HOW ARE MILLENNIALS USING MOBILE DEVICES TO STAY CONNECTED

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, CX, Digital Design, Marketing

Millennials customers ignore any classification by definition. However, they share some common characteristics: very optimistic; self-awareness and requirements; always through technology connections and empowerment.

They breathe together with their smartphones. They are definitely a vivid proof of digital transformation, which changes the way we live, communicate, search and shop. How do you participate in the millennial generation and monetize it?

Of course, Millennials are not the only customers you need to attract and participate. However, in the era of mobile devices – the ability to take advantage of micro-time means everything – they are the key factors in determining whether you are successful or not.

A new study of college students’ mobile device habits shows that they are leaving their desktops and venture into increasingly mobile areas – advanced infrastructure must evolve to adapt.

Although the survey found that millennials spend more time browsing the Internet on their mobile phones than on the desktop, mobile web surfing only gets a 2% profit margin (45.7% compared to 43.4% for laptops or desktops).

A survey from cloud provider Domo surveyed 2,228 senior students to find out how they use mobile devices on campus.

In addition to bandwidth considerations, Citrix Systems’ infographics show that higher education institutions must have a secure network that can support the various devices brought to campus.

THERE IS A PROBLEM HOW TO ENGAGE MILLENNIALS?

Once you know who these digital customers are, what they like and how they buy, you still need to know more. How to attract millennials to keep your brand in top shape while shopping. They think that technology is taken for granted, so this is the ideal starting point.

Thinking and Action

19 of the world’s 20 millennials have smartphones, and most people check 43 times a day. There is a huge opportunity here, the app is just a part of your mobile strategy: customer assistant (robot), wearable technology, smartwatch, proximity marketing, geofencing, internet of things. Everything you do must be moved first.

Connect on any channel

Only traditional ads don’t work, and old fidelity cards or newspapers are not retained. If you want to build a successful campaign, digital channels will be the primary reference for all marketing campaigns. According to Accenture, 68% of Millennials require “a seamless, integrated experience regardless of channel.”

Ask them to contribute 

Generation Y is also known as ‘my generation’. One of the most effective ways to attract Millennials is to achieve this peculiar way of thinking by asking them to contribute to what they generate. Personalization is the keyword you never forget when dealing with powerful, strict customers.

Serve them quickly and easily

No matter what you do, it’s quick and easy. Millennials are not willing to waste time waiting for your reply. They are perfect multitaskers with short attention. If you can’t contact them at the microscopic moments they want, then you lose your customers. Make sure you have a good experience across all channels.

Keep real and epic 

Millennials look for meaningful interaction. They don’t think the price is the main brand differentiation factor; they stand out and are amazingly a true epic brand. Whether you create it by using content or disruptive technology (virtual reality), you can create a unique story based on your real brand identity.

Remember: Praise and criticism are two sides of the same coin. Offering a stunning digital customer experience, you will earn their trust and loyalty; provide bad customer experience and they will abandon you without regret.

Need more insights on how to attract Millennial customers? Download the Mobile Interactive Handbook, a series of insights that can help you overcome the challenges of digital transformation and grow your business exponentially.

Does your Brand possess these Traits??? If it does your Business on its way to being truly competitive

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, CX, Digital Design, Marketing, Social Media, UX

Competition is the most resounding word in the business world today. It commands a lot of action and moment in our busy world today, if an entrepreneur chooses to ignore it, his business takes a nose-dive down the business life cycle slope.

You want to watch out for this negligence and be up on your toes always, just like tech lovers await new tech models, then you have to possess certain traits as an entrepreneur as well as put specific structures in place.

Personality Traits That Sustains Business

 

1. Critical thinking.

When you question assumptions, claims, and viewpoints instead of just accepting them as gospel, as in “A Harvard professor said it online, so it must be true,” welcome my friend, you are thinking critically. This fundamental to smart decision making. And that, in turn, is key to being successful at just about anything.

Question everything, especially common doctrine. Listen to those who challenge your own and popularly held beliefs. Resist the pressure to view things in black and white or “us vs. them” terms. Learn to see the world in shades of grey and from different angles, viewpoints, and perspectives.

2. Focus and discipline.

Focus and discipline are always critical to success, but managing distraction has become increasingly hard. Now, more than ever, you have to learn how to shut out the noise without shutting yourself off from what really matters.

This is also not easy, but if ‘you’re too distracted and indisciplined to focus on what is critical, you ‘can’t get things done. And if you ‘can’t get things done, somebody else will.

3. Being human.

Sadly, we have become carefully constructed avatars that reflect social norms, popular themes, and wishful thinking. The information we share is filtered. Many things that pertain to us are getting unreal.

Successful businesses, however, are built on real communication and real relationships. Running a business is about motivating investors to provide capital, customers to buy products, and employees to work their tails off for you. Every business transaction ultimately has a human being at both ends.

Even as businesses are taking themselves out to the online space, those who strive to remain unique individuals will have a significant advantage. Instead of hiding behind your social media avatar and personal brand, dare to be your genuine self. Rest your social network a bit and build relationships in the real world. Listen to what people have to say and trust your instincts.

4. Getting things done.

Too much talking and visualization have never gotten the job done. Highly accomplished executives did not reach that height by merely walking around with their heads in the clouds. They got there by putting one foot in front of the other and getting the job done.

Grow the ability to focus and motivate people to work together toward a common goal, as well as a strong sense of personal responsibility, accountability, and work ethic.

You should know what your goals and priorities are— know what you want to get done, and do precisely that. Deliver the goods, get the job done, and satisfy the needs of your stakeholders, no matter what.

5. Competitive spirit.

New competitors are arising on every front as technology lowers the barriers to entry, and more and more companies cross over into each ‘other’s lanes. Meanwhile, ‘we’re de-emphasizing competitive spirit and individual achievement in our schools. ‘We’re beginning to see competition as a bad thing.

This creates an exciting competition gap and presents us with both challenge and opportunity. Challenge in that competition is brutal. Opportunity in that if ‘you’re highly driven to compete and win, you’re setting a pace that is going to widen over time.

Market share is somewhat constrained and while markets are elastic—they grow over time—at a macro level, at a micro level, every business transaction generally has one winner and multiple losers. Only one business wins the contract. Just one company is selected to provide the necessary service. In a very real sense, you’re always competing in the real world.

But that ‘doesn’t mean it is a bad thing.

The point is, many, if not most great companies, are founded and led by fierce competitors. Google aggressively pursued Apple into the smartphone business. ‘Uber’s Travis Kalanick takes a lot of heat for his competitiveness, but in just five years, ‘he’s built a company ‘that’s now valued at $41 billion.

Surprisingly, acquiring the above-listed traits usually isn’t enough to set your business high above others. No, several technicalities involving your brand, your culture, and service comes into play.

Let us look at some of the things that should be put in place to boost your competitive advantage.

1. Provide an Unforgettable Customer Service Experience. 

Treat your customers like kings, even if you are not in the service industry. The belief that customer service only matters in the service industry is a myth. All customers have an expectation of excellent service and will not put up with waiting in long lines or receiving inadequate responses from representatives.

Around 75% of customers state that they consider customer service a true test of a ‘company’s competence. Reputable companies with excellent customer service include Amazon and Hyundai. But even small companies seem to be doing much better in this area, as they have discovered the loyalty-generating power of exceptional customer support.

2. Admit Mistakes and Fix Problems to Build Stronger Relationships.

Customers equate experience with brands. If they have even one bad experience that remains unresolved, they will write off the brand. And negative feedback spreads like wildfire through social media and word of mouth. You need to be on top of your game to improve the customer experience, sometimes by going far out of your way.

Always try to accept your mistakes, whether they are your fault or not. Customers prefer businesses that own up to their mistakes and take steps to correct them.

In reality, customer relationships can actually be stronger after a problem than before, if handled well by your people.

3. Be Honest About Your Products and Services.

Never say what you can’t do. Customers remember. ‘Can’t deliver by the due date? Call and let your buyers know. One of your field reps messed up on a bid? Immediately have a tough conversation with your client. Lying to customers is like shooting yourself in the foot. If your customers catch you lying, they will lose faith in you and may even spread negative feedback about your business.

One common form of dishonesty in business is failing to share bad news. In reality, the faster you share bad news, the more your customers will respect you. Just make sure you follow up with solutions

4. Come Up with Something New.

There is no lack of invention in the business world. It is the lifeblood of many businesses. Continue to reinvent your company by adopting emerging technologies and introducing new processes, products and solutions. Make use of social media and mobile apps as a growing number of buyers prefer to find and work with you through their phones.

There have been many examples of people coming up with unique ideas that have made a lasting impression, such as a real Santa Claus in Birmingham. All of these attention-grabbers help businesses stand out from the crowd; however, to be effective, the underlying product or service must be at least up to par.

5. Embrace Corporate Social Responsibility.

This is the public face of a corporate body. While some may argue that a ‘company’s primary responsibility is to take care of its core stakeholders such as customers, employees and owners, experts believe that businesses should give back to society as well.

Look at Microsoft. It has excellent CSR programs that not only help society but also keep the corporate giant in the news.

CSR programs help businesses stay in ‘customers’ minds, improve goodwill, and often bring in more revenue.

Do all these and your days in the business world won’t be numbered.

You have herd of the Flywheel, but what is it and why do you need to be using it Yesterday!

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, CX, Marketing, Social Media, UX

Jim Cоllinѕ originally соinеd thе рhrаѕе “thе flуwhееl еffесt” аѕ a strategic buѕinеѕѕ tool. According to tо Cоllinѕ, “thеrе’ѕ nо ѕinglе killеr innоvаtiоn, no ѕоlitаrу luсkу brеаk, nо miracle moment; rаthеr, thе рrосеѕѕ resembles rеlеntlеѕѕlу рuѕhing a giant, heavy flуwhееl, turn uроn turn, building mоmеntum until a роint of brеаkthrоugh аnd bеуоnd.”

Lеt’ ѕ brеаk it down furthеr.

Whаt is a flywheel?

A flywheel is an incredibly heavy wheel thаt tаkеѕ huge еffоrt to push. Kеер pushing аnd thе flywheel builds mоmеntum. Kеер pushing аnd еvеntuаllу, it starts tо hеlр turn itself аnd gеnеrаtе itѕ оwn momentum. A flуwhееl iѕ also a ѕеlf-rеinfоrсing lоор made uр оf an fеw kеу initiаtivеѕ. Thоѕе initiаtivеѕ fееd and аrе in turn drivеn by each оthеr, аnd build lоng tеrm mоmеntum.

Amаzоn’ѕ Flуwhееl

Onе оf thе mоѕt famous flywheels iѕ Amаzоn’ѕ “virtuоuѕ cycle.” Each initiative in thе flуwhееl is focused on the customer еxреriеnсе. Amazon’s соrе initiatives rеvоlvе аrоund a continuous imрrоvеmеnt оf thе customer еxреriеnсе. A strong сuѕtоmеr еxреriеnсе will lead tо mоrе ѕhорреrѕ, whiсh will, in turn, bring more sellers. Mоrе ѕеllеrѕ will lоwеr costs аnd prices thrоugh соmреtitiоn whilе bоlѕtеring ѕеlесtiоn fоr сuѕtоmеrѕ. Lоwеr рriсеѕ аnd more ѕеlесtiоn will bring in more сuѕtоmеrѕ аnd thе сусlе rереаtѕ itѕеlf.

 

Flуwhееl Effесt Aррliеd Tо B2B Mаrkеting

The flywheel effect centres оn gеnеrаting momentum. When applied tо mаrkеting, it hеlрѕ mаrkеting tеаmѕ рrоduсе a ѕurrоund-ѕоund effect, сrеаting mоmеntum аnd buzz.

Successful marketing iѕ thе result of programmatic асtivitiеѕ, similar tо pushing оn a hеаvу flуwhееl. Thе bеѕt mаrkеting results соmе frоm intеgrаting mаrkеting асtivitiеѕ frоm diffеrеnt ѕроkеѕ оf thе mаrkеting flywheel tо ѕее success.

The mаrkеting team ѕhоuld have multiрlе flywheels – оnе tор-lеvеl flуwhееl fосuѕing the organization on a ѕinglе рurроѕе and then program flуwhееlѕ fоr еасh саmраign dеvеlореd thrоughоut thе year.

The ѕроkеѕ оn the mаrkеting flywheel will diffеr in each оrgаnizаtiоn dереnding targeted market, ѕресifiс оrgаnizаtiоnаl gоаlѕ, аnd whеrе thеу аrе in thе соmраnу аnd product life сусlе. The key iѕ tо choose initiatives is thаt соmрlеmеnt еасh other tо сrеаtе a mini-ecosystem оf initiаtivеѕ thаt fееd оff еасh other аnd drivе growth.

Fоr еxаmрlе, аn еаrlу-ѕtаgе B2B tесhnоlоgу startup mау idеntifу thought leadership, рrоduсt mаrkеting, demand gеnеrаtiоn, аnd раrtnеr programs as the key spokes оn thеir flуwhееl. Prоduсt mаrkеting fееdѕ thоught leadership, thоught lеаdеrѕhiр brings nеw раrtnеrѕ, more раrtnеrѕ сrеаtе mоrе market coverage for dеmаnd gеnеrаtiоn, demand gеnеrаtiоn bringѕ in mоrе customers thаt fееd bасk intо product marketing аnd so on.

 

That’s a consideration bеѕt mаdе using thе mаrkеting flywheel аѕ a guidе.

 

Mаrkеting

If you take nоthing else frоm this blog роѕt, rеmеmbеr thаt thе mаrkеting funnеl ѕеtѕ you uр tо believe a сuѕtоmеr саn оnlу рurсhаѕе once, whеrе thе flуwhееl dеmоnѕtrаtеѕ the орроrtunitу fоr rереаt buѕinеѕѕ. By utilizing сliеnt marketing bеѕt practices, your mаrkеting team can соntinuе еngаging with еxiѕting сuѕtоmеrѕ. Thiѕ еngаgеmеnt kеерѕ thе рrоѕресt (now customer!) coming back аrоund the flуwhееl for аdditiоnаl рrоduсtѕ аnd ѕеrviсеѕ оr tо rеnеw thеir current оnеѕ.

Sаlеѕ

With рurсhаѕing роwеr in thе hаndѕ оf the buyer, уоur customers hаvе bесоmе bеttеr mаrkеtеrѕ thаn уоu. Cоnѕumеrѕ are аlmоѕt as ѕkерtiсаl оf ѕаlеѕреорlе аѕ they are of аdvеrtiѕеmеntѕ. According to tо HubSроt Rеѕеаrсh, buѕinеѕѕеѕ rероrt thаt word-of-mouth iѕ thеir bеѕt ѕоurсе оf referrals. Yоu саn no lоngеr bring in new customers only to fоrgеt about them in рurѕuit оf thе nеxt dеаl. Inѕtеаd, уоu need tо build mеаningful rеlаtiоnѕhiрѕ аnd рut thеm at the сеntеr of уоur оrgаnizаtiоn (аnd flуwhееl). If уоu fоѕtеr successful partnerships rаthеr thаn ignоring your customers, they would help роwеr уоur growth thrоugh their invaluable rесоmmеndаtiоnѕ.

Sеrviсе

Thе finаl сhаngе thе flуwhееl mаkеѕ is bооѕting сuѕtоmеr ѕеrviсе up to еԛuаl standing with marketing аnd ѕаlеѕ. Hоwеvеr, whеrе mаrkеting and sales hаd tо rеdеfinе thеir rеlаtiоnѕhiрѕ with your сuѕtоmеrѕ, hopefully, уоur customer ѕеrviсе tеаm wоn’t. If уоur CS tеаm has bееn fоllоwing the рrinсiрlеѕ of сuѕtоmеr lоуаltу, thеу ‘vе already bееn living in a flуwhееl wоrld. It аll соmеѕ dоwn to rеminding ourselves of thе finаl stage оf thе inbound mеthоdоlоgу: dеlight. Dеlight your сuѕtоmеrѕ with excellent service аnd watch уоur flywheel go аrоund and аrоund.

Thе Takeaway

Sо no, уоur marketing funnеl isn’t соmрlеtеlу dеаd: уоu’ll ѕtill uѕе it tо gаin customers. But оnсе уоu ‘vе ѕесurеd уоur сuѕtоmеrѕ, уоu nееd tо ѕtаrt рlасing thеm into thе flywheel, which will better focus on their journey with уоu аѕ сuѕtоmеrѕ nоt аѕ оnе-timе оnlу рrоѕресtѕ.

A mаrkеting flуwhееl keeps thе tactics fосuѕеd оn a ѕinglе measurable goal. It fоrсеѕ уоu аnd your organization tо keep a ѕinglе рurроѕе in mind аѕ thеу develop thе tасtiсѕ.

Are you risk averse???  Here are 25 times taking risks paid off, and the branding lessons learnt.

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, CX, Digital Design

No entrepreneur starts a business with the notion of playing safe. It is sometimes said that your level of success is proportional to the level of risk taken. Sometimes success means having the right idea, in the right place, at the right time. Other times, it’s about not being afraid to quit and move onto something new.

In growing your business, you have to manage risks and learn from the successes and failures of others. Check out our list of brands that took a risk, and it paid off.

 

  1. Microsoft

Though Microsoft was not so successful with mobile devices, back in 2001, the tech giant pushed the envelope with its first gaming console: the Xbox. At a time when it seemed like there could be no rival to the PlayStation, the company doubled down on their marketing budget for the device. Now, the Xbox isn’t just a way to play games but is also a major player when it comes to OTT television and video streaming.

 

  1. Zipcar

Now, car and ride sharing seem natural, but back in 2000, Zipcar was just an idea that co-founders Robin Chase and Antje Danielson came up with while dropping their kids off at the same kindergarten. With just $68 in their bank accounts, they turned the idea into a tangible business. They sold to Avis in 2013 for $500 million and changed the way people drive.

 

  1. Whole Foods

Remember when buying organic and natural products seemed like a fancy idea? You can blame four guys from Texas, John Mackey and Renee Lawson Hardy, owners of Safer Way Natural Foods, and Craig Weller and Mark Skiles, owners of Clarksville Natural Grocery, for the rise of the all-natural economy. They all left their popular shopping market gigs to bet on Whole Foods, which could have been a major flop. But by believing in the model, and starting out with just 19 employees in 1980, they’ve changed the entire culture of grocery shopping and food preparation.

 

  1. Twitter

In 2008, Twitter’s user base was growing, but it was turning profits like many insiders thought they should’ve been. Facebook offered $500 million to take over the growing social network – an offer Twitter promptly rejected. The platform is almost indispensable but whether the risk really will pay off in the end still remains to be seen. Sometimes, saying no and sticking it out through the tough times is the hardest risk of all.

 

  1. Charmin

Sometimes it’s the little things that count. In 2014, the toilet paper company decided that it was going to use potty humour to engage its audience and it totally worked. Getting sassy and turning a wholesome family brand into one of the most engaging, hysterical brands on social media was a big leap but they keep rolling with it.

 

  1. Google

Co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin created the company while PhD students at TK, and almost gave up on it all because it was taking way too much time. Page almost sold the company in 1997 for just $1.5 million. Later on, in 2006, when no one understood the potential of a short video service called YouTube, the tech company bought it up. The rest is history.

 

  1. TOMS

When Blake Mycoskie founded TOMS, many investors laughed at the business model and the fashion. Mycoskie went all in though, starting and running the business from the very beginning. Not only do they have multiple product lines, but the “buy one, give one” concept has defined an entire generation of millennial consumers and the sharing economy.

 

  1. Dropbox

Can you imagine saying no to Steve Jobs? Dropbox founder Drew Houston did. Houston didn’t back down when Jobs told him that the cloud wasn’t his and now the file-sharing company is worth around $8-10 billion.

 

  1. Intel

Intel is one of the foundational companies of almost everything digital. But just this spring, they announced that they’re totally reinventing themselves and ditching their main focus on chips and getting into the cloud and storage. They’re betting it all on the Internet of Things.

  1. FedEx

When FedEx was denied a business loan, they needed to foot a gas bill and stay afloat; founder Fred Smith took $5,000 to Las Vegas to raise the cash. If that’s not the epitome of risk-taking, we don’t know what is.

 

  1. Pandora

When Pandora was completely out of money in 2001, CEO Tim Westergren asked 50 employees to defer their salaries for two years. They were eventually bailed out by investors, but employees stuck around. Asking for help and team effort isn’t easy.

 

  1. SpaceX

Elon Musk took all of the capital he had from the sale of PayPal and threw into his passion project, SpaceX. At one time he had blown every penny he’d earned in the past, not even able to make payroll for the company. Months later, he closed a multibillion-dollar deal. Musk knows how to take big leaps.

 

  1. Apple

Apple takes risks all the time on design and products, but when they decided to focus on phones, they changed the world (and how everyone connects with each other). This year, they’re changing the way users listen to music, going against popular opinion and betting on better audio all around.

 

  1. Spanx

Spanx founder Sara Blakely knew nothing about business, but all about how uncomfortable pantyhose were. After being told over and over that her idea was “so crazy,” she wrote the patent herself and went for it. Now, their undergarments are everywhere.

 

  1. IBM

IBM, a company that consistently delivers year after year and is particularly hailed in the B2B sphere, has come up with a “Smarter Planet” campaign. The company explained its plans to help clients innovate and make the world a better place. They inspired consumers to believe in the brand and see where they are now.

 

  1. McDonald’s

One of McDonald’s gifts was the ability to listen to consumers’ sentiments and adapt, particularly to growing health concerns. It has come out with a much healthier menu with apple slices, oatmeal, and a Chicken McWrap which has done well. McDonald’s has ventured into the coffee space and is gaining a stronghold already. This should be an exciting new endeavour to follow.

 

  1. MasterCard

MasterCard’s rank as the 20th most valuable brand in the world today and this is attributable to the growth of mobile technology. As consumers up their online shopping habits, brands like Mastercard and Visa reap the rewards for offering noncash payment methods.

 

  1. SAP

SAP is really into the big data. Their overall success is reflective of a consistent storyline: The growth of mobile shopping. SAP has big data solutions enterprise companies need.

 

  1. Walmart

Walmart has mastered the art of brick and mortar shopping. The retail giant has a large and loyal consumer base that is constantly growing – even internationally.

 

  1. Vodafone

At almost $40 billion, Vodafone is still one of the largest mobile carriers in the UK.

 

  1. UPS

A lot of UPS growth is really tied to several consumer trends – the need for consumers to shop online via mobile devices. Consumers need to get the products they bought on the internet somehow, and that’s where UPS comes in.

 

  1. Amazon

It’s almost impossible for brick and mortar shops to compete with Amazon’s wide selection, low prices, and mastery of the mobile marketplace – easily allowing consumers to buy anything from anywhere on their phone or tablet. Recent acquisitions of Audible.com and Goodreads also show the company’s determination to dominate all aspects of mobile book consumption and sharing.

 

  1. Verizon

Verizon got a boost after Apple opened its services to carriers other than just AT&T. While Verizon and AT&T’s rivalry heats up, there is a high chance that the competition will be up to both brands’ game. As data devices continue to proliferate, Verizon will continually do well.

 

  1. GE

GE continues to be one of the most well-respected consumer and industrial brands in the world, and the public is starting to see that it makes more than just light bulbs. General Electric has dedicated major marketing dollars to making sure that consumers know it produces everything from aeroplane engines to wind turbines to medical equipment. Hammering in its dedication to innovation, a recent ad campaign even enlisted the help of famous robots.

 

  1. Visa

A key way to bolster global presence is to sponsor the Olympics. But that’s not the only thing that upped Visa’s brand value so drastically. As one of the most trusted names in noncash payments, Visa has gained clout in the world of online shopping and mobile payments.

 

Have you noticed how all these successful brands first identified a need before sacrificing resources to see that they satisfy these needs innovatively? Then there is the firm belief and steadfastness too. In all, you must give something to get something better.

These are just a few lessons you can derive from these bold brands.

Don’t Think Instagram is For You, Here Are 15 Ways to Leverage Your Brand on Instagram

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, Desgin, Marketing

Social media gives you the ability to go to where your potential clients are, grab their attention and then make them aware of your store or product. It also gives you leverage to compete against faceless e-commerce giants. It should be part of your eCommerce business plan an essential part of your marketing strategy if you are trying to grow your brand and gain new customers.

No two social media are the same; neither can they generate the same result for your marketing campaign. So, the way to go to reach a large number of interested audience easily and excitingly? Think Instagram!

Check out our list of actionable tips on various ways you can gain followers and spread your online brand using Instagram.

  1. Build a Consistent Image Brand

People like consistency, which is why branding your images is vital — especially on Instagram. In most people’s minds, consistency equates to trust. And when people view your brand as trustworthy, they are more likely to purchase from you. You should create consistent visuals and have a colour scheme to work with (when necessary).

  1. Consistent Visual Imagery

Consistent imagery is an integral part of creating trust and gaining followers. There are many ways to develop consistent visuals. For example, Nike’s Instagram Image Branding consists of a variety of colour overlays, filters, and even videos that they’ve posted. However, every photo is crisp, clean with a clear focus. And yet, looking at those six images alone, anyone could tell that this is Nike.

  1. Use Beautiful and Inspirational Posts

Everyone loves taking a picture, but people love a good photo too. A good photo is not just about snapping a pic on your cellphone. The best photographs are considered art, and art evokes emotion. Instagram was built on the idea of sharing pictures, so your images are vital and something you need to nail down when it comes to creating them for brand awareness. Make your photos art by using inspirational quotes.

  1. Use Hashtags

One of the most amazing things about Instagram is its ability of organic search. Though Instagram is a social media platform, it is also a search engine. But where Google uses keywords as part of its ranking, Instagram uses hashtags which can be used to be easily found in the search section of Instagram. Hashtags help your brand get found.

Not using hashtags makes everything you are doing a waste of time — to use them. One of the best places to use hashtags is in the description of the post. IG allows up to 30 hashtags in this section.

  1. Think Outside the Instagram Box

Keep in mind that Instagram can connect to other social profiles like Facebook and Twitter and you can post your images to these profiles all at the same time. Therefore, you can and should take your hashtag research off of just IG and look into what’s trending on Facebook and Twitter too and then post from IG to those profiles to expand your overall social media reach.

  1. Use Iconosquare

As with any marketing tactic you employ, you will want to know your Return on Investment (ROI). Even though you can reach 100% of your Instagram followers organically (for now), there is still an investment in your time that should be considered. And even if you determine that your time investment has been worth it, you still should be tracking: what posts resonate best, which posts get the most likes, comments, and re-posts, and how many followers you’re gaining or losing. Iconosquare makes it easy for you to do these. It gives you a ton of data that is pleasantly presented and easily digestible.

  1. Hire Photographers

Do you think this sounds expensive? Wrong! If you don’t have time to take pictures worth posting, then consider hiring a photographer. And, yes, it is cheaper than you think. For $50 you can get 5 generic photos on Shutterstock, or hire a photographer on People Per Hour for the same price and get dozens of original images. This is a little price to pay to let your brand stand out.

  1. Use and Test Filters

You have got your branding guide, hashtags you want to use, tools to help you keep track of your account, and some awesome photos. The next thing to do is post. But before you post that first picture, consider adding a filter. Studies have shown that even though a No-Filter post is most often used, the Filters that get more likes and overall engagement are as follows: Mayfair, Inkwell, Amaro, Walden, and Lo-Fi.

  1. Post at the “Perfect” Time

Sincerely, there is no perfect time to post on Instagram. Every audience is a bit different, but that doesn’t mean you are left to guessing. So, start by posting to Instagram on Friday around 5 PM EST and see how that does. Test a few other times and days to measure how well those do and then cut out what’s not working and stick to what is.

  1. Creativity in Highlighting Products

You could simply snap a picture, apply a good filter on it and post, but why not shake things up a bit? Dig deep and be creative when you want to highlight a product. Getting a massive number of likes may have had to do with timing, but the creativity applied to a picture can and will do a lot for it.

  1. Use Influencers

Influencer Outreach is just as vital for your blog as it is for gaining a follower on Instagram. There are a ton of influential people on Instagram, and many of them may be the last people you’d expect. There are quite a few accounts in various niches that have tens of thousands of followers, and they are ran kids. No matter the age of the people behind these accounts, these accounts hold power in your niche because they already have the followers you want. Get to work with them.

  1. Give and Get

When it comes to Instagram, the idea of ‘I scratch your back, you scratch mine’ is not lost on the platform. But how do you do this? Simple – by re-gramming. Believe it or not, re-gramming other people’s image content and cross-promoting with others while singing their praises is one of the best things you can do to grow your following and show that you are a reputable brand.

  1. Get Visible

Go through the images and Like other people’s posts. Then, take it a step further and Comment on the post. If you can be the first person to like and comment on a post, then be that person. Say something that is engaging enough to get them to be like ‘I don’t know this person… but they like what I’ve posted. I wonder who they are…*then taps to see your profile*’. This isn’t hard to get people to do on Instagram. People are highly and easily engaged on the platform, but you usually have to make the first move.

  1. Run Contests and Giveaways

Contests and Giveaways can get you more followers in a single post than all your other posts throughout the month. Collaborate with a couple of influencers and some active followers, and you can skyrocket your giveaway’s success. In order for this to work, you need to put up something that your audience would want to win.

  1. Use Your Bio-Link

Lastly, make sure you add your store’s link in your Bio area. You won’t be able to sell much if people can’t actually find a way to your store to buy your stuff so don’t forget to add it — it’s super important!

Currently, one of the only clickable URLs that you can put on Instagram is in your Bio-Link. However, your Bio-Link is not something set in stone so you can always change it to support your latest marketing endeavour.

So, you see, you too can be king using Instagram? Start applying these tips in no particular order and you just will be bringing your brand to the limelight.

Building Customer Trust and Social Communities – Especially Today

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, Canberra, CX, SEO

Most people are aware that companies collect and harvest customer data for advertising purposes. However, they don’t think about it, and brands haven’t been open with consumers in the background. With these headlines about the misuse of data, people are becoming more worried about how businesses use their data. With the falling trust in social media, people place more faith in experts, journalists, and their immediate circles on social media. In turn, all of this has put specific trust-building strategies at the forefront when it comes to current marketing trends.

Building Employee Advocacy Programs

Brand advocacy includes using established voices to promote your company where possible. You can go with academic and technical experts, customers, or your employees. The best and easiest brand advocates are people who believe in your mission and products. People trust their peers. Social media advocacy includes leveraging the social networks of those who like you or invest in your success – your employees and customers. These are your most significant untapped resources.

Employee advocacy is still in its early stages, so it would be smart to take advantage of it as a young marketing tool with lots of potentials. According to Cisco, employees’ posts on social media generate 8x more engagement than the posts from the company employers. Also, your employees already have their social media profiles and are probably present on some networks that your brand isn’t. To establish a good employee advocacy program for building and reinforcing your customer trust, you should:

Prioritise your workplace culture. When employees believe in your company mission and love more about their work than just their paycheck, the engagement and loyalty with your company will increase. Make authentic connections with your employees to develop a high-trust culture. Support open feedback, help them in times of need, give back, and inspire innovation.

Ask them for help. Once you’ve created a high-trust culture, ask them openly to help by promoting your brand on social media.

Make advocacy easy. Have them promote something fun or interesting (like a humorous video or a new product announcement.) Also, create a branded hashtag and have them use it in their posts.

Show enthusiasm. Give updates on fresh, shareable content and remind them about the program.

Set clear goals and KPIs. Employees can help if you define specific goals. There has to be an organised system as well as a way of tracking results. Offer goals that might include expanding your demographic, increasing traffic from social media, or improving organic reach.

Guidelines and practices. Educate your employees on the message, but also on the best ways to communicate it. How often should they post, how to respond to comments, and what language to use? That way, you’ll ensure consistency across accounts and platforms.

Track the right metrics. There’s no point to your employee advocacy program if you do not measure your success. Track brand mentions and hashtags to find out which employee generates the most engagement. What’s the commitment you’re getting per social network? How much website traffic did your brand advocates drive?

One-to-One Messaging System

Today’s customers, especially Millennials, don’t want to listen only to their favourite brands. They want two-way communication. Also, they want meaningful conversations and faster responses. Social media platforms are networks intended for sharing content and conversing. You gain trust as a brand by talking to your audience and being present. That’s why social customer care is so urgent and why you’ll need to set up a coordinated communication system.

Social media is the perfect platform for communicating with your customer daily. And by limiting your advertisement messages, this system will work better. If you’re present on more than one social network, staying on top of all your social media conversations could be difficult. On the other hand, if a message from your customer remains unanswered, you’ll fail to develop a relationship with them (not to mention build customer trust.) That’s where you need to rely on technology. Use an excellent social media management system with a unified inbox feature.

Connect all your social accounts and manage your conversations from one unified dashboard. Choose a plan that allows for team collaboration, and have all your social media marketing team members use it.

Social messaging platforms reign supreme over traditional communication channels because:

They are engaging with customers.

They are convenient.

They are offering better transparency.

They accelerate response times by automating certain communications.

Remember that you shouldn’t over-rely on technology because people don’t want to talk to robots but with human beings.

Renewing Social Communities

As people have grown distrustful of social media and celebrity influencers, their trust has reverted to friends and acquaintances on social media as well as trusted journalism outlets. If you have a social media community where you interact with your customers, you will have to renew and reinforce customer trust.

Take part in social media conversations

For example, you can engage in Twitter chats, which are mostly public discussions. It’s a great way to build and join your community by generating or participating in dialogue around your consumers’ interests.

Run Q&A sessions

In retaining your customer trust, it is essential to be as transparent as possible, address problems proactively, and communicate often. Q&As, Facebook Live, and Instagram live are an excellent place to start. When there’s someone to talk to customers in real-time, it makes the brand feel more human. Also, these sessions are budget-friendly and easy to manage.

Create a public or a secret group

On your Facebook page, you can offer general information. On the other hand, you can target your superfans and address niche interests in your Facebook group. Your group is a space where your fans can talk to you or one another. As for secret groups, it’s a great way to add intrigue or exclusivity. The members may feel freer to share ideas because they’re free from the prying eyes of the public.

Influencers can be a great asset to any campaign or brand, but how do you find the right one and measure their effectiveness?

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, Digital Design, Marketing

You know by now how influencers can be a key asset to your campaign or brand. Since every good marketing campaign is geared towards sales and more sales, there is a need to track the effectiveness of influencers. This is not an easy task as you might have found out by now, especially when you don’t know how to go about it or the right tools to use.

Check out our 15 ways to find influencers and measure their effectiveness.

  1. Brand awareness. Is your campaign goal geared towards brand awareness? Then the most important metric to consider is impressions. Impressions tell you how many people viewed a piece of content.  The more people you can reach, the better it is for brand awareness and exposure. Getting access to impressions is different for each social media or digital channel and because they are private metrics. You will need to rely on influencers sending you the data post campaign.
  2. Brand Engagement. If you are geared towards building an engaged community, you should be on the lookout for the total engagements post(s) get. These are the likes, comments, shares, retweets and reactions a piece of content receives. Calculating the number of engagements is relatively easy as the metrics are all public. You just have to add them altogether if you are working with multiple influencers within the one campaign.
  3. Social media growth. Measuring social media growth effectiveness is relatively easy to measure because the data is readily available on your own social platforms. You can see and track the growth of your social media followers over time in most built-in social analytic tools or third-party reporting apps. Your social media analytics will give you a clear understanding of overall trends, or else you would have to do some manual reporting and tracking.
  4. Analyse Each Piece of Content in Real Time. Too many influencer marketing campaigns are stuck using old tactics (and metrics). Having a bunch of influencers showing a product isn’t enough in 2018. New influencer marketing requires real-time analysis of each piece of content followed by targeted syndication of the best pieces.
  5. Compare Performance and Exposure to Other Marketing Investments. Tracking is gold. Be sure to track wherever possible: custom links, landing pages, influencer promo codes, giveaways, anything you can. Consider an influencer marketing campaign’s performance against your other marketing strategies.
  6. Website traffic. When website traffic is the goal, Google Analytics should be set up to track metrics such as new users, sessions, page views, time on site and referral partners for a specific date range. If Google Analytics is already set up, you will have historical data to compare to, which is excellent for measuring an increase in traffic over a couple of weeks, months or a year.
  7. Sales. If the strategy involves an affiliate marketing component or discount code, it is effortless to access the effectiveness of the influencer campaign, as consumers will use a unique code to purchase. Where no affiliate link or discount code is involved, you can still measure an increase in sales by looking at your total monthly revenue and trends that occur over time. Google Analytics eCommerce tracking can give you the data you want.
  8. Use Coupon Codes. With all the talk of impressions, clicks and brand awareness, it’s still important to get specific attribution to what worked for a specific sale. That’s why giving a coupon code – and tracking which influencer gets which sales – still matters, even though it’s simple.
  9. Host A Live Experience to See Social Amplification in Real Time. A live experience is the ultimate influencer ecosystem. Getting like-minded people together who have a passion for a particular subject matter creates an environment for influencing, whether it is on comics, cars or causes.
  10. Share Influencer Content on Your Own Ad Platforms. Do not only consider the ROI directly correlated to the influencer’s post. You may generate far more revenue from using their content on other ad platforms and reaching a new audience.
  11. Downloads of an e-product. If downloading an e-product, such as an app, eBook or template, is your goal, you’ll need access to the hosting provider so you can see how many times the product has been downloaded. You can also set up UTM tracking links for another reliable way to measure and track downloads.
  12. Database growth. Likewise, if you aim to grow your email database, you’ll need to have access to the Email Marketing Platform that is used to collect the data and run your email marketing campaigns. Access to this platform will likely have in-built reporting metrics, where you can measure and track database growth and also identify engaged users.
  13. Content creation. This campaign goal cannot typically be tracked digitally, as it requires a manual count of the amount of content that has been created or received during the campaign period. You will have to look at the content that has been provided and assign a dollar value to each piece. This will help you calculate the ROI and the value that was received during the campaign.
  14. Reach new target markets. Audience data is a new metric that can be very insightful but is not readily available. Some third-party reporting tools are starting to analyse audience data to understand who followers are, their interests and demographics.
  15. Track Brand Mentions. Lastly, you have to measure how well your campaign performed overall. This could be done by tracking brand mentions. You can do this by using a brand monitoring tool that tracks and notifies you whenever your brand name is mentioned.

How to write an email that not only gets opened; but gets the reader excited.

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, Marketing, Social Media, UX

We all have inboxes full of newsletters we don’t read. According to Mailchimp’s 2018 email campaign report, the sector with the highest email open rate is hobbies (27.35%). On the opposite end of the spectrum there is:

Daily Deals (14.92%)

E-commerce (15.66%)

Marketing/Advertising (16.48%)

Effectively, the data tells us that people open a small percentage of the emails they receive on a daily basis.

For busy people with a lot on their plate, there is no time to sift through emails to see what’s spam or not. And because of the volume received – especially for journalists who receive tons of email pitches every day – what tends to happen is that a majority of emails get lumped into the trash bin without even being opened. This happens to a lot of business owners as they attempt to forge relationships with journalists in the interest of getting press for their business.

As you go about pitching cold emails to journalists, you should keep these common failings of email newsletter writing top-of-mind. The question then becomes: how do you stand out from the pack? How do you write the perfect email pitch to catch the journalists eye?

GETTING OVER THE COLD EMAIL SYNDROME

Writing an email to someone that you’ve never had any connection with is called a cold email. While you mostly want to avoid writing cold emails in your professional life, the fact is that journalists actually rely on cold emails for many of their story leads and ideas. This unveils to root of the problem with most story pitches. Journalists are not likely to ignore your email on the grounds that they don’t know you. They are, however, far more likely to overlook your email because it lacks substance or relevance to them. Here is what you need to do to write the ‘perfect’ pitch for each journalist you reach out to.

A Direct and Clear Subject. You can have the most interesting pitch the journalist has ever heard of, but they won’t open your email if your subject line does not pique their interest. A common mistake people make with subject headlines is too be vague or general with their subjects, without even mentioning the article proposition. The key here is to be direct and clear, presenting your request in the five to seven words that resonate with the journalists.

A Personal Touch. The next most important feature is to personalise your email. Turn a cold email into a warm email by stating why you are reaching out to them specifically. You can then delve into brief detail about how much you liked some of their previous writing or feel as though their subject matter expertise makes them a great fit for your idea and your audience.

Share Your Proof Points. In fleshing out the email, you want to share any valuable data points about your topic idea, your business, and any past publication exposure you’ve had. Slide these into the email in a seamless way. Don’t dwell on your past achievements or the data points because, although the journalist will be curious to learn about social proof points, you want to keep them complementary to the core point of the email – which is to collaborate on a future article.

TURN COLD EMAILS INTO COLLABORATIONS BY BEING YOURSELF

Ultimately, the challenge in writing cold emails is to overcome the awkwardness of first introductions and be yourself in the email, as much as you can. Dry, technical, or over-the-top language is not going to intrigue journalists; remember that you want to pitch an opportunity to collaborate, not present a practically written article. What will capture their interest is a short email from a reputable source that is direct, to the point, and written only to them.

Turning Tyre Kickers into Hot Leads

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, Canberra, Marketing

It is frustrating when customers check out your offerings and fail to contact you again to actually purchase the product or service, after so much promise of returning. These are tyre kickers. There is an abundance of them in the market, and somehow, your business success depends on their conversion. I will tell you what; whenever you get a request for product literature or a sample of your product and a week or two after sending the request for a product sample or sample of your product the prospect has not placed an order, don’t fold your arms and do nothing.

Customers who request product literature or samples often have a genuine interest in making a purchase, but they may not need to purchase that item immediately. Thus, they look over what you send and then put it aside, planning to follow up at some point in the future. But a couple of months later their priorities shift. Then suddenly, the product they were thinking about purchasing “sometimes” becomes the product or service they need now. By this time, however, that first piece of literature or sample you sent may be filed, misfiled, buried on the bottom of a stack of non-urgent things to do, or even tossed into the trash and lost forever.

In this case, if you have competitors selling very similar products or services at very similar prices, the vendor whose name is most familiar because they have made the most recent and/or frequent contacts with the prospect is likely to get the order.

This is a reason you should never slack on following up prospects. Follow them up regularly for at least six months. Make your initial follow-ups once every other week for the first six weeks if the prospect seems genuinely interested. After that, follow up about once a month. Your follow-ups don’t have to be elaborate or costly. A telephone call or follow up letter asking if you can provide additional information, reminders to check your web site for new information, and notices of special offers all are good ways to keep in touch and keep your name and product fresh in their mind.

Running a cold campaign – marketing to new customers who have never heard of you – can be a great way to boost the traffic to your site. The cold campaign can include cold emails, cold calls and cold advertising too. But it doesn’t end at running the cold campaign; conversion is what matters because this is what brings in the revenue. Statistically, more than 97% of visitors will leave the average eCommerce site without converting.

Therefore, after building your cold campaign, your next question should be, “how will I convert the traffic from my cold campaign into sales and leads?”

The answer to this is in this article. You will learn everything you need to know about cold prospects and how you can convert them into hot leads ready to make a purchase. But first, let us get level on some terms.

Cold Prospects

Cold prospects are people who have never heard of your business. They are new people you have never done business with but hope to do business. They haven’t been “warmed up” to the idea of your brand or products yet. They come from cold traffic sources like display ads, Facebook posts or cold emails. A typical behaviour of cold prospects is browsing generic content like your blog or introductory materials. Those new visitors that takes up the larger proportion of your site visitors are your cold prospects.

You must understand that cold prospects are not ready to buy yet. You can’t expect them to make a purchase decision the first time they visit your site. They will want to get to know you, and after they trust you, they will make a purchase.

Stages of The Buying Process

To understand how to treat your cold prospects, you have to understand the four main stages in the buying process, which are: Awareness, Consideration, Decision and Retention.

As the name implies, at the Awareness stage, your prospects are just discovering you. These are the early-stage prospects. For these prospects, your goal is to increase engagement and awareness of your offer. You should only start lead generation and list building in the Consideration stage when your visitors begin thinking about a purchase. They start to purchase in the Decision stage and join other of your existing clients in the Retention when they make rebuy decisions.

All cold prospects are just in the Awareness stage. They are learning of your products for the first time. Trying to make an immediate sale, or even trying for immediate signup won’t work because they haven’t reached the Consideration stage yet.

Let’s take a closer look at how you can increase the level of engagement and promote your offer to your cold prospects, helping them move along in the buying process.

You have to DO the following to bring them to that stage:

1. Promote Soft Goals

A soft goal on your website is typically a secondary conversion goal, such as a subscription. Start with this instead of trying to make a “hard” sale. These goals are also known as micro conversion goals, or micro conversions because they lead to the ultimate objective, a purchase.

Provide some valuable content on your site to encourage people to subscribe to your list. You can offer an eBook, or other free resources such as webinars, case study, or demo. When you provide something useful to people, they are more likely to give you their email address. Once you have their contact details, you can communicate with them directly and nurture the relationship until they are ready to buy.

2. Target Cold Visitors Specifically on Your Website

Direct your cold visitors to a unique landing page that is customised for their needs. This means that you should create unique landing pages for the traffic you generate from your cold campaigns. Following the buying process, the goal of this page should be increasing the awareness of your offer. Clearly present your offer in terms your customers can understand. Use attractive design and testimonials from existing customers to build trust and credibility.

You can even go a step beyond the landing page and really create a unique first impression. You can learn from the approach BOOM! Here you direct your visitors to a presell engagement page with great content that engages people in a conversation. Then, once awareness had been raised, they lead visitors to a solution.

Note that sales promotion is not always the right goal for every visitor. By creating unique landing pages for your cold prospects, and using unique marketing messages, you can accomplish the soft goals needed to convert cold prospects into hot leads.

3. Keep Up with Your Visitors

The mantra is Follow-up, follow-up, and follow-up! The buying process takes a lot of time. You need to stay in your prospect’s mind throughout the process. Send emails regularly to cold prospects, and not just as a reminder about your business, but to also give them a chance to get to know you. This builds trust to keep them moving along the buying process.

Also, remember to follow-up cold prospects beyond the first interaction; (e.g. visiting your website or answering a cold email that was sent). To stay on their mind, send them educational videos, articles related to their industry/situation or useful blog posts.

You might want to consider using Facebook remarketing. This is a great tool, but know while using this that marketing to cold prospects takes place outside of your website. It is for this reason that we recommend using it together with onsite retargeting.

Repeat business such as referrals, and warm inbound leads are excellent and necessary, but if you want to grow your revenue, so now go out there and use these tips and start converting your cold leads into hot leads.

The Difference Between Sales and Closing – The Inevitable You

By: Jonathan | No Comment | Advertising, CX, Marketing

Selling and closing have often been used interchangeably and misconstrued to mean the same thing. If you are in the circle of those confusing these terms, it is time to leave. This article explains these terms, thereby helping you to become a better marketer.

What is selling?

Selling is showing the product or service and why it’s valuable. It is presenting the proposition. To sell, you have to do some business development, educate, motivate, build a relationship, and try to get the customer to like you. Sales are the process that leads up to the close. It is the journey. It is getting to the point where they want to buy.

What is closing?

Closing is making a decision to take action. It is finalising the deal. Some say it is a decision and a commitment. But a decision or commitment to what? This is the reason why salespeople find it challenging to ask for the business. Now let’s look at a marriage commitment for example. Marriage commitment involves: asking for a hand in marriage, checking with all the relatives, courting for a long time, setting it all up, and then getting on one knee.

Do you think closers follow this process?

The Art of Closing

Closing is very important for reaching your marketing goals because it is the end point of sales. This is when the client eventually purchases. It is a waste being a good salesman without mastering the art of closing. So, let’s get right into business.

Closers ask clients to make a purchase right away.

 

Why do they ask right away?

This is because 1%, 3%, or 5% of the time, people buy right away. Why then would you sell to somebody that’s ready to buy? You need to have a psychology that says, “Hey, I’m Chris Williams, I’m here to sell you this because it is awesome and I have a nice proposition, etc. Are you ready to sign with me?”

One of Napoleon Hill’s rule is that really successful people make their minds up quickly and change it slowly. Everybody else, which means the “not-as-successful” make up their minds slowly and change it quickly. Ask yourself about the type of client you need. Walk in and ask for the business in a very professional manner because you don’t have a lot of time to waste and they don’t have a lot of time to waste too.

Closing begins right at the start; there is no certain place to stop or start. Closers begin the closing process from the moment they walk in that door. If you say, “Here is my professional proposition and I want to close this business. It’s good for you, and it’s good for me.” And they refuse or are unsure you say, “Whoa, okay, so you’re not ready to buy yet. Let me give you some research as to why you want to accelerate this decision and why I’m the right decision.” Now you’re in the sales process, whether it is through questions or you’ve researched the client, and you start giving them information to make a decision. Closers are closing every step of the way.

Closers close. And their subliminal message is “Will you buy now?” And the risk they run is that somebody is not going to like them. And they might make some customers unhappy because they are too aggressive.

Finally, while closing the sale is necessary, it doesn’t have to be a big deal. A salesperson who has done an excellent job in the early stages of the sales process will only need to give a simple nudge to the prospect to start the close. It might be as simple as saying, “Sign here to make it yours,” while handing the prospect a pen and a contract.

So, as a salesperson, you have to start your sales process with closing in mind, if you really want to convert, rather than get the client to like you. If possible, start with the close before stepping down to the proper sales process.