Marketing 101

Today we go through some key areas of your marketing presence. Often times, small business owners ask, “Where do I even begin when it comes to marketing?” In this video we go through 6 key areas, Online Reputation, Listings, Social Media, SEO, Advertising, and Website.

Prospecting 101

Today we go through some tips to use referenceUSA. referenceUSA is a free database of businesses. You can slice and dice the settings to fit your ideal prospect. This is getting back to basics, when you don’t have a full prospect pipeline, and don’t want to spend any money. Try using referenceUSA to start your day off productive.

 

How’s your mindset?

Your mindset in business is just as important as anything else. If you don’t know how to deal with adversity or don’t have the right attitude to fix problems that come up, then you might be in trouble. Check out our video about how the ocean is alot like entrepreneurship.

5 Tips to Improve your Click-Through-Rate

Want to improve your click-through rate? Check our our Facebook Advertising Package!

Click-through rate is the percentage of people visiting a web page who access a hypertext link to a particular advertisement. This information is often tracked through your advertising or website medium and is a good way to track how effective your online advertising and marketing efforts are. There are various ways that you can increase your engagement and improve your click-through rate in order to create new leads and business opportunities.
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1. Use Call-to-Action buttons

People love interaction and offering a chance to interact with your ad or your brand creates a feeling of authenticity. A simple action such as pressing a button can make your audience feel as though they are interacting personally with you brand and calling them specifically to interact with your products or services.

2. Focus on Aesthetic

Appearance is everything in the world of marketing and advertising. Your audience will be more likely to interact with your brand if they are aesthetically drawn to your advertisement with a good-looking front ad and landing page.

3. Share Expert Advice

By sharing expert advice on your ad page, your brand demonstrates it’s knowledge in it;s domain of products/services. It can be assumed that a customer would rather use a credible, knowledgeable company rather than an amateur company with less experience.

4. Make an Announcement

By announcing some sort of new product or service, you create excitement surrounding your brand. Your customers will want to see what new products/services you have to offer if you use active language such as Behind the Scenes, As Seen On, Cost Effective, Enhanced, Never Before Seen or Proven Method.

5. Offer Benefits

Every customer wants the best products/services but they also want the best deals. Similar to making an announcement, using active language when offering benefits will make your brand more appealing. It will also make your customers feel “special” because the deals seem exclusive. Try using wording in your ads like Competitive Pricing, Effective, Economic, Mega Earnings, Mega Savings or Up to ___% off.

Get your own damn coffee! Tips to a Successful Internship Program

Millennials, get a really bad rep for being lazy, entitled and not wanting to pay their dues. They enter into the workforce thinking they will land their “dream job” at 22 years old, but the cold hard realty is that those “dream jobs” require 3-5 years of experience, which they’re supposed to already have fresh out of college. But how are they supposed to get said experience when they aren’t getting internships because they’re too young and inexperienced…and when they do get the internships, they’re not actually learning anything?

Understanding this fact, we at MaxExposure, have hired interns as young as Freshmen, to give them the real world experience nobody else will at 18 years old. We find that by hiring younger students, and offering them room to grow into their positions that they will stay with the company longer, which looks incredible on a resume!

Working with over 20 students over the past 7 years, I’ve complied a a list of 10 tips on how to have a successful program.

  1. Treat them how you would want to be treated – This goes with out saying, but so many interns are treated poorly. They get stuck doing the “grunt work” nobody wants to do which doesn’t actually give them any experience, except that they don’t want to be the low man on the totem pole. Now I’m not saying don’t give them basic assignments, but on top of the basic assignments, let them grow and learn and take on projects that they want to work on!
  2. Give them REAL assignments – Give them assignments that you would do, give them real tasks so that they can learn how to research, compile data, use software systems and or manage customer accounts.
  3. Let them fail – This one sounds weird right? Why on earth would you want your intern to fail. I don’t want them to fail, but I want them to learn to think on their own and problem solve. I throw my interns into the deep end having only a few weeks of swimming lessons under their belts because I want them to learn how to not only tread water, but swim confidently. In the real world, you have to do this, and you won’t always have the opportunity to hand off the phone. I supervise and always ensure our customers are well taken care of, but I let them make mistakes so that they can learn to fix them.
  4. Teach don’t preach – Teach them how to do things, teach them to use your systems, and do what you do, as their boss, they are watching your every move, so if you just “take care of it” they will never learn how to do it themselves.
  5. Let them talk to your customers! – This one was tough for me at first, because I didn’t want them to mess up, sound young (and inexperienced) or be asked a question they couldn’t answer. But they (the interns) will ALWAYS prove you wrong. As of the last 2 years, I’ve let our interns talk to customers on a regular basis and its been an incredible experience for everyone involved!
  6. Let them share their ideas! – Interns are FRESH BLOOD! they have new ideas, they see the world differently and they aren’t jaded by life yet. Let them give you ideas or come up with new plans. In my experience some of their ideas have been the best changes we’ve made!
  7. Let them grow! – Let them take on new assignments or roles. If they have the hunger to learn how to do something new, don’t force them to stick to their assigned role. Make sure it’s clear they have to get their assignments done, but let them take on more if they want to, it will only help them become a better employee and you become a better boss!
  8. PAY THEM! – Internships, especially in the marketing world, can traditionally be unpaid. This is fine, if they’re getting enough experience to justify the lack of money. But if your budget allows it, PAY YOUR INTERNS. When they are being paid for their work, they will take more responsibility, work harder and be more accountable for the role they are in.
  9. Hire their friends – Now this one can be tricky, because you want them to focus on their job, not social hour, but if you find a good intern, ask them to share open positions to their friends, more often than not they surround themselves with similar caliber people.
  10. Make work fun! – “I’m not a regular boss, I’m a cool boss” – you don’t have to be their BEST FRIEND, and you should always establish boundaries as they do work for you, but keeping the work place fun is key to them coming back! These kids don’t HAVE to work, they choose to work, and while yes they are getting resume experience, you want to show them that working in an office doesn’t have to be a scene out of “Office Space” it can be enjoyable and fun given the right dynamic.

 

 

5 Tips for getting your Business recognized on Facebook

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In the new age of social media, an overwhelming amount of individuals are receiving their primary source of both news and advertisements from social media platforms, in particular Facebook. This is why it is more important than ever to make sure that your company’s posts stick out. Here are 5 tips to getting your business recognized on Facebook.

Sharing Events

First, make sure that you are sharing events that your company is hosting. This is a simple way to promote events and encourage attendance. If a customer can RSVP on Facebook, they are more likely to keep that date in mind and actually show up to the event in question. Whether it be a networking event, a store opening, or a weekend sale, people love to share what they are up to and will likely jump at an opportunity to not only RSVP but also share with their friends and family. It wouldn’t hurt to follow up on your events as well, sharing photos or recaps, encouraging future attendance to other events you intend to host! Seeing all of the fun things going on or even recognizing friendly faces can be a great way to get new customer on board.

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Communicate with Your Audience

Social media really lends itself as a bridge between you and your customers—make sure you use it to interact with them! Whether a customer loves or hates your product, if they are sharing about it online, use this as an opportunity to reach out. While apologizing and offering solutions to individuals who have chosen to express disappointment with a product or service is a common and useful practice, also keep in mind the power of thanking loyal customers who speak highly of you. Customers and their friends and family get a chance to see how much you truly care about their experiences. Don’t have the time to scroll through your media platforms looking for feedback? Hiring a third party social media management company to sift through all of your platforms for you can save you a lot of time (and stress!). Max Exposure’s MaxExposure Essentials – Basic package includes monitoring of a variety of platforms where feedback will be carefully and professionally responded to.

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Paid Advertisements

Using ads on Facebook can be an incredibly powerful tool. Facebook works to only show your advertisements to those who are already potential customers, ensuring you get the most out of your investment. There are also a wide variety of advertisement styles to choose from, so be sure to pick one that emphasizes the key aspects of your company! A news station may benefit from a photo ad with a compelling headline, while an energetic new startup might want to lead with a video advertisement to show potential customers who they are. Try getting customers to recognize the key aspects you are trying to convey with consistency in your brand’s image across advertisements. Not Facebook savvy? Hiring a third party social media management company can simplify the process. Max Exposure offers the Facebook Advertising – Level 1package—perfect for those who want to utilize all of Facebook’s benefits without necessarily knowing how they work, or simply wanting to ensure that you are using them to their fullest potential!

Post News Updates

Posting articles that relate to your company and/or industry can be a great tool for keeping your audience engaged. Give your customers a place to keep up to date on big news and recent trends, that way when you throw in an event or advertisement, they are more likely to actually give it a read. Again, Facebook is becoming a major news outlet for some and giving a voice to your particular industry could give you a real advantage.

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Interact With Other Businesses

Lastly, interact with other companies on Facebook whenever you see fit! Liking and/or commenting on the posts of others in your industry can be a great way to become more visible to those around you. But don’t stop there—make sure to keep in mind those key demographics you’re aiming to target and look to other companies, even outside of your industry, that they may be interested in. It can never hurt to get your name out there next to other thriving businesses. The more customers start to see your name, the more they will start to recognize it, so targeting your potential/likely customers’ companies is a sure-fire way to gain the recognition you’ve been looking for. Also, look to companies who already know your name, like the ones you work with. Companies who know and work with you are more likely to interact with you, ensuring to their customers that you are trustworthy.

The Fears of a Boss Babe and the Journey to Success!

When I agreed to take on an upper level management role in my father’s company, there was the desire to jump right in and get started, being a TOTAL boss at 22; but there was also an anxiousness in taking on a role I was completely inexperienced with. I quickly went from a newly graduated college student, to an upper level management position. I went from being a college student, to training and teaching college students all within a matter of 2 years. I also struggled to find my voice, not coming off as too much of a b*tch, but standing firm and getting my point across. I never had that chance to “dip my toes in the water” as some might say. I cannonballed straight into that water, and started swimming without anytime to catch my breath!!

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Relying on my own instincts and skills, as well as trusting that my dad knew what he was doing in hiring me, I took the job and started working almost immediately. Who knew that this job I was pretty anxious of going into, would result in me growing into the inspired, hardworking, self motivated and confident boss I am today. I couldn’t possibly list everything I’ve learned throughout the past nearly 7 years, but there are 5 essential things I’ve learned that have helped develop me into the successful businesswoman I am today…

 

If you’re gonna cannonball, don’t hesitate…

pexels-photo-618550.jpegOne of the most difficult things to overcome from moving so quickly from college student to boss, is the confidence to hold true to your convictions. This doesn’t just apply to entrepreneurs, or upper level management, but any sector of your business. No matter what department you are in, or what role you have, you are always going to be faced with people who do not think you know as much as they do. It is your responsibility to stand up for your ideas, your intelligence and make them listen. At 22 this was immensely difficult as I didn’t trust myself as much as I should have and felt the need to over compensate by making myself sound tougher, which in turn made me sound rude, condescending, and b*tchy.

You will never feel like a worthy contributor, and they will never see you as one, unless you show them you are. No matter how scared you might be to be wrong, slap on your best poker face, look them in the eye, and give them your opinion. If you’re going to do the job, do it to the best of your abilities.

 

Take the advice and learn from it

No matter what tier of the business you are in, mistakes are inevitable, and learning from them is the only way you will grow. Although you do need to have confidence in your ideas and intelligence, you need to make the decision that is best for the company.

No matter how hard it might be to admit to the new coworker that he or she is right and you think their idea is better, doing so will not only help your company, but make you a better business person. Keeping track of and reminding yourself of your main purpose and motivation in working for that business will increase your value to the company, even if it does mean you don’t move forward with your suggestion. Learning how to best manage people and communicate with customers is something my father and I still work on to this day, taking his advice & constructive criticism on best ways to communicate isn’t always easy though. I have definitely fallen on my face several times, and absolutely stuck my foot in my mouth, but those lessons are the ones I’ve learned the most from.

 

Know your limits

pexels-photo-313690.jpegApproaching any new job, it’s exciting, scary and anxiety provoking all at the same time.  Starting my career as a top level manager, I wanted to do the best I could possibly do, and I soon realized it is extremely easy to get ahead of yourself, especially when you are 22 and think you can do it all. Doing higher quality work is better than doing increased quantity of work. Everyone has their limits, and as you continue your job, you will gradually progress and become more accustomed and comfortable with your responsibilities.

Knowing your limits and knowing when and how to remind yourself to slow down is essential in maintaining high quality work and improving in your job. Make a list of the needed tasks each day of work, complete those accurately and thoroughly, and as you start to have more and more extra time, you can begin to add in those extra tasks. Burning out, when you are an integral part of running your company’s daily activities isn’t an option, so it’s important to stay organized and know when to ask for help.

 

It takes time

Going into my job, I wanted to automatically be an amazing boss and impress my dad and my other coworkers. I came into work ready to learn, and eager to improve.  I have undoubtedly improved by leaps and bounds from where I was when I first began at this company, but I am STILL learning and growing. I could never have imagined I would be where I am today and accomplish all I have accomplished this quickly. Looking back to the first year I started however, I did have doubts as to how much and how quickly I would grow to be able to manage on my own, without my dad holding my hand every step of the way.

Day to day, it can be hard to see the bigger picture, especially when you’re focused in the trenches, but every experience helps you become a stronger leader. Getting to that point where you can look back at all of the progress you’ve made, takes time. No one walks into a new job and is automatically great at it. Even when you get great at one job, you maybe get promoted to a higher level job, and have to start all over again learning that position. Accepting the time that it takes to slowly improve and grow in your job is essential to succeeding in it.

 

Never lose sight of the person you intended to be

pexels-photo-450271.jpegThis is might be the most important suggestion I can give you. If you strive to grow, accomplish great things, increase your knowledge and become a true boss, you cannot lose sight of yourself, or who you are working to be. Its taken me nearly 7 years to get to a point where I am truly comfortable in my skin as a “Boss Babe”, but I am nowhere near the finish line. I still have so much to learn, and I continue to be thrown curve balls as my position evolves, but what I do know is who I am and that I am absolutely where I am meant to be.

 

Life Experiences & Dictation by Aly Grushkin

Copy written by Alli Burns

Social Media and the Job Search

Three years ago during my college freshman orientation one of the very first seminars I attended was “How to Clean Up Your Social Media.” I attend Bentley University, which is a business school, and from the very first day we stepped on campus, the advisors and faculty ingrained in our heads the importance of professionally displaying ourselves on the internet. Social media management is everywhere at my school. Everyone is required to take a class dedicated to learning how to make a perfect LinkedIn profile, and even my sorority has strict guidelines and a contract we must sign that dictates what is considered appropriate to post.

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Pause Before You Post on Social Media

In my last three and a half years at college, knowing what to post and what not to post almost comes second nature to me. However, I never really understood the importance until I began applying for summer internships, and more recently, a full-time job post-graduation. A recent study showed that 70 percent of employers screen job applicants using their social media, so it is important now more than ever before to check up on all of your online personas before you send in your resume to your dream job (Brooks, 2017).

 

pexels-photo-935756.jpegEven if you think your account is completely private, there are still ways to see the content you post. The easiest thing is to just pause before you post to ensure that everything you’re about to share, like, tweet, or comment is tasteful and appropriate. Someone once taught me that if you wouldn’t want your grandmother to see it, then don’t post it at all. I still follow those guidelines every day.

 

Social Media Scanning is not Always Out to Get You

Before you panic and delete every form of social media you have, know that there are times your platforms can actually help you out rather than hurt you. When an employer is screening an applicant, they are not necessarily looking at your profiles to “catch” you. Many of the times your pictures or statuses can confirm something you already spoke to them about or support your professional qualities. For instance, if your resume says you dedicate several hours a week to volunteering at your local pet shelter and your Instagram is filled with adorable puppies, then the employer will remember that and know the information you gave them is valid.

 

pexels-photo-219003.jpegEmployers also use social media to see what other people are posting about you too. This can be beneficial since most things that are shared online about someone else are positive. However, sometimes friends can post things that were meant as jokes but could be construed as inappropriate or unprofessional. Next time you’re about to post the most embarrassing selfies you have of your friend on her Facebook wall for her birthday, maybe think twice about it.

 

By taking the extra second to think about what you are about to upload before you hit the “share” button you will see that it can make a huge difference, and employers will take notice. Not only will you show you have great communication skills and creativity, but you will also show employers you know how to professionally portray yourself to others. Social Media is often times your first impression to many people and you always want to put your best foot forward.

 

Social Media Screening Works Both Ways

pexels-photo-515169.jpegOne thing I did take away from my job search experience is not only how important your own social media accounts are, but also how important social media platforms are for the company you are applying to. One of the first things I do when I hear about a company or am interested in applying to a job is look at the business’ Facebook and Instagram pages. These, along with many other platforms, give myself and other candidates a look into the company that may be different from what they have on their website.

 

Checking out the company’s social media platforms can also give you a feel for their company culture. Websites are usually more formal and informative, but social media platforms like Twitter or Instagram can share more fun or engaging content showing you an inside peek at everyday work life. You may even earn extra brownie points during an interview if you bring up something that they shared on Facebook or retweeted on Twitter!

 

If your business needs a little extra boost managing your social media platforms….

MaxExposure Social Media can help! Check out our Reputation Management package, which has our team of experts manage your reviews, social media activity, and overall online presence. If you are interested in this or would like to learn more about our other services please feel free to contact us!

 

Resources:

Brooks, Chad. “Keep It Clean: Social Media Screenings Gain in Popularity.” Business News Daily, 16 June 2017, https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/2377-social-media-hiring.html.

How to Make your Job More Enjoyable

In today’s day and age, people are constantly complaining about their job, whether it be the workload, their colleagues, or their over demanding boss. Even if you love what you do, there are so many other factors coming into play that skew your level of enjoyment in your day to day at work.
“My boss was being so annoying today.”
“I’ve had so much work lately, I had to stay two hours later at the office last night.”
“I can’t stand the people in my department! They’re so under-qualified.”

There is no way of knowing what challenges you are going to encounter throughout your work week. Although these challenges or conflicts add to your stress and overall, tend to lead to a less enjoyable work week, there are things you can do to prevent that stress or frustration from affecting how much you enjoy your job. Below are 5 tips on how to improve your overall enjoyment at your job..
      1. Smile every morning
cropped-cropped-cropped-adobestock_57792388.jpegThis one sounds super cliche, but smiling every morning when you wake up, when you get in your car to go to work, and when you walk into the office, makes a huge difference in your work attitude. Smiling is a natural way of making you feel more relaxed and calm, and lowers your stress levels. You will generally feel much happier throughout the day and have a more positive outlook on your job by starting every morning with a smile.
2. Maintain a healthy lifestyle
We all know work can get pretty demanding and exhausting. We all have those days when we tell ourselves all day that we’re going to go to the gym after work, no matter how tired we are, no matter how much we want to crack open the leftover lasagna from last night, and then, when it comes time, you put those gym clothes on, and drive straight home to the lasagna (gym clothes are definitely more accommodating to the post-work binge eat). Although you feel tired at the end of the day, the more and more you skip the gym, and the more you choose lasagna as opposed to some healthy greens, the more tired you are going to feel. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle; eating healthy, working out, and staying hydrated, will not only make you feel better both physically and mentally, but will make you view your work as part of your lifestyle as opposed to something that interferes with your lifestyle. This will allow you to enjoy your work more, rather than resent working.
3. Decorate your workstation
Woman Working. Work space Concept, Woman Working Home Office Start up Ideas ConceptEveryone has a different office setup depending on how the company organizes its employees and what type of office space is used. Decorating your office or desk can make such a big difference in the overall atmosphere of your work space. Put up pictures of people or things that make you happy and make you smile. I was recently struggling to keep up a positive attitude with work, so I changed my phone background to a picture of my cousin’s new baby laughing. Although I received multiple accusations of having a child and not telling anyone (my boyfriend begged me to change my background), the picture made me smile and improved my overall attitude throughout the day.
4. Strengthen office network
The people you work with can vastly affect your overall happiness at your job. Although there are the occasional employee conflicts or disagreements, getting to know your coworkers outside of the office will improve your communication and lessen the conflict in the office. Going on employee outings on the weekends such as, going out to lunch, going to see a movie, getting coffee, holding an employee dinner, or even going out to a bar together, can greatly improve your relationship with your coworkers and strengthen communication both in and out of work. These experiences will also give you something to talk and laugh about with your employees, lessening the boring small talk and improving your connections with people, overall making work more appealing and enjoyable.
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   5. Bring Yourself to your Job Everyday
This probably makes zero sense to you as of right now but let me explain. We go to work everyday, but would you say that you bring not only your work talents, but your personality to work everyday? Do you often find that you act extremely different, maybe rather boring, at work compared to how you act outside of work? I am sure you are great at what you do, and having the talents required for your specific job is extremely important. However, bringing your personality into the workplace cannot only increase your own personal happiness, but the happiness of your coworkers as well, and can even improve job performance. Bringing your personality with you to work allows you to feel more comfortable with your colleagues, and improves your relationship and connections with employees, and even clients. Job talent and personality combined leads to improved work ethic and performance, and can even lead to job promotions as well.