In 2016, social media is a huge part of every startup’s digital marketing. Still, what most people fail to realize is that this particular task is far more complicated than it may appear. Numerous people tend to shamelessly self-promote their business by posting, tweeting and commenting about the products they sell and the services they offer. Needless to say, this is not a good idea and usually doesn’t result in a good conversion rate. With this in mind, here are some tips and tricks that may help you make maximum impact on social networks.
Know Thy Network
Speaking of social media is quite vague, when there are so many of them. Seeing how they are different in their nature, as well as in their popularity, it comes as no surprise that each of them brings a different conversion rate and a different ROI. The first thing you should know is that, even though it is on a steady decline, an average of 85 percent of all orders from social media is still made through Facebook. However, the number of orders is not all that matters. You see, cheaper products like photography, pet supplies, sports and rec equipment are the most popular items bought via Facebook. On the other hand, if you are interested in more expensive purchases, you should probably turn to Instagram and Pinterest.
The Industry Makes the Difference
According to the experts behind advertising agency based in Melbourne, another thing startups and SMBs should keep in mind is the nature of their industry. As we already mentioned, when it comes to pet supplies, Facebook rules undisputed. However, this is not so in all the industries. For example, if your business deals with digital products, YouTube should be your weapon of choice. The reason behind this is quite simple – YouTube is alone responsible for over 47 percent of all social media orders for digital products. Similar is the case with the services where YouTube and Pinterest alone own over 60 percent of all sales. In other words, your product and your business niche are what determines your most efficient social network.
Recognize Vanity Metrics
Finally, the most important thing about your social media engagement is to recognize which metrics are meaningful and which are not. Things like the number of followers, the number of likes and positive comments on your posts may all seem great on paper, but what do they actually bring to the table? These parameters are, therefore, called vanity metrics. Not everyone who likes your goods buys them or has the intention of ever doing so. This is why you shouldn’t measure your success on social networks based on vanity metrics, but on ROI that they bring. The easiest way to do so is to include a one-question survey for your online buyers, asking them where they heard about your business.
Like there is no recipe for success in traditional retail and service industry, there isn’t one applying to the digital world, either. Most of the measures that will result in the greatest success are quite situational, but in order to take these measures, you must know both your business and your social networks like the back of your hand. Follow the latest trends and market movements, as well as the boosts and declines in the social networks’ popularity – that is the only way to always stay ahead of the curve.
The Rocky Road towards Successful Food Entrepreneurship
Running a food business can be awesome and fun, especially owing to the fact that these ventures are rarely a result of anything but passion and dedication. That being said, the vast majority of these tend to fail within the first year – the restaurant business market is hard to predict, even with a ton of research, planning and capital. With this in mind, it’s the perseverance that pays off here, along with business acumen and, perhaps most importantly, vision and ambition. While vision and ambition are factors beyond your control, if you have those covered, here are some tips that will hopefully help you start your successful food business.
Research, research, research
Research plays a key role, regardless of the business type. So, what’s so different about starting a food business? Well, the emphasis on research is even bigger here. People tend to eat their meals at their trusted places, meaning that it’s going to take a whole lot to draw their attention to a brand new food joint. As a rule of thumb, the areas that are abundant with various restaurants are far from ideal for your startup – even if you have the recipe for the best food business venture in the world, people are always going to crowd in front of their favorite, trusted places, which means you might as well not bother.
Research is your way out of this – attend business networking events, don’t be afraid to bore people to death with your questions (though you probably won’t as there’s nothing a successful entrepreneur likes more than networking and bragging about their success) and go out twice, even thrice, a week, browsing the local food places – you can learn a whole lot in this way!
Innovation or upgrade?
Going around the existing (and successful) food joints in your target area can give you a ton useful information. You can learn a lot about doing business in this way, but let’s focus on the product here. First of all, people have to like it, and your friends and family are your best bet here – without being able to serve your future customers a tasty meal, well, what are you doing in the food business to begin with? Unfortunately, a tasty meal and quality customer service won’t necessarily get you very far on the food market – something needs to be special.
Of course, trying to reinvent the wheel is rarely a fruitful process – you either have an awesome idea, or you don’t. The sad truth of things is that you probably won’t have a completely original product to pitch to the market, but relax – most successful businesspersons rarely do either.
The key, of course, is upgrading an existing product – offer something other restaurants lack in. This part of food entrepreneurship is entirely on you and your time spent on research.
Food laws and regulations
This is yet another aspect the food business differ from other entrepreneurial efforts. Depending on the state, food laws and regulations differ – from food safety to labor laws, and you have to deal with them professionally and meticulously. Think about things such as cleanliness – even stuff like finding quality heat exchangers or industrial agitator should be on your list. They provide maintenance-free and hygienic operation, removing the need for the chemical-laden coatings or spray paints, typically found in traditional mild steel frames.
You don’t want to know how many restaurants have ended up closed and barred from performing business on account of a minor regulatory fluke.
Do not aim big…
…unless you want to risk instantaneous failure. Sure, every once in a while, a food business idea pops up that goes all-in and starts bringing in a ton of cash to their owner(s) from the get-go, but in truth, for every food business that enjoys instant success, there are hundreds (maybe even thousands) of instant failures. Start slowly by testing your idea – think of creative food truck ideas, or try the local market to get the feel of things. Not only is this a safe way to see how your product pans out, but it will give you a ton of room for upgrades and improvement.
As results of passion and perseverance, successful food businesses will always be a competitive market. The only thing you can do is make sure that you cover everything properly; from research, to laws and regulations. Either innovate or upgrade, and always remember not to aim big from the start.
5 Tips for Relocating Your Company
Until recently, businesses preferred sticking to their roots and developing their customer base in the part of the country where the company is located. Today, however, the rapid rise of digital technologies has allowed micro, small and medium-sized enterprises to become mobile and start considering their relocation options. Businesses move for a number of reasons: some relocate in search of a new market, others want to take advantage of better tax breaks and some simply want to take advantage of low office space prices. Here are some things you should take into consideration before fully committing to relocating your company.
Finding a solid reason to move
Almost all reasons for relocating a small business can be grouped into following five categories:
- Issues with labor and/or the workforce
- Reaching new and potentially lucrative markets
- Much needed upgrade of equipment and facilities
- Decreasing operational costs and increasing cash flow
- Improved quality of living
For different companies at different stages of their business lifecycle, some concerns might be more significant than others, but ultimately, every business relocation is caused by some of the above-mentioned issues or a combination of issues.
Why location is so important
Finding the ideal location for your business allows you to resolve some, if not all of the issues your company might be facing. A new location means a new, profitable market, better labor conditions and abundant workforce, lower rent and maintenance costs, better tax breaks and overall, a better life. However, one of the most common mistakes business owners make is closing their old location as soon as they move to a new one. While that might be a cost-effective option, the information about your relocation might not reach all your suppliers, partners and customers at the same time. Choose carefully, but leave the old location open until your company has fully settled.
Benefiting the company or the employees
The single largest concern of any major business decision is the cost. Relocating your company to a new location has the potential to solve the old and create new cost-related issues. Businesses are often forced to make a compromise between choosing a low-cost facility and staying near their target markets, a decision that has in recent years resulted in a large number of employees moving away from central cities and into the nearby suburbs to cut down their living expenses, something you as a business owner will have to consider.
Another thing you need to think about is the actual price of physically moving your equipment, merchandise, furnishings, paying rent for the new office space, utility costs and operational costs. In case you’re tearing down your old office space or constructing and expanding the new one, you will also have to consider the construction related-fees, obtaining the necessary licenses and finding the best out of many professional services for rubbish removal Sydney has to offer. Prepare your budget carefully and set aside additional funds for any unexpected costs.
Let the world know about your move
As obvious as it sounds, spreading the information about the move is one of the largest logistical issues for businesses. The main cause of the issue is the fact that people tend to overlook the types of announcements or simply mistake them for a newsletter. Always have more than one option of letting people know and utilize your company website, social media profiles, e-mail lists or any other method you can think of and always send more than one copy.
Business partners, investors, suppliers, employees, customers and even the utility companies all need to be informed in a timely fashion, which is why you might want to let them know beforehand, but also keep them updated during and after the move. As difficult as it sounds, moving to a new location is just another step in your company’s evolution. Whether it will be a step forward or backward is just one of many risks you will have to take in order to grow your business.
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