Friday, November 13, 2009

Free Seminar for Chamber Members

In conjunction with the Coshocton County Chamber of Commerce, Hasseman Marketing will be hosting a FREE marketing seminar for local businesses. We are excited to provide this opportunity to small businesses in our area. The class is based on the book Think Big Marketing For Small Business and is limited to the first 50 people!

Please contact the Chamber at (740) 622-5411 to make your reservation.'s a FREE Marketing Seminar for the first 50 people. I can't wait to see you there!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Some Great Tips When Creating a Business Video

With 2009 winding down, now is a great time to either consider a video before the end of the fiscal year...or plan for a project with the new budget. Here are some quick tips to help ensure an effective video that is on time and on budget!

1) Have a vision with what you want in advance. So many people have no idea what message they want to portray or what they want it to look like. Though you need to leave it to the professional to make it work, you having an idea of what you want will help them create what you want...on the first try!

2) Use Faces to Sell the Vision. People's eyes are naturally attracted to faces. Use closer shots to really show the emotion of the video.

3) Use Testimonials to tell the story (when appropriate). If you can get your clients to tell your story for you, it's very powerful. They have no agenda in the video, so their story can have more credibility and be more powerful.

4) Keep it simple...keep it short! Make sure the video is not just interesting to you...but to the viewer. Get your message across and then give them an opportunity to contact you. Our attention spans are very short these days. Remember that when you are creating the video!

Need more great tips like this? Check out the book Think Big Marketing For Small Business today! If you are interested in a video production project, please contact us at (740) 622-7429!

9 Lessons from the Lemonade Stand

I was out looking for brilliant marketing tips to share and came across this article. It is simple...and so true. Sometimes we make it too hard. Let's take this lesson from the 9 year old!
The other day my daughter, Sophia, announced that she wanted to set up a lemonade stand.

Seeing as how I didn’t really want to spend the better part of my weekend selling lemonade, I tried to talk her out of it by showing her how much she’d need to spend to buy the lemonade mix, get the cups, that sort of thing.

Regardless of my best efforts, there was no changing her mind. She wanted to go into business and there wasn’t anything I was going to do to stop her.

So as I succumbed to my role as venture capitalist in her first business startup. I decided that at the very least, this would be a great chance to teach my daughter about counting money, basic business principals, that sort of thing.

We sat down with a pad of paper and started writing the business plan.

It didn’t take long before Sophia, becoming completely exasperated with my efforts to teach her about price structure and ROI, looked up at me and said:

“But Daddy, I just want to give it away. Our neighbors are so nice, I just want to give them the lemonade.”

Wow! What do you say to that? She hit me with a complete game changer that I didn’t expect.

Suddenly, the lemonade stand had taken on an entirely different meaning.

So we put away the business plan, she drew up a sign and my wife helped her mix a pitcher of lemonade.

Just as we were about to open for business, Sophia came in from the back porch with a sprig of mint she had cut from a pot.

“Can we put mint in the lemonade?” she asked. “I want to make it extra special.”

And with that, on a Sunday afternoon in a quiet neighborhood, she was open for business.

Within a few minutes, one of our neighbors who had heard about the project came over with 50 cents to buy a glass of lemonade. Twice the price my daughter was originally planning to charge.

“But it’s free” Sophia told her.

“That’s OK. I want to pay you for the lemonade”, she replied.

Not knowing what to do with the money, Sophia put it in a cup and set the cup on the table (where everyone could see it).

Before long, more neighbors came by, each one giving her at least 50 cents. When a car would pass, she would jump up and down and scream, “Free lemonade” hoping they would stop.

For the most part they didn’t. However, at one point, one did and the driver handed her three dollars for his glass of lemonade – 1,100 percent more then if she’d gone with her father’s suggestion of 25 cents per cup.

By the end of the day, Sophia had made a whopping eight dollars at her “free” lemonade stand.

When it was all said and done, I realized that although my original business lessons didn’t stick with my daughter, I learned a lot about marketing.

Here are nine lemonade stand tips that you can use to market your services:

1. Give people something for free and they will feel obligated to return the favor
When you help someone, it creates a natural desire to return the favor. As a web designer, provide helpful tips on your blog, participate in forums offering advice and helping non-designers, share ideas on Twitter. In doing so, you’ll not only build trust, but also develop relationships with potential clients.

2. Give potential customers a taste of your offerings
Offer free themes or templates with an easy upgrade to “pro” versions. Provide free stock graphics that hint at potential identity or branding packages while demonstrating your creativity. Just be sure to make it good. When users are excited about the base product, they are much more likely to upgrade.

3. Make it “Extra Special”
Don’t just offer lemonade. Put in that extra sprig of mint. Make everything you do something “extra special” and clients will take notice. Not only will they come back for more, they’ll tell their friends.

4. Don’t Be Afraid to Tell Your “Neighbors” (Network!)
One of the first things my daughter did when she opened her stand was run next door and tell the neighbor. After getting his lemonade, he called two other neighbors to tell them about the lemonade stand – both of whom came right over with “donations”. Don’t be afraid to tell friends and colleagues about your services. You never know, they may talk to your next big client later that day.

5. Do What You Need to Do to Be Seen
It wasn’t enough to just put up a sign. My daughter’s advertising consisted of jumping up and down screaming “free lemonade” at passing cars. While it might seem extreme, it worked. How are you “screaming” about your business?

6. Be Persistent
Even though most of the cars passed by, my daughter didn’t give up. Finally, after many failed attempts, one of them did stop—doubling her income for the day.

7. Build Anticipation
My daughter’s first customer knew about her project and was there as soon as it opened. Don’t just launch your new web site, let people know it’s coming. Drop hints, show them screen shots, make them look forward to the big day.

8. Find Good Partners
My daughter’s little brother kept drinking the lemonade – not the best partner. However, her friend from down the street was out there with her jumping up and down screaming, doubling their advertising efforts.

9. Advertise Your Popularity
Once my daughter’s cup started filling with coins, people were more likely to “donate”. Don’t be afraid to advertise your popularity. Place download counters, comment counts and subscriber numbers in prominent places. Just make sure the stats are high enough to warrant a little bragging.