Forearmed is forewarned …

How much do you know about your competition?

As business owners, there are many stats to keep a track of and many areas of the business to remain on top of. One of the key areas is your competition.
Why?

We are not recommending copying them of course, but seeing what they are doing helps understand what you are up against if customers approach you with comparing questions, but also this research will help you be mindful of what they are not doing so you can craft out your niche and your USP.
Reviewing your competition also helps define and analyse keywords and online activity for SEO and online marketing purposes.

So who is your competition?
Think direct and like for like but also think about similar companies even if they are not exactly matching on paper. The competition may be local and national and it may be on and offline.
Marketing Plans created by Pinpoint Marketing covers competition analysis in terms of reviewing their sites and social media profiles, but searching for them and you using Google and keywords.

Forearmed is forewarned as they say …

Buckinghamshire based Pinpoint Marketing gets a Twitter Boost from Theo Paphitis.

A Bucks based firm has received a business boost from Retail Entrepreneur Theo Paphitis. Last week, Nicole Martin, owner of Pinpoint Marketing, tweeted Theo about her business during ‘Small Business Sunday’ and was one of weekly winners to gain a retweet by Theo to his 500,000 Twitter followers.  The weekly initiative, set up by Theo in 2010, now has over 2200 #SBS winners and supports small businesses in the UK.

Business and retail entrepreneur and self-confessed Shopkeeper, Theo re‐tweeted Pinpoint Marketing’s message to his almost 500,000 followers and as a result, Pinpoint’s Twitter accounts has almost 100 more followers and increased social media presence. They are also profiled on the #SBS website (www.theopaphitissbs.com) that is exclusive to all Small Business Sunday winners.

Nicole of Pinpoint Marketing said, “I am so excited and proud to be one of the winners. We have been in business for 10 years now. It is great to have support from Theo because it can be hard to raise our profile and Theo has recognised our hard work and helped spread the word about what we do to his following.”

Small business champion and Ryman Stationery, Robert Dyas and Boux Avenue Chairman, Theo Paphitis, said: “We are thrilled to welcome new #SBS members every week and highlight just how important it is to support our small businesses here in the UK.  My vision is that everyone who has ever won an #SBS re-tweet from me becomes part of a friendly club; like-minded individuals who can share successes and learnings. The website will also give a valuable profile to the winners chosen and I wish Pinpoint Marketing every success.”

Anyone looking for a re‐tweet from Theo should tweet him about their business on Sunday between 5 PM and 7.30 PM and include the hashtag #SBS. Six lucky businesses are re‐tweeted every Monday at 8 PM and then invited to enter their profile on the new website, attend the annual #SBS networking event and take advantage of the networking opportunities.

For further information about Small Business Sunday please visit www.theopaphitissbs.com.

Branding – it is more than just a logo …

A brand is a name, term, design, symbol, or other feature that distinguishes an organisation or product from its rivals in the eyes of the customer. Brands are used in business, marketing, and advertising. Name brands are sometimes distinguished from generic or store brands.
Colour plays a huge part in branding. Read about using colour in this article from Vista Print.

When we think of branding, we normally think of logos, Pantone’s, straplines and so on. This is branding in the traditional sense and is very important to do and get right. But what about personal branding? This is an area talked about and focused on more and more. Your personal branding or persona looks at what makes you, you and what makes you memorable and unique. Your usp! (Unique selling point).

For me, my branding for Pinpoint and my personal branding is all about the colour red whether that be my logo or clothing or merchandise and collateral that I hand out. I have been referred to as the “red marketing lady”! I have also been called “Nicole Marketing” instead of Nicole Martin. It doesn’t bother me as it is something that makes me memorable.

If you have a brand already, you may want to consider a rebrand? Why? If you aren’t proud of your brand, if you feel its outdated or if your business has evolved and your brand doesn’t reflect the changes.

Use your brand to tell your story. What is your personal story? What do you want to be famous for and so on.

 

What is a UTM and how you can use them to strengthen your marketing?

What is a UTM?

Where are you getting the most traffic from? Which one of your social media feeds bring in the most leads? How can you personalise the url’s within your campaigns?

Use a UTM link! UTM stands for “Urchin tracking module.” UTM codes are bits of text you can add to a link that tell Google Analytics (as well as other analytics tools) a little bit more information about each link.  All you need is Google Analytics access and link codes. It really isn’t as tricky as the description may sound. It is simple, yet effective.

So, would you like to be able to personalise your marketing campaigns with unique codes and urls to enable you to track exactly where your clicks and leads are coming from?

The 3 puzzles a UTM Link can answer are:

  1. Where is the traffic coming from?
  2. How is it getting to me?
  3. Why is it coming to me?

This works by using three (or four) elements called “UTM parameters,” which we’ll cover in detail below:

  • Source eg specific name such as Mailchimp or Facebook or website
  • Medium eg social media or newsletter
  • Content (optional) eg the contents/theme
  • Campaign eg article otitle or event/exhibition name

For example, if I had written an article that I uploaded to my website and then submitted to a marketing magazine about the importance of planning, a typical UTM that would be bespoke to all of this may look like:

https://www.pinpointmarketingconsultancy.co.uk/planningarticle?utm_source=marketingmagazine&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Pinpointcampaign

Easy to set up and measurable. Ask Pinpoint how to set up UTM’s and how to use them.

Outsourcing to a Marketing Consultant IS it right for your business?

YES! Outsourcing core processes such as marketing, PR, legal and accounts is a good idea.

According to wikipedia, the definition of outsourcing is “In business, outsourcing is an agreement in which one company contracts its own internal activity to different company. It involves the contracting out of a business process. Eg marketing!

So why do it? Outsourcing allows you to focus on what you do best within your business, whether it be selling, managing or market development. Outsourcing is flexible in terms of project type, length and cost. It is less of a commitment than recruiting an employee and is often less expensive in the long run.

In this current climate, stability of sales and growth is not easy to achieve. Using a consultant means you can increase or decrease your marketing efforts as and when the need arises and as the cash flow allows.

So grab some time back for you and your business and then look into outsourcing! If you are looking after others whether that be children or customers or staff, then you also need to be looked after and helped first. You cannot run on empty if you are to be of use to others.

If you are looking for more help and advice, take a look at our Marketing Downloads page or FAQ page.