Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Maximize ROI on Social Media Projects

From guest author Tate Handy

As social media continues its march towards digital marketing domination, companies are experimenting with new and exciting ways to market themselves using social media. One of the most effective ways brands have discovered for engaging with customers is through social media promotions; although these efforts are fairly simple to set up and run, it’s vital to keep your marketing objectives in mind to maximize your ROI.

Here are three simple steps to help you measure and optimize the ROI of your Facebook promotions:
  1. Set Your KPIs. Determine your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) before you do anything else; on Facebook, these might include distribution, interaction, influence, lead generation, or conversion. As tempting as it might be, “likes” are typically not relevant to your campaign success; don’t include them as a KPI.
  2. Measure Your Efforts. According to Greg Macek, Marketing Resources’ VP of Digital Strategy, enlist the Facebook Ad Conversion Pixel as a tool to get an accurate picture of your Facebook ad success.

  3. Maximize Your Return. This involves three mini-steps. First, pick a prize that’s relevant to your business and include its image in your post. Next, write your promotional post; keep it simple, include the prize and its value in the title, and use bullet points to explain how to enter (link to page on your website that has the official rules). Finally, promote your sweepstakes using Facebook as well as other social media channels, you website, industry influencers, and Facebook Ads.
With social media contests, you get to engage with your customers in a fun way that ultimately ends with making the customer happy; by measuring and maximizing your ROI, you’ll walk away happy too.

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

So, you think you know about training proposals

When the Australian Government enacted the "Training Guarantee (Administration) Act 1990" it:
"introduced the training guarantee levy that requires employers to contribute a minimum of an amount equal to 1.5% of their payroll to structured training or, if they have not contributed this amount, to pay the shortfall as a charge (the training guarantee charge)." HREF
Although the act had sound intentions ie, to increase training and therefore skills throughout Australian industry, the unintended consequences adversely impacted on the quality of Australian training.

One of those consequences was a feeding frenzy of "trainers" who tapped into the money firms had to expend annually. Every Tom, Dick and Mary became an overnight training expert.

Mostly unqualified amateurs appeared overnight. Many flew into regional towns with a box of hastily prepared course notes, overhead slides and delivered "training courses" in a rented room with rented furniture and equipment.

Short courses in time management, budgeting, negotiation skills, teamwork, and other easy topics sprang up all over the country. The amateurs delivery mode was what we professional educators once called "chalk and talk".

Amateurs and Training Proposals

On several occasions I worked with amateur trainers who were responsible for spending large sums of money on organising training activities. None knew how to do it properly and wasted thousands on sub-standard programs.

As a result, I wrote an e-book titled, "How to Write Winning Training Proposals".

It was intended to help amateurs write a proposal for training that would lead to development of a quality training program either in-house or by external consultant.

Today, the principles for development of training proposals have not changed and the e-book is still relevant. You can read more about it here.


PS: The Training Guarantee Act was suspended in 1994

Monday, August 25, 2014

Keep Teamwork Thriving with a Team-Building Event

Team building events can be an amazing way for your staff to come together and grow as a cohesive unit. However, for many companies team building events are regarded as nothing more than a waste of time or a way to get out of doing "real work" for a few days. Holding a team building event that employees take seriously and actually enjoy can be challenging, but it is completely doable if you have the right attitude. Here are some steps to help you in planning a successful team building event.

Pick The Right Type of Activities For Your Team

The activities that fill the itinerary at a team building event are the deciding factor as to whether or not that event will be successful. Many companies pick some standard "getting to know you" or trust-building exercises without really putting any thought into what they are selecting for their employees. At many corporate organizations, educated and professional staff members will oftentimes resent these almost childish activities. This is why it's crucial that event organizers choose activities that indeed help to bolster trust and the team mentality, but that don't condescend to their staff members. Do your research to find activities that are appropriate.

Pick The Right Venue

Some team building events are a simple day of activities held onsite at the office, while others might be weekend-long excursions held at a hotel or conference center. Decide which is more appropriate for your team's needs. If you are indeed renting facilities or a hotel, start making calls early to ensure that you can find the best package deal or group rate. Holding your event off-site is generally the best course of action; by taking your team out of the same old boring office setting, they're more likely to be enthusiastic and excited for the planned activities when they arrive. The corporate function venue at some entertainment centre, for example, would be a great choice of venue.

Decide What You Want Out Of The Event

Every business has different goals for their team building events. Sometimes events are meant to address teamwork issues that your company has been experiencing, while other times it's simply a way to keep the ongoing attitude of unity and trust alive within your organization. You and the organizing committee should take the time to sit down and write out what sort of results you would like to see from your team building weekend. This will help you to better plan everything from the events to the venue.

A team building event is a fantastic way to promote teamwork, trust and togetherness at your organization. While you're certainly there to grow as a cohesive team, don't forget to include "fun" in your itinerary. Sometimes, the best team building happens when employees are allowed to just sit back, relax and enjoy each others' company outside of an office setting.

Author bio: Bob Gorman is event planner and organizer who likes writing helpful articles for small and corporate businesses. Currently, he is working as contributing writer to several blogs and event planner at corporate function venue

Image source:highergroundcreative

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

How to manage your trade show team the smart(er) way

By guest author James Burbank

Despite the naysayers who are saying that trade shows and exhibiting at trade fairs belong in history books and that they are too time- and cost-consuming without giving results, the reality is that trade shows are still going strong and that they are still a great way to gain new customers, make new partners and find suppliers.

One very important part of every successful trade show exhibit is the team that you have to assemble and train before the trade show starts and which you need to manage in a smart way so that you reap all the potential benefits of exhibiting at said show.

Assembling and training your team

When assembling the team, it is important to include many different people who will share some characteristics but who will also have their unique strengths.

For example, it is crucial to have a diplomat in your team, someone who will know how to defuse potentially stressful and tumultuous exchanges between team members or perhaps even with the visitors. It is also a good idea to have a tech-savvy member who will know what to do with your new iPad stands that you got for the booth. A leader is also a crucial part of every trade show team.

When it comes to training your team, it is absolutely essential that they know and understand their responsibilities and their tasks. However, you need to be patient and you need to understand that talking to hundreds or thousands of visitors is a scary prospect for many people. In the end, make sure that your team feels comfortable asking questions as you do not want them to go in without not being sure about something important.

Managing your team the smart way

Once the trade show begins, so will your job as a trade show team manager. The idea here is to be tough but fair, to put things as simply they can be put. Of course, for the duration of the trade show in question, you will be put in many situations that you will need to know how to defuse.

Trade shows are very specific occasions and you need to understand that people who may already work for your company and who are very good workers can get distracted and become less efficient than usually. For instance, a member of your team may start slacking, being late and so on. The idea is to let them know that this will not be tolerated, but there is really no need to go berserk on them.

Another “problem” with trade shows is that you may not be able to be present at all times due to other responsibilities or things you need to do. It is important that your team knows they are expected to perform even when you are not there. Of course, it is always good when you can be around, both to keep them in line, but also to contribute to your trade show presence yourself.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Little Details That Can Help You Attract Loyal Customers

By Guest Author Sophie Andersen
Displaying Little Details That Can Help You Attract Loyal Customers.jpg
This century did not start particularly well. Global economic crisis dominates headlines all over the world for quite some time already, and all signs point to the conclusion that it will dominate them in the foreseeable future. At the same time, it needs to be pointed out that the crisis is a sort of a self sustainable mechanism. It survives by perpetuating the fact of its own existence - the very fact that people think things are not going well will make the things even worse.

The key to solving this problem is in educating business people on how to change their way of thinking and start being positive and proactive in their approach to the market. However, before that happens, it is crucial to stay afloat and remain present while waiting for things to improve. This is best done by connecting to your customers and earning their loyalty - one loyal customer is worth many regular ones. Here is a couple of tips on the ways in which you can make sure your clients stay your clients for more than one transaction.

1. Recognize what people need and deliver it to them

People will be more likely to buy things (and keep buying things) if they feel those things are specially tailored for them. When planning your business strategy and products, you need to make sure that they can appeal to the customers in that way. When customers are satisfied, the majority of them will not look any further than you the next time they want to make a

2. Communicate with your clients and make them feel like they are a part of something

The communication with customers has never been easier than it is now - the advent of social networking on the internet has created a great opportunity for businesses to reach out to the world of their potential clients and include them in their company’s ecosystem. This way, without too much effort, the customers feel respected and thought of, which eventually makes them spend more.

3. Popularize your company’s brand

There are many ways in which you can promote your company and make your image stick out above everybody else. The aforementioned internet social networking is always an option, but do not neglect the power of the real world communication either. Attending business events and fairs can do miracles for your company, while distributing promotional products can help your brand reach even further, into the homes of your clients, where it can have further effect.

4. Make sure your loyal customers are rewarded for their loyalty

Nothing spells great user experience so convincingly as a company which appreciates and rewards its customers. The expenses you will have in order to provide your faithful clients with presents for their faithfulness are negligible compared to the positive effect this will leave on your company’s image. Show the people that you care, that you know they are the reason why you are where you are, and be sure that their response will be to stay your customers, all to the mutual benefit and satisfaction.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Today's post at People & Jobs blog is about Quick Response Codes (QR Codes).
If you use QRCs, let us know what you use them for and why.