Infographic: Small Business and Marketing

What’s your small business SEO strategy? If you’re like the many small business owners, you may be wondering how you can leverage the power of social media and online marketing to get ahead. In fact, only about 27 percent of small businesses have a current SEO plan, and when you combine that surprisingly low figure with fact that only about 40 percent of marketers are using mobile marketing tactics, it’s easy to see how sound search engine optimization practices could help you get a leg up on the competition.

Small business owners are an incredibly diverse group of people who know a lot about their chosen fields. Slightly less than half of all small businesses have more than one owner, and sixty percent of small business owners have worked in their industry for more than 20 years. That’s a lot of total combined experience. These owners are always looking for new ways to connect to their customers and clients and grow their businesses.

About 63 percent of small businesses find that social media is a good way to increase customer loyalty, and 27 percent plan to increase their investment in social media. When it comes to the impact of social media, 40 percent of small businesses find it helpful for customer reviews, 30 percent find useful for correcting problems brought up by customers, 18 percent find that it gives them a chance to defend against negative publicity, and only 5 percent feel that social media has hurt their image more than helped. If used correctly, it’s clear that social media generally has an overall positive effect on small businesses.

If your small business is one of the 52 percent that plan to increase their SEO budget, it’s important to make the most of your investment by implementing a sound small business SEO plan. You can do that with the assistance of an SEO company with lots of experience in managing successful small business SEO campaigns.

Source: https://www.seo.com/blog/small-business-marketing-infographic/

Infographic: Top Trends And Brands Of 2011 On Twitter

2012 is underway but we have one more recap to share. The popular Twitter dashboard HootSuite has put together an infographic of the top brands, topics, hash tags, “in memorium” and holiday topics on Twitter of past year.

Take a look at the Infographic below, which  lists Top 15 brands on Twitter in 2011 as well as many other top 10s

Source: https://www.dazeinfo.com/2012/01/17/top-trends-and-brands-of-2011-on-twitter-infographic/#ixzz1ji7Lva3U

Mark Cuban’s 12 Rules for Startups

Anyone who has started a business has his or her own rules and guidelines, so I thought I would add to the memo with my own. My “rules” below aren’t just for those founding the companies, but for those who are considering going to work for them, as well.  

1. Don’t start a company unless it’s an obsession and something you love.

2. If you have an exit strategy, it’s not an obsession.

3. Hire people who you think will love working there.

4. Sales Cure All. Know how your company will make money and how you will actually make sales.

5. Know your core competencies and focus on being great at them. Pay up for people in your core competencies. Get the best. Outside the core competencies, hire people that fit your culture but aren’t as expensive to pay.

6. An espresso machine? Are you kidding me? Coffee is for closers. Sodas are free. Lunch is a chance to get out of the office and talk. There are 24 hours in a day, and if people like their jobs, they will find ways to use as much of it as possible to do their jobs.

7. No offices. Open offices keep everyone in tune with what is going on and keep the energy up. If an employee is about privacy, show him or her how to use the lock on the bathroom. There is nothing private in a startup. This is also a good way to keep from hiring executives who cannot operate successfully in a startup. My biggest fear was always hiring someone who wanted to build an empire. If the person demands to fly first class or to bring over a personal secretary, run away. If an exec won’t go on sales calls, run away. They are empire builders and will pollute your company.

8. As far as technology, go with what you know. That is always the most inexpensive way. If you know Apple, use it. If you know Vista, ask yourself why, then use it. It’s a startup so there are just a few employees. Let people use what they know.

9. Keep the organization flat. If you have managers reporting to managers in a startup, you will fail. Once you get beyond startup, if you have managers reporting to managers, you will create politics.

10. Never buy swag. A sure sign of failure for a startup is when someone sends me logo-embroidered polo shirts. If your people are at shows and in public, it’s okay to buy for your own employees, but if you really think people are going to wear your branded polo when they’re out and about, you are mistaken and have no idea how to spend your money.

11. Never hire a PR firm. A public relations firm will call or email people in the publications you already read, on the shows you already watch and at the websites you already surf. Those people publish their emails. Whenever you consume any information related to your field, get the email of the person publishing it and send them a message introducing yourself and the company. Their job is to find new stuff. They will welcome hearing from the founder instead of some PR flack. Once you establish communication with that person, make yourself available to answer their questions about the industry and be a source for them. If you are smart, they will use you.

12. Make the job fun for employees. Keep a pulse on the stress levels and accomplishments of your people and reward them. My first company, MicroSolutions, when we had a record sales month, or someone did something special, I would walk around handing out $100 bills to salespeople. At Broadcast.com and MicroSolutions, we had a company shot. The Kamikaze. We would take people to a bar every now and then and buy one or ten for everyone. At MicroSolutions, more often than not we had vendors cover the tab. Vendors always love a good party.

 

This article is an edited excerpt from How to Win at the Sport of Business: If I Can Do It, You Can Do It (Diversion Books, 2011) by Mark Cuban (Available at Amazon and iTunes).