ones need it as much as the biggies do. And if you are worried about the investment that a branding plan may require, you will be surprised to know that it is within reach. All that you need to do is start small, with smart strategies that work without burning a hole in your pocket. Identifying such strategies is not rocket science because there are many that have the potential to deliver big benefits even with small investment. Let us list some result-oriented and budget-friendly branding strategies that can propel your small business.

Define your brand

Even if you operate a small business, you should still define your brand clearly. Clarity about your mission and vision not only reinforces your existence but makes it easy to convey them to your audience. Showcase your presence in your brand messaging, story and tone of voice. Once you define these elements, make sure that you replicate them everywhere, on print ads, your website, product packaging and every other channel where you exist.

Build an online presence with a website

When it comes to branding in modern times, an omnichannel presence is a must. Just being visible on the billboards and ads will not help. Big or small, every business must have a website. A great design and good content that follows your tone of voice make up a winning website. At the same time, make sure that it has the same look and feel as your business has in its offline presence.

Give away merchandise

Giving away free goodies is the key to winning over your customers and extending your brand’s reach. Since you will have limited budgets, you would want quality merchandise that is affordable as well. You can check Snupit to find the best local corporate gift manufacturers. Come up with thoughtful and personalized gift ideas like coffee mugs, key chains, t-shirts and bags.

Capitalize on customer reviews

For small businesses, word-of-mouth is the smartest branding strategy they can capitalize on. Getting them is as easy as offering superlative products and great services. You can also incentivize them for sharing referrals and positive words for your business. The best thing about this strategy is that it has immense potential because people trust the word of real customers rather than brands.

Don’t miss out on social media

When it comes to finding inexpensive ways for promoting your business, social media is a channel you cannot afford to miss out on. The reach of these platforms is great, which gives you the opportunity to connect with a huge audience base. Moreover, this tactic requires minimal efforts because your followers can actually serve as catalysts to propagate and promote your brand. Building social communities and staying active is the key.

These small initiatives can go a long way in boosting your branding plan, all without having to spend heftily. It is all about understanding your audience, matching their expectations, and being where they are!

Legal Branding

A Guide on Separating The Properties During Divorce

It is quite common for couples seeking a divorce to separate their properties after the divorce is granted by the honorable court. However, deciding which property items to be allocated to which party is not an easy task. The court assumes its obligatory duty to separate the property based on value and ownership, between the two parties.

Primarily, the property is divided into two categories- community property and non-community property. It is quite important to understand the difference between these two categories before moving any further.

  • Community Property: The possessions acquired during the marriage are usually known as community property. Not only the possessions but the debts as well. Because these property acquisitions were to benefit both the spouse for a happy married life, both parties equally share the value after separation as well. For example, if a couple purchases a house after getting married, and before they mutually decided to dissolve the marriage, they both have equal rights to the house.
  • Non-Community Property: The property items and debts that individual parties own for their personal use and that too prior to the marriage or after the marriage is filed for dissolution in the court, are referred to as non-community property. For example, clothes personal loans, and any such expense which was made on the sole discretion of one party falls under this category.

Evidently, all the property items must be divided between the two parties after separation. Well, notably, this could either be consensual or by court-ordered division, depending on the case.

How does the court decide the property division?

There can be instances in mutual consensus when one of the parties may try to hide or sell a portion of the property to protect it from going to the other spouse. However, this is deemed unethical and illegal by the law. Therefore, as the experts from Ephraimlaw.com suggest court prefers interfering between the parties to resolve property disputes and equally distribute it among both parties. But the question still remains how does the court decide the separation.

Court Considers Liabilities

Primarily the court considers the liabilities on both parties. For example, if the husband has to pay alimony, are there any dependant kids or companions, and the living cost in general. Taking these factors into consideration, the court may decide what property items to be allocated to which party.

The need for the party

There are cases when one of the spouses has a more imminent need for one of the property items than the other. Generally, this happens in the case of the ownership of the house. It is usually offered to the party that needs it the most, or otherwise can be mutually agreed upon both parties for rightful possession after divorce.

Valuation of the property

Most importantly, when the court intervenes in the property matters, they do not offer the immovable property items randomly, but rather divide the value of the property among both the parties. For example, although the house may be offered to one party for possession, the other party may still receive fair compensation for their share in the value of the house. This is done with almost every immovable property item.

It is noteworthy that filing a divorce is not as easy as it may sound, but with appropriate consultation, it may easily be done. Particularly, the part where the property is to be divided between the spouses.

Personal Branding

Why Retention Marketing Is the Ultimate Growth Strategy

What keeps a business going is its solid base of consumers that are loyal to its products and services. Although the purpose of promoting your brand is to widen the reach of your business by acquiring new customers, focusing on the consumers that already patronize your brand is quite profitable too. This business strategy is called retention marketing, which gives special attention to an existing consumer base. 

What is Retention Marketing?

Growth in business is often perceived as the expansion of your audience. But the philosophy of retention marketing underlines the importance of building a solid connection with your existing base to make sure that you are consistently profiting off their patronage. 

While customer acquisition focuses on getting new people to buy your products, retention marketing makes sure that these new customers, together with your past buyers, come to you for their subsequent purchases. This is the reason why retention marketing is a very powerful business growth strategy for small and big companies alike.

To enhance your retention marketing plans, you can even dive into your existing audience’s intent in browsing the Internet. Referring to this search intent guide can help you understand what your consumers search for and why. By knowing what types of things they search related to your industry, you can effectively address their needs and solve their problems.

There are a lot of marketing strategies out there that will boost business growth, and retention marketing is just one of them. But it’s good for your brand to employ many different strategies to reap more benefits.

Powerful Retention Marketing Strategies to Catalyze Business Growth

Retention marketing is proven to reap profits and ROI, but not everyone’s familiar with this strategy. If you’re just hearing about retention marketing now, don’t fret! Here are a few retention marketing strategies to start you off on your journey to maximizing your loyal customer base.

1. Foster an open and approachable brand community

 

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One of the most basic customer retention strategies is to build a brand community for your consumers. A community is a place, virtual or physical, wherein people come together because of their shared experiences and beliefs.

Having a brand community gives business owners and consumers the platform to converse with like-minded people connected by loyalty to your brand. This sense of belonging to a community will strengthen their ties to your products, which will translate into repeated sales in the long run.

 

2. Regularly ask feedback from your customers

 

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Another retention marketing strategy is to collect feedback from customers. Whether in the form of formal surveys or through online threads, garnering comments from consumers can help you relate with them. 

This will help you perceive why they choose your brand over others, or why they don’t. Data from this feedback will augment your overall marketing campaign assessment. Asking your market what they like or dislike about your product is one way to know how to improve your service and retain customers.

 

3. Invest in corporate social responsibility activities

 

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Corporate social responsibility is not just about staying true to your brand’s values and helping the less fortunate. It’s also a compelling reason for your customers to remain loyal to you.

A study done at the University of Valencia in Spain discussed the effects of corporate social responsibility on consumer brand loyalty. The findings indicated that customers appreciated the brand’s social awareness and these brought on positive perceptions of the brand.

 

4. Offer premium subscriptions or memberships to encourage loyalty

 

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Another popular retention marketing strategy is to provide subscriptions or memberships to your brand. It’s a good way to update your consumer base about new products or services.  In addition to that, provide exclusive offers in their subscription or membership to encourage them to get these promotions. 

Subscriptions and memberships don’t have to be paid. “You can produce a newsletter that

regularly delivers news and trends to your subscribers. Make sure your content is original and relevant to your customers, so they’ll be likely to maintain the subscription to your updates and retain loyalty to your business”, says Marie Fincher, a Head on Content at TrustMyPaper.

 

5. Provide generous regular discounts

 

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What any consumer likes the most are some discounts, promotions, and free offers.. Reward your loyal customers by providing them with generous price slashes. You can use this tactic to conduct clearance sales or to sell products that don’t usually do well with the consumers.

You can give loyalty to member discounts or seasonal discounts, depending on the business goals you want to achieve alongside customer retention. Regularly update your customers about these promos to encourage them to buy from your business.

 

6. Set yourself apart from competitors

 

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Standing out in the industry is one way to maintain customer loyalty. This doesn’t need to mean that you take jabs at your competitors through advertising. You can set yourself apart from the competition just by producing content and products that stay true to your businesses’ values and vision.

You can also do this by extending efficient customer service to your consumers. Make sure that as much as possible you address their concerns and grievances. You will foster customer loyalty when you focus on improving your consumers’ experience with your products.

 

7. Maximize customer testimonials

 

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When you provide excellent customer service and your products are of high quality, you can expect positive feedback from customers. Whether in the form of product reviews or comments on your social media posts, these testimonials are invaluable.

Collect these testimonials together and publish them to let others know how much your consumers trust you. In the process, thank your customers for their kind feedback to strengthen your connection with them.

 

8. Build a learning environment for your consumers

 

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Customer retention can also be fostered around a learning environment. Provide your consumers with new and relevant content about your products and the industry. This will make you a valuable source of information for your customers.

You can also give them free how-tos and listicles to improve their skills. This will encourage them to patronize your content consistently, and in turn, purchase from your business instead of your competitors.

 

9. Take complaints seriously

 

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Aside from taking note of general feedback about your products, you should also be on the lookout for customer complaints. These are very important comments about your brand that should not be taken lightly. If you take these complaints seriously and address the senders immediately, you will showcase your business’s integrity.

You can avoid losing customers when you address complaints as soon as possible. Unsatisfied customers are likely to patronize another brand, so if you want to retain your audience, you should learn how to prioritize addressing their complaints instead of just underpinning the positive feedback you get.

 

10. Be transparent about mistakes

 

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Finally, customers stay loyal to brands that own up to their mistakes. When you fall short of customer expectations, say you delivered unsatisfactory products or responded to complaints late, you should not hesitate to apologize. 

You’ll lose customers if you choose to ignore your mistakes. Your customers will want to hold you accountable for failing to provide good service. If you fail to responsibly address these concerns, you risk losing them.

To effectively manage any retention marketing strategy, you should first study your audience thoroughly. You can start by using data-driven strategies to collate data about the people who always purchase from your business. Here, you’ll know who your most loyal customers are, which will help you narrow down your target for your retention strategies. 

Connecting with your consumers should not stop with just the sale of your products. In the same breath, maintaining consumers should not just be about having them buy products from you again and again. Retention marketing will bolster business growth only if it’s based on a deep understanding of your customers.

You should strive to build a connection with them that will eventually turn into consumer loyalty. Loyal customers are easier to retain, and they are also more likely to recommend your business to family and friends, increasing your loyal customer base.