31 May

Proudly Promote While Pinching Pennies

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 31.05.12 by John Meloche

It’s all about business promotion. And here, at Synergy Marketing Consultants, we specialize in providing business owners with the best promotional products in our industry. Naturally, we champion the use of promo gifts to build businesses. But, as we discussed in our last blog, good business promotion requires a number of advertising approaches that work in tandem.

On SubmitYourArticle.com, Tomer Harel writes that it doesn’t have to cost business owners a bundle to advertise their companies. There are a number of cost-effective ways to do so. Obviously, promo gifts top our list of ways to promote your business without breaking the bank. But what else can be done to assist your business in getting to the next level?

Brand Your Stationery. What you do with your promo gifts, you should do with every piece of stationery that leaves your business. And that is branding it with your company name and logo. It’s important to have a recognizable image attached to everything that has to do with your company.

As Harel points out, “Every envelope should have your business name, return address, phone and fax numbers, your URL and anything else you can fit on there. Outgoing faxes, receipts, bill payments – any piece of paper can be used an advertising tool. Emails need to have your company’s signature, which includes all of the information as listed above.”

Keep Your Website Updated. In today’s business world, having a strong online presence is imperative. It’s no secret that most consumers go online to research products and services before going into an actual store location to make a purchase. This is why we work so diligently to ensure that our own website is updated with all of our newest products.

Harel notes that keeping your website present in search engines is also of key importance. Obviously, you want people to find you when they are researching the products and services that you offer online. One way to ensure that your business keeps popping up is to regularly update your site with blogs that contain keywords that are intrinsic to your industry.

Get Involved With Your Community. What better place to promote your business than the community that it exists within? Harel suggests you set up shop at local fairs and special events. See if you can set up a booth or have an open house to allow you to showcase and demonstrate your products and services.

Check back for tomorrow’s blog as we round out our lists of tips on how to promote your business while pinching those pennies!

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30 May

The Basics of Business Advertising

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 30.05.12 by John Meloche

Over the past couple of days, we have been blogging about the benefits of using promotional gifts to help elevate the status of your company. As we’ve mentioned, your promo gift is a symbol of your gratitude towards the customer who becomes its recipient. This is one of the main reasons that promo gifts work so well as advertising tools.

Quite simply, they do more than just advertise. They communicate a message to your client base. The message, of course, is that you care about their business. Furthermore, you care about them. As explained in the last few blogs, when you focus on your target audience and gain a good understanding of their wants and needs, you will be better suited to meet and exceed them.

Promo gifts also work wonders for business owners because of their relative inexpensiveness when compared to other modes of advertising. There’s no way that filming a television commercial will be possible on a tight budget. Promotional items, on the other hand, provide that personal touch that you’re looking for, at a fraction of the cost of traditional advertising..

Naturally, there are a number of other ways to promote your business. In addition to handing out promo gifts, you should be considering various ways that will get the name of your business out there. In an article submitted to SubmitYourArticle.com, Tomer Harel lists a number of tips for business owners looking to grow their businesses without breaking the bank.

The Yellow Pages. Hey, that’s where people go when they are looking for businesses, right? You may as well be included among your competitors so that you are not left in the dark. Harel notes that inclusion Yellow Pages “is not going to be as expensive as others”. Not to mention, people can now go online to locate your information through this advertising source.

The Newspaper. Harel recommends that you take advantage of box ads and advertising inserts. Be sure to look into community papers as well. They often offer local businesses the opportunities to have articles printed about them. If special interest newspapers exist in your area as well, they very well may provide great sources of advertising to those who are interested in your product.

Craigslist. Although this did not appear on Harel’s list, we felt the need to include it. Craigslist, in fact, is an advertising source that we utilize, here at Synergy. Completely free to use, this online ad source allows us to post classifieds in cities all over Canada. There’s no question that this is a cost-effective idea is a great way to connect to more potential customers.

We will continue to explore more business advertising ideas in our next blog!

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29 May

Great Gifts Grow Your Business

Posted in Promotional Products, Synergy Suggestions on 29.05.12 by John Meloche

In yesterday’s blog, we discussed the importance of selecting the right promo gift for your business. Of course, there are many different types of businesses out there. And, as a result, there is a wide variety of customer bases that are all different from each other based on their needs and wants.

Mechanics or owners of auto body shops, for instance, will most benefit from giving their customers automobile-related gifts. The Aluminum Tire Pressure Gauge is an ideal example. About the size of a pen, this awesome gift, that can live in the car, keeps your business on the minds of its customers whenever they have automotive needs.

“Choosing the right gift is key,” explained one of our sales team members this morning, “Our job, here at Synergy, is to make sure that all of our clients are assisted in making the best possible choices for their businesses. Tapping into your market is integral to finding success within it. That is why we are here to help.”

Yesterday, we commented upon an eHow.com article by Laure Justice. In it, she explains that the most useful gifts are the ones that often bring businesses the most success. Your gift should serve as a daily reminder that your business is the one to go to whenever its products and services are needed.

“I have a lot of clients who re-order pens and key chains,” explained another member of our team, “I consider them ‘go-to’ gifts. That means that no matter what type of business you own, these gifts can be used by the general public. They are also used on a daily basis so your company is never kept far from their minds.”

Promotional gifts almost work like social media. How so, you ask? They get people talking about your business. It cannot be said enough that the best type of advertising is word-of-mouth promotion. When your company is recommended to others by your customers, that is the best endorsement you can get.

This is the beauty of promotional gifts. They encourage customer loyalty that spawns into referrals. As mentioned in yesterday’s blog, it’s all about the relationships that you develop with your customers, as your gifts communicate generosity and genuine care. Contact one our reps today to get help in selecting the gift that is perfect for your business. Call 1-877-748-9884.

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28 May

Choose The Right Gift For Your Clients

Posted in Promotional Products, Synergy Suggestions on 28.05.12 by John Meloche

At Synergy Marketing Consultants, we specialize in providing our clients with the best promo products in the business. But as our talented sales team will often express to their clients, it’s not just the gift itself that will make your company more successful. Keep in mind that it is your act of generosity that symbolizes your dedication to keeping your customers satisfied.

Choosing the right gift for your clients, however, is an extremely important part of this marketing strategy. On eHow.com, Laure Justice explains that it is important to think about your customers so that you may consider their wants and needs. She suggests that you keep a notebook and periodically write down things that you notice about them.

What are their most common traits? What do they find most fascinating about your business? What interests them the most? Answering these and similar questions will help you to choose wisely so that your gift can do its job – and that is to increase customer loyalty while inspiring your customers to refer you to others.

It’s important that your gift is useful. After all, you do want your customers to not only remember you, but regularly think fondly of you when they are using their new mugs or key chains. As Justice points out, the most useful items make the best promotional gifts. It should be your intent to have your gift recipients think of your business first when they are ready to spend money.

This is why effectively tapping into your market is so important. Doing so the right way will provide great benefits to your company. Reminds Justice, “Promotional products are part of an $18.1 billion industry. Businesses that effectively tap into that market are the most likely to be rewarded by customer loyalty and increased sales.”

Justice also notes that “wearable items” are very effective. This is why Synergy offers a fantastic line of hats, sunglasses and even neck ties! She writes that such items are of great value because so many people see them. Therefore, you are not only advertising to the gift’s recipient but to everyone that person comes in contact with while wearing your gift.

Writes Justice: “Even if only one person in a busy area is wearing a company logo, everyone else there is exposed to the message.” Sometimes gifts that only reach one or two people work just as well. Pens, for example, fall into this category. The message is seen on a regular basis as people do get a lot of use out of pens. Not to mention, they are quite inexpensive! Choose right, and build your brand today.

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25 May

Become A Social Media Superhero

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 25.05.12 by John Meloche

“It’s already made a difference,” mentioned one of our clients yesterday, “Your blogs really woke me up to how to use Facebook and Twitter. So I decided to post a question on my Facebook wall and Twitter account. It had to do with what people plan on doing with their summers. I got more responses than any of my social media ads have ever gotten me!”

Our dear client, of course, was referring to the past couple of entries made in the Synergy Marketing Consultants Blog this week. Taking a close look at the ways in which business owners use social media, it was unveiled that there is most definitely a right and wrong way to use such sites as Facebook and Twitter.

It’s about engaging your audience, not just advertising to them. This was heavily pointed out in an article by Lynn Terry on ClickNewz.com. Reviewing this article over the past couple of days has even awoken some members of the Synergy staff to how they can increase the productivity of their own personal social media usage.

“I’ve gotten more followers to add me this week than ever before,” shared one of our team members, “I learned that using social media to connect to people is a much better usage of my time than it is to just straight advertise. At the end of the day, the more people reading what you wrote means that you are doing a better job of advertising anyway.”

Lynn Terry agrees. She writes that “if all you post is self-promotional links and requests, you will eventually become a part of your readers “noise” and ultimately be filtered out. They may not unfollow or delete you, but they will begin to scan over your posts and tweets without even realizing it.”

Keep in mind that you will need to do some social networking of your own while using social media. In other words, you will not only have to post your own questions, comments and links but you will need to respond to others as well. Terry even suggests going as far as becoming “friends” with your competitors.

Remember that doing so will only bring you closer to members of your target audience, after all. Says Terry, “One of your goals should be to locate every competitor on your level (or within reasonable range) and create an ‘inner circle’ of friends or business peers…Stop looking at them as competition, and start looking at how you can leverage each others position in the marketplace!”

Get involved in discussions. Keep in mind that each time you post a comment on someone else’s Facebook page, you have essentially created a link to your own. The same goes for tweeting or retweeting a comment made by someone else. Use social media the right way, and it will do wonders for your business!

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24 May

Step Up Your Social Media Game

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 24.05.12 by John Meloche

In yesterday’s blog, we revisited the topic of social media and their importance in today’s business world. Even we have to admit, here at Synergy Marketing Consultants, that we are still new to the entire social networking game. This is why we make every effort to improve our ability to connect with our target audience through such sites as Facebook and Twitter.

It’s one thing to keep your social media profiles regularly updated. It’s another thing to be truly engaging with your potential customers. As Lynn Terry points out on ClickNewz.com, there is a right way and a wrong way to utilize social media to promote your business.

Spamming, for example, is frowned upon. So how does one avoid it? Terry lists a number of ways that entrepreneurs can use social media correctly. Yesterday, we reviewed the first few points on her list, highlighting that a clear objective to your social media marketing plans must be decided upon. Let’s pick up where we left off.

Focus on Content, Not Marketing. This is why we so often talk about the importance of blogging. You want to give your audience content that is worth reading and discussing. Promoting yourself through social media is so much more than finding a new place to run a commercial. It’s about communication and engaging with others. Creating discussions is a big part of what makes social networking successful.

As Terry puts it, “if you focus on valuable, high-quality content then that content will do the marketing for you.” Keep in mind that when people like what you have to say, then they will share it with others. So be sure to write interesting things that will intrigue others to begin talking about you.

Dont Over-Optimize! Be careful not to overdo it when using specific keyword phrases. Writes Terry, “Using the same anchor text everywhere that you link to (or request a link to) your site leaves a ‘digital footprint’ too, throwing up a red flag that you may be trying to manipulate the search results.”

Be A Valuable Resource. Sometimes, it’s hard to remember that social media is not all about self-promotion. Some business owners get caught up in only using their Facebook and Twitter pages to promote themselves. This usually does not generate a conversation. One of our very own clients spoke to this earlier this week.

“I used to just post information about sales in my store,” he admitted, “and I realized that I wasn’t getting a ton of likes or followers by doing that. So I started asking questions. Of course, this generated answers. Slowly but surely, people started following and paying more attention to my posts. That’s how social media really works.”

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23 May

Make The Most Of Social Media

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 23.05.12 by John Meloche

The Synergy Marketing Consultants Blog has been known to champion the use of social media from time to time. And why wouldn’t it? Is there anyone left on the planet without a Facebook page? Is anybody out there not tweeting? Well, of course, not everyone uses social media. But it certainly feels like most of us do.

As business owners, it’s important to not only use social media to promote your businesses, but it is equally imperative that you use it properly. Is there a wrong way to use social media? According to ClickNewz author, Lynn Terry, there is definitely a right way and a wrong way to utilize social networking.

On the ClickNewz website, Terry explains that when using social media websites like Facebook and Twitter, you must have a clear objective. If not, your usage could “come back to slap you”. How so? Spam. You know when people use software to arbitrarily blast links to hundreds of online followers? People hate that.

However, when used correctly, social media provide for you a platform where you may develop your brand awareness, increase your exposure and boost traffic to your website. The end result? More sales! And that’s the point of any promotional campaign, isn’t it? Terry also points out that correct use of social media helps for small businesses to get an “edge”.

As we’ve often said in the past, using Facebook and Twitter enables you to connect directly with your clients – much like your blogs would. This personal connection is not something that customers generally receive from bigger businesses and corporations. So how can you utilize social media so that you are not spamming AND you are setting yourself apart from your competition? Terry lists a number of solutions.

Map Out A Clear Objective. As alluded to earlier, any type of marketing strategy needs to be well thought out. Your social media plan should provide a lot more for you than simply increasing your search engine rankings, says Terry. Your overall objective should include ways to gain more exposure, highlight your branding, increase your networking links and build trust within your target audience.

The Customer Comes First. Consider that your interaction with your customers should be more about them than it is about you. Terry suggests that you get a clear picture in your mind about who your ideal customer would be. Focus on making a great impression on that person. They will end up finding you.

Consistent, Quality Content. Avoiding spam also entails avoiding mundane, random posts. As Terry writes, “the content that you post to social media properties should be both consistent as in regular updates, and also consistent with your overall message or objective.” Check back for tomorrow’s blog as we round out Terry’s list on the correct ways to use social media!

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22 May

More Reasons To Relax

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 22.05.12 by John Meloche

In yesterday’s blog, we discussed the importance of business owners enjoying a little vacation time now and again. Working with entrepreneurs on a regular basis, our staff here at Synergy Marketing Consultants knows all too well that most business owners are workaholics. They don’t often give themselves breaks – even during statutory holidays.

On MastermindCoach.com, there is a list of five reasons for such individuals to give themselves a break. We’d like to continue looking at that list in today’s blog even though we know that most of you are all back to work today. Remember, you don’t just have to wait for a holiday to take a break or mini-vacation of your own. For what, you ask?

Spend Time With Loved Ones. As we mentioned in yesterday’s blog, this is a great way to get your mind off of work for a short time. The majority of our clients have families and we know just how important they are to all of them. We know this because of the many times we hear how “hard” it is for our clients to spend time with family due to business obligations.

As the website puts it, “your family and friends see you working, working, working, sometimes rarely coming up for air. Both you and they will appreciate spending some quality time together.” So even when there is no long weekend scheduled for a while, take the time to create one for yourself and your family After all, you’re the boss!

See The World (Or Your Own Backyard). Once again, no matter what you do or where you go, be sure to enjoy it! MastermindCoach.com reminds us that whether you are traveling or staying at home, it’s important to simply stay out of the office during your down time. That also means to stay out of your “office mindset” during your vacation time.

Try getting creative, recommends the site. If you work from home, you should make your office “off limits”. Put up a “stay out” sign as a reminder and have some fun with it. Do whatever it is you can to keep your mind off of work. Remember that you deserve your vacations, so there is no need to feel guilty. Also keep in mind that this will inevitably help your business.

You Have A Life And A Small Business. According to MastermindCoach.com, some business owners feel as if they don’t deserve the time that they take off. They often feel that there is too much work to be done and not enough time to do it in. Remember that only you have the power to give yourself the time off that you need! You have both a business and a life outside of it. Spend your down time wisely and enjoy the benefits!

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21 May

Enjoy Your Victoria Day!

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 21.05.12 by John Meloche

Happy Victoria Day! From the staff, here at Synergy Marketing Consultants, to yours – we hope that your having the time of your life as the long weekend winds down. Now, while most of us are on holiday today, we know that some of you business owners are still hard at work. It’s not uncommon for entrepreneurs to not take a day off. But they should!

Sometimes, just giving yourself a break allows for your body and mind to recharge. A mini-vacation is what you may need to refocus and get things in gear for your next day of work. Business owners, by nature, are often workaholics though. So how do we convince you that it’s okay to enjoy your holiday today?

Well, you don’t just have to take our advice. On MastermindCoach.com, five top reasons to give yourself a holiday are listed. The list is inspired by those business owners who feel that they cannot justify taking any time off from work – holidays included. So hopefully, this list will help those who think that way to take a break.

Physical Down Time. According to the site, trying to be “superhuman” can take quite a toll on you, both physically and mentally. As we mentioned earlier, it’s actually quite important to give your mind and body a break. It only serves to help you focus on the needs of your business. And there’s no better time to do that than on a statutory holiday like today.

Reconnect with family members and friends that you may not have had the chance to speak to in a while. Plan a barbeque or a simple get together. You know those people in your life who just “don’t have time” to connect with anymore? Give them a call! Or, keep it simple, and stay at home with the kids. Whatever you do, enjoy it!

Mental Down Time. Perhaps, getting out and having fun with the kids is in order. You work hard, it’s time to play hard. As MastermindCoach.com puts it, “if you don’t allow yourself to get away from it once in a while, your peace of mind and general well-being will most definitely suffer. Get out and play. Your mind will thank you!”

In tomorrow’s blog, we’ll take a look at a few more ways that entrepreneurs can take breaks and mini-vacations. After all, you don’t have to wait for a statutory holiday to relax your mind. It will pay dividends to your business when you take a break now and again to make sure all of your life’s priorities are being attended to. And that includes your sanity!

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18 May

Facebook Failing Privacy Promises?

Posted in News on 18.05.12 by John Meloche

This week, the Synergy Marketing Consultants Blog has taken a look at the phenomenon that is Facebook. With the social networking website making its Wall Street debut, people have begun to question its staying power. Evidence would suggest that the website is here to stay. But not everyone seems to think so.

Tali Arbel of The Associated Press revealed the findings of a survey, earlier this week, detailing the responses of Americans concerning their thoughts on Facebook. In yesterday’s blog, we concluded with the mention of one of the biggest concerns that people seem to have about Facebook – privacy.

“Why even go on to Facebook if you’re concerned about privacy?” asked one of our Synergy team members earlier this morning, “The very nature of Facebook is that it allows you to share information, photos, thoughts and comments with others. If you don’t want to do that, then don’t register for an account.”

Sensible advice, right? After all, we have often heralded Facebook as an excellent promotional tool. The overall point of using the social media platform is to reach as many people as possible to provide business-related news. Most users, however, seem to log on to Facebook each and every day without a business-related purpose.

As Arbel writes, Facebook makes most of its money by selling ads. Meanwhile, 57 per cent of those who took the Associated Press-CNBC survey claim that they never click on them. That would mean that nearly half of those who use Facebook do check the ads out. Not to mention, it is free to set up a profile, so the site is great for business no matter how you look at it.

But back to the privacy issue – Facebook does enable its users to decide who may or may not have access to their profiles. “But somehow, I find that people can still see my page even if I don’t want them to,” mentioned another one of our team members, “It’s tricky figuring out how to set up your settings perfectly.”

Not everyone trusts Facebook, reminds Arbel. According to the report, “even Facebook’s most dedicated users are wary — half of those who use the site daily say they wouldn’t feel safe buying things on the network.” Well, you don’t have to buy anything from our Facebook page. We’d like to speak with you one-on-one about our awesome promo gifts! Call us up at 1-877-748-9448.

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