Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Some quick video tips!

Now is a great time to start a new video project. 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!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Free Book Offer

For those of you that have been interested in getting a Think Big Marketing Kit and have is the time to pull the trigger! In addition to the 60 Day Money Back Guarantee and the New Price (only $199), we are now going to give a FREE Think Big Marketing Book to the first 20 people to order!

There is just no reason not to order! Check out the kit here!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Survey Forecasts Business Growth

If you are looking for good economic news (and I am!) there are lots of indicators pointing up. Here's another...

The index of leading indicators posted a gain of 1.4% in March, the largest increase in 10 months and another sign of a recovering economy. The figures, released this week by the Conference Board, indicate expected growth in the economy over the next three to six months. "The indicators point to a slow recovery that should continue over the next few months," said Ken Goldstein, an economist with the Conference board. "Strength of demand remains the big question going forward. Improvement in employment and income will be the key factors in whether consumers push the recovery on a stronger path."

The 1.4% increase is greater than initial estimates, which had pinned growth closer to 1%. The board also revised its February total to .4%, after it initially reported a .1% increase. In total, seven of the 10 leading indicators grew last month, including the spread between short-term and long-term interest rates (a sign of belief in future economic growth).

Economists believe the data indicates a perking up of the housing market and manufacturing after a tough winter in the Northeast, as well as broader trends of improved consumer spending and corporate investment in technology.

However, forecasts for next month are not as optimistic. "We look for a much smaller increase in the index in April," wrote Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist with High Frequency Economics. "The index, in our view, is very likely overstating growth substantially.”

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Great Direct Mail Piece

I always say you can tell what we "really" like by what we put our own name on! We did this direct mail piece last month. It's personalized, attention-getting, and useful. Check out this quick video!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Help Me Help Small Businesses!

Many of you know I recently published the book Think Big Marketing For Small Business. The response I have received from the book has been overwhelming. Business owners like the easy to read format and the targeted approach that helps them save their marketing dollars!

Now I have created the Think Big Marketing Video Business Kit and hope to help even more businesses begin to Think Big. But I need your help! Please help me spread the word about the new kit! You can learn more by going to this site.

I am experimenting to see how many copies of the 6 disc set just by utilizing social media, press releases, email and other low cost marketing efforts. So if you are a small business owner--or you know one--please check out the Think Big Marketing Video Business Kit. It's only $249 and there's a money back guarantee! There is literally nothing to lose!

Please spread the word. I thank you, in advance, for your help!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Survey: Small Businesses Forecast Growth

After surviving the worst, small business owners are now planning for the best. A new study, "U.S. Small Business Outlook 2010: Lessons Learned—A Case for Greater Optimism," conducted by CIT Group and Forbes Insights, found that 60% of small business owners believe their businesses will grow this year. "We think we're going to hold our own and grow very slowly," says Mark Astle, owner of M.L. Schuman Co. (asi/321200). "Last year we were down about five percent and cut expenses and took care of that. This year we're slightly ahead of last year. We're optimistic about it."

Part of the positive attitude comes from the challenges since the financial crisis hit. Of the 220 owners surveyed in the CIT study, 81% say they feel smarter about running a small business now, with 70% saying that the challenges of the recession made them stronger leaders. "2009 was really rough in particular for small companies," said Stuart Feil, editorial director of Forbes Insights, a research group at Forbes Publishing, which co-authored the study. "It's really ‘what doesn't kill you makes you stronger,' and sometimes small business owners have to be forced into an appraisal of their company and their abilities."

Feil says that while a small business owner may have known prior to the recession that it needed to improve its planning or expand its client base, the financial crisis really brought these lessons home in a visceral way. The sorts of challenges faced by companies during this time have led to a reassessment of their own business fundamentals, according to Feil. An additional 45% of respondents said that the recession exposed issues in their business strategies that were not previously apparent to them. Fifty-nine percent plan to have a greater focus on operating efficiencies to achieve growth this year, while 62% said they will invest more in marketing and advertising and half (50%) plan to invest in expansion.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Consumer Confidence Rises In March

Following a sharp fall in February, consumer confidence improved in March, according to the latest survey released by The Conference Board, a private research firm. The Consumer Confidence Index climbed to 52.5 last month, up from 46.4 in February, demonstrating a cautious increase in optimism regarding the economy. “Consumer confidence managed to recoup most of the loss in March,” says Lynn Franco, director of consumer research at The Conference Board.

According to data, consumers have an improving short-term view of the business climate and labor market. Among respondents in March, 18.3% expect economic conditions to become better over the next six months, up from 16.1% in February. In March, those claiming business conditions are good rose to 8.6%, increasing from 6.8% a month earlier. Additionally, 14.6% of respondents anticipate more jobs will soon become available, a modest jump from 13.2% in February.

Separately, the U.S. Commerce Department released mixed economic news this week, announcing consumer spending rose slightly in February while personal income remained flat. Disposable income was also unchanged in February, and with no income growth, national savings slipped to its lowest level since October 2008, according to government reports. In a reversal from earlier in the year, payrolls of goods-producing industries dropped $3.5 billion in February, with manufacturing slipping $1.4 billion following a $5 billion gain in January.

Further obscuring an already unsettled long-term outlook for many consumers, the private sector cut an estimated 23,000 jobs in March. However, analysts believe overall U.S. employment numbers could actually rebound in March, buoyed by temporary hiring related to the 2010 Census. A full Bureau of Labor Statistics report will be released tomorrow.