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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Invest in your marketing with social media and video

John McKeown of Lakes Creative gives some marketing tips for Cumbrian firms

John McKeown
John McKeown

With the downturn in the economy, it seems that businesses are caught in a Catch 22 situation.

Marketing is necessary though when turnover is down, spending money on marketing seems almost frivolous to some, so imagine how that seems when it comes to spending money on online marketing for the first time.

Print - whether newspapers or magazines - is all some businesses have ever known and
for some it works well. Some are perhaps finding that a combination of print, radio and having a well made website is a solution that covers all bases and with the latter, gives customers what I believe to be an important first step into digital marketing.

However, a business I know in the north-east has ceased all print advertising in favour of enhancing their website and has seen no loss of trade but saved 80% on its annual advertising costs.

So where is the best place to spend your marketing budget? Well that can depend on a lot of factors but there are some marketing methods that are free.

Having a Facebook fan page for your business linked to a Twitter account, gives you exposure on the world's biggest social media platform and saves you double the effort by posting your updates automatically to the second biggest.

Keeping people updated on developments within your business or your industry can be more interesting than you might think and works particularly well in the hospitality industry for example, to publicise special offers, events and a specific area of your business.

I know a lot of people glaze over when social media is mentioned so there are people like ourselves who can help manage your social media campaign, saving you time in the process.

Essential for social media is content. What are you going to show everyone who has taken an interest in your daily business? Photographs and blogs can be effective though this is where YouTube and our services come to the fore.

YouTube is both a social media platform and search engine connected to Google, so a well optimised video of relevant content, can demonstrate in a nutshell what your business is all about and boost your position in the search engine rankings at the same time.

A large hotel for example, with a range of services such as weddings, conferences, leisure facilities and fine dining, should at the very least have a short video on their website informing customers of the benefits of a stay there. I would go further to suggest that they should have a a video for each area of their business. These videos should be hosted on a custom YouTube channel where they can easily shared by email or through Facebook etc.

Colin Johnson, head of the leisure and tourism team at accountants Moore and Smalley, of  Kendal, warned hotels against reducing their marketing too far.

“Cutting back too much can lead to reductions in sales for years to come and hoteliers need to ascertain which areas of marketing are not working and concentrate on more effective marketing techniques to find ways of attracting customers.”

You might think video is an expensive means of marketing though that's not necessarily the case. A video we produced recently had within two weeks, been viewed hundreds of  times and lead directly to bookings.

Here it is - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FS9lKzDIzk&sns=em or watch it below 

 

Iʼm sure there are many companies out there who donʼt think a video or social media would be suitable for their business but if you think a little differently, you might come up with a solution that sets you apart from your competition. Maybe itʼs time for a Marketing Makeover!

By By John McKeown, Director at Lakes Creative Limited.
Published: May 13, 2012

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