Elaine Fogel

business cards

top-tenAs I did on Friday for the nonprofit sector, here are my top 10 small and medium business marketing blog posts from last year:

Study Says Small-Medium Businesses Seeing Higher Twitter ROI

A recent study by BIA/Kelsey’s Local Commerce Monitor says that small-medium businesses (SMBs) perceived their Twitter ROI as “excellent” (10-19 times spend; 18.8%) or “extraordinary” (20+ times spend; 12.3%), up from 25% of advertisers in last year’s survey and 17.1% in 2011. But, there’s something missing here.

Why We Still Need Business Cards

The demise of the 3½ x 2″ business card is a myth. If you’re working, you still need a business card. Why?

Is Your B2B Company Sending the Right Brand Messages?

Your B2B (business-to-business) company may not be sending the “right” brand messages, according to newly-released McKinsey research. It appears that many companies are using ineffective brand messaging to engage their customers and prospects. The research suggests, “a marked apparent divergence between the core messages companies communicate about their brands and the characteristics their customers value most.” Oh-oh.

Companies Wanting to Achieve Social Impact Require Measured Approach

No matter how small or large your company is, if it’s involved in cause marketing – supporting a charitable cause – there are new guidelines out for you. According to the 2013 Cone Communications Social Impact Study, social impact is the new standard for how companies address social and environmental issues to drive meaningful and positive change.

Smaller B2B Companies Outdo Larger Ones on Content Marketing Strategy

Here’s a switch. Smaller businesses – those with 10-99 employees – are outdoing large companies with over 1000 employees on content marketing strategy. Almost half of smaller businesses (48%) have a documented content strategy, compared with 41% of large organizations, according to a newly-released study from the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs. And, get this…

Don’t Forget Customers During Organizational Change

Most smaller businesses and nonprofits exist to serve their customers. But sometimes, they take their eyes off the ball during organizational change or growth. And, that’s not a good thing. The customer experience is a key factor in building brand loyalty for any organization. Every brand touchpoint must offer a positive, exceptional experience. When that experience is lackluster or inconsistent, the risk for customer attrition rises.

9 Essential Elements of an Effective Smaller Business Website

Right now, your website is like a bucket with a hole in the bottom; maybe several. Trickles of your diligent investment to gain targeted traffic are going to waste and the holes must be plugged up before they cost you any more money. The number of considerations in a strong homepage is vast, making it easy to overlook business essentials that can cost you clients. Here are 9 critical website elements to make sure this doesn’t happen.

Do You Feel Pulled in Multiple Marketing Directions?

Content marketers want you to believe that content is everything in marketing now. Same thing with the in-bound marketers, mobile marketers, database marketers, SEO (search engine optimization) marketers, social media marketers, and so on and so on…

Keep Your Small Biz Social Media Interaction Personal

It’s funny how it works… small businesses want to look bigger than they are, while corporations want to appear smaller and more personal. No one’s ever satisfied, right? One thing’s for sure. When it comes to interacting on social media sites, being personal works best no matter the size of your business.

Let’s Make 2013 the Year of Integrated Marketing

Of all the marketing challenges we face in the business and nonprofit sectors, there’s one that is “fixable.”  Integration. What is marketing integration?



Here’s to a successful year in 2014 to all my SMB colleagues and friends!

business-cardThe demise of the 3½ x 2″ business card is a myth. If you’re working, you still need a business card. Why?

Here are seven good reasons:

1. They’re so easy to use. Business cards are the smallest form of advertising for your company or organization. Stash them in your pocket or purse in an attractive business card holder and you’ll look über professional when you whip them out.

2. They’re cheap to print. There are all kinds of business card offers online and offline. Some are cheaper than others to print. When you order cards, make sure that you’re comparing apples to apples in your specifications when you’re getting quotes. Some companies’ sizes are smaller or the stock is thinner. Our company charges $40 for 1000 cards on 14-pt white card stock, full color and bleed on both sides, and Aqueous coating. That comes out to 4¢/card! Now, that’s an inexpensive direct marketing tool. No stamps, no e-mail… you hand your business cards to people in person. Imagine that?! Continue reading

Guest BloggerGuest post by Sue Fenton

(British spelling has been changed to U.S. spelling)

You have probably read article and books, or listened to speakers, explain why we should change from print to embrace digital marketing. After all, it is the modern way as more people leave print behind in favor of the new, cost-effective, convenient way to achieve potential mass exposure.

But, should we really abandon this traditional, tried and tested method?

We must remember that crafting good content and careful branding are important skills which are transferable between print and digital media. The increasing bombardment by digital messages means that printed materials generally have a higher rate of being read.

In addition, response rates to e-mail marketing have significantly declined over the years while direct mail rates have increased, even if to a lesser extent. Nowadays, print is environmentally acceptable with paper derived from sustainable sources, recycling, and eco-friendly inks.

Printing’s Reach

The reach of printed messages can be widespread, including people’s homes, their work, other businesses, social events, and business conferences. The very nature of print material allows you to reach a demographic or niche audience that may be less active online or alternatively, receive too many digital messages to notice your message.

It’s also an ideal way for you to tap into your local market. Handing out business cards, flyers, or brochures at in-person business events gives you a powerful and effective networking opportunity.

With today’s fast-paced communications, sending a personalized letter to customers and clients can often stand out more than an e-mail in their inboxes. How about mailing them discount vouchers on their birthdays?

Personalize it!

Did you know that you can easily personalize your greetings on postcards, letters, and flyers using your database? Personalizing your marketing campaign has been shown to produce a 33% higher return on investment.

Do not visualize your marketing campaign in black and white terms, as either traditional print or digital media. They should complement each other. Printed materials should refer to your Web site, Facebook, and Twitter presence.

By using QR codes in print, the two media integrate effectively as people with mobile devices are directed to your Web site or landing page. Over 60% of specific online searches are believed to originate from printed messages.

So, don’t miss out on new opportunities. As we become more and more swamped by digital advertising - which is easy to ignore and quick to delete - the tangible nature of traditional print media should form part of your overall marketing campaign.

Is your organization using print marketing? If yes, how are you integrating it with digital marketing?


sue fentonSue Fenton has worked in the managed print services for several years and has seen how the industry has evolved to meet the challenges of digital marketing. She currently works for Print and Digital Associates in the U.K.

For custom printing in the U.S., check out my company: Solutions Marketing & Consulting! EF

Check out my new book!
Sign Up For My Newsletter!
Subscribe to My Blog

Use your favorite feed. 

Contributor to:
My Company
Solutions Marketing & Consulting
Archived Posts