Blog

7 Creative Ways to Make Your Storefront Stand Out

7 Creative Ways to Make Your Storefront Stand Out.

 

Physical stores have seen rising competition from online brands, but they still have some serious advantages, including the ability to generate foot traffic. However, to succeed in drawing in foot traffic, stores have to go out of their way to stand out from the competition.

The best way to do this is to come up with a storefront display that’s simultaneously inventive and aesthetically appealing. But you can’t just conjure a creative idea out of thin air—so what can you do to come up with better, more appealing displays?

Standing Out

These are some of the best strategies you’ll find for creating more powerful storefront displays:

  1. Invest in the right glass. First, make sure you’re investing in the right glass. There are many thicknesses and styles to choose from, and if you want to add a signature touch, you can even get it engraved or decorated. In general, the more clean and open your glass is, the more flexibility you’ll have for your display, but a few permanent touches could help your brand become more memorable.
  2. Use a minimal display. Minimalism is in. Our world is one that’s bombarded with information, advertising, and clutter, and most people have grown to filter out most of these inputs as white noise. Relying on a minimalistic display, which incorporates tasteful amounts of white space with only a handful of intentional center pieces, will draw onlookers’ eyes exactly where you want them to go. Don’t try to stuff your display with as many items as you can. In this case, less is more.
  3. Choose your best products. This should go without saying, but you’ll only have room for a handful of items in your display, so choose your best products. Here, “best” is a subjective and variable term. “Best” may mean the products most likely to get attention from passersby, your newest products (so you can highlight them to your recurring customers), or even your most profitable items.
  4. Add lights or moving parts. Nothing catches the eye like light and movement, so make sure there’s some of each in your display. A flashing light here or there can draw attention from down the street, and a moving display makes your storefront seem like a video, rather than a still image. Just remember the importance of minimalism here; too many flashing lights can seem tacky, and excessive or fast movement may seem chaotic rather than pleasing.
  5. Utilize greenery. If you can, incorporate some plants into your display—especially during spring and summer months. A basket of flowers, or a small herb garden in your front window can make your place seem livelier and more inviting to passersby.
  6. Stay in brand. Most of these rules are generic because much of the power of your display is dependent on the qualities and tone of your brand. Your brand should be customized to appeal to your specific target demographics, rather than the general public, and those key characteristics should be evident in your display choices. Is your brand fun-loving and carefree? Consider something youthful, including toys and jokes. Is your brand more professional and focused on image? Make sure everything is lined up perfectly, with sharp colors and deliberate choices.
  7. Change your display regularly. Many of the people walking by your storefront have walked by there before. If they see the same display every time, even if it’s imminently creative, eventually, it’s going to blend into the background. If you want to stand out to those people, you’ll need to change your display on a regular basis—usually once a month, or at least once a quarter, is plenty.

The Ongoing Experiment

The best way to succeed in optimizing your storefront is to treat the endeavor as an ongoing scientific experiment. Because there are so many variables that factor into how people respond to a given display, it’s virtually impossible to predict how your customers might react to your latest arrangement—even if it’s unequivocally creative.

Instead of vying for perfection, make a change and see what happens. Take careful measurement of your foot traffic—including increases or decreases—and pay attention to customer comments. Use this information to fuel your next attempt, and use careful analysis to determine which elements of your displays are most and least successful. Eventually, you’ll be able to determine the best themes, products, and styles for your storefront, and optimize accordingly.

 

Advertisements

Instagram for business 101

instagram pic

Instagram continues to grow as an effective digital marketing platform for brands because it reveals interesting brand stories with engaging visuals that can be easily shared. And, with consistent and strategic effort, businesses can build substantial audiences.

But are you and your brand getting the most out of Instagram? Do you have a strategy for growth and conversion? And, more importantly, is it working?

Here’s a few ways to ensure your business’s success on today’s fastest growing social media platform…

Your profile matters

While it may seem like the smallest part of your Instagram presence, your profile’s description plays a huge role in your potential growth. You only have 150 words to play with, so make them count! Be concise and to the point but take the opportunity to use this space to convey your brand’s personality.

You should change your profile description to advertise important events, sales or product launches. Make careful use of the one link you can put in your bio. Remember, most of your fans will already know your website address, so perhaps here you can promote specific landing pages to entice potential customers further down the sales funnel.

If you register for an Instagram Business profile, you can include your phone number in your bio. You will also be able to access useful analytics data. This might be worth considering!

 

Get strategic

While this may seem pretty obvious, posting regularly is the best way to attract interest and followers on Instagram. The ideal amount of posts varies, depending on your audience, but posting high-quality images 3-6 times a day definitely grow your views and, in turn, your followers.

Make sure what you do post really speaks to your niche and don’t continually repost your own images. The Instagram audience can be fickle and will unfollow in an instant if they don’t like what they’re seeing. If posting so frequently doesn’t suit your brand, keeping the posting low quantity but high quality is the way to go.

There are several apps, both paid and unpaid like Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Later or Buffer that can help you to keep on top of your posting schedule.

It’s also important to make sure you give your fans the correct ratio of value posts (that educate, empower or inspire) to selling (promoting your product or service) posts. A good rule of thumb is 3 value posts to 1 sell post.

Go behind the scenes

While many businesses use Instagram to show off their products and achievements, one of the best ways to leverage the platform is to instead take your audience behind the scenes. And Instagram Stories is the best way to show them things that they did not already know about your business.

Providing this sort of insider perspective develops a stronger bond between you and your target market. They will likely feel more connected to your brand, having been allowed into the inner workings. Ideally, this strategy will foster stronger brand loyalty and it also gives you the chance to speak directly to your fans or followers.

Going behind the scenes might involve filming or taking photos from in the warehouse, or after work hours. Alternatively, you might create content about where you source your products from and how they’re made. There are endless ways for you to share some behind-the-scenes action with your fans.

Look out for trending hashtags

To get your content in front of as many sets of eyeballs as possible, you need to use trending hashtags within your target audience and then post content related to what people are looking at! This will help put you in front of the eyes of those you care about, without having to spend on advertising.

You can use up to 30 hashtags per post so it’s a good idea to use them all.  Post the hashtags in a comment immediately after the pic.

Of course, before of hashtags that have been shadowbanned (hashtags that Instagram makes undiscoverable, therefore they won’t show up on searches and reducing the reach of your account and making it much harder to reach a new audience).

Track your traffic

It can be difficult to measure conversion rates from your Instagram posts, particularly when coming from the mobile app. This makes it harder for businesses to determine how much money to budget towards Instagram marketing.

A great way to combat this is to use link shorteners whenever posting links on Instagram. That way, you will be able to see when people are visiting your website from the shortened link – meaning they have come from Instagram.

This allows you to better evaluate your Instagram strategy along the way, and tailor it through A/B testing towards converting into business profitability. This sort of analysis is crucial in the world of digital marketing for businesses.

Partner up

Influencer marketing is one of the most important ways to leverage Instagram for your business. Look for people who have like-minded followings in your niche and think about how you can make a partnership with them mutually beneficial.

Sometimes, it can be as simple as tagging them in a post that they may share. Other times, you will have to more formally collaborate with them.

Influencers act as a point of authority and have an audience of passionate fans. They are all over Instagram, so you should be making efforts to engage with them, especially if your target market looks up to and respect them.

 

5 Inexpensive Marketing Ideas For Small Businesses

5 Low-Budget Marketing Ideas For Small Businesses

1. Publish Great Content. I don’t think I even need to say this, but it’d be neglectful not to mention the importance of kick-ass content. If you can create it yourself, all the better (isn’t free always better?). Even if writing isn’t your strong point, you shouldn’t have too much trouble getting someone on your team to crank out some articles for your blog. Try top 10 lists, tip collections, best practices for your industry, etc.

2. Get Ad Promo Credits. While massive ad campaigns may be out of your budget, there are often discounts and coupons floating around for paid Facebook ads or Google ads. Some web hosting services offer advertising discount codes as part of their membership offerings. Check and see if yours does.

3. Awesome Business Cards. Get yourself some snazzy business cards, then give them to every person you lay eyes on.  Every handshake should come with a business card. The more people who find out about your business, the better – even if it’s just a quick glance at a business card.

4. Host an Event or Class. Plan an event or class to host, then print out flyers and post them on community bulletin boards (libraries, coffee shops, local colleges and adult ed centers). While most community bulletin boards won’t let you post business advertisements, they’re often more than happy to post a flyer promoting an educational event or class.

5. Industry Partnerships. Team up with a business related to your industry (but not a direct competitor) for a joint project. This can be done locally offline through some kind of special event, or online with a webinar or promotional giveaway.

Partnering with another business means twice as much notice. If you’re partnering with an industry-relevant business, you’re getting introduced to a whole new audience related to your niche. People pay big money for that kind of access!

6 Ways You’re STILL Leaving #Money on the Table in #2017

6 Ways You_re STILL Leaving Money on the Table in 2017

1.Stop starting over everytime you repeat a task.You don’t have systems in place to maintain your business. You need technology systems in place. You must have a strategy.

2. You don’t master all of the skills you need to grow your business. You refuse to delegate task. You need to get a team. (Virtual Assistant, Email Marketing Company, Graphic Designers, etc.) You must stop doing task that you don’t like to do. In order for you to operate in you genius zone. In order for you to get to a place where you are your most efficient, creative and productive. You must stop spending too much time doing things you don’t like. And that’s when your money, abundance and success flows. Stop spending time doing things that you aren’t really great at. Start delegating now. Start actively look for people to build your team of experts.

3. You’re not getting in front of the right people. A part of growing your business is getting in front of the right people. Don’t just get in front of an audience, get in front of the right audience. Understand the importance of being in the right place at the right time. You are not building influence, consistency or making money with your audience when you are not in front of the right audience. Don’t just waste time on social media in front of the wrong audience.

4. You have to invest in you education so that you can grow. Recognize that you don’t know everything. Invest in yourself to go to the next level. Get a coach, immerse yourself in the industry. It cost 10,000 hours to become an expert in anything. So put in your 10,000 hours. Learn your craft. Invest your time and energy into learning how to master your craft.

5. You gotta use automation. Invest in automation. Everything in your business should not have to be operated by you. Set up your business to where it can function to a degree without you. A great way to do that is automation. You can automate your emails, social media. But you must invest in that technology to be able to do so.

6. Optimization simply means getting the most out of whatever it is that you do.You must optimize your marketing, optimize your website, optimize your social media. Whatever it is that you are doing you want to get the most bang for your buck. To help with this you can use our Free list building mastery resource guide Click Here to get your FREE List Building Mastery Resource Guide.

FREE List Building Mastery Resource Guide

FREE List Building Mastery Resource Guide (1)

Creating Freebies Canva.com Canva is a FREE platform that you can use to create checklists, ebooks, images, and more. For more features you can upgrade to a business account.

LANDING PAGES & OPT-IN BOXES LeadPages: LeadPages is the industry ‘ s leader in creating beautiful landing pages even if you don ‘t know how to do web design. LeadPages offers hundreds of templates for you to create pages & opt­in boxes anything you need

EMAIL MARKETING SERVICE Active Campaign: Active Campaign offers users the most features for an affordable price. Send autoresponders, create segmented lists, schedule campaigns and more so you can grow your list and make more money online.

FILE HOSTING Amazon S3 Amazon S3 allows you to host your files online at a very low price, and even offers a 12month free trial. This is perfect to be able to send you freebies and other documents to your subscribers.

ROYALTY FREE IMAGES CreateHer.com CreateHer.com sends FREE royalty free images to you every month. You can use these images in your freebies, on your landing pages, or even your social media post.

TELESEMINARS FreeConferenceCall.com Teleseminars are a great way for you to grow your lists. You can host your teleseminar for free on  freeconferencecall.com

WEBINARS Zoom.us Webinars are another tool that the pros use to grow their lists. Zoom offers tons of options to fit your needs, and allows your viewers to interact with you, see you and ask questions live.

Eight things I wish I new before I started.


Entrepreneurship can be a tough game. Almost no college or university level education can prepare you for it. Most of the learning happens on the job.

When I started my first business way back in 2002, little did I expect the journey to be this brutal. Here are some lessons I wish I knew when I first started.
#1 Money is important but not enough

A lot of entrepreneurs manage to raise capital early in the game, but money is just not enough. A sound business model that generates consistent cash flows is important. Besides, you need people to implement your systems.

#2 Focus on people and their needs

Business is all about people. You can’t do it all by yourself. Focus on people, understand their needs, compensate them adequately, and invest in their training. They may or may not stay with you, but it’s important to continually train them.

#3 The owner is separate from his business

It’s important to separate yourself from your business, and look at yourself as an employee and shareholder in your business. I’ve seen that many people struggle to differentiate their personal finances from that of their business.

#4 Choose the right business for you

Sometimes, the difference between success and failure can be just choosing the right business for you. There are times when no matter how much you try, things just won’t work out because market conditions are not in your favor.

For example, the airline industry in most countries has a profit margin of less than 2% and most airlines even though they are run by competent people don’t make money.

#5 Maintain a strong work-life balance

I see a lot of entrepreneurs spend 12 to 13 hours a day in their business. And they’ve been doing it for over 10 years. This eventually causes them to burn out and become unproductive. The moment you start working lesser hours, you find ways to streamline your operations and get things done faster. Nowadays, there are a lot of apps that can help you become more productive.

#6 Start Saving Early

I was never really a big spender. However, I rarely bothered to save money early in my life. If you start saving early, you can use your savings to invest in your business. Savings give you options.

#7 Learn to manage debt better or stay out of it

Some entrepreneurs use debt to start a business, this can be very dangerous especially if you are a first time entrepreneur. A start-up is inherently very risky, especially if the business model is untested.

If the business fails, the business owner still needs to pay back debt because most debts are personally guaranteed by the business owner.

Some entrepreneurs use home loans, and personal loans to start a business because interest rates on these type of loans are low. However, be very careful, less optimistic, and make sure your debt is within manageable limits.

#8 Find a good mentor

Having a good mentor is like parental guidance. You want someone to hold you accountable for your actions, and provide guidance through your journey.

But choose your mentor wisely. It should ideally be someone who has a strong track record of success in business, believes in your idea, and is willing to give you honest feedback without worrying about protecting your feelings.