Category Archives: Articles

eCommerce Giants And Their Social Media Partners

This article below was written by our friends at 16best.net.

With the rise of social media, all consumers have been adapting to the social networking platforms. They have engaged in micro-blogging, promoting content, downloading applications for their electronic devices and, overall, trying to enhance their social lives.

But beyond just using social media platforms for updating their relationship status, watching and sharing funny cat videos with their friends and family, all of the users have also found that there is another possibility when it comes to using the social media networks.

This has been the focus on an individual level.

At the organizational level, many companies haven’t quite adapted to the latest trends of using social media to promote their products and their content and the nearly infinite options that arise when it comes to marketing. And it’s incredibly easy to create something and then spread it all over the world, thanks to social media.

Either way, nowadays, spending on social media only makes up a small fraction of the budget in any business marketing strategy. According to recent research, on average, only 9% of the total companies’ budget was spent on social media. However, this number is set to increase to around 22% in just the next five years.

It’s obvious that sellers have been recognizing the power of social media and their ability to connect with their audiences. Seeing how the various social media platforms are an essential part of our daily lives, the companies had to adapt. We use social media to quickly find new information, to communicate, and more recently and more increasingly, for shopping.

According to recent studies, people around the world spend a total of over 110 billion minutes per day on social media platforms. And the top platform here is Facebook, shortly followed by YouTube.

We see every day how much impact these web-based platforms have on the economy, and of course, on the digital economy. Needless to say, in these times of digital economy, trying to set up a store and waiting for the customers to arrive is not enough anymore. Instead, all these companies have been finding new and creative ways to engage with their customers, to build relationships and create big and small communities. And the main difference has been social commerce.

With social commerce, people have increasingly seen features like user recommendations, referrals, customer ratings and reviews, and, perhaps most importantly, social shopping tools. All of these features make for a safe environment where anyone can contribute thanks to referral and positive and negative feedback and testimonials.

This is something that the eCommerce giants also noticed, which is why they started getting integrated with social media platforms and crossing a bridge. Thanks to its massive reach, we’ve seen eBay discount codes and Amazon listings pop up on our Facebook feeds.

According to a poll from the late last year, around 47.7% of users made their most recent purchase from this social media giant, which is far more than any other platform. Instagram ranked a distant second, and then there was Pinterest and the rest of the platforms.

Right now, you can take your phone and shop through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and even Tumblr, YouTube and LinkedIn. Or if you’re on the other end of the spectrum, you can also use Amazon’s new social media platform Spark and promote your content there. You can connect to other users who share stories and ideas and grow your business even more.

If you’re interested in learning more about the crossover from eCommerce to social media and vice versa, feel free to take a look at the infographic below.

Should a gift to my client have our company logo?

This article below was written by our friends at PointFast. PointFast helps Sales professionals seize their emails by tracking emails, links and file attachments.

Gift giving serves a vital purpose in the business world. So whether it’s Christmas, a big launch celebration, a promotion, or even a client’s birthday, there’s a reason to give. There’s a lot to consider in this gift-giving exercise. Who should we give to? What do we give? How should we give it?

For this post, I want to explore a more subtle, but important topic: should our client gift contain our company’s logo?

Why We Give
Let’s take a step back and remind ourselves of the ultimate goal: to drive revenue. Revenue comes from customers and customers buy (to a good extent) from trusted relationships.

So gift-giving to the client is the opportune chance to build the relationship, to show that we care. After all, without the relationship, there’s really not much left over.

Let’s be clear: if we think that we’re giving purely out of the goodness of our heart—then we should really be investing our time and money to a charity. Giving a thoughtful gift to a client is not charity work.

Give with Logo or Not?
Talk to anyone in marketing and they would instinctively say that any corporate gift should contain the company’s logo. This is really inferior thinking. Moreover, it’s really selfish.

Why? Because if our goal is to build on the personal relationship–not our corporate relationship–then we should not tie the gift with our company logo. We want to give with the perception that we want nothing else in return.

Giving a gift with our logo makes the gift only a half-present. We want the client to take the gift so that we can outlandishly remind them that we exist.

We don’t have to stoop so low. We in sales should take the high-road.

Imagine for a minute we gave the client a nice, titanium fidget spinner to help them destress. I’d prefer the client’s friend or colleague to ask, “Hey, that’s a cool stress reliever. Where did you get it?” than for that client to outright see my company logo. Why? Because then it allows the client—the person whom I want to build a relationship—to acknowledge me and my company for the gift. Acknowledgment is the first sign of appreciation.

Give for the Sake of the Relationship
It’s easy to just sit back and forget about giving. But I’d encourage you to give a simple gift with the goal of fostering the relationship. Just make sure not to stamp the company logo on it!

What You Need To Accept Credit Cards Checklist

The main appeal of credit and debit cards is their accessibility. Rather than having to carry a wad of cash that might not cover your purchases, a card allows you to carry a single piece of plastic — or numerous, depending on your shopping habits. Indeed, the number of people in the United States who primarily use cash for their everyday purchases has dropped to under 25 percent of the population, and that number continues to decline. Using a card to make purchases is simply more convenient for the consumer. Unfortunately, however, that comes at the merchant’s expense.

Retailers and other merchants need to know how to navigate the often-confusing ecosystem of accepting credit and debit cards. Otherwise, they stand to miss out on the business of customers who exclusively carry cards or have a small amount of cash on hand. At the same time, those merchants need to be aware of their security and legal requirements that are part and parcel of accepting card payments. As if all of that weren’t complicated enough, the advents of online and mobile payment options have their own individual requirements and infrastructures. Whether you’re a small business or a large one, accepting credit and debit card payments is nowhere near as simple as it is for a customer to make them.

Yet, accepting credit and debit card payments is a requirement for business of any type today. Businesses that don’t accept these types of payments run the risk of distancing customers who will feel inconvenienced. Any type of inconvenience has the potential to push consumers into finding other options, so there’s no excuse for businesses to avoid accepting credit and debit card payments. Even though the process of setting up the infrastructure necessary to accept these payments can be troublesome and complicated, some preparation can make all the difference.

Making processes simpler for your customers often means making things a little more difficult for yourself, but isn’t that what customer service is all about? By following the checklist from BluePay below, businesses can prepare themselves to accept credit and debit card payments if they don’t already. The advice covered in this guide can help businesses avoid many of the most common frustrations that come with establishing the framework needed to become part of the credit and debit card ecosystem.

Checklist Source: credit card processing company Bluepay

Ideas For Employee Recognition

Sales organizations use a lot of tricks to motivate their sales professionals. However, although most companies have employee recognition programs in place, too many of them are simply based on tenure. That means, even the most successful salesperson only receives kudos from the company whenever the calendar shows another five or 10 years has passed. This approach can work, but it’s also not the most effective way to show appreciation for a high-performing sales professional. Building an employee recognition program that responds to the significant contributions salespeople make on a regular basis has been shown to be much more successful at motivating employees and keeping them engaged. By praising the individual’s performance rather than marking milestones, employees feel as though the company truly pays attention to what they do and appreciates their efforts. Naturally, a salesperson who has been with the company for 20 years is an obvious asset. Though by honoring that employee only every five years, the company misses the opportunity to reward and motivate that salesperson more frequently.

Although many companies might think about implementing a more active employee recognition program and reel at the potential costs, the truth is such a program can be easier and cheaper to implement than they may believe. There are many techniques companies can use for employee recognition programs that don’t have to cost a lot of money or require significant efforts. Even these small gestures, when properly applied, can have a substantial impact on an employee’s engagement; communicating to that employee that his or her contributions to the company’s success have not gone unnoticed.

For example, a basic “wall of fame” concept enables managers to applaud individual performances in a public setting. A points-based system allows employees to cash in points they earn for perks such as time off or gift cards. Even something as simple as a “thank you” note left at an employee’s workstation can be a powerful reminder that what he or she does every day matters to the organization. There are countless other ideas that can be used to build a successful employee recognition program. The following guide lists many of them. Take a look and see if any of these ideas might work well for your employees.

20 Creative (And Affordable) Ideas For Employee Recognition created by Point Recognition

Articles by Brian Farrell

Brian Farrell previously wrote for Search Engine People’s blog. Topics range from social selling and marketing to lead generation, SEO and more. The complete list of published articles are listed below.

1/1/16
How To Use Social Selling In Each Stage Of The Buying Process
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/16015-social-selling-stages.html

9/21/15
4 Steps To Effective Social Selling On Linkedin
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/15091-social-selling.html

5/15/2015
How To Get Marketing And Sales Funnels To Work Together
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/150550955-marketing-sales-funnel.html

2/3/2015
How To Tailor Copy To Customers In Different Stages Of The Buying Cycle
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/150221142-buying-cycle-content.html

12/24/2014
How to Feed Your Sales Funnel with Social Media
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/14123925-social-feed-sales-funnel.html

7/23/2014
Content Marketing as a Key Element of Consultative Selling
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/925-content-consultative-selling.html

5/23/2014
7 Ways To Use Social Media In The Selling Process
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/125-social-media-selling-process.html

3/21/2014
The 5 Core Steps to Consultative Selling
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/125-consultative-selling-core-steps.html

2/17/2014
Where and How to Keep Relationship Data
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/125-relationship-data.html

11/21/2013
SEO Advice from Questionable Blog Comments
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/seo-advice-from-questionable-blog-comments.html

7/31/2013
How Consultative Selling And Inbound Marketing Work Great Together
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/how-consultative-selling-and-inbound-marketing-work-great-together.html

6/3/2013
5 Ways to Develop Leads Beyond the eBook
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/5-ways-to-develop-leads-beyond-the-ebook.html

5/7/2013
How To Manage Your Sales Funnel With Twitter
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/how-to-manage-your-sales-funnel-with-twitter.html

3/5/2013
How To Apply One Of The Most Popular Selling Techniques Online: Consultative Selling
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/consultative-selling.html

1/9/2013
Common Name Personal Branding
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/common-name-personal-branding.html

10/30/2012
How to set-up your Google+ Local page
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/common-name-personal-branding.html

7/27/2012
Improve SERP Rankings with Long Tail Keywords
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/improve-serp-rankings-with-long-tail-keywords.html

5/30/2012
5 Reasons why you should outsource your PPC
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/why-outsource-ppc.html

4/16/2012
How To Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/linkedin-optimization.html

1/25/2012
Social Media is Like Fly Fishing
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/social-media-fly-fishing.html

11/25/2011
Simple Steps To Improve Local Search Marketing
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/local-seo-steps.html

10/12/2011
Marketing your business during a prolonged economic decline
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/recession-marketing.html

8/9/2011
Pay to Play: Why PPC is Critical for SMB Marketing
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/pay-to-play.html

6/15/2011
Content Marketing Strategies: Comment or Create?
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/comment-or-blog.html

4/14/2011
Social referrals – the original inbound marketing strategy
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/social-wom.html

3/3/2011
The Emotional Use of Colors on Your Website
http://www.searchenginepeople.com/blog/color-emotion-meaning.html