Archive | inspiration RSS feed for this section

Social Media – Manageable or not?

26 Aug

downloadt

The number of Social Media channels a Small Business had to look at utilising for marketing purposes has skyrocketed in the last few years & consequentially the number of ways to  make a mistake, has skyrocketed too.

Once upon a time, you could concentrate on one or two channels & know that your customers & potential revenue stream were there, but now, it seems a new portal / platform is appearing almost weekly. Now even the most adept marketers are faced with the unenviable task of determining the most suitable channels from dozens & dozens for each client they are assisting.

So how can YOU, the Small Business owner be expected to maintain your own social media marketing strategy & still run your business effectively.

Well if you follow these quick tips, you can achieve a semblance of balance.

Of course it would always be preferable to get a professional in to help; However being one myself, I understand small business & am always here to help as & when you are ready to take that step. But for now – Heres some help.

Facebook – 

Active-Facebook-icon

1) Ensure you have a “Business Page” – Don’t be tempted to use your personal page

2) Brand the header & have a comprehensive “About us” section

3) Respond daily to comments / posts on your wall

4) Don’t Automate any function – it looks & lazy & feels like you are cheating your customers.

Twitter – 

Active-Twitter-icon

1)  Respond to Comments & RT’s daily 

2) Post at least 2-4 Tweets daily, Thanking new followers & Linking to your sites

3) Don’t Automate any function – it looks & lazy & feels like you are cheating your customers. 

 

Pinterest – 

Active-Pinterest-icon1) Create at least  6 – 8 boards

2) Re-pin at least 4- pins daily

3)  Engage with the above channels – making sure you follow their Pinterest channels too

4) Don’t Automate any function – it looks & lazy & feels like you are cheating your customers

You can see I have said DON’T automate – The reason I say this is explained more Auto-Tweets a BIG FAIL!

The above should take no more than an hour or two to do well – Which is ok, if you have that time & if you know what you are doing. 

Personally, I would suggest using someone like Rocoja to help. 

Leave it to a professional, so you can get on with running your business.. Its a lot cheaper than you think!

WELL – it should be! Read this ->  Bigger isn’t always Better

 

Please read my other blogs for some more tips & hints.

I hope the above helps.

Karin

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

Image  Image  Image  Image  Image  Image

Social Media for Events in 13 steps

26 Jun

Events Character Means Concert Occasion Events Or FunctionsA quick “How to” guide 

 

 

1) Prepare the information you need – Location / format etc

2) Define your goals

3) Learn where your target audience are – (research their online habits)

4) Decide on appropriate Social Media forum (Pinterest/ Facebook / Twitter etc)

5) Create the platforms (grab same names / Very similar names across all you use)

6) Brand the platforms – Using relevant colours / icons / logos

7) Create an engaging intro & post onto relevant communities/groups

8) Decide on Hashtags & keywords & ensure their use across platforms

9) Support & encourage pre-event networking

10) Ask for ideas from the community you build – create an engaging atmosphere

11) Ensure regular linking to sales portals such as eventbrite or your webpage

12) Create social links to other communities / groups in same arena

13) Near to event, create a “count-down” to increase the anticipation

OR Spend your time building your event, doing the fun part and hire a Social Media consultant to help.

It’s not expensive as you may think & they have “contacts” which may help in disseminating your info & event out.

Contact info@Rocoja.co.uk for details of what we can do.

www.Rocoja.co.uk

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

Image  Image  Image  Image  Image  Image

 

 

Why can’t I DIY it?

14 May

I’ve been asked this question a LOT by the small businesses who seek out my help.

I create a social media presence for my clients, branding it & marketing them in a way that gets the best from the platforms we choose to use in relation to the business/ sole trader I am helping.. It’s not a One-size fits all routine & is certainly not an easy thing to do. BUT on first impressions, I can see why some people would assume, it’s just “messing about with Facebook” .

So below is a quick “help” guide to see if you could / should be handling your own marketing..

  1. Do you have Social Media or Marketing experience?

(This may seem a silly question, as you would expect someone to have experience in something they were going to undertake, especially if its something as fundamental to the life & success of their business as marketing is;  However many many directors/owners have no experience in this area & fall straight away at the first hurdle).

2.  Do you have time to learn a whole new Job role?

– Below is the “Job description” from an advert placed this week in a publication for a “Social media marketer”.

We are looking for a competent & able person to optimise, maintain, monitor and lead the platforms and any marketing strategies carried out in them: Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, YouTube, Pinterest, Mixcloud, Soundcloud, Google+, Flickr, etc.

– Content creation and management: content marketing.

– Interaction with users: community engagement.

– Social commerce: leads, calls to action and conversions in social media.

– Monitoring: online media, information sources and social channels.

– Measurements and follow-up: determining the ROI of the work carried out, justifying the quality of the actions taken and, of course, the results thereof.

– Fan building: based on achieving specific ROI objectives.

– Contests and campaigns: creative input, development, starting up and monitoring.

– Qualitative aspects: Sentiment reports, strengths, scope, virality, passion and effects for the brand online.

– SEO: website, blog and social platform (social search) optimisation, aimed at improving search results.

– Keyword optimisation and improvement in new SEO/SEM opportunities

– Email marketing: development, creative input, running, results and campaigns.

– Database: creation, management and maintenance of the database, making it larger and more streamlined.

– Website: content optimisation and stimulation, improvements within the website structure: functionality, usability, navigation by users. Developing and launching a mobile version. Promoting, marketing and communicating all the website’s contents. Measurements, monitoring and follow-up of results.

– Coordination and management of press and communication tasks: contents, interviews, website news, exclusive acts, etc.

– Video-marketing: optimisation, search, keywords, sponsored videos, marketing.

– e-Commerce: creation and generation of online sales opportunities.

– Reports: online sales, online positioning, online reputation, online results.

– Community: leading online communities, brand representation in different forums and communities.

– Online branding: searching, identifying and improving all brand-related aspects in social media.

– Adviser: playing a brand consulting/advising role with regard to the online environment: opportunities, threats, new initiatives, development of digital identity and online presence, identification of potential business and new digital transactions.

Other ad-hoc duties as & when required.

(What do you think)?

  3. Research time

Finding & engaging clients is key to the growth of any online platform, this is luckily a smaller arena when you work for small businesses as less is often,  more – a more targeted approach with the focus on quality rather than quantity is key here. However, you need to be very comfortable with engaging the audience you are seeking. this can be by demographic / geographic or another key factor.

The 3 points above are the most key factors to consider when thinking about a DIY campaign.

If you can do this & still run/grow your business, then fantastic!!!

However for the sake of a few pounds a month, I highly recommend engaging the services of a professional.

This doesn’t mean, get online & find the biggest flashiest website, with promises of hundreds of followers & clicks etc in a few days for extortionate sums..

This means look at a social media company who understands small businesses, look for references, look for recommendations & of course look at costs.

Rocoja is happy to provide free analysis & to quote to help small businesses.

We are trusted amongst the small business community in Surrey & South London, with costs starting at just £30 per month.

www.Rocoja.co.uk

Karin

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

Image  Image  Image  Image  Image  Image

3 Tricks I’ve learned over the years

15 Apr

During my extensive & eclectic career, I have attended many “sales” training courses, along with motivational & managerial courses,How to be the best courses & lots more all packaged up as “career enhancing”.

Training

Through the last quarter century I have come to realise that a few tiny tricks help far more than some ofthe “essential” tools I was given at the above seminars..

Today I will share 3 with you.

Trick 1:-  If you work in telesales, or customer services & are hooked up to a phone all day, put a Mirror on your desk. Whenever you are on a call, make an effort to look at yourself & smile… Sounds weird, but people can hear the smile at the other end of the phone line & it can lift a boring/tense conversation up.

Trick 2:- If you work in a customer facing environment, maybe at a Bar area, Serving bench. Install a large mirror on the wall behind you. Customers who approach you will then see themselves in the mirror behind you and the chances of them behaving irrationally or getting angry lowers significantly.

Trick 3:- Fake it till you make it; confidence is more important than knowledge in many scenarios. Don’t be intimidated by anyone, everyone is playing a role: I’ve come across many people who employed this strategy & eventually they became exactly the person they were “faking” at being. So fake your confidence, whilst all the while improving your ability.

My most valuable lesson learned was to be around positive people, in work, at home, in life in general.

self

You are an individual, let that shine through & maybe give yourself permission to use the tricks above to help make life a little easier.

As with all my blogs – Please please let me know if you find any of this helpful.

Thank you

Karin

www.Rocoja.co.uk

Email me here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk

Facebook – Rocoja Limited

Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

g+ – Rocoja Limited

 

Social Media 101

28 Nov

Here I am going to simplify the process by which a social media campaign can & will enhance your marketing.

This is crucial for small businesses who are struggling at the moment as the majority of social media platforms are free to use (at the moment).

However – like most “free” activities, you really do need to use it correctly for it to work.

The first step is to work out what your goals are!

Most small businesses will want at least one of the following (some will want all of them),

  1. General marketing (getting your name out there).
  2. Interaction with the customer / potential customer base
  3. Sharing of idea’s / offers / competitions
  4. Showcase new products
  5. Drive traffic to your website

The next step is to identify platforms 

There’s no point in jumping into all & then feeling deflated when they dont work!

  1. Twitter – My favourite!  Connection with customers in short sharp bites of info.
  2. Facebook – 70% of users are small businesses / owners
  3. Pinterest – Create showcasing boards of products / merchandise & share out
  4. Blog – Lots of info, Gives a “personal feel” for customers.
  5. Linked-In – Very professional, Perfect for sourcing info on clients / colleagues
  6. Google + – after a shaky start, this is coming into its own – Just think, Google LOVES Google +
  7. Lots more – all of which need to be researched.

Now work out which ones are right for your business

  1. Do you offer a service that needs explaining?
  2. Do you offer products which change rapidly?
  3. Are your product lines static?
  4. Which demographic are you aimed at? Professional, Manual, Skilled, age related?
  5. Can you link from your website (some sites are not #Pinterest or #Instagram friendly)
  6. Are you able to identify the sites your competitors use?

Plan Plan Plan

  1. When should you post?
  2. Will your customers appreciate automated posts or will it turn them off?
  3. What time are your demographic on-line
  4. Are your services / products seasonal?
  5. What links are relevant to which of your target audience?

Now comes the hard work

  1. Make sure you monitor your presence
  2. Respond to direct messages/questions personally (not automated)
  3. Be proactive when trying to increase followers / likes etc – Research on this is vital
  4. Keep an eye on competitors
  5. Welcome all feedback, good or bad! Respond professionally & with solutions
  6. Actively engage your customers, welcome them into your “family” (business)
  7. Monitor search terms that are relevant & actively incorporate these into your plan.
  8. Join relevant groups / networks on-line.

Now if all of the above seems like a lot of work for something that is essentially a “free” tool, that’s because it is hard work…

The presence you develop on Social media will be there forever, you need to ensure it shows your passion for your business as well as your regard for your clients/customers. This needs to run hand in hand with informative & relevant content.

Your prospective client needs to feel that their very precious time is best placed with you.

Should you do this yourself?

Of course you can BUT do you have the time to do it properly?

Anything less than full attention to a social media campaign can leave you despondent & feeling let down. This is why you as a small business should invest in a social media manager or a consultant. This can cost as little as £1 a day.

Please read my other blogs on the subjects above for some more tips & hints.

I hope the above helps.

Karin

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

Image  Image  Image  Image  Image  Image

Or contact us via

info@Rocoja.co.uk

Gathering Intel

14 Nov

Part of the services I offer is the “Build a Database” service.

This includes capturing details of followers/friends (where possible) on FB / Twitter & placing these details in a basic format

(more commonly excel). This can be from scratch or from an existing list of followers.

This usually doesn’t cause much of an issue as I (or one of my colleagues) am the one compiling the list from scratch & 99% of the time this is done electronically (straight onto excel).

However I have recently come across a number of small businesses which are run from home offices etc, where the owner / director is still keeping manual records. This is something I happily transfer to electronic however I have been astounded at the level of sensitive information people have lying about in their home-offices.

I’ve seen folders full of names & addresses; customers scribbled down in haste and with information so sensitive its astounding.

Collecting customer information is VITAL for small business, a basic database is essential for mail-shots/loyalty schemes and information such as this used correctly can breed customer loyalty & promote sales.

However you must never forget your responsibilty to keep this information secure.

If you handle personal information about individuals, you have a number of legal obligations to protect that information under the Data Protection Act 1998.

see :- Data Protection

Please email me with any request for quotes on how to transfer your paper files to a basic database easily if you are in SWLondon or Surrey.

Karin@Rocoja.co.uk

Image

a Small Business supporting fellow small businesses.

Oh & PS – Try to make the writing easy to decipher – Pretty please

Join Rocoja here

Image  Image

Image  Active-Twitter-icon

Retail Recruitment in the UK

14 Aug

A number of the small businesses I work for are in the retail sector and they are bearing a heavy burden during this recession. Bad news seems to abound at the moment, especially from large retailers who are making redundancies, to the UK being the 4th worst payer in the retail sector in the European Union.

Well, this may be so for some larger companies, BUT thank fully not all & thankfully we have a skilled, experienced workforce available for employment right now. This can only be a good thing for the retailers who recognise the positives which can be taken from the current economic situation!

So where should you go if you are looking for these people?

ImageYou would need to access the portal retail managers and retail sales professionals are using now for their career advice.   Sadly, this is something lacking previously in high street agencies & job centres so now they have Retail Human Resources.

RHR insist on meeting all candidates face-to-face and are constantly measuring their own response standards. They are as dedicated to the candidates as they are to the clients which leads to full commitment of service.

For retail job seekers, it means RHR are in a better position than any other consultancy to help professionals find a rewarding job with a retailer that will perfectly compliment skills, experience and ambitions.

For retailers who are looking to hire, it means you will be offered a diverse range of recruitment services which will enable your vacancy to be quickly filled with suitably skilled people.

It’s the portal I suggest to my retail clients.

So if this is your industry, or indeed, if this is your profession, take a look 🙂

As with any recommendation I make – Please please let me know if you make use of this.

Thank you

Karin

www.Rocoja.co.uk

email me here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk

Facebook – Rocoja Limited

Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

g+ – Rocoja Limited

Purity Beauty & Skin Spa New Malden

2 Aug

I have done something that I have never done in the 46 years of being on this planet – I have been for a “Facial”.

Now you may laugh as this is something some women do on a regular basis, but I have never really bought into the whole “beauty regimen” hoopla. Don’t get me wrong, I try to look as good as I can (Thank you Maybelline & Rimmel), but my cleansing routine  has always been good old-fashioned soap & water; followed by freezing cold water splashed on my face before towel drying!

Purity Skin centre

However I was seduced by the fact that Purity beauty & skin centre had an offer on & that they are almost opposite one of the clients I work for.

Therefore, I headed off for a facial for the first time ever.

Purity Beauty & Skin Centre is based within a complex of offices / small businesses in the New Malden area, every door looking the same as you work your way through the business park: However as soon as I walked into the corridor towards my goal, the fantastic aroma’s hit me. Wafting out of their Beauty rooms & down through the stark corridor was the scent of “Happy” – something I can only think, other tenants must absolutely love.

I followed the rich aroma to an open door at the end & was greeted by a lovely smiling face. The young lady immediately asked me if I would like a cold drink (it was a sweltering 32 degrees outside) & ushered me to a comfy sofa.

ImageI was then greeted by the other young lady, who introduced herself as Gemma & shown through to a lovely intimate room, with candles & soft lighting.  Being all new to me, I wasn’t sure what would happen next, but my worries were quickly dispersed when she began to explain the procedure & went on to ask me some questions about myself, explaining that lifestyle & food choices etc can affect the skin.

I then made myself comfy on a bed & waited for this new experience.

Gemma wrapped my hair in a band & then began to cleanse my face, which was a weird feeling as no one else as ever washed / wiped my face.   She then put the brightest light onto my skin & looked closely to determine my skin type. Again this was an odd feeling as I was a little embarrassed at the thought of someone looking at my ageing skin & seeing all its imperfections, but as soon as that thought crossed my mind, it was almost like Gemma knew; as the light was taken away & she began to advise on how she would complete the facial & the skin type I have; All done in a very friendly & relaxed way – NO hard sell here!

I was then rewarded with a wonderful set of treatments from facial scrub & massage to a steam treatment. All topped off with moisturisers, carefully massaged into my skin by Gemma.

The time went so quickly & I felt so relaxed throughout, I was sad when the treatment ended.

All I can say ladies, is if you have never tried a facial before, it is something I would highly recommend. Not only was it wonderful to have an hour or so out of my busy schedule, but my skin felt gorgeous & renewed afterwards.

The people at Purity Beauty & Skin centre are so nice & welcoming & the cost is NOT prohibitive.

Check out their Facebook page for a number of offers on right now!

I am going back soon – Will be trying another treatment & will of course keep everyone posted on how it goes.

As with any recommendation I make – Please please let me know if you use these services,.  Thank you

Karin

www.Rocoja.co.uk

email me here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk

Facebook – Rocoja Limited

Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

g+ – Rocoja Limited

A Sweet & cheerful break

2 Jul

I have been working non-stop lately & have met some wonderful small business people, but some stick in the mind more than others – Let me tell you about Cake-Links.

Image

Cake-links are a gorgeous triple fronted shop in the lovely Christchurch Town centre, Dorset,

They could’ve stayed being a very successful & much-loved family owned bakery & Sugarcraft company, but no… Cake-links have embraced the new era of on-line promotion & marketing & are selling their unique wares on-line, not only that, they are offering their specially trained staff up to answer any questions about equipment, techniques and general cake decorating.

They also have a fantastic order service in place, offering a next day courier delivery service throughout the UK if your order is placed by 1pm, with FREE delivery if the order totals over £40.

Cake-links not only sell everything you need to bake & make unique & wonderful creations, they are with you every step of the way, via handy on-line guides, Telephone advice & even Cake-Links own video’s.

Cake-links are now considered to be “The Cake Decorating Supplies Specialist”;

ImageStocking Cake Decorating tools and equipment, including Wedding Cake Toppers, Cake Decorations, Icing Cutters, Sugarpaste, Modelling Paste, Modelling Tools, Cupcake Decorations, Boards, Boxes and Ribbon. Everything you would expect in a cake makers Aladin’s cave and more!

I recommend, if you have a business, that has anything to do with cakes, baking, sugarcraft etc, take a look at Cake-Links… or indeed, if like me, you just fancy a look at the gorgeous things they have for sale…

As with all the services I find, please let me know if you decide to have a look at this companies wares… Also, they are very social media aware, so please nip by & say hi on their respective accounts 🙂

www.Rocoja.co.uk

email me here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk or Cake Links here – info@cake-links.com

Facebook – Rocoja Limited  or Cake-Links

Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

g+ – Rocoja Limited

Flutter those Lashes!

29 May

Wasn’t that Bank holiday lovely? Did you read my post on time management, so you can have some extra free time all the time?

Well, I am taking some of my own advice & a certain part of my life, which I have neglected of late, is getting some pampering…My car.

Every one of my cars has had a name (& personality). My beautiful baby now is “Scarlet”, I usually wash her to a gleam regularly, clean her leather interior meticulously, shine her chrome & buff her tyres….

However with work taking up so much of my time, She has not been as pampered as she should have been, so on Monday I spent some time looking for something to make her feel special.

I found these —>

Car EyelashesThese are amazing & because I want to make sure my baby gets the best she deserves, I have searched for the supplier with what I consider to be the most informative site, lovely photos & of course value  choice.

ultimate pack eyelashes

The standard set is just £14.95 for one set (You can choose the colour you want & they also come in a glow in the dark set too!).

Or you can go all out & get an Ultimate pack for £49.99, which looks absolutely perfect for me.

The site offers a comprehensive 30 day Money back guarantee also, which is something you may struggle with if you source these gorgeous Car eyelashes from other sites.

So whether you are  a BMW     Or a Mini      Or a Jeep Person……

BMW EyelashesMini Eyelashesjeep eyelashes

Or  the Ultimate girlie car, lover – These are for YOU!

pink BeautySo I recommend a trip to EYELASHES FOR CARS 

Or better still, nip along to their Facebook page where you can proudly upload pics of your pride & joy sporting their

lovely new Car Eyelashes.

As with all my posts, please let me know if you visit this site, or indeed if you (like me) decide to pamper your car with these gorgeous Car Eyelashes.

www.Rocoja.co.uk

email us here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk

Facebook – Rocoja Limited

Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

g+ – Rocoja Limited

Behind The Scenes - Life as a Spoonie

The Fading Ghost / Professional Eccedentesiast

Road To Somewhere Else

the view from the dark side: politics, media, cities & culture

Streetsister

Conversations with Street People

companyformationuk

Company Formation UK|Business Start up UK|Accounting Services UK

Dennis Cardiff

Poems & Prose

The savvy bookkeeping blog

Bookkeeping tips for the small business owner.

Logical Quotes

Social Media for Small Business in Surrey & SW London

%d bloggers like this: