3 Jul 2010

Harnessing Social Networks for your business

If you've got a website, but not doing anything to drive people to your website, you're probably not getting much sales out of that investment. If you haven't got a website, you're seriously at the bottom of the learning curve, but no worries, those that have got one but do not market it aren't very far ahead, you can still catch up. You'll probably have heard from your children or your neighbour's children about facebook and twitter and wonder how or what these things are?

You've gone onto these websites, but do not know how these things can do for you. Hopefully, we'll have some ideas for you to help you to demystify these seemingly challenging social networks.

Many businesses are on Facebook promoting their products and their brand through the use of the myriad of tools available on this social network.

The key is to work on one social media at a time, and have very clear objectives what you wish to achieve, then break that main objective into small tasks which help you achieve that main objective.

But firstly, you'll of course need a Facebook account. That's not too difficult, it only takes 5 minutes to get one setup and then you're ready to "Rock and Roll".
After setting up your Facebook account, you may want to setup a Facebook page for your brand / business. This will allow you to do many things for your business - like gather customer feedback, promote and advertise your brand/product on Facebook and share news and information with prospective clients.

You would know that Word of Mouth marketing is by far a very effective tool as opposed to mass advertising.  Consumers have always valued opinions expressed directly to them. Business owners like you and me spend tons of money and heaps of hours to advertise and promote our brand/product/business, yet often what really makes up a consumer’s mind is not only simple but also free: a word-of-mouth recommendation from a trusted source.  As consumers overwhelmed by product choices tune out the ever-growing barrage of traditional marketing, word of mouth cuts through the noise quickly and effectively.

Well lets face it, we've all got competitors, heck if we didn't have any competitors, the product/business must be so new that the market may not even be able to accept it. You'll still need social networks to create awareness (but I digress).

The market (be it B2B or B2C) has amplified and accelerated its reach to the point where word of mouth is no longer an act of intimate, one-on-one communication. Today, it also operates on a one-to-many basis: product reviews are posted online and opinions disseminated through social networks. This is one of the very useful aspects of social networks, but you will need to manage it very carefully, because you can receive both Positive as well as Negative responses. In appropriate responses to Negative comments or bad service recovery will not just result in loss of 1 client, but many.

Hence you may wish to engage a social media expert or consultant to help you with such an exercise or attend a workshop on Social Media marketing. We'll keep you updated when we have such courses available. 

Women in business

When I started in business back in 1999, I probably wasn't as I am today. Many women entrepreneurs build confidence over the years, although I (think) I lacked in confidence, but I had a great ambition - that was to succeed in any business I did. And of course, my ambition for my business then was to build my own brand of apparel and have my own specialty shop was a little overly ambitious. And that business had failed and we lost a large amount of money in it, and went into debt.

However that did not discourage me, and I was able to survive with my small real estate deals that I brokered, but not to run a business was just not for me. I popped right back in to run a F&B distribution business which I still do today.

I'll be launching a mini-series of stories of local women entrepreneurs, and what makes them tick, how do they manage their life, family and business. If you would like to find out more, stay tuned to this blog.

2 Feb 2008

Chinese New Year - Going Green!

Chinese New Year is that time of year when there is over-consumption of nearly everything and for some businesses - it is pulling off all the stops to get consumers spending (yes possibly even their last dollar).

Many of these displays are made of large cardboards, plywoord, and large marketing posters, flyers, promotional material are printed all just for this CNY. After this Thursday - all this will be passe, and soon after that - will be removed and sent to the dumps.

There must be a much more eco-friendly method of doing marketing - Go Digital!

Singapore has a high penetration of mobile phone users - it only makes sense to use mobile digital advertising as the alternative to achieve a big impact! However, most businesses are still relying on traditional means to bring their CNY promotions across.

30 Jan 2008

Ozone's Mega event in December

I have been guilty in the First Degree (not of love), but of not posting on my blog!
Yes I have been so pre-occupied with my businesses since December. That was when Ozone had organised a mega barter event, and it had a fantastic turn out of several hundred participants, Ozone barter members and public as well.

My own guests (mainly my family, friends and some of my business friends), dropped by and had a ball of a time.

It also spin-off lots of good PR for Ozone Barter as well.
Out of this entire exercise, I realised that we didn't do enough marketing for the event. As it is our very first mega event. And given that it is our virgin attempt at bringing the barter concept to the masses, and given that it was in deed in a remote place - like Changi Coast Road (some ulu ulu place in changi, near the airport) did have its difficulties. But we did pull it off, quite well - as a virgin.

With that, we have greater experience, in dealing and managing the marketing and publicity for such events in the future. We also realise that PR is really important to a company. Our Spin Doctors - did a very good job getting us radio spots - on 938 Live, WanBao, ShinMin newspaper, Biz Times, Straits Times - was really fantastic.

25 Oct 2007

Event Organising vs exam jittery parents

It has been slightly over a month since I last posted. Yes it seemed really like ages. And I probably might have aged tremendously since the last post. If you cannot see me (what an obviously ridiculous question to ask a reader), you can't see the tired look in my eyes.

But I digress. Today I am writing about my barter trade events. It's the Exam Period again. As predictable as the sun rising from the east, this time of the year, many parents are jittery over their kids sitting for school exams up to those sitting for the O levels. But how does that affect my events. Many of these parents are worried that if they are not seated next to their children, their children will suffer pre-exam symptoms and hence unable to come and attend my business events.


This period is also where game arcades, movie cinemas, hip-hangout places become semi-deserted.

Depressing that my business friends have to babysit (in some cases teenager-sit) and ensure that they revise for their exams.

Perhaps that's why the Asia Outdoor Advertising expo and Wine for Asia expo is held specifically in this week. They want to keep those people who are hyper-jittery out of fun expos like these 2. BTW, I'll be dropping by at WFA today, and perhaps tomorrow drop by the AOA expo. Hope to load up some nice pics for all of you to take a look