Last week we were able to broadcast an awesome webinar, 5 Ways to Amp Up Your Social Media Strategy in 2015. We had so many registrants that we decided to do the broadcast again two days later to help those that weren’t able to see it the first time. In all, over 1300 people registered for the webinar! For those who missed it, or who would like to watch it again, we’ve decided to post the recording of the webinar right here on our blog!
This webinar is all about accelerating your business with a strong social media strategy. Almost everybody is on social media. As a result, every business can reach more customers and create more business by implementing a thought-out social media campaign. In this webinar learn more about these social media principles:
- Broaden your social media scope
- Post more frequently
- Repurpose content across all platforms
- Display ads on social media
- Holding promotions and contests
Learning how to implement a social media strategy will help build your brand and earn more business.
Here’s the recording:
If you have more questions or concerns, feel free to contact us!
Mobile technology seems to be in the news quite a bit today. Instagram, a social photosharing, site was acquired by Facebook. AisleBuyer, a line-busting mobile commerce application, was acquired by Intuit. Best Buy is looking at mobile strategies to combat the phenomenon of “showrooming,” in which consumers come to the retail store to look at the product, then make the purchase from Amazon, or eBay or another eCommerce site. Mobile commerce, mobile payments, mobile social. It seems that mobile is everywhere. What does that mean for merchants? What should merchants be looking for in the mobile revolution?
Something that often gets overlooked with the introduction of a new technology is that of strategy. Merchants often rush to the new technology that promises convenience, increased conversion, and cool factor. But the question that we should be asking is, “Why?” Does mobile even make sense for me? Consider a traditional, independent bookstore. They have a storefront and inventory. They get foot-traffic and have a traditional Point of Sale (POS) system that is integrated into their inventory management system. What would a mobile acceptance channel add to them? On the other side of that coin, consider a crafter or a locksmith. Often, these professionals operate in the field – at craft fairs or in parking lots. They have traditionally accepted cash or checks. Recently they’ve begun to use either a “knucklebuster” or an IVR system to accept payment from debit or credit cards. For them, mobile payment acceptance makes sense – they can increase their conversion rate (and sometimes their average ticket size), cut back on “bad” transactions with real-time authorization, and add convenience for themselves and their clients.
Another factor that must be considered is security. Just because a payment is mobile, that doesn’t mean that security goes by the wayside. In fact, some (including myself) may argue that security becomes more important. Encrypted card readers are just one layer, albeit a very important layer, of protection for the payment process. Choosing a service provider with a demonstrated history of compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard is another important step in protecting mobile payments.
Mobile payments are an exciting innovation in the payments world. They offer significant advantage, but as with any tool, they must be managed appropriately in order to recognize the maximum benefit.
Many people today that consider themselves to be internet savvy might believe that they are too clever to fall for an online scam. They know that they should not respond to pleas for help from Nigerian princes that need to move furniture for their long-deceased, well-meaning philanthropist great uncle. They know that any job posting that requires respondents to send their bank routing information is likely not legitimate. They know that a bank will never send an email asking their account holders to “verify their passwords” by clicking on a link. But do they know that they shouldn’t click on that link that promises a sneak peak of the iPhone 5?
According to a recent survey by the Ponemon Institute (in collaboration with PC Tools), the answer is “no.” The temptation is just too much, even for seemingly savvy internet users. “Almost half (47%) of US respondents identified an online survey with a prize as either a scam or an attempt to get you to buy something later. However, when presented with the test scenarios, more than half (55%) of US respondents indicated they would be likely to provide their personal information to redeem a prize after completing an online survey,” said Richard Clooke, Online Security Expert, PC Tools.
A recent article on CNet emphasizes point made by the survey. Last spring, a number of Facebook users were scammed by a link that offered a look at the new iPhone 5. According to Elinor Mills, the author of the article, “People who normally ignore all the other scams involving purported free software or naked celebrity photos clicked that fake news link and even completed a captcha on a second site, which reposted the scam to their own Facebook stream. That probably says more about how fanatical people are about Apple products than anything else. But it did raise the question–what does it take to lure someone to click on something that seems fishy?” It would certainly appear that the old cliche “everyone has their price” is analogous to this situation. If scammers can target the right prey with the right bait, people seem to disregard their concerns about fraud. Target techies and Jobs-o-philes with a promised look at a future Apple product and they’ll likely click away.
The moral of the story – “think before you click.” Many people associate internet scams with malware and Trojans, but sometimes scammers are looking for more specific information about users so that they can launch more targeted and sophisticated attacks later on. For example, in the scam listed above, scammers could perhaps garner email addresses. Those addresses could then be used in phishing attacks later on to get more sensitive data from individuals. It’s important to remember not to let your guard down when it comes to cyberscams.
As information sharing and technology are updated at an increasingly rapid pace, it is critical to maintain a competitive edge by keeping customers informed of new solutions to their problems.
When rolling out new services or products, it is important to have a clear, straightforward message that can be shared quickly on what the benefits of your new services are. Some of the more popular and important ways to stay in touch with your customers are through social media, blogs, newsletters, email and your website. These tools can help a company reach many people more quickly and cost effectively than traditional marketing channels.
These marketing methods allow you to communicate effectively with a broad customer demographic in the way they choose to receive information. In addition, they provide an opportunity for you to hear back from your customers quickly and candidly what they think about your products and services. In fact, many new product developments, improvements and advancements are a result of customer feedback or requests for a certain item or service.
ProPay employs many of these resources to communicate to our customers what is new, what is coming and what solutions you may not already be using. Checking our site, blog and subscribing to our newsletter are great ways to stay informed on what’s happening in credit card processing. In addition, you may want to make sure you’re subscribed to receive updates and promotions via email, including our weekly 60 second tip. You can edit your preferences by logging into your account and going to ‘my account’ then clicking on ‘my profile’ and then ‘change options’.
Stay tuned for on-going updates on new products and services from ProPay.
We have heard a lot lately about consumers tightening purse strings, saving more and spending less. This means more competition for each dollar. While finding new customers is important, you may find significant value in retaining those you already have. Promotions and price cuts erode profitability, so here are some other ways to enhance the customer experience and entice customers back.
Let customers know their business is appreciated and you would like to see them again. An easy way to do this is through a small business email marketing service. Keep the communication brief, relevant and not too frequent. You might also send a physical card to announce an event or a hand-written note to tell a customer thank you.
Open a dialogue with your customers. Let them know you are listening and that their feedback is important. In his recent book, The Thank You Economy, Gary Vaynerchuk argues that getting involved in the social media discussion in particular with your customers is critical to a business’s success. It allows a business to discover ways to improve and builds relationships, which drives customer loyalty.
Finding ways to give more benefits without cutting costs can give you an edge on the competition. Some insurance companies provide time-based extra benefits for loyal customers, making them think twice about switching. Likewise, some credit card companies can charge higher fees because of the extra benefits they offer cardholders.
Happy employees help make happy customers. Do you know people who will drive past several other mechanic shops to go to the one they like because the service is outstanding and the experience enjoyable? Creating trust and having above-average customer service keeps people coming back and can generate a healthy stream of referrals.
Make Buying Easy.
Encouraging repeat business may be as simple as offering gift cards, bounce back coupons, or scheduling the next appointment right away. You might consider securely storing their payment information so they don’t have to provide it next time. Enabling your website to accept payments allows your customers to buy whenever they want. If it fits your business, offering a monthly subscription or auto-ship makes repeat buying a breeze.