This article is a round-up of marketing and business promotion issues. It provides access to tools you can use right now to promote your firm plus software that will help those endeavours. The really good thing is that most of them are free – yes, that’s right, they won’t cost you a penny.
marketing cartoon

By the way, don’t forget to read my blog posts on current affairs, finance scams, recession (yes, it may be back again together with higher interest rates and plummeting property values), the audit of honesty in organisations and much more at: onesmartplace.com/blog. If you didn’t see it, why not read last week’s blog about Dr Cable’s posture on foreign takeovers.

The dos and don’ts of pitching for business investment

Each year venture capitalists and seed investors pour billions into businesses in the hope one day they will bag a winner. Creating big, sustainable, and highly profitable ventures is every investor’s dream.

But getting you and your business in front of these wannabe billionaires – let alone being given the green light – isn’t easy. So BBC spoke to three different and influential investors to find out how to get a proposal to them, what they were looking for, and as importantly, what they would run a mile from. Each of the investors has agreed to answer questions from our readers. You can email your questions to haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk with the subject heading “investment”, or complete the form at the bottom of the story.
Read more: www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-28331659

There’s a better way to plan your event: Use Eventbrite

eventbriteNow, here’s the easiest way to sell tickets and manage registration for any kind of event: Powerful tools to save you time and energy. Create a polished, customised event page in minutes – just fill in your event information and you’re good to go!  You can send email invitations and updates to your guests directly from your Eventbrite dashboard.

With simple online registration by invitees, you don’t have to bother with phone calls, emails, or tracking guests on a spreadsheet. Instead of guessing who will show up, have people RSVP in advance so you can plan your food, seating and more.
Read more: www.eventbrite.co.uk

Free Search Engine Basics E-Book

This is from Rocket X1, theInternet Marketing Agency for Growing Businesses.People use search engines to find your business, product, or service, but how do you show up consistently in search engine results?

It starts with good, optimised content, but let’s face it, Google’s winning. It’s been an uphill battle for businesses trying to make a dent in the search rankings. And if you’re among the downtrodden that got slammed by some of the algorithm updates, you learned how quickly all those SEO tricks can become completely useless, if not outright harmful.

But there are a handful of fundamental practices that you can implement to maximize the chances of getting your content found and read. It starts with relevant, useful content in the form of website copy, blog posts, video, and more. In this E-Book, you’ll learn about the essential element that go into optimizing your online properties and content for search engines and for mobile devices.
Download it free from: www.rocketx1.com/free-e-book-search-engine-basics/?campaign=20140719email

IntelliSend for business email

intellisendEngage Mobility, Inc., a US provider of mobile technology, marketing and data solutions, has announced that is has launched its newest technology and service called IntelliSend, a proprietary technology that detects whether an email recipient is viewing an email via mobile, tablet or desktop. The technology then delivers the optimized version to the mobile user. IntelliSend will be integrated with the Engage Mobile Engagement System for a complete mobile marketing experience.

“One of the challenges with the small mobile screen is filling out online forms. The abandonment rate for customer acquisition is extremely high and businesses are losing conversions and revenue. With IntelliSend, our technology recognizes the device and delivers a mobile friendly version of the content that seamlessly integrates with our click-to-call platform. The conversion rates using optimized mobile with click-to-call are markedly better,” states Engage CEO Jim Byrd. “As more and more email is read through the mobile device, businesses must deliver the right message, in the right format, to the right device so their customers can respond. IntelliSend makes this process seamless, easy and extremely cost effective.”

Engage offers IntelliSend to all business owners, agencies and marketing partners with pricing beginning at $500. For more information, please visit www.engagemobility.com or call them at US +888-888-3642.
Read more: business.einnews.com/pr_news/214451801/engage-mobility-launches-intellisend-for-business-email

Captivate your audience with a guerrilla marketing blitz

Like guerrilla soldiers forced to use limited resources to fight mightier opponents on the battlefield, guerrilla marketers rely on strategic strikes to gain a foothold in the digital marketplace. While traditional billboards and magazine ads might prove to be a few-million-dollar drop in the bucket for some companies, smaller businesses can reach huge audiences with a refined approach to basic internet tools like YouTube and other social media sites.

While many business people have heard of the concept, not everyone has led a quick, sexy, interactive guerrilla campaign. It requires a simple marketing message made into an unmistakable experience. Entrepreneur magazine defines guerrilla marketing as “any promotion that’s unconventional, unexpected and usually evocative of a unique, memorable reaction from or interaction with the viewer.” That’s exactly what the approach takes: an unconventional method, led by imagination and an innovative spirit to craft messages that resonate with audiences.

This excellent article provides a few things to consider before you launch a guerrilla campaign.
Read more: www.creativeguerrillamarketing.com/guerrilla-marketing/captivate-audience-guerrilla-marketing-blitz

Coca-Cola’s Mini Kiosk is absolutely adorable

Despite being an enormous multi-national, billion-dollar company, Coca-Cola has really distinguished itself with small-scale guerrilla marketing. They have prioritised the localised customer experience with a series of happiness focused stunts, which thanks to smart filming and social marketing have gone viral globally. Well, it doesn’t get much more small-scale than with one of their most recent campaigns, The Mini Kiosk and its new product the 150ml mini can.

There’s something about tiny things, and tiny versions of things that make our brains go into adorable overdrive. Coca-Cola has capitalised on this in a way we can’t even be impressed at, because we’re too busy gushing about it.
Read more: www.creativeguerrillamarketing.com/guerrilla-marketing/coca-colas-mini-kiosk-absolutely-adorable

Kickstarter wrote a computer program for its ‘Lunch Roulette.’

To ramp up its culture, Kickstarter created a creative lunch program for its employees and now the company is ready to share it with the crowds. You see, Kickstarter’s staff is especially diverse – former funeral directors, radio hosts and hardware hackers are all part of the team. To bring this eclectic group together, the Brooklyn-based crowdfunding platform started organizing different, random groups of employees to break bread together.

While middle school may have been a long time ago, we still need a bit of encouragement sometimes to leave our comfort zone. In order to be sure that the hardware hackers weren’t exclusively having lunch with other hardware hackers, the office manager at Kickstarter, Shannon Ferguson would work tirelessly to come up with continually random groups for these lunch outings. But as Kickstarter grew, so did the challenge of this task.
Read more: www.entrepreneur.com/article/235766

Avoid Loss in Translation: Put developers & creative staffers on the same page

In the exciting fast-paced world of technology startups, communication failures between different departments can spell disaster. As the founder of a company that builds software to streamline and optimise communication on teams, the author knows subjectively and from customers, that this problem is pervasive between technical and nontechnical teams.

And the communication gap can’t be bridged with project-management software. Basecamp, Trello and other scrum platforms are amazing, but the kind of communication breakdowns I’m talking about run deep. It’s almost as if one party were speaking English and the other Japanese, and all are tossing their heads in misunderstanding. But don’t send a marketing guru to night school for computer science. Some clear and easy ways can prevent company initiatives from becoming lost in translation.
Read more: www.entrepreneur.com/article/235637

Brainstorm Assistant – the answer to how to promote your brand

Talk to the brains[21 July 2014, staysourced.com] Need a helping hand to find your perfect promotional product to represent your brand? If so, look no further than Brainstorm Assistant – simply fill in your details on their online form and they’ll help you come up with promotional ideas. With plenty of options for marketing ideas on offer, they say they will ensure that your product is the right fit for your company with their promotional idea generator.What have you got to lose? Just try it!
Read more: www.staysourced.com/brainstorm

Marketing Profs – lots of new ideas to try

Here are lots of new ideas from Marketing Profs:

Source: e.marketingprofs.com

Marketing Professional Services

animationA long time ago, Philip Kotler and Richard A. Connor, Jr. wrote something about marketing that will surely interest you. It’s called: Marketing Professional Services – A specific program for managers of professional services firms.  It appeared in Journal of Marketing, January 1977. You can download the free paper at the source link provided below.

Marketing is one of the most important functions for helping professional service firms meet the unprecedented challenges they are facing. This article outlines a specific program.

Read more: belzludovic.free.fr/nolwenn/Kotler,%20Conor%20-%20Marketing%20professional%20services%20(cit%C3%A9%2030)%20-%201977.pdf

Solving the problem – what Leaders need

You’re a marketer, and you’re in charge. You’re overrun with responsibilities but limited on time, and money never seems to go far enough. You make it work. But could it work better?

The people at MarketingProfs, feel your pain. They hear from executives like you every day about the inimitable challenges leaders face and the knowledge they require to fill the gaps. They know what you need, and they’re here to deliver.

That’s where B2B Marketing Forum comes in. Now in its eighth year, B2B Marketing Forum has always brought together the brightest practitioners—those in the trenches who’ve been there, done that—to help marketing leaders like you understand the latest tools and tactics, cultivate new ideas, and walk away with new strategies for success. And this year’s no different. In fact, they’re doing something even more special: they’re presenting a series of CMO-focused sessions to address your unique needs. Register now to secure your spot at this premiere learning experience.

Join them for executive-level, how-to presentations.

Finally, jumpstart your learning a day early with their executive-level workshop, Let’s Talk Strategy! Focused on the fundamentals of strategy and how to apply strategic thinking to advance your B2B marketing goals, you’ll learn how to take control of your marketing strategy with the real tools for real challenges in real life. This workshop is nearly full, so register now before it’s too late.

The Forum takes place October 9-10, 2014 (workshops October 8), at Westin Copley Place, Boston, MA, USA. The registration form (with pricing details) is at: www.marketingprofs.com/events/register/113
Read more: www.marketingprofs.com/assets/email/2014/7/20140718_b2b14_cmo_webview.html

Over a third of clients use internet to find lawyers

A survey of consumers has found that 38 per cent in the US and 36 per cent in the UK use the internet to find a lawyer if they need one. The research was carried out by YouGov for the Thomson Reuters site FindLaw. The conclusions suggest that the public is moving away from relying on personal recommendation to the net. In the UK some 30 per cent of people still prefer to rely on the advice of friends or family when seeking a lawyer. Source: Legal Futures
Read more at: www.globallegalpost.com/global-view/over-a-third-of-clients-use-internet-to-find-lawyers-29388619

How to Build an Army of Advocates

The rise of social media has created a legion of consumers who openly and enthusiastically share their opinions on brands they love. But how do you organise the masses into your own army of brand advocates? It’s easier than you think.

Nowadays, there are satisfied customers, and there are brand advocates—those who eagerly embrace your company’s vision and help advance your interest through interactions online. And as The Advocate Marketing Playbook explains, it’s easy to create and manage an advocate marketing program for your company. Filled with best practices, use cases, and helpful worksheets, it’s your how-to guide for planning and launching successful programs that leverage one of your best assets—your customers. Download now from the hyperlink given below.
Source: e.marketingprofs.com/a/hBTxWr3AJaJZfB87NKgB9lxEmOS/download

Leading tech entrepreneurs share how they raised funding

strategyFunding a tech start-up doesn’t always turn out how you planned. Three tech entrepreneurs reveal how their first-time fundraisings turned out…Raising finance can be a treacherous path to take, inevitably throws up twists and turns and often takes twice as long as you expected.

Speaking at London Technology Week, founder of Seven magazine and forthcoming website 2210 Fashion Marc Cameron, asked three tech entrepreneurs – Tim Jackson, Nick Holzherr, and Stefan Siegel – to revisit their first-time fundraising attempts.
Read more at: startups.co.uk/leading-tech-entrepreneurs-share-how-they-raised-funding

Powerpoint pro tips: Exporting to other formats

PowerPoint is used everywhere, but it can’t be viewed or edited on every device. That’s a problem in an increasingly ‘Bring Your Own Device’ (BYOD) world, where many audience members could be wielding Android tablets instead of PCs.

Why not take advantage of PowerPoint 2013’s versatile Export tool to create versions for posting and sharing that embrace all devices. The article explains how to save a presentation as a PDF, a Word document handout, and an RTF outline.

Read more at: www.pcworld.com/article/2452598/powerpoint-pro-tips-exporting-to-other-formats.html#tk.rss_all

Perspective-shifting habits of 10 extremely creative people

steve jobsThe best ideas often come to the person who isn’t actively searching for them. We spend a lot of time racking our brains in morning meetings and staring at blank computer screens waiting for an aha moment, but science shows we might be better off removing ourselves entirely from our typical work environment to gain a fresh perspective.

Earlier this year, Stanford University researchers found that a person’s ability to think creatively increases almost 60 per cent when they abandon that office chair for a stroll around the block. And taking brief, unplugged vacations and spending time outdoors specifically have proven to help us arrive at our best ideas and improve our decision-making abilities.

Of course, great creative minds don’t necessarily take a cue from science or wait around for research to back up their methods — they arrive through intuition and discipline at the habits and practices that lead to their best ideas and greatest successes.

This article profiles 10 people who found some of their best ideas by stepping out the office, away from the noise and into spaces that encourage their creativity rather than stifle it.
Read more: www.news.com.au/finance/work/perspectiveshifting-habits-of-these-extremely-creative-people/story-fn5tas5k-1226994716872

Can employees expect their employers to be caring?

employee thinking

Of course they can and they do. According to a recent study, a third of employees said they would consider leaving a job due to poor workplace wellbeing. So what’s the secret to getting it right; being seen as a caring company and, in turn, boosting growth for the business?

Over the past few months The Telegraph, in partnership with leading financial protection provider Unum, has developed The Blueprint; a practical guide to help employers make a case for a renewed focus on health and wellness at board level, and to provide them with the everyday solutions to apply in their workplace. To create The Blueprint, the views of employees and employers at some of the country’s most established brands and innovative start-ups were garnered, collated and collected, focusing on five central business areas.
Read about them at: www.smartmessages.net/webversion/584205

Martin Pollins

Martin Pollins

Managing Director at Bizezia
Martin Pollins is a Chartered Accountant with wide experience in corporate finance and business management. He holds a number of directorships and has served on the boards of several companies, including those listed on the London Stock Exchange, AIM and OFEX.

He was a Council member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales from 1988 to 1996.

Martin Pollins ran his own firm based in Sussex and was the first Accountancy firm in the UK to advertise on television and Martin went on to create and launch the CharterGroup Partnership (the UK's first Accountancy network) and then LawGroup UK (one of the largest networks of lawyers in the country).

Martin started work on the Bizezia concept in 1996, developing the broad range of information resources and products over the past 18 years.
Martin Pollins
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