Join the Club: A Case Study

Extracurricular activities aren’t just for the We can help you plan a successful marketing event. Email for a free — people of all ages can advance their careers by getting involved with the right organizations outside of work. There’s no shortage of them, so you might find yourself hard pressed to choose which ones make the best use of your networking time. But if you’re interested in networking in order to promote your own personal brand or a corporate brand, it might make sense to plan your own event.

Allow me to explain how to do this by way of example: the “Lean Construction” event I put together for the German-American Business Association. I came up with the idea for it, and designated myself as the moderator of the panel discussion.

I then enlisted Heike Abeck, senior project manager at Chiron, to co-chair it with me, including splitting up the planning work. I chose her to co-chair with me because she was involved in the management of the TFPI facility project with M+W Zander in the first phase.

Once we secured a keynote speaker, I asked his company’s marketing department to send out printed postcards promoting the event, supplementing the email invitations we also mailed out. This greatly boosted the visibility of the event, especially because we sent personalized invitations to every single life sciences facility director in the San Francisco Bay Area.

The results were successful in many ways:

  • The guests were so intrigued by the subject matter covered that evening that the event went into overtime.
  • Chiron sent a request for proposal to my attention for the phase two of the TFPI facility project.
  • I also made five connections with prospective clients that together represented about $100 billion in prospective business for the brand I was promoting at the time, M+W Zander.

Of course, an event doesn’t need to bring in hundreds of billions of dollars in order to be considered successful. Increased brand awareness is priceless. If you’d like to learn more about how event planning can market your brand ffectively, please contact us at

How Much Does Multitasking Cost Your Business?

Apparently multitasking takes a toll on the global economy, sapping it of $450 billion annually. That statistic comes from a report by Realization that provided source material for the infographic below. For small businesses, multitasking may seem inevitable, but outsourcing projects can lessen the need to multitask. How does your business compare with the benchmarks below?
The High Cost of Multitasking

by kikikarpus.
Explore more infographics like this one on the web’s largest information design community – Visually.


7 Ways To Improve Your Marketing On Pinterest

Free consultation on how to grow your business. ticular - strategies for success.Over the past week, we’ve seen a flurry of articles and blog posts about how to market one’s brand on Pinterest. They all seem to validate what we’ve been recommending over the past couple of months: The fastest-growing social network is a viable medium for marketing.

In the short term, Pinterest seems to be better for marketing to women, since they account for about 70 percent of the site’s users. However, we suspect that gender on the site could balance out somewhat over time as more people are drawn by the fact that Pinterest’s growing so quickly.

But here’s another reason why creating content for Pinterest might be good for marketing targets other than women only: content created for for Pinterest also works well on Facebook, where there’s a more even balance of genders.

Facebook data continues to demonstrate that images get more clickthroughs, likes and comments than any other type of content that goes up on the site. So those images created for posting on Pinterest would do well on Facebook too.

That said, here’s some more advice about creating visual marketing materials for social media, based on the recent bounty of articles and posts on the topics.

1. Show, don’t tell. This may be obvious, but images speak louder than words on the pinboard site, although infographics that include imagery fare better than plain text.

2. Pin photos and illustrations depicting your brand, products, customers or employees. This is easier to accomplish if your business is consumer facing than business-to-business, but the latter isn’t impossible to present on Pinterest.

3. Add captions to your pins to make them Twitter friendly — click the box labeled “post to Twitter” for that.

4. Uploading images that you’ve saved to your own machine gives you more control over a message than simply copying web addresses for pinning to the site.

5. Attribute all of your source material either within each graphic or in the caption. Not only does this keep you in line with copyright laws, but showing integrity can only boost people’s trust in your brand.

6. After you’ve uploaded an image, click on “edit” above the image and you can add a URL leading to your brand’s website or page on another social media network.

7. Test whether including contact information at the bottom of your images helps you get sales from things you pin. If you put such data in the captions, then you might want to reconsider whether to uncheck the box labeled “post to Twitter,” simply because of space limitations for Tweets.

Now, it’s your turn: What other tactics have you had success with in posting branded content to Pinterest?

Consumers Prefer Email Marketing, But Retailers Don’t Use It Enough

Free Consultation: ticular - strategies for successEmail still outperforms all other methods of direct marketing, in the eyes of consumers. But it’s also underutilized by retailers.

Nearly 7 out of every 10 consumers have made a purchase based on an email marketing message, according to an ExactTarget survey of nearly 1,500 consumers.

However, more than half of the 100 fastest growing retailers don’t connect email or other technologies to offline experiences with customers, according to another study by ExactTarget.

The opportunity for email marketing is ripe for the taking. Do you use this method of promotion? Free Consultation: ticular - strategies for success

20 Ways to Jack Up Your Productivity

Even the slightest increase in productivity can have a very noticeable effect on a small business’ bottom line. Here’s where technology vendors have your best interests at heart — this category of software continues to explode, to the point that it can seem like there are too many of these tools to choose from.

You can narrow down your selection by checking out the infographic below, which lists 20 of the best applications for improving your organization and keeping you on task. Readers, please let us know what you think of this list by posting your opinions in the comments section below.

Turn Your Marketing Into a Profit Center

Small business marketers recognize that they need to change the structure of their marketing organizations over the next three to five years — taking on more responsibility for customer engagement and revenue generation. That’s the gist of a survey of 478 small business marketing executives conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, as commissioned by Marketo. More details appear in the infographic below — please let us know in the comments section whether these findings jibe with what you’re seeing.

Turn your small business marketing into a profit center -- email



5 Great Ways to Get More for Less

ticular can help you increase cost efficienciesStart-ups need fiscal discipline in order to survive. Simply spending less can backfire if it’s not coupled with maximizing value.

What at first appears to be the cheapest option can turn into the most costly from an opportunity standpoint. Frequent repairs or early replacements cannibalize the savings, often to the point of making the entire exercise more expensive than even the highest-priced option. You’re better off striving for the biggest return on investment — finding the perfect ratio of maximum value to minimum expenditure.

You don’t need to be a math genius to succeed at cutting costs without being cheap. Here are some easy ways to do exactly that.

Pay Now

It’s all too tempting to borrow up a storm when you’re staring out. But paying for anything on an installment plan or any form of payment that levies interest will quickly make something cost up to twice as much as the original amount, depending on how long you carry the balance. Vow to pay for things immediately, and you’ll save a bundle. Pay with cash or the equivalent — no-interest credit, debit cards, check, PayPal, Bitcoin, and the like — and you come out ahead.

Go Virtual

A big expense for many businesses is rent, but employees increasingly want to work from home. Let them do that, and get rid of the physical office. Even if you spring for them all to have videoconferencing software on their computers, and pay for an annual retreat that puts everyone in the same place for a few days, you’ll still come out ahead of what you would have paid for year-round real estate.

Join the Club

Join organizations that give members discounts on products and services your business uses — from office supplies to health insurance. The savings more than cover the cost of any dues you might have to pay to join the group — and it will give you an opportunity to network.

freeconsultation@ticular.comCompare Three Bids

Set a goal of comparing at least three competing bids for services, or three different brands of products, before deciding which one to buy. Make it more than three if you’re in the market for anything that is marketed with free trial periods. Don’t just opt for the lowest-priced choice, but rather look for the best value: the most for the least. When in doubt, postpone the purchase until you have certainty.

Don’t Buy

Look for opportunities to share or lease resources rather than buying them outright. Partnering with companies that have different resources than yours can give you a chance to use one another’s infrastructure without incurring any extra costs on either side. If you can’t find good partnerships, lease whatever you can. This frees you from having to worry about maintenance and depreciation of assets, while enabling you to upgrade to the latest and greatest. While you’re at it, consider selling things you are no longer using.

There is some truth to the adage “You get what you pay for.” If your penny pinching gets excessive, customers and business partners can tell and possibly be put off by it. Instead, strive to maximize value, and it’s a win-win for all.

Make YouTube Part of Your Growth Plan

YouTube has become more popular than cable television among U.S. adults between 18 and 34. That trend makes the video website a dramatically cheaper alternative to TV commercials. Actually, the site is cheap even if you’re trying to reach people in other demographics.

And here’s why it makes sense to incorporate YouTube into your company’s growth marketing plan: Posting content to the video site can boost your website’s ranking in Google search results and can also amplify the effectiveness of a Google AdWords campaign, should you choose to go that route.

It’s never too late to get started. And no matter where you are on the YouTube learning curve, ample guidance is available for free on the video site’s how-to section, linked here. In case you still need convincing, here are some highlights from YouTube’s own statistics page:

  • More than 1 billion unique users visit YouTube each month
  • Over 6 billion hours of video are watched each month on YouTube—that’s almost an hour for every person on Earth, and 50% more than last year
  • 100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute
  • 80 percent of YouTube traffic comes from outside the U.S.
  • YouTube is localized in 61 countries and across 61 languages
  • Mobile makes up almost 40 percent of YouTube’s global watch time
  • YouTube is available on hundreds of millions of devices

Hopefully those number have whetted your appetite for more information about YouTube, including pointers on how to use the video site to promote your business. Advice on how to do that appears in the graphicsbelow. Let us know what you think of them in the comments section beneath this

How Does Social Responsibility Boost Your Brand?

freeconsultation@ticular.comBefore, it was called corporate citizenship, but it confused people. It sounded like a contradiction, while also coming off as legalese, like a tax strategy or something that shareholders demand. Now that it’s called social responsibility, we can tell you that it’s good for your brand.

Find a logical way to connect your brand with some form of community service and you can attract customers who feel strongly about the issue in question. The practice has the added benefit of making your company look larger than it really is, which can actually help you grow. However, if you let on that your motive for social responsibility is in any way driven by capitalistic objectives, the whole thing could backfire.

That said, social media has made it easier than ever to associate your brand with social responsibility. An excellent tactic: raise money for a charity via your online profiles. And even if you are unable to contribute any of your own money to the cause, surely you and your staff could give some time instead.

The infographic below does a good job of explaining why people are so receptive to social responsibility on social media. Please let us know what you think of the topic in the comments section.

Advice on how to embrace corporate citizenship to appeal to customers -

Marketing to People Who Don’t Go Online (Much)

freeconsultation@ticular.comWhile the Internet has made marketing so much more efficient and cost effective, it’s not the only game in town, and for some it might not even be an option: What do you do if your target market happens to be offline?

Offline might be your only option for marketing if your target market is over 65, as 44 percent of people in that age bracket don’t go online, according to Pew Internet Research.

Overall,15 percent of American adults don’t use the Internet and another 9 percent only access it outside their homes. About a third of those who aren’t online told Pew they don’t find the Internet easy to use, and another third simply don’t find it relevant to them.

Reaching these people requires old-fashioned face time. That means scheduling lots of appointments, ideally involving refreshments of some sort. But it also requires going to lots of events, including conferences and trade fairs. You could even organize your own social gatherings. It could be as simple as a wine and cheese party at your own place or a more elaborate reception in a hotel ballroom, depending on how many people you can invite and the size of your budget.

When talking face to face with people, learning their hobbies and interests will help you find ways to connect what you’re selling with things that appeal to them. Offering to help them find whatever they are looking for in any capacity can also create a bridge between your business offering and what they need.

Look for interests of theirs that would give you an opportunity to chat about what you provide. For instance, if you learn that someone’s hobbies include opera and golf, you might have more of an opportunity to talk between putting than you would in a theater.

Certainly, all of this requires more footwork — in the literal sense — than any kind of online marketing does. But you’d get to step outside and enjoy the world, which could make the exercise all the more fun.