Category Archives: Marketing Strategy

Social media network apps.

Social Media How-To: What Your Business Needs to Succeed

Feel like your business’s social media game needs some work? While every business is different and should have a social game plan as unique as its products and services, there are a handful of tips that every business owner can do to boost their social efforts.

Notes and doodles in notebook.

Strategy 

Having a plan in place to stay active and relevant is crucial to the long-term success of your business’s social media efforts. Build your social marketing strategy with this in mind and tailor your day-to-day social activity accordingly.

Looking to build your audience? Promote content to people in your target market. Trying to connect more with your existing customers? Pump up your engaging posts, ask for testimonials, or create promotional offers and contests.

 

Woman writing in notebook.

Content 

The content you choose to share on your social media platforms is vital to the effectiveness of your marketing plan. You have to find the balance between engaging your audience, sharing informative or helpful resources, and promoting your business.

Each business and its social pages will be different and require unique content strategies to appeal to their specific audience, but a good rule of thumb to follow is the 50-30-20 rule:

  • 50%: Engaging
  • 30%: Informative
  • 20%: Promotion

 

Thumbs-up and thumbs-down icons.

Feedback 

Pay close attention to what your followers have to say. These people make up your audience, and listening to their questions, suggestions, frustrations and other feedback can be used to improve your business and its social media strategy. Learn from this information and provide them more of what they want – and fix any potential issues they may be experiencing with your products or services.

An extremely important thing to remember when reviewing and replying to customer feedback is to always stay positive and helpful. Read these tips for dealing with negative social media posts or other feedback in a professional way.

 

Illustration of megaphone.

Boosted Posts

To help improve your reach and expand your targeting efforts on social media, try boosting posts on some of your networks. Even a budget of $10 or $20 can help to dramatically increase the number of people that see your boosted post and broaden your audience.

Improve results over time by reviewing the analytics provided to you at the end of your promotional timeline to see how well it performed and test the effectiveness of different types of posts.

 

Handshake.

Professionals

Feel like you don’t have the time to dedicate to your social media strategy? Get a helping hand to cover the work load so you can have more time to focus on your business. At Stray Media Group, we offer flexible social media marketing plans that fit the unique needs and goals of our clients. Give us a call to learn more about our social media services today.

Barista at coffee shop handing male customer cup of coffee.

3 Keys to Marketing for Your Audience

You know your business like the back of your hand, but does the same go for your target audience? Learning as much as possible about the customers you want to attract will help your marketing efforts reach their full potential, and in turn grow your business in the right direction. Consider these three tips for maximizing your marketing success:

Crowd of people crossing city street.

Don’t Get Personal

This is a big one, folks. In a sea of people, think about who you want to attract and what draws that person to a brand.

While it’s true that the heart and soul of why you offer the business you do needs to be a core component of your brand identity, it’s vital that you keep your personal preferences in check when marketing to your audience.

Are you part of your target market? Great! Then you’ve got a leg up on the competition. However, if you’re like the vast majority of businesses, you may be one very small – or not even at all – part of the audience that you’re trying to reach with your marketing strategy. If this is the case, what appeals to you personally is irrelevant.

The more you can let this notion sink in, the better off you and your marketing efforts – including the hard-earned money you put into your marketing budget – will be.

How do you know exactly what your target audience will connect with? We’re so glad you asked…

Person’s hand holding pen over sheets of paper with graphs on them.

Do Your Research

It’s elementary, dear brand ambassador. You believe in your company and how it can improve the lives of your customers. Don’t let that passion be wasted by taking shots in the dark for the best marketing strategies – do your homework to find exactly what will connect with your audience.

Excellent tools at your disposal for market research include:

  • • case studies
  • • consumer surveys
  • • focus groups
  • • competitor comparisons (social media channels, websites, branded material, etc.)

One more resource that will prove invaluable in your research efforts? People who do this for a living…

Handshake between woman and man in professional office.

Trust Your Experts

Would you trust your brother-in-law who knows nothing about electrical work to fix your faulty circuit breaker? Well, you could, but chances are you’re going to have a power outage or a trip to the hospital for a bad case of ‘could’ve-been-avoided-burn-by-electrocution’. If you want to save yourself time, money and a headache, you know that professional services are best left to – you guessed it! – professionals.

Related: Friends Don’t Let Friends Do Their Marketing

Getting a marketing team in your corner is not only a resource to tap for invaluable advice, it also lifts a heavy weight off your shoulders when it comes to marketing your business. At Stray Media Group, we offer marketing support and strategies tailored to your unique business, goals and budget.

Intrigued and ready to maximize the effectiveness of your marketing strategy? Give us a shout to learn how we can help you out.

How to choose blog topics

Blog How-To: Choosing Blog Topics Viewers Want to Read

Picking a blog topic – easy, right? Not necessarily. The process of writing a thorough blog that hits all the proper check marks – captures your audience, answers questions, provides value, positions you as an expert – requires many layers of work.

Where to begin? Here is a cheat-sheet for how to pick a blog topic that your customers will want to read:

Research

Man looking at a wall covered in papers

Start with some good old-fashioned research. You have more resources at your fingertips than you may realize. Before you put pen to paper, ask yourself these questions:

What are people searching on Google?

Many of us don’t remember life before Google, and would be lost without it. Use this to your advantage by viewing Google-suggested search options to see what others are looking for on the search engine giant. This will give you tons of great blog topic ideas that are relevant to your audience and industry.

Google search on "how to improve your SEO"

What questions do you get from customers?

Don’t make the mistake of forgetting about your customers – they are one of your best resources because they are already using your products or services, so they have an edge up on subjects that would be beneficial to write about, compared to just anyone off the street.

Question mark on gray background

What questions do you get from customers all the time? Is there a topic or some information you wish they had that would help to resolve issues your audience commonly encounters? What questions do you get in the comments from your other blog posts? Seek these questions from your audience and answer them to position yourself as the go-to industry expert.

Is there a common subject your competitors are addressing?

Look at what your competitors and fellow industry colleagues are writing about and put your own spin on it. This is a great way to both give your business clout and be involved in relevant conversations surrounding your industry.

Woman and mans hands on a table pointing to a chart with a pen

Use these tips to help get your blog topic juices flowing with an everlasting supply of great ideas to write about. Still a little hazy on the details of writing a business blog or how to get started? Give our team of experts at Stray Media Group a call to learn how we can help.

Writing a blog

5 Steps to Build a Better Business Blog

Stop making excuses or procrastinating; if you’ve thought about posting regular business blogs or you’d like to sharpen up your skills and increase your posting frequency, the time is NOW!

Why are blogs so important? They:

  • – Improve SEO so you’re easier to find
  • – Give businesses clout to position you as an industry expert
  • – Increase leads
  • – Open lines of communication with customers

Learn how to write a blog for your business with these 5 steps:

Blog Target Audience

Marketing communication is all about your consumer: Who are they, what do they like, what are their goals, hobbies, and interests? Find answers to these questions and formulate customer personas to more effectively connect with your audience.

A woman standing in a crowd waving.

This will help you choose topics, guide your writing style and find the best avenues to promote your content. You spend valuable time writing excellent content, so make sure it speaks to the leads you are trying to generate!

How to choose a blog topic

You have identified who you want to speak to, now it’s time to choose something to write about. Keep your business blog conversational and not entirely product- or service-oriented.

Potential clients want a solution to a problem – not to be bombarded with messages about your product or service. Keep your content focused on topics that offer useful information that adds value to the lives of your customers.

A person drawing black business graphics.

 

How to write a blog headline and intro

Content is surely king these days when it comes to a marketing strategy. We live in a Game of Thrones-esque world where there are more kings than you can count, with more and more popping up each day. In order to conquer the content world, you will need an epic headline and an intro that not only grabs attention but keeps the readers wanting more. Using numbers, keywords, and exciting verbiage is key – tell them why they must read this article!

How to organize a business blog

You’ve figured out the who and the what, now it’s time to write, organize, and condense your content so it is easy to read and retain.

Start with research. You’re well versed in the products and services your business offers, but it’s also helpful to research what others are doing and search for industry updates. This allows you to see how you stand out from the competition and helps you find new, unique, and interesting ways you could connect with potential clients or solve their problems.

A person typing on a laptop, the screen shows a WordPress blog.

After research, organize your information for optimal readability. Try breaking up the information into 3 to 5 sub-topics that would be most beneficial to the reader. This helps to keep your blog full of valuable information but organized in a way that the viewer can easily retain.

Remember to keep it short and sweet. Your blog doesn’t need to be a novel with every last feature and benefit, just something to answer potential clients’ questions and get them interested. A good starting point to go by is a maximum of 1,000 words but remember every blog goal is unique so do what works best for you.

Posting and promoting a blog

Once you’re done writing, the fun begins! It’s time to take a break, delete the blog from your brain for a bit (at least a few hours!), and focus on something else. Giving yourself a little time to refocus will allow you to have fresh eyes and reassess what you have written, reorganize, and edit better.

It is paramount that your content flows well and doesn’t contain grammar and spelling errors, which can reduce the blog’s credibility. Always allow an outside set of eyes with grammar and spelling strengths to take a second look and make necessary proofreading corrections.

Two people sharing an Apple laptop.

After that, you are ready to post and promote. Writing your blog is only half of the equation; in order for potential clients to see and benefit from your content, it is vital that you choose where the best place to reach your target demographic is, both online and through your active social media platforms.

We get it – building and writing a business blog can seem like an extremely daunting task when you aren’t one of the few who loves to write, but not having a blog can be a business marketing killer in this modern research- and consumer-driven market.

Let us check this task off your to-do list with our team of professional content creators, who love to write engaging and shareworthy content. Meet the team today by getting hold of us at 701.757.2000.

Marketing Strategies – Essentials from the Experts

The many facets of marketing can be daunting. What does your business’s marketing strategy actually need? How much should you be spending on a marketing? How do you get potential customers to connect with your brand?

The answer is there is no ‘one size fits all’ method when it comes to marketing. Your business is as unique as your fingerprint and should be treated as such.

While there is no single method, there are components of marketing that every business needs to think about. Our team has put together their marketing genius to help get your gears turning.

“Having a clear vision of your brand and maintaining that in all of your creative and social content. Your brand identity is the best tool in your sale’s kit. It is what drives customers to want to interact with you. Until that first person-to-person interaction occurs your only goal should be to sell who you are and not necessarily your product or service.”

Tim, Account Manager

“I think the most important part of marketing is adding value to people’s lives. Instead of thinking about how you can sell something, think of how you can impact their lives in a positive way.”

Mariah, Account Coordinator

“Being on target with your message and delivering it clearly. Too many commercials and advertisements make me say, “What the…?” because I have no idea what message they’re trying to get across to me. It’s one thing to be clever but being unclear is another.”

Heather, COO

“Figure out who you want to market to. Once you know your target audience, you can create messages that will resonate deeper with people. Connecting on a more personal level will help to improve communication and build customer loyalty.”

Alexa, Graphic Designer

“Know what the goal of your message is. Are you trying to evoke an emotion from viewers? Inform people of something? Have a clear vision of what your overall goal is so your marketing is continuously working to achieve it.”

Keely, Graphic & Web Designer

“Having your own unique voice and brand persona. The style you write content in, how you interact with followers on social media, the look and feel of your creative material – all these elements give your audience a glimpse into who you are as a business. Use these opportunities to tell your story and connect people not only to your products and services, but your overall brand.”

Jen, Content Creator

The boss of the apple sauce has two must-haves to share:

“First is simplicity. Whether it’s a big billboard or a business card, if your material is too busy or complicated to grasp right away, the chance to connect with your audience will be lost.

Second, and perhaps the most important of all is brand standards and consistency. Too many businesses have an “it’s good enough” attitude which stunts their growth. Consistently holding your marketing to the highest level of standards across all of your marketing mediums and your brand will not only be elevated in appearance, but more trusted by the people you are trying to communicate with.”

Dave, Creative Director

 

Incorporate these essentials into your marketing plan for a well-rounded strategy that gets results. Still not quite sure where to begin? Our team of marketing gurus has your back – give us a call to chat about how we can help build the strategy that fits your business best.