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Small Business Marketing Services

WHERE IS YOUR MARKETING PAIN?

How do you want to lighten your load? Do you need long term marketing help? Temporary assistance? Occasional collaboration and insight? 2Q Solutions is designed to meet you at your point of need.

2Q MARKETING SERVICES ARE DELIVERED IN THREE WAYS
Interval Coaching | Short Term Projects | Outsourced Marketing department

Depending on your resources and what you want to accomplish there are three ways you can get marketing help from 2Q Solutions. 

1) Interval Coaching: As a small business owner it's easy to get distracted and it helps to know that you have someone to help keep you on track with your marketing plans. This is simple, occasional consultation at whatever frequency makes sense for you. We help you make plans and discuss ways to improve your marketing efforts and get better results. Learn more about Interval Coaching.

2) Short Term Marketing Projects: You have some marketing plans in mind, or you need some fresh ideas. You're busy running the day-to-day aspects of your business, and you can't afford to stop the presses to dig into your marketing efforts. You just need help for a short period of time.

3) Outsourced Marketing Department: You want to work with someone on a longer term basis without hiring a permanent employee. You don't have much tolerance for detail or administration, and you need someone who will bring some ideas to the table and implement marketing plans. You want occasional written reports to see what kind of performance you're getting out of your marketing dollars.

SMALL BUSINESS MARKETING SERVICES - CUSTOMIZED TO SUIT

Get help where you need it: There are several areas were we can work together to improve your marketing efforts. Some of these are done by Steve Smart and some elements are outsourced and coordinated by Steve

Here are a few of the areas where 2Q Solutions can be helpful to you:

Contact 2Q today! Find how small business marketing services will lighten your load and help your business grow. 

The Exponential Power of Customer Satisfaction

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

 

Recent experiences got me thinking about marketing resources and the exponential power of customer satisfaction.

I want to share some thoughts about its importance and how it contributes to your business success. I’ll also tell you a story from my own experience. For that, you'll have to watch the video.

I want to start with a question. Why do you pay attention to customer satisfaction? Or do you pay attention to customer satisfaction at all? Here are two typical reasons why people think about customer satisfaction.


  • To satisfy their own sense of goodwill, knowing you are doing the right thing.
  • To keep dissatisfied people from getting in their face.
I believe there is a more serious economic and business growth reason to pay attention to customer satisfaction.

Some things in life and business are important but not easy. Taxes is one of those things. It’s important and I know I have to deal with them. Fortunately I can outsource to an expert.

Customer satisfaction is also important but not easy. And you know that's not something you can outsource. Unfortunately it's often fuzzy, hard to measure and hard to fix.

In life and business we tend to make decisions about what we're going to pay attention to, partly based on a pain vs profit continuum. We easily prioritize the things that are easier to deal with and have a clear benefit. If something is hard to deal with and the benefit is unclear, it's likely to be low on the priority list.

Because customer satisfaction is fuzzy it often gets ignored until someone complains. That's not what you want to happen. Dissatisfied customers don't always complain.

I'd like to put the subject of customer satisfaction in a different light so it can be treated on a more proactive than reactive basis.

The Football Analogy

I’m more of a motorsports guy but I’m going to talk about football for a minute.

Making a sale, especially in higher ticket items, is exciting. It's like making a touchdown. You've planned your plays, executed well and crossed the goal line. It's time to celebrate! That's exactly what you're looking for.

What could be better than getting a touchdown? What about winning the game? A touchdown isn’t worth much if you don’t win. But when you strategize and maximize the power of your offense and defense and get more touchdowns than your competitor, you win and that rocks!

What could be better than winning the game? How about winning the CHAMPIONSHIP? Football players dream about having a winning season, playing in the Super Bowl and getting that game winning ring.

How does this relate to customer satisfaction, and what does it have to do with marketing resources?

Getting The Exponential Benefit

There are three things you want people to do:

  • Buy from you
  • Buy repeatedly
  • Refer others to you who will buy repeatedly

When people make that first purchase from you it's like getting a touchdown. When people buy repeatedly it's like winning the game. When they refer others who buy repeatedly, that's like winning the championship.

What does all this have to do with marketing resources? You put time, effort and money into making that sale. If you only make one sale and the customer doesn't return, those marketing resources aren't terribly effective. If they do return several times, you get a much better return on your marketing resources. If, however, you satisfy customers to the degree that they refer others who repeatedly buy from you, that's when your marketing resources get an exponential return.

To hear my story on customer DISsatisfaction, watch the video. 


Steve Smart works with busy entrepreneurs who want to improve their marketing efforts. He lives in St. Louis and can be reached at srsmart@2Qsolutions.net or 636-699-8772.

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Top 12 Website Review Questions

Monday, March 03, 2014

 

Comparing website proposals can be a pain, especially when they're all formatted differently. It's a lot easier when you have a template and several good questions.

Ask these twelve questions when reviewing a web proposal. Download this template to organize and compare your notes.

1) What are the merits and weaknesses of the proposed platform?


From my perspective there are three general platform categories. CMS (Content Management Systems) are generally the better solution.
  • A static HTML site   
  • Open source CMS sites like WordPress  
  • Proprietary CMS sites like Adobe's Business Catalyst.
Ask good questions during the interview process and make notes that will be useful for the proposal review.

2) How many web pages are covered in the proposal?

People don't like unexpected charges. When considering a web proposal be sure to verify how many pages of content are included. One proposal might cover the entire content of your current site while another might only cover a home page and five inner pages.

3) Who will write new content?

Even if your web person is highly capable, do not assume they're going to write new content for you. Clarify this point so you don't end up with an extra bill you didn’t expect.

4) Who will optimize the pages for SEO?

You might be buying a platform that's capable of being optimized. But that's not the same as the work actually being done. "On page optimization" is less important than it used to be. But there are some pieces that still matter to SEO professionals. It will help you to understand exactly what's being quoted.

5) What are the hosting costs?

This is easily compared between proposals. Do not, however, assume that they'll be the same. Monthly charges can vary greatly. Don't forget to ask about redundancy and how your site will be hosted.

6) How many users are covered with the hosting package?

Building and launching a website is just the beginning. Managing and editing your site is an ongoing effort that may require several people. Many of my clients prefer to have someone else make simple updates. They want to stay focused on their core business activities.

There are several aspects to a website that frequently need to be managed with different levels of permission. Some people might need access to make simple page edits. However, it might not be appropriate for them to see or edit sensitive information. Consider also the consequences of human error. A few harmless typos is one thing. Blowing up your navigation or deleting entire sections is quite another. Consider the number of people who might need access and their appropriate permission levels when assessing your hosting needs.

7) What kind of support can I expect?

You might not be able to quantify this aspect. But get a general description of what can be expected before choosing your web developer.

8) How will the site display on different mobile devices?

Before asking this question you need to have an idea about how the mobile experience fits in your marketing plan. Modern websites now display better on smart phones, but you might need a more finely tuned mobile site. What do you want users to see on mobile, and with how much effort? What actions do you want them to easily take?

In my opinion the best way to approach this is to have a site built with responsive design so it can be viewed on any device or orientation.


9) What automation can be achieved with respect to collecting email addresses?

Most of my clients use email marketing on some level. One key function of their website is collecting email addresses. Make sure your site will automatically load those addresses into a list connected with your ESP (email service provider). You should also get an alert when someone subscribes.

10) What happens if the web developer disappears or discontinues web support services?

You need to know that your website hosting package and support won't suffer if your web provider ceases to exist. Is a contingency plan required?

11) What pieces can be easily "bolted on?"

It may well be that there are things you want your site to do that you simply cannot afford just yet. Make a prioritized list of things that your site needs to be able to do in the future. Make sure that each of those things can be added at a later date without a major overhaul.

12) Consider the WHO

This template makes it easier to review and compare web development proposals. It's important to quantify the differences between prospective vendors. Once you've considered those differences and similarities I want you to think about something else.
 
Price is not the only factor. The people you work with make a big difference. Pay attention to the chemistry and communication habits of the people you've interviewed. There's a great deal of value in a quality relationship that contributes to your success. It's not just about the what, it's also about the who.


Steve Smart works with busy entrepreneurs who want to improve their marketing efforts. He lives in St. Louis and can be reached at srsmart@2Qsolutions.net or 636-699-8772.

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