Apr 162015

Relationships are hard work. And, unfortunately, they are two-way. Most of us guys have tried the one-sided approach. We thought I’ll only care about the things that make me happy and write off everything else. We aren’t known as the nurturers supporting our partner and thinking of them first. We’re more of the Janet Jackson, “What have you done for me lately?” approach. We weren’t relationship ready.

Well now the buzz for internet marketing and social media marketing is all about relationships.  “It’s not a pitch, it’s a person.” “I don’t send an email, I send feelings.” “Get to know your customers. Walk a mile in their shoes.” All of these are great ideas and I support them 100%. Succeed at any of these and you’ll have moved yourself ahead of most of the competition. Your customers will identify with you sooner and be loyal to you longer because of your efforts.

Is it really a two-way street?

What happens when the customer, or worse potential customer, wants to give you feedback? Small businesses are usually still open to this. They put their phone number or email address on the website or email and welcome the chance to interact with the customer. Even the occasional whack-a-doodle! But as the business gets bigger they start locking the doors. They remove the email addresses because of all of the spam but add in a contact form. Then they lock the form down so it will be spam-proof and the submitter will only be able to choose from the categories the company thinks are important. Wow! My status just changed from a customer to a submitter.

I ran into this just today. A potential client wanted me to suggest a theme I might use for her website (she’s a designer and very visual). I was looking for a demo page at Woothemes to show how the Canvas theme can be customized to show off the best features. On their website are “Canvas Case Studies -A collection of stories from people using Canvas to power their businesses”. The problem is that the link I followed has a website where the theme is obviously having conflicts with something and breaking. I use some Woo products so as a loyal customer I tried to find a way to let them know about this marketing snafu quietly rather than post in comments. I have three options on their Contact page: Get Some Answers from the FAQ, Submit a Support Ticket because I have a technical question or Complete a Form since I have a sales question. The way I’m reading it is that other than that they don’t want me contacting them.  So I didn’t.

Don’t get so big and so “smart” that you find a way to block your customers from getting to you. I know it can be a pain to listen to them whine when something goes wrong. I know it is usually their fault because they didn’t follow directions. But sometimes you just have to listen and say, “Yes, I know that can be frustrating.” (I almost said Yes Dear.) You have to be on the lookout for the few that want to share a unique perspective, a great solution or an issue you never knew existed. Seek out these opportunities because when your company/website/social media campaign is personalized to that level, people are going to listen.

Oct 222012

Kernersville Chiropractic was looking for a way to “modernize” their site and make it easier to keep current. They had prepaid for a hosting so they didn’t want to waste that money. After investigating their hosting package and their existing site we were able to create a site for a one-time cost that allowed them to used their pre-paid hosting. check out the new site at www.KernersvilleChiropractic.com.  I’m sure you’ll see a lot more added in the coming weeks as they tie in with thier Facebook page and add more graphics.

Sep 212012

Just finished expanding a website for client that is growing her social media presence. That is great but we often times need reminders that all tools don’t do the same job and all social media shouldn’t be used the same way.

We all want traffic to our website.  But if all of my Tweets, e-mails and Facebook posts say, “Hey come check out my blog!” then that is going to get tiring soon.  Each of these viewers can turn us off (unfriend, delete, unfollow) so we have to give them something of value each time we pop up in front of them.  The easiest way to do this is to remember that each social media tool has an audience that likes to use that tool. As we start to tie in all of your various “tools” (ie, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter) we need to make sure that each one is tailored to that audience.  

I tend to break them down this way:

  • Twitter: Short snippets telling someone that something is going on now or something just got updated.
  • Pinterest: Visually interesting items.  Things that need pictures and can be collected in groups.  An idea book.
  • LinkedIn: Professional affiliations and achievements.
  • Facebook: Conversations with like-minded people.

 So if you have something with a superb picture to include in a post on your blog and it is another example of your tastes or expertise then go ahead and Pin It so it shows up on one of your boards.

Tweet about it but be specific.  Don’t just say check out my blog but if you’re a web designer say something like, “I just found the best free plug-in for WordPress. Link on the blog.”

Link it to Facebook but go ahead and say what you think makes it work.  You’ve got “friends” here so ask them for interaction, “Does anyone else have a great plug-in they use that gets this done?” Don’t forget that when you get comments and likes on Facebook it helps with your ranking within Facebook.

The main thing is that you’re not trying to “create activity” you’re trying to be “truly active”.  The bloggers and pinners that are truly successful have a following because they interact with their audience.  Their audience “gets them” and wants to know what they are finding.  The audience is “too busy” to go out and find this stuff so they are counting on their “experts” to find the treasures and post them. Make sure that your voice comes through.  Tell me why you took the time to post that on your blog. What made it interesting, different, unique, special?

Apr 262012

jo-an's papersWith years of experience helping South Florida find unique gifts, accessories and stationery jo-an’s papers is one of those stores that has a special feel and great customer service when you walk inside.  Unfortunately, their website didn’t feel the same.  Now they have launched a website where they can keep their customers current on the latest styles, the newest gift trends and classic invitations. They’ve supplemented the web site with a makeover of their Facebook page because they know their customers are busy and may not check both places. The response has been exciting and we can’t wait to see all of the items as they come into the Lauderdale-by-the-Sea store.

Feb 292012

If you’re not following a lot of the changes with the search engines these days then you’re missing a great new direction. Gone are the days when you tried to “fool” the search engine into moving your page higher up the rankings (well, some are still trying to do that.) The search engines catch on really quickly to these loopholes and close them down.

Now the emphasis is right where it should be. Content. If you have fresh, regularly updated content that is focused on topic(s) that you claim to be the expert on then you are probably going to satisfy the searchers looking for your topic. The search engines (primarily Google) have finally realized this and, more importantly, found ways to measure and rank freshness. There goal is to deliver the best answer to the search question in the quickest way possible. (Yes, their real goal is to sell advertising but if they do the delivery right then more people come back and the advertisers come back too.)

If you don’t have time to keep your site current hire help. If you can’t write effectively then hire a copy writer, make changes and updates to your site every day. And not just on the home page or the blog page. Make sure that ALL of your site gets a little love regularly.  The search engines and your readers will appreciate it and come back more often.

Feb 072012

Social Media strategy from Kama MarketingThere is a lot of buzz about utilizing Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, FourSquare, etc.) in your internet marketing campaign. My main response is, “How does it make money?” I’ve seen some people do social media really well. My client Marina Anderson (www.medusirena.com) does a phenomenal job of posting to numerous social media outlets, monitoring those outlets to make sure that nothing is getting out of hand and keeping people really excited when she posts. More often than not though I see people do social media really badly.

The key to social media is relationship building. As one of my RSS feeds put it, “Show, Share but don’t Shill.” It isn’t about selling stuff as much as it is about keeping your target audience engaged and remembering your name. If you are selling something every time you post to Facebook then your friends will start dropping off. If all of your e-mails are announcing a sale or a coupon then how are your different from a coupon pack that arrives in the mail and goes into the trash? Most people will just unsubscribe.

However, if you sent out e-mails that have free helpful tips or educational short articles then your reader perceives value. If your posts entertain with funny cartoons, pictures or videos then you even have the chance to go viral. And if your content on your website is always changing and fresh and interesting then people will want to stop by and see what is happening with you and your company.

Lastly, most social media is free to utilize. Which means that the social media provider is selling the ads and trying to make the money with the page or e-mail. They have very little interest in allowing you sell something through their site without you paying them for advertising. Ever notice how hard it is to get your webpage address linked to a video on You Tube? They don’t want the viewer to leave the site. They are perfectly happy with you spending the resources to produce the video, posting it on their site and then they get the traffic while people log in and get entertained with your video.

Be careful and be strategic. Use the social media outlets to build relationships, provide value and keep your name in front of customers and potential customers. Once you start using social media keep at it because most experts agree that it is better to not do social media at all than to do it badly. Best of luck.

Feb 072012

Pride Cheerleading is dynamic group of young men and women who are involved in competitive cheerleading in the Florida market. This audience is always texting, e-mailing, photographing and updating Facebook. To keep the site current the old HTML version wasn’t working.

We are in the process of keeping the continuity and equity that they have built over the past two years while adding functionality with WordPress’ inherent inherent ease of posting news and photos. Watch http://www.pridecheerleading.net and see the new and improved web site in the coming weeks.

Feb 072012

Rebuilding the website for Hey Sugar Bakery in New York city. Chef Chad Orlando is gearing up for an exciting year with many television appearances and special events planned. To keep up with all of these exciting activities we are re-building his web site in WordPress to allow for more timely updates. We’re adding in a photo gallery of customer’s cakes and special treats. We’re also adding in Social Media buttons as Chef Chad has an active Facebook following and is now starting to Tweet.

Watch http://www.heysugarbakery.com for a similar look to his old site but new functionality and ease in updating the site.

Feb 072012

Many people realize that that need to be “on the web.” They spend some time, hire someone that knows html and get their site up and running. And then……nothing. You have to direct people to your site. If you’re not using your web address as your e-mail address (Craig@kamamarketing.com) then you’re missing traffic. If you’re web site is not on your business card then your missing business. If you’re not sharing links with other businesses that you know you then you’re missing improving your rank on the search engines. If you aren’t linking to your website with all of your e-mail communication then you are making it difficult for readers to find their way to your site.

At Kama Marketing we can help you maximize these chances to get your visits to the web site increased. E-mail us today and we’ll take a look at your site and help you get more visits. E-mail us at info@kamamarketing.com.

Feb 072012

E-mail recipients get stuff about sale offers in their in box all of the time. What you should try and do is build a relationship with your clients and prospective clients. If every time they receive an e-mail from you it is about a rate increase or a sale where they can save 10% then they eventually won’t open the e-mails. 10% is no big deal! Now if every time they get an e-mail from you they learn something new about how to use your product or get some other bit of information that they percieve has value then they will love getting your e-mails.

This the secret to effective e-mail communication. They gave you permission to put items in their inbox. It is up to you to make sure that what you put in that inbox has value…in their eyes. We can help you get to know your customer better and tailor your communication to WOW them. E-mail us at info@kamamarketing.com