Budgeting for the Entrepreneur

Budgeting for the Entrepreneur

Budgeting for your business is one of the most important systems you need to master. Of course, this is easier said than done. As a business owner, you probably have rent or a mortgage to pay on top of payroll costs, utilities, tax payments, and more. 

 

There are several small steps and simple tools you can use to make the big task of budgeting less complicated. 

 

What is a budget? 

 

A budget is an estimation of revenue and expense over a specific future period of time. It is usually gathered and re-evaluated periodically. For a business, a budget is an internal management tool. Budgets are essential to improve efficiency, aid in goal setting, measuring outcomes, and planning for possibilities. 

 

Budgeting isn’t exclusive to your business. Staying accountable with your own income and expenses is just as important as keeping your business afloat. Chances are high that if your personal budget is in shambles, your business won’t be doing much better. 

 

Research 

Depending on what your business is, you have some options to research what to expect for your financial future. You might have to make assumptions based on your location, hours of operation, and type of business. If there are similar businesses to your own locally or online, you can try obtaining information about weekly revenue and consumer patterns from them. 

 

Your goal through research is to find out what your average weekly expenses for overhead, utilities, materials, payroll, etc. might be. If you’ve been in business for a while, you can monitor your past expenses and calculate in additional costs. 

 

Organization 

To be successful with your budget, you need to stay organized. Create a spreadsheet monitoring every expense and income your business has. Include basic bills, employee salaries, taxes, insurance, and small things like picking up new printer ink or paperclips.

 

Cut Costs when Beneficial

Always keep your eyes open for ways to minimize expenses. Factor in whether or not the lower cost is associated with lower quality, and if your business can afford either loss. Wait to make purchases until the beginning of a new billing cycle. 

 

Budgeting Apps & Software

There are plenty of resources out there to assist you with the many facets of budgeting. Here are a few we recommend: 

 

 

  • Quickbooks Enterprise 

 

      • Quickbooks is an accounting software for small businesses. This app allows users to keep track of pretty much every aspect of budgeting. It can be tailored to work for your industry and helps you make better decisions with advanced inventory tools. You can make and receive payments and quickly create powerful reports to give you insight into your business.
    • Mint 
      • Mint is one of the oldest and most well-known budgeting apps. It’s owned by the same company as Quickbooks and TurboTax. There are many features to assist you in tracking and managing your money. Mint automatically categorizes transactions and tracks them against your budget. You can adjust your budget at anytime as things change within your life and your business.

 

  •  YNAB (You Need a Budget) 

 

    • You Need a Budget has a unique approach to budgeting. You build your budget based on your income, accounting for every single dollar. This app keeps you aware of everything you spend money on, and makes you think about whether these purchases are necessary. This is a good app for personal budgeting, but can be helpful as a business owner, as well. 

While you work on your budget, consider how building good habits can improve your life personally and in business. As you work on your budget, you will start developing healthy habits that will make budgeting more intuitive the longer you work at it. 

 

Which Social Platforms fit your business

Which Social Platforms fit your business

Every modern business needs a social media presence. But when you’re starting out, it can be hard to navigate where to start. We broke down the basics of the top social media platforms on our recent blog Comparing Social Media Platforms. Now let’s get down to details and discover which platforms you should invest your time into. 

 

Before you can decide which social media platforms to use, you need to know two things: 

 

  • Who is your target audience? (Who is your ideal customer?) 
  • What is your goal? 

 

To hone in on your target audience, ask yourself these 10 questions: 

 

  1. What is the average age of your target audience? 
  2. What is your ideal client’s average income? 
  3. Where is your audience located? 
  4. Are they homeowners? 
  5. How do they intake information? 
  6. What are their hobbies? 
  7. Do they have kids? 
  8. What industry do they work in? 
  9. What problems and challenges do they face? 
  10. Who are my most loyal customers? 

 

Once you have answered all these questions, you’re ready to decide which social platforms to use. Only choose two to start out. After you have mastered those two, you can pick up a third. But don’t try to master every social media platform all at once. You want to put in greater effort into fewer platforms in order to see success. 

 

Social Media Platform Breakdown (based on a 2019 Pew Research Center Report)

 

Facebook

  • 62 percent men, 74 percent women 
  • 81 percent of 18-29 year olds, 78 percent of 30-49 year olds, 65 percent of 50-64 year olds, and 41 percent of those 65 and older report they use Facebook. 
  • 75 percent of Urban dwellers, 67 percent of Suburban households, and 58 percent of those in a rural setting use Facebook. 
  • 60 percent of those with a high school degree or less, 71 percent of people with some college education, and 77 percent of college graduates report using Facebook. 
  • 66 percent of people with an income less than $30K, 74 percent of those with an income between $30K-49,999, 70 percent of those with a $50K-$74,999 income, and 75 percent of people with an income of $75K+ say they use Facebook. 

 

Instagram

  • 30 percent of men and 39 percent of women say they use Instagram 
  • People who are 65+ are less likely to be on Instagram with 10 percent of that age range on the platform, 21 percent of 50-64 year olds, 40 percent of 30-49 year olds, and 64 percent of 18-29 year old are reportedly on Instagram. If you have a younger audience, Instagram is definitely a platform you should focus on. 
  • 42 percent of Urban dwellers, 34 percent of Suburban households, and 25 percent of those in a rural setting use Instagram
  • 29 percent of those with a high school degree or less, 36 percent of people with some college education, and 42 percent of college graduates report using Instagram. 
  • 30 percent of people with an income less than $30K, 42 percent of those with an income between $30K-49,999, 32 percent of those with a $50K-$74,999 income, and 42 percent of people with an income of $75K+ say they use Instagram. 

 

Twitter

  • 23 percent of men and 24 percent of women say they use Instagram 
  • People who are 65+ are less likely to be on Twitter with 8 percent of that age range on the platform, 19 percent of 50-64 year olds, 27 percent of 30-49 year olds, and 40 percent of 18-29 year old are reportedly on Twitter
  • 29 percent of Urban dwellers, 23 percent of Suburban households, and 17 percent of those in a rural setting use Instagram
  • 18 percent of those with a high school degree or less, 25 percent of people with some college education, and 32 percent of college graduates report using Twitter. 
  • 20 percent of people with an income less than $30K, 21 percent of those with an income between $30K-49,999, 26 percent of those with a $50K-$74,999 income, and 32 percent of people with an income of $75K+ say they use Facebook. 

 

Pinterest

  • 16 percent of men and 41 percent of women say they use Pinterest  
  • 16 percent of the 65+ age range are on Pinterest, 26 percent of 50-64 year olds, 34 percent of 30-49 year olds, and 34 percent of 18-29 year old are reportedly on Pinterest
  • 29 percent of Urban dwellers, 31 percent of Suburban households, and 28 percent of those in a rural setting use Instagram
  • 18 percent of those with a high school degree or less, 32 percent of people with some college education, and 40 percent of college graduates report using Instagram. 
  • 20 percent of people with an income less than $30K, 32 percent of those with an income between $30K-49,999, 34 percent of those with a $50K-$74,999 income, and 39 percent of people with an income of $75K+ say they use Facebook. 

YouTube

  • 75 percent of men and 72 percent of women say they use YouTube
  • 40 percent of the 65+ age range use YouTube, 68 percent of 50-64 year olds, 85 percent of 30-49 year olds, and 91 percent of 18-29 year old are reportedly on YouTube. 
  • 80 percent of Urban dwellers, 74 percent of Suburban households, and 59 percent of those in a rural setting use YouTube
  • 65 percent of those with a high school degree or less, 74 percent of people with some college education, and 85 percent of college graduates report using Instagram. 
  • 68 percent of people with an income less than $30K, 78 percent of those with an income between $30K-49,999, 77 percent of those with a $50K-$74,999 income, and 84 percent of people with an income of $75K+ say they use Facebook. 

 

Hopefully these breakdowns gave you a better idea of which platforms you need to be on. We’ll dive even deeper on an upcoming blog about which types of businesses are on each platform, so stay tuned!

 

Let little moments fuel you

Let little moments fuel you

For a very long time, I thought everything had to be perfect. Before I presented a project to a client or to the world via Facebook or Instagram, I wanted it to be absolutely perfect. By perfect I mean 100 percent flawless. Every spelling error needed to be fixed, all the punctuation double checked, all the formatting and grammar had to be perfect.

I quickly had to realize that done is better than perfect. This doesn’t mean I can be lazy. There’s a big difference between imperfection and laziness. But if I don’t follow “Done is better than perfect,” I can get so caught up on perfecting everything that I never finish the project.

I use the high priority, low priority, urgent, not urgent punnett square. I keep this in the back of my mind with each task I assign a team member and every assignment that comes on my plate. My natural tendency is to put everything in the high priority/urgent square. I have to remind myself that some tasks can fall into other categories. Not everything can be done right away. I also have to remind myself to celebrate the small wins.  

So, how do I let little moments fuel me?

Celebrate the small wins 

As a high strung personality, I want to continuously go, go go, and my tendency is to forget to stop and celebrate. When I have everything in high priority/high importance, I feel anxious. I make every single thing a big deal — every email, text, call feels like it needs to be taken care of immediately. When I think like that, I can’t ever let myself relax.

Letting Little Moments Fuel You - KRose Marketing

I have to tell myself, OK, that blog got recorded. I accomplished that task. I need to take 5 minutes and be proud of that instead of moving right on to the next blog and being frustrated that I don’t get 5 blogs recorded.

Letting little moments fuel me means that I am taking time to stop and celebrate success. When I get a blog recorded I’ll listen to my favorite song on the radio before I listen to the next one. (I know I talk about not listening to the radio, but because I’m about halfway through writing my book, I have stopped listening to audiobooks and most business podcasts so I can be truly creative in my own way and not in someone else’s way.)

It means letting some things wait until tomorrow and letting other things wait until next week and being OK with that. It’s important to communicate with my team what can wait and what can’t wait. But what causes me the most anxiety is when I put something in high priority/importance and someone in my team doesn’t. Then I’m wondering why they didn’t just stop everything and do it right then. It’s because they put it in a different category, which goes back to communication.

Remember the positives

I have a folder of kind words people have sent me about how I have impacted their business or their lives. If I’m having a really frustrating day, I’ll often look at them and read through them. It’s easy to forget the positive remarks. I can have 100 people give me feedback and if one out of 100 is negative, I remember that negative feedback. But I strive to hold on to the positive feedback now. I make sure if I’m having a negative or frustrating day and need some little moments, I look at those kind words.

Letting little moments fuel you - KRose Marketing

I also ask for encouragement from the team. If I’m doing something that I’m not feeling the best about, I might send a message to my teammates and say, “I’m needing some support, are you liking this project? Do you feel like it’s going well?” Their support gives me an extra push and I have the momentum to keep going to the next project.

 

Download our Monthly Success Guide to stay organized and move your business forward.  And don’t forget to check out our new YouTube channel for the inside scoop on how to grow your social media following, hacks for busy entrepreneurs, and a heck of a lot more. 

Let Little Moments Fuel You - KRose Marketing

 

 

Let Little Moments Fuel You - KRose Marketing
Blog Recap! 10/7-10/11

Blog Recap! 10/7-10/11

Happy Friday guys! 

 

You know what’s coming…our weekly recap! 

 

So this week was a little different because we shared TWO small businesses! 

 

Let’s dive in 

 

Monday: Small Business Spotlight: JRock Jewelry 

  • Montana local, Jessica Hanson took a leap of faith to pursue her dream and her craft of making statement pieces of jewelry 
  • Her style is so unique that there is something for everyone 
  • Check out Jessica’s story behind her business and see some of the pieces I LOVED! 

 

Tuesday: Comparing Social Media Platforms for Business Marketing 

  • Not sure which platforms fit your business? 
  • We have broken down each platform so you can decide which will work for you! 
  • Believe it or not, some businesses should NOT be on Instagram… why? Because their audience may not be there! 
  • Check out our quick guide! 

 

Wednesday: Small Business Spotlight: Amanda Radke 

  • Remember how Ellen announced on instagram that we should eat less meat? 
  • Amanda has been going viral on social media to try and tell the TRUE story behind agriculture and ranchers! 
  • We are here to support her the whole way and you should too! 
  • If you’re on the fence, read her story and it just might change your mind 

 

Thursday: Answering you FAQs 

  • Being in marketing, I get a ton of questions so I figured I would jot down some of the big ones that seem to be pretty common 
  • Social Media questions? Marketing? Business? Being an Entrepreneur? I got you! 

 

Have a wonderful weekend and I will see you next week!

 

Small Business Spotlight: Amanda Radke

Small Business Spotlight: Amanda Radke

Howdy!  

My name is Amanda Radke, and I’m a cattle rancher, wife, mom of three, writer, speaker, children’s book author and collector of cool graphic tees.

 

My website — www.amandaradke.com — launched in March 2019 with the release of my second children’s book, “Can-Do Cowkids.”

 

I’ve been freelance writing and speaking at agricultural events for the 13 years now, and you might recognize my name from my blog, BEEF Daily, at www.beefmagazine.com

 

Throughout my career, projects typically came my way through word of mouth. I wanted to find a better way to promote my communications work, so that’s what prompted me to create my own website, which now houses my speaking topics, schedule, classroom programs, and of course, the western gift boutique!

 

With the book launch, I decided to add inventory to my website to create a fun shopping experience for folks checking out my books. I wasn’t sure what people would gravitate towards, so I simply curated a collection of western gifts and clothing items that I personally loved and hoped for the best.

 

Turns out, people were really digging my graphic tees, ag-themed greeting cards, coffee mugs, tea towels and farm animal toys! I continue to add more inventory to the site all the time, and honestly, it’s really been a fun, rewarding and  creative outlet for me outside of my writing work.

 

And while graphic tees are the BOMB (they are comfy, cute and send a strong message), my true passion is in promoting agricultural literacy with my children’s books. I’m currently working on my third book project with my talented illustrator, Michelle Weber. 

 

Together, we plan to continue this important work of sharing accurate agricultural stories, and we are now seeking commodity groups to partner with in this endeavor. As an example, our third book is a collaboration with Georgia’s peanut farmers, and I can’t wait to share it with all of you! If your agricultural organization might be interested, please email me at amanda.radke@live.com!

 

I want to give a big thank you to KRose Company for the opportunity to share my story! I would love to connect with y’all online!  Friend me on Facebook or follow me on Instagram at @amandaradke. I would love to meet you! 

Comparing Social Media Platforms for Business Marketing

Comparing Social Media Platforms for Business Marketing

When you run a small business, social media is an incredible tool for marketing. Businesses can connect directly with their audience and instantly respond and update. 

 

It can be a challenge to know which social media platform is best for your specific marketing goals. From Facebook to Instagram to Twitter to Pinterest, and more, social media platforms have a wide range of benefits and limitations. Trying to master every single one all at once can quickly lead to burn out. 

 

We want to break down the top social media platforms so you can discover which ones are best for you to utilize. 

 

Facebook 

 

There are 1.5 billion daily Facebook users, allowing business owners to reach a high number of potential customers. 

 

Key Features 

 

There is an emphasis on visuals from the profile and cover photo to uploads on a page. Businesses can advertise to users who don’t follow their page. 

 

Targeting 

 

Businesses can post and advertise in front of very specific groups based on your own criteria. You can reach out to the exact demographic you are looking for. From special interests, location, gender, age, and more, you can tailor who will see your content. 

 

Analytics

 

With Facebook Analytics, you can track conversion and measure engagement, which allows you to improve your future marketing tactics. 

 

Limits

 

The main age range of Facebook users is over the age of 35. If your target market is younger than this, you might not be able to reach as many potential customers as you could on another platform. Facebook has become more of a pay-to-play platform, where businesses need to purchase ads to be seen. Recent changes to the newsfeed make it harder to reach followers without promoted content. 

 

Twitter 

 

Twitter has more than 300 million monthly users and is a popular spot for small business owners. 

 

Communication 

Facebook is great for online advertising, while Twitter excels in its ability to allow direct communication. 

 

Connections 

 

Many users go to Twitter to get news and share opinions. People can connect and build relationships with specific people based on their interests. 

 

Networking 

 

Through Twitter, small business owners can build relationships with potential customers, network with professionals and improve their customer’s experience. 

 

Limits 

 

Twitter doesn’t offer the vast targeting potential that Facebook does. You can create targeted ad campaigns, but you’re limited to the 140 character limit post. 

 

Instagram 

 

Instagram continues to grow in popularity with 600 million+ visitors per month. It is fully integrated with Facebook and Twitter with unlimited photo uploads.  

To check out our instagram account, be sure to follow @krosecompany on IG

 

Targeting 

 

Instagram is owned by Facebook and offers similar targeting abilities to reach the correct audience. 

 

Engagement 

 

Instagrammers are nearly 60 times as likely to share an Insta-post than one from Facebook and 120 times more likely than a Twitter post. Advertising on Instagram is far more likely to get the “word-of-mouth” shares that can spread your ad. 

 

Brand Awareness 

 

You can hone in on your brand’s voice on Instagram. Images make more lasting impressions than text. You’ve heard the phrase “a picture is worth 1000 words.” The specific word count is arbitrary, but it’s true that images tend to stick with us more than words alone. 

 

Limits 

 

Nearly opposite to Facebook, Instagrammers are mainly 15-35 year olds. If your demographic is older than this, you’re less likely to reach them. Posts and messages through Instagram don’t support clickable links, which means you need to make sure everything is easy for users to copy and paste or simply remember.

 

Pinterest 

 

There are more than 290 million monthly users on Pinterest. This number is less impressive than Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, but there are some key benefits to this lesser used platform. Pinterest users are much more likely to purchase based on what they find on the platform. Often they are looking to Pinterest for a specific purchase. 

 

Web Traffic 

 

Images uploaded to Pinterest automatically hyperlink their source. This makes it much easier to drive traffic from Pinterest to your website. 

 

Branding 

 

You can increase brand awareness with promoted pins. Tracking performance and analytics is helpful as you develop your brand further. 

 

Limits 

 

Most of Pinterest users are female, which means if your demographic is more male, you’re less likely to reach them on this platform. 

 

As a small business owner, you are going to want to sit down and decide which platforms you should put time into. We hope this helped you decide which ones are better for your demographic. 

 

Small Business Spotlight: Jessica Hanson, JRock Jewelry

Small Business Spotlight: Jessica Hanson, JRock Jewelry

 Jessica Hanson is an incredibly talented jewelry maker that has refined her skills to bring people pieces of jewelry that speak to them. It was SO hard for me not to want to buy every little piece. I saw a lot of her work on instagram and knew we had to collaborate because pieces like these need to be seen! Check out Jessica’s story below! 

From Jessica Hanson, JRock Jewelry :

So my story starts back in highschool when I took a jewelry class from an amazing person that helped me decide which path I was going to take towards my future.  Granted, I took a little bit of a scenic route to get to where I am now, but here I am. I confided in my teacher one day that I felt like I had to make one of two choices. Go to school to be an X-Ray tech like my family hoped I would for a stable career path or face my fear of telling them I wanted to go for Goldsmithing and jewelry design. Her answer was simple and I still remember it to this day.  

She said I could take the road where I knew I would be financially set and risk wondering whether I would be happy with my choice or I could take a chance to do something I was passionate about and not be certain of what kind of living I would make from it. After that i knew what I had to do. Fast forward to 2 years ago and several odd jobs that paid the bills, I left a stable career in a high end jewelry store that I had been at for several years. My husband was offered an opportunity we couldn’t refuse and I was going to be able to stay home with our two small children. After months of being at home I knew it was time to start my own business. I was tired of scrolling through social media and seeing all of these people I followed that were living out their truths and creating these amazing pieces. It was literally eating away at me that I wasn’t creating or using my talents I so enjoyed. I had loved my job at the jewelry store for several reasons but I still felt like a part of me was missing. When I started making my own jewelry again, the love and support of the responses I received just baffled me. I can honestly say the last year of my life has been the most trying yet transformative I have had.  

I can’t explain the feeling of creating something for someone and seeing the joy it brings them. Every day I am inspired more and more to show my two little girls that they can make their own way in life and enjoy every moment along the way. All I want for them from this life is to be able to make a life for themselves that brings joy and passion to them. The love and support my family and friends have shown me so far has been tremendous and I could never thank them enough. I hope I can continue to create, learn, and grow until it is no longer a possibility. It’s a cliche but life really is so short and why wouldn’t I try to be the happiest while doing it.

 

Be sure to check out her Facebook page: JRock Jewelry and IG @jrockjewelry

She even gave us a discount code! Use code KROSE15 for 15% off!

Blog Recap! 10/7-10/11

Blog Recap 9/30-10/4

Happy Friday! 

 

You know what that means, it’s recap day! 

 

This week our blogs covered a bunch of categories so in case you missed any, here’s a recap with all the links! 

 

Monday: Staying Accountable by Asking the Right Questions 

  • Are you holding yourself accountable? Learn how to be asking yourself the tough questions that are SO necessary 
  • By not being realistic with yourself, you are your own worst enemy 
  • Ask the hard questions, face the facts, and let’s get going! 

 

Tuesday: Should I have an Email List or Not? 

  • Have you been on the fence about if your business needs an email list? 
  • Here we help show you how that answer is always YES 
  • Check out how to get started! 

 

Wednesday: How To Benefit from a Hotel Rewards Program 

  • Do you travel a lot for work like I do? 
  • Every entrepreneur travels at some point and I want to share some tips I’ve learned over the years! 
  • These programs have really come in handy so if they’ve helped me, they will help you! 

 

Thursday: Biggest Takeaways from our Email Marketing Blog Series 

  • We have covered  TON in email marketing so we broke it down even further 
  • One summary of everything we covered on Email Marketing, is just a click away! 

 

Thank you for another great week and stay tuned for what’s coming! 

 

Have a great weekend!

 

Biggest Takeaways for our Email List Blog Series

Biggest Takeaways for our Email List Blog Series

We’ve talked a lot about email marketing recently. If you’ve been following our blog series, you are ready to take the next step to building and implementing an email marketing list and strategy. 

 

If you missed the recent blogs, don’t fret! We’re compiling the highlights for you now. Take time to read through each blog and let us know if you have any questions. 

 

What is Email Marketing and Why Do You Need it? 

 

Email marketing is the process of promoting your business through email. It is a direct marketing strategy that is similar to postal mail, minus the cost of stamps. 

 

Entrepreneurs use email marketing to reach their audience about updates, promotions, and most importantly: to build trust. Through email marketing, you can reach a larger audience and strengthen your relationship with current customers. 

 

  • Email is reliable
    • If you only have a Facebook business page, it’s not enough. You could have 10K followers on Facebook, but if Facebook goes down how will you reach them? 

Email marketing is the topmost effective resource for eCommerce businesses, driving traffic and communicating with existing and prospective customers. You have the opportunity to engage with your audience, build brand loyalty, and increase sales. Ultimately, email marketing grows your bottom line. 

Getting started: Build an Email list 

 

  • Before you start inviting all your email contacts, you should know that you can’t add anyone to your business’s email list who doesn’t opt-in. You have to use an email marketing program like Active Campaign and have an opt-in plan. 
  • Active Campaign and other programs allow you to monitor the emails you send out. You can observe how your subscribers respond and interact with your sent emails. This software tracks analytics like open and bounce rates, click-through rates, and conversions. 

 

What are opt-ins? 

 

  • Aptly titled “opt-ins” are forms of consent given by web users to acknowledge they are interested in your services or products. When users opt-in, they are allowing a business to contact them with more information. 
  • Opt-ins aren’t merely a means of being polite, they are required by law. You also must make it simple for people to opt-out — or unsubscribe — if they want off the list.  
  • Opt-in forms come in different shapes and sizes. They can be pop-ups on a homepage or landing pages. It’s much easier to build your list when you are offering something valuable. Your landing pages need to have great copy and conversion that will convert followers into email subscribers. 

Create an Email Marketing Campaign

 

  • Once you have your email list, it’s now time to use it. With your email marketing software (like Active Campaign), you can customize the content of your email with the subscriber’s name. You can even send out birthday emails and other personalized content. You have the ability to keep separate lists to send out different promotions and offers based on the audience.

 

Give, Give, Give, Sell

 

  • When someone agrees to be on your email list, you should be providing them with value from the very start. Opt-ins can be useful and educational. Once you have an email list you should continue to provide your audience with more value. For every selling email, there should be about three giving emails that benefit readers. 

Use Calls-to-Action 

 

  • In every communication with your audience — from emails to Facebook posts to in-person seminars — tell them what you want. You can use CTAs to ask people to attend an event, purchase a product, read an email, or subscribe to your social media platforms.

 

Email Marketing is a Marathon, Not a Sprint 

 

What can email marketing do for your business in the long haul? 

 

Email Marketing Benefits

  • Strengthen Customer Relationships 
    • Good quality email marketing that is consistent, relevant, and valuable helps you gain the trust of your audience. Overtime, your audience will develop a kinship with you. They’ll look forward to seeing you in their inboxes because they want to be in the loop and see what new value you are providing. You want your audience to think of you when a problem arises that you have the solution for. 
  • Expertise and Education 
    • Your audience wants what you have to offer. They want to learn more from you as a trusted authority. Continue to position yourself as an expert through the content you create and share. 

Along with updating your customers about company news, promotions, and incoming product, you should also provide some valuable education. Whether you have blogs, videos, podcasts, pamphlets, or exclusive email-only content, your audience will appreciate well-crafted information

  • Time and Cost Effective 
    • How you spend your time and money as a small business owner is critical. It can be hard knowing where to invest yourself. Creating an email marketing campaign isn’t very complicated. Once you get the hang of it, it doesn’t take much time, either. You are able to reach a large group of people in an instant through email.
  • Increases Brand Recognition 
    • The more your audience sees your name and appreciates your content, the bigger your brand becomes. Make sure your emails have your brand image and name. Keep your color palette and logo consistent in the template of your emails. You will build credibility as your name continues to be seen while you provide quality content. 
  • Reach and Grow Your Target Market 
    • Not only are you able to stay in touch with your audience regularly, but you can also reach an even larger group of people through your website opt-ins. You can promote your opt-ins through social media and on your website, on your products and email signature. 

 

How to Gather & Start and Email List 

 

In order to gather your list, you need to create and utilize a landing or lead page, create an opt-in or freebie, share that opt-in/freebie, give people a reason to stay on your list, and utilize email marketing software to easily plan your strategies.

 

  • Create an Opt-In 
    • Along with opt-ins, you can also use what is called a freebie or a freemium. This is something you are offering of a $250+ value in exchange for a person’s email address. This could be a PDF full of valuable information, a webinar, a video, a training, or a coupon. 

To create an opt-in, you need a landing page or a lead page where people can sign up for your email list. Once someone signs up, you want to immediately provide them with the free item. 

  • Share your Opt-In
    • You can create ads, Facebook ads, and other social media ads out of the opt-in you created. This is another great way to get people on your email list. You don’t see an immediate Return on Investment (ROI) from gathering your email list. But once someone is on your list, they’re that much closer to becoming a paying customer. Remember it’s a long game you are playing with your email marketing strategy. 

 

  • Create a Landing Page
    • A landing page is a focused page that invites people to sign up to learn more. They’re great for promoting with a clear call-to-action to get people on your email list. There are several landing page builders you can use including Google Sites, Unbounce, Wix, and Instapage. We often use Leadpages, which is great for advertising and selling products/services. 
  • Grow your List Further — Give People a Reason to Join your Email List
    • To avoid becoming an annoyance to inboxes everywhere, make sure you are actually providing relevant, valuable information and material. Give people a reason to stay on your list. Once a person has received their opt-in or freebie, you want them to stay active. Engage them with attention grabbing headlines and emails full of great material. Give them a reason to keep opening your emails! 
  • Utilize ActiveCampaign– This has been a game changer for us and we used it Every. Single. Day. If you are looking for a software that can handle all of your email marketing needs, this is it! We have it linked here if you want to sign up for a free trial or full service!
    • There are a lot of marketing technologies you can use to maximize your email list’s potential. After using several, we have stuck with ActiveCampaign for years now. It has flexibility, making it easy for businesses of all types to use its features for their own unique needs. 
    • ActiveCampaign has four core elements: 
      • Email Marketing 
      • Marketing Automation 
      • Sales CRM 
      • Customer Messaging

9 Steps to Sending you First Marketing Email

 

  1. Introduce yourself 
  2. Craft a welcome email 
  3. Give them an offer 
  4. Write a stellar subject line 
  5. Be aware of the preview text 
  6. Write smartly 
  7. Get to know your audience 
  8. Calls to action 
  9. Don’t overload them with too much content

 

Should I have an email list or not? 

I hope you answered this question with a big YES! Of course you need an email list. 

 

Ways to build your email list: 

  • Use Call-to-Action “Subscribe” buttons on every landing page of your website 
  • Create surveys that pop-up while a user is browsing your site 
  • Include pop up or slide-in images on your landing pages 
  • Recruit followers from your social media accounts 

 

Why you need an email list

 

  • You have control 

 

      • On social media, you are working in branded territory. When you own your own website and communicate with your audience via email, you hold the power.
         

 

  • It’s easy to update your audience at once 

 

    • Email is the best way to share a new message with your audience. Any changes to your company, products, or services can be shared quickly and easily with everyone on your email list. 

 

 

  • Email subscribers are more likely to purchase 

 

    • A person’s email inbox is, well, personal. When someone allows you to send them emails it is because they want to hear from you. They are far more likely to purchase from you as they develop trust for your business through your email communications. 

 

We have officially covered EVERYTHING in our Email Marketing series!! I know I threw a lot at you, but I promise it will pay off! All the links in this blog will take you to the specific blog on each topic in case you want to go over them again. I just wanted to lay out one big giant summary at the end to make sure we covered all the bases!

 

 

How to Benefit from a Hotel Rewards Points Program

How to Benefit from a Hotel Rewards Points Program

I find myself traveling pretty much constantly for my business. If you’re like me and you’re on the road a lot, you should consider taking advantage of a Hotel Rewards Points Program. Many different hotels offer these. I’d recommend looking into hotels you can find in the areas where you travel. 

 

Some of the popular hotel chains include: 

 

You might recognize some of those hotel names, but those large chains include great (affordable) hotels like Comfort Inn, Days Inn, Ramada, Hampton, Aloft, and Hyatt Regency. 

Be proactive and not reactive in the way you save money. Hotel rewards can come in a few different forms but benefit those who travel frequently. You can get a Hotel Rewards credit card from most of these hotel brands! If you use the credit card on basic needs like groceries and gas, while paying off your bill every month, you will start gaining points. 

 

Overtime you will accrue enough points for free or extremely discounted hotel stays, possibly even FREE. Pretty awesome, right? You’d already be spending money on gas and food, and you’ll save a ton of money while you travel. You might be thinking that we are getting affiliate money from promoting these Hotel Rewards programs, but we’re not. We just want you to help you save money where you can!

 

If the idea of another credit card isn’t right for you, you can still benefit from a rewards program. The more hotel stays you make, the more points you’ll gather. 

 

Hotel benefits are not the only way to travel smart. Remember, you want to be proactive, not reactive. Make sure to use no-fee bank cards while you’re traveling. Those annoying fees can add up quickly if you’re not paying attention. 

 

If you use WiFi while you travel, as most modern business owners do, research which locations offer free WiFi in the area you’re visiting. The last thing you want to add to your travel bill is an overpriced internet fee at a hotel. Also, if you’re not a breakfast person you might not care what the hotel offers. But if you are, then make sure to check out the breakfast they offer! Often the cheaper hotels don’t offer breakfast, adding an extra cost for you in the long run. These are just a few factors to think about as you book your next trip!

 

Travel safe and smart, my hustlers!  

If you need some ideas about what I MUST have in my truck when I travel a ton, our blog “Car Essentials for the Entrepreneur on the Go” has all the goodies!