Webinar Recap: “Driving Business Growth Through Marketing” from Part 1 of the free webinar series, “Accelerating Your Business Growth”

Part 1 of our free webinar series, “Accelerating Your Business Growth” entitled “Driving Business Growth Through Marketing”, presented by AnyMeeting together with Comcast Business and SCORE, featured speaker Bob Paino, a SCORE mentor and former partner in a mid-size boutique advertising agency in New York City for over 37 years specializing in travel, consumer products and business-to-business accounts.

Bob’s rich and engaging presentation is designed to help small business owners and marketers:

  • Maximize customer reach and retention with tools and tips on social media, online marketing, public relations, advertising, event marketing and more.
  • Learn how to create “raving fans” and prepare your business and team to execute for growth.

Get insights and actionable advice as Bob engages the audience in live Q&A.

Whether you are just starting your business, looking to accelerate your growth or simply want to gain an edge to get your business to the next level, you won’t want to miss out.

Watch the full webinar recording here.

Snap-Meeting_Recording__Accelerating_Your_Business_Growth_Webinar_Series__Part_1_-_Driving_Growth_Through_Marketing___AnyMeeting_-_The_Completely_Free_Web_Conferencing_and_Meeting_Service_and_AnyMeeting

Want to view and download the presentation from the webinar complete with Bob’s resources? Get it from Slideshare.

Be sure to check out the other webinars from this series and sign up for the latest webinar today!

10 Ways Webinars Could Be Building Your Small Business

This is a guest post by John Jantsch – Duct Tape Marketing

iStock_000034684846_SmallSmall business owners have a lot on their plate. You know running a business is no easy feat. Because of all the time constraints being put on you, it is easy to relegate marketing to the back burner.

Sure, you write blog posts and create content whenever you get a few free hours or need a break from the business side of things. Bigger marketing tools, such as webinars, though, are for a time in the future when you’ve grown a lot and can better justify taking the time and effort necessary to host a webinar that is valuable to your customers.

If done right, however, webinars can be an integral part of your content marketing strategy for many reasons. They can also be used in multiple ways. The effort you put into a webinar can result in not only great leads, but can also be the foundation of multiple pieces of content. Here are 10 reasons to hold webinars as part of your small business marketing plan.

  1. Networking. One of the best ways webinars can help you is through networking. Unless you do all your webinars yourself, you will likely need some help. Finding someone to host a guest webinar for you is a great way to expand your network, and when you give them a little bit of publicity, they might reciprocate by asking you to help out on one of their webinars.  
  2. Contacts. Webinars is one of the best content marketing tools if you want to gather a list of potential clients. Most webinars have you sign up ahead of time. Once the viewer has registered, you have all of their contact information. So even offering a free webinar can ultimately make you money in future sales.  
  3. Prestige. Even the word webinar sounds fancy. Everybody has a blog and a Twitter handle, but not everybody offers webinars. Seeing them listed on a site or having them pull up in a Google search can add a little prestige to a website that just might make the product you are selling seem a little bit more legitimate and trustworthy.
  4. MultiPurpose. When you create a webinar, you can multi-purpose it as a blog as well. All you have to do is add a line or a paragraph about the webinar and then insert the webinar, or a link to it, in the post. That way, you get two content marketing posts for the price (and time) of one.
  5. Communication. Hosting a webinar is a great way to communicate with your target audience. Webinars are interactive, so not only do you get a list of contacts by hosting a webinar, you get to hear, and answer, real customer questions.
  6. Research. The interactive component of a webinar has another important consequence. The questions that people ask during webinars show just what their concerns are. Answering those questions during the webinar helps foster communication, but examining those questions in more depth at the end of the webinar gives you valuable research into future webinar and social media topics as well as what people are looking for in your service.
  7. Money. While a lot of people host webinars for free, you can charge for them as well. Even if only one out of four of your webinars are for profit, this is one of the only content marketing strategies that can actually make you money by their very existence.
  8. Social Media. Hosting a webinar does not have to be done strictly on top of your other social media campaigns. You can Tweet about the webinar and use your other social media outlets to promote it.
  9. Accreditation. If your webinar is geared towards professionals who need accreditation hours (e.g., lawyers), you can go through the process to set your webinars up with credits, which will make them much more likely to sit down and pay attention to what you are teaching.
  10. Repurposing. Once you have a few webinars under your belt, you can update what you already have with new information instead of starting from scratch.  

Plus, here is a bonus for you. In addition to all of the above, webinars are just a really good way to build up brand recognition.

Creating Webinars

While thinking about creating a webinar can be daunting, it does not have to be. There are many tutorials, and even webinars, that can walk you through the steps. If you just are not good with that type of thing or simply do not have time, you can still take advantage of these great marketing tools. Think about using a marketing service that could help you create them. You’ve got to spend money to make money, after all, and the small cost of marketing can make you a lot of money with the new business it will supply you.

Sign up for a free 14-day trial with AnyMeeting’s Webinar Pro and get started with your first webinar today.

Kwela Leadership and Talent Management “Winning Webinar Strategy”

 

Kwela logo

Kwela Leadership and Talent Management is a Vancouver-based consulting company that specializes in leadership development, team building, organizational development and training for businesses of all sizes.

Who is the target audience for your marketing webinars?

Both current clients and new client prospects.

What goals were are you looking to accomplish with your webinars?

The primary objective of these informational webinars is to deepen Kwela’s relationship with its current clients, in what is a strongly relationship-driven business.  A secondary objective is to engage with new prospect by providing information relevant to the services Kwela provides, without a hard sell.

How do you attract people to your webinars?

Kwela encourages its staff to reach out personally to each of its clients when inviting them to these information sessions.  It also promotes them via its website to attract new client prospects.

What content are you typically presenting in your marketing webinars?

Informational webinars on topics important to its clients and prospects, without any hard selling.  Past sessions include:

– Performance management best practices

– How to build a high performing team

– Selecting and hiring great talent

The sessions are generally about one hour or less with Q&A breaks at key points throughout the presentations.

What are your personal tips for conducting effective marketing webinars?

* “There is no substitute for preparation.”  Kwela distributes a “webinar best practices” guide to each of its presenters and encourages practicing in advance with presenters and an acting attendee.

* Avoid hard selling.  Kwela focuses on providing value to the audience to help build relationships and trust.

* Keep the content simple, without too much content on each slide.

* Don’t leave audience engagement and Q&A to the end of the presentation.  Take moments out within the presentation to solicit and address questions from the audience.

* Understand that your audience can get distracted, so lead with what’s in it for them, as well as with assurances that the presentation will be brief, rich, and sensitive to their time.

What has been the biggest surprise or learning you’d like to share with others?

The biggest surprise has been how challenging it can be to engage with audiences remotely versus in person.  It requires practice to overcome the limits of online versus in-person presentations.

Like their webinar strategy? Vote Now!

PROergonomics “Winning Webinar Strategy”


The mission of PROergonomics is to provide solutions to advance clients’ ergonomic strategies to help reduce injury risk and improve workplace design.

Who is the target audience for your marketing webinars?

Company HR and/or health & safety managers

What goals were are you looking to accomplish with your webinars?

“It’s a great way to drive traffic to our website, generate interest in our business, educate our clients about what we can do to help them, and it’s also a great offer on a cold call if the client isn’t interested in a meeting.  This way, we still get them connected to us so that we can open up that conversation again later.”

How do you attract people to your webinars?

The webinar events complement PROergonomics’ prospecting activities including cold calling and tradeshows.  The company also sends e-newsletters each month, which include articles about the webinar topics, and promotes upcoming and past webinars on its website.

What content are you typically presenting in your marketing webinars/

Informational topics of direct interest to HR and health & safety managers.  Titles of recent events include:

* What Makes a Product “Ergonomic”?

* Developing an Onsite Stretching Program

* Addressing the Millennial Workforce Through Ergonomics”

Content includes PowerPoint presentations as well as chat-based Q&A to engage the audience, which range in size from 30-40 people.

What are your personal tips for conducting effective marketing webinars?

* Keep presentations informational and not too “salesy.”

* Provide enough information to catch the audience’s attention and get them reflecting on the topic, but leave them wanting more, which will help drive follow-up engagement.

* Keep events to an hour or less to be respectful of the time demands of your audience.

* Ask questions of your audience, which can be managed through chat, to further engage them.

What has been the biggest surprise or learning you’d like to share with others?

The importance of making an offer to all participants – ideally one that is closely tied to the topic of your presentation, such as a 30-minute free consultation related to the topic area.  Then follow up with each participant to further drive participation in that offer.
Like their Winning Webinar Strategy? Vote Now!

121 Temps “Winning Webinar Strategy”

121 Temps photo121 Temps, an Australian company launched by Liz Parker in 2007, helps women who want to work from home.  They help former teachers, paralegals, project managers, salespeople, personal assistants and others re-enter the workforce by establishing and promoting work-from-home businesses.

Who is the target audience for your marketing webinars?

Women with interest in building work-from-home businesses as well as companies seeking the talents of these work-from-home professionals.

What goals were are you looking to accomplish with your webinars?

121 Temps uses webinars to attract women who are thinking about working as “virtual assistants,” to train virtual assistants and virtual receptionists, and to promote 121 Temps through thought leadership opportunities with related organizations like the Australian Businesswomens’ Network and government sponsored small business festivals.

How do you attract people to your webinars?

121 Temps uses a variety of sources to build their webinar audiences, including:

  • Joint speaking opportunities with related organizations like the Australian Businesswomens’ Network and AAVIP (Australian Association for Virtual Industry Professionals)
  • Email invitations to their contact list developed over their 9-year history
  • Outreach to people and groups via social media, especially Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter
  • Advertising on Facebook


What content are you typically presenting in your marketing webinars?

The informational sessions span a wide range of topics depending on the goal and audience, but here is one example on creating “a one-page easy plan for your business”:

https://www.anymeeting.com/WebConference-beta/RecordingDefault.aspx?c_psrid=EF51DE848347

What are your personal tips for conducting effective marketing webinars?

“5 Lessons I have learned and how I have changed my tactics over the years:

  1. Less on the screen, just have a heading – too many points on the screen and people read rather than listen.
  2. Ask a question for each screen and get feedback in the chat box
  3. Start the session with some housekeeping and expectations
    1. Housekeeping, turn off all distractions (including any additional tabs or social media sites, phones and even put the dogs away.
    2. Expectations – come as a student with an open mind and ask lots of questions
  4. Don’t read your presentation verbatim, just make key points on a page to remind you what you want to cover.  Use lots of case studies or examples to emphasize your key points.
  5. Don’t try and cover too much in one session especially if you are recording it as people won’t sit through 1 hour to try and get some nuggets of gold.”

 

What has been the biggest surprise or learning you’d like to share with others?

Liz has been most surprised by how comfortable she has become presenting to large groups in a webinar environment.  “It was a bit scary at first, and it was hard to tell if the presentations were going well.”  But by changing her style and adding more questions, Liz became very comfortable.  It takes practice, though.  “It took two years” before I was completely comfortable.

Like their webinar strategy? Vote Now!

Webinar: Marketing Without Money

ICYMI: The first of our free 3-part, “Building Your Business Webinar Series” presented by AnyMeeting, Comcast Business and SCORE, “Marketing Without Money” is available as a recorded webinar.

Hear from SCORE mentors Tom Patty and John Pietro to find out how you can use million-dollar marketing ideas on a zero-dollar budget. Learn the strategies of big budget marketing to grow your small business, how to get more customers and increase your response rate without spending a dime.

Tom spent over 21 years in the advertising business and retired as President of Chiat/Day, one of the most creative ad agencies in the country. John has over 40 years’ experience in marketing, advertising and promotions. He helped create the famous “Where’s the Beef” campaign for Wendy’s.

Watch the webinar now.

Building Your Business Webinar Series

am-comcast-score-webinar-imageJoin us for a free 3-part Building Your Business Webinar Series, presented by AnyMeeting, Comcast Business and SCORE, a non-profit association supported by the U.S. Small Business Administration with over 11,000 volunteers dedicated to helping small businesses launch and grow. Check out the sessions below and register today.

We look forward to seeing you there!


Part 1: Marketing Without Money
  • Tuesday, February 24, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Pacific Time
  • Guest Speakers: SCORE mentors Tom Patty and John Pietro
Join SCORE mentors Tom Patty and John Pietro to find out how you can use million-dollar marketing ideas on a zero-dollar budget. Learn the strategies of big budget marketing to grow your small business, how to get more customers and increase your response rate without spending a dime.
Tom spent over 21 years in the advertising business and retired as President of Chiat/Day, one of the most creative ad agencies in the country. John has over 40 years’ experience in marketing, advertising and promotions. He helped create the famous “Where’s the Beef” campaign for Wendy’s.
REGISTER

 

Part 2: How to Develop a Business Plan in 6 Easy Steps

  • Tuesday, March 24, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Pacific Time
  • Guest Speaker: David Albright, Small Business Mentor, SCORE
A business plan is an essential road map for business success, but few small businesses ever complete a plan due to over-complicated approaches that entail too much theory, writing and detail. This webinar will give you pragmatic, straightforward tools for setting goals, developing action plans for achieving them, measuring how you are doing on an ongoing basis and adjusting accordingly.

 

David Albright is an active SCORE mentor with extensive experience in the consumer products industry including being President of Pepperidge Farm, Inc., Godiva Chocolatier Worldwide and Glacial Confections, a start-up venture. He currently consults with venture capital firms on the food and confectionery industries.
REGISTER

 

Part 3: The Many Ways SCORE Can Help You Succeed in Business

  • Tuesday, April 21, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Pacific Time
  • Guest Speaker: Bridget Weston Pollack, Vice President of Marketing & Communications, SCORE
SCORE is here for the life of your business. With free mentoring, training and resources for entrepreneurs and small business owners,SCORE is committed to helping you succeed – whatever your business goal! With more than 10 million people served by SCORE since its inception in 1964, SCORE works with you to provide you with customized, unbiased assistance – no matter what business stage you are at. Join this webinar to learn about the ways that SCORE can help you today.

 

Bridget Weston Pollack is the Vice President of Marketing & Communications at the SCORE Association. In this role, Bridget is responsible for all branding, marketing, PR, and communication efforts. She focuses on implementing marketing plans and strategies for the organization to facilitate the growth of SCORE’s mentoring and trainings services.
REGISTER

 

Spring Cleaning for Your Small Business

spring-520x200
Many small businesses face transitions and sometimes it is hard to embody change. But with everything in life, change happens constantly, and when we embrace it we end up realizing that it is likely for the better. Employees come and go and often times, people we come to trust and rely on, move on, whether it be for a new career, a higher paying job or a new city. Perhaps you lose that long term client you have relied on as a major source of income, or you end a partnership that hasn’t been as fulfilling as you would have liked it to be.  As business owners we often feel alone, like we are the only ones who really care about that idea we had way back, when it was just a twinkle in your eye. Let’s face it; it can get lonely at the top of the ladder!

So, what do we do when we are staring right in the face of transformation? Panic can easily set in and as a result we can quickly lose our way and even our business! Sometimes a good spring-cleaning to get rid of the old and make space for the new is just what a company needs.

Here are some great business spring-cleaning tips to help you transform in a positive way!

  1. Evaluate your retention rate: If you are in the business of ongoing clients and you are noticing that your retention rate has dropped, it may be time to seriously pay attention to customer service. A good way to understand why your clients are leaving is to have them fill out a client satisfaction survey. Maybe it is time to evaluate what type of clients you really want. Losing clients is not a great feeling, but perhaps the transformation means that it is making way for the ideal client to enter. Decide exactly what type of clients you are looking for and then focus on targeting your sales and marketing to them.  Once you get them in the door be extra nurturing to ensure they feel valued.
  2. Efficiency is Key! Sometimes we hold on to employees because let’s face it, letting someone go is not fun. But losing money on lack of efficiency can ultimately make or break your business success. Start evaluating everyone’s value in the company and how efficiently they work. Are they utilizing their time to the fullest? Or are they spending their hours lounging on Facebook? Be firm with your expectations, everybody is replaceable and there is a big pool out there of talented people who are eager to work!
  3. A new look goes a long way: Not only do we have to evaluate our external environment but when we want to create positive change we also have to look at ourselves as well. When was the last time you did a visual makeover? Is your site remnant of the period when the dot-com was all a hype? Don’t be afraid to invest in a new image, re-launching to your audience shows that you are strong, current, and here to stay! Plus, it will at least get people talking and going to your new and improved website. Which means bringing back awareness and possibly new clients. ☺
  4. Get back to basics: Remember what it was that you loved to do and the reason you started this company and get back to that passion. As time goes by we often find ourselves moving farther away from our trade and more into a management roll. Rarely do people start a business with the dream of becoming a “manager” normally it is because they have a talent or skill that they can share with the world and make a living off of. So start reliving those days and take back that momentum and motivation. This will also help you with the staffing transition that we mentioned above, if you are short on staff, now is the perfect time to get your elbows dirty and retrain yourself!
  5. Run lean and mean: It’s time to clean up everything that you don’t need in your business that is access overhead. Scaling things back is key to increasing profit margins. Go through your company with a fine tooth-comb, you will be surprised at how all the little expenses add up! Once you eliminate the unnecessary clutter you can find room to free up some money and build back equity.

Spring is the perfect time to get excited and start rebuilding and restructuring. If you are in a transition period, then this is the perfect time to evaluate where you have come and what new opportunities, policies and services you can implement to improve your overall infrastructure. Every opportunity for change is an opportunity for growth!

Beautiful things bud in springtime :)

The above article is a guest post by Sari Gabbay, founder, president and visionary at U2R1, a branding, design and marketing agency. To submit your own blog post or article for consideration, learn more here.

Five Easy Content Marketing Wins for Small Business

Producing great content that appeals to people beyond your established audience is an increasingly vital part of the marketing mix. But contrary to what some might have you think, doing it successfully doesn’t have to be big budget and it doesn’t have to be massively time consuming.

Here are five ways small businesses can produce and promote great content.

1) Make the most of your meetings

Meetings of all kinds produce a wealth of interesting content which is often cast aside after it has been used for its original purpose. However, with just a little bit of re-purposing it can be given a new lease of life.

If someone makes a presentation on how they managed to generate a 30 per cent increase in organic traffic, why not take their slides, tweak them if need be, and then upload them to a service like Slideshare so other people can learn from your expertise?

Success stories of any kind always attract views and shares. You just have to decide how much you want to tell people.

2) Promote content via your existing network

A large part of a successful content marketing campaign is finding people who are willing to share what you have to offer. But most small businesses already have a network of contacts who only need a little encouragement to pass on your wisdom. It’s just a case of making it worth their while.

The best way to do this is flattery. To go back to our first example, if your SEO success was achieved with the help of a particular tool, let the company in question know about the slideshow you’ve created and that it mentions just how great their product is.

This means they’ll be more likely to share it with their audience, exponentially increasing the reach of your presentation.

If you can create valuable content that is relevant to your all your business partners, then you should make some big gains that are hard to beat.

3) Share your internal stories

Want international media coverage and thousands of websites linking to you? All you have to do is fall down a sinkhole and then have your wife write about it like the crew at Golf Manna.

Admittedly, that’s a little bit drastic but it goes to show you never know how interesting what happens in your company will be to other people.

Don’t expect everything you do to go viral, but what might seem like an insignificant event in your company’s day-to-day life can often be turned into something more interesting.

If you’re running a charity event, make sure you tell the local press about it. You might end up with some coverage (be sure to ask for a link back to your website if they run the story online) but you’ll also gain a valuable contact in the form of a local journalist who can promote your future successes.

You can also contact the charity you’re raising money for and offer to provide them with photos of the event so they can feature them on their site.

None of this may feel like marketing in the traditional sense, but it is a valuable way to increase awareness about your company.

4) Learn to love free tools

If you don’t have the budget to invest in monthly subscriptions for the leading content marketing tools, track down the free alternatives and make the most of them.

Buzzstream, a package which allows you to identify people who might be interested in publishing contact you’ve created and track your relationship with them, offers a wide selection of free tools which can be used to start a basic content marketing outreach programme.

The SEOMoz toolbar, which is also free, can be used to evaluate whether it is worth your time trying to get a site to link back to you. A guide on how to use the metrics you’ll see can be found on the SEOMoz site, as can a huge archive of valuable tips and how-tos.

These free tools can be used in a very basic way – to help you track down people who might be interested in promoting your content and to see how powerful their site is, both vital parts of content marketing.

5) Avoid shortcuts

Content marketing can be made easier, but it can never be made simple. There are a huge number of pitfalls awaiting the unwary small business taking its first steps into the world of content marketing.

Stay away from lost cost packages that promise cheap articles or a huge number of links – they’ll do you more harm than good. You should be proud of the content you create and promote and if you’re not then you shouldn’t expect other people to be interested in it.

Companies that have met with success on any scale have a lot of useful information to share and it’s this, rather than articles that cost a penny a word, that will help extend your reach as a business.

Guest post written by Will Stevens of 123-reg a provider of domain names and cloud hosting services.

BYOD. Bring Your Own Device? Or Bring Your Own Disaster?

cell phoneThe concept of “bring your own device” (BYOD) is an unstoppable trend especially in the small business space. It’s a winning combination as companies save on hardware and training costs while improving employee satisfaction. However to embrace the power of BYOD, businesses must ensure that they have adequate protections in place to counter the associated security risks.

The first step in enhancing your small business security posture with regards to BYOD is to lay out a clear policy. It should define access methods and mandate the use of company authorized applications and security tools for employee-owned devices that access company resources. Mobile device security is relatively limited today, but standard techniques such as VPN access, setting up a pin code to access the phone, installing a security application, and the ability to remotely erase data off a stolen device will be enough to deliver basic protection. Make sure any security and data protection steps you take conform to compliance mandates such as PCI DSS, HIPAA, or GLBA. These are often industry requirements.

Embrace BYOD with confidence to explore everything the new mobile world has to offer, and do it safely. To help, all AnyMeeting customers get free mobile phone security check-up free of charge delivered by 24/7 Techies. Send an email to AnyMeeting@247techies.com and schedule your session today or call toll free 1-888-294-7201 for assistance. 24/7 Techies delivers online tech support to small businesses and consumers nationwide. Support is delivered remotely by taking control of the customer’s computer or mobile device while the customer watches.

 

Note: This is a guest post from 24/7 Techies. To submit your ideas for guest posting on our blog, send email to press@anymeeting.com.