Communication Presentation at Santa Fe Business Incubator Discusses 2012 Realities

September 24, 2011 by · Comments Off on Communication Presentation at Santa Fe Business Incubator Discusses 2012 Realities 

Seasonally New Mexicans turn off swamp coolers and winterize their homes in October. The fourth quarter with its cooler temperatures requires a different approach for comfort.

Similarly, businesses might evaluate communications in preparation for the New Year. The realities presented by 2012 demand a freshened marketing approach.

Traditional marketing plays the numbers game. It uses sales, advertising, promotion and public relations to send the message out.

The average person gets more than 2,000 outbound messages a day.

Trade shows, direct mail, television, radio and print advertising, all examples of traditional marketing, continue to lose effectiveness.

Studies show today’s customer chooses inbound communication, finding information on their terms. Can your business meet the demands of “real-time?”

In a presentation to clients at the Santa Fe Business Incubator, I listed five communication realities represented by these changes:

  1. Because of the attention economy, now more than ever, your message must be defined and honed for your ideal customer.
  2. Smartphones already play an important role in our lives. How mobile-friendly is your business?
  3. New tools to consolidate information emerge daily. Your competitive advantage may well depend on your use of technology.
  4. Interactivity is essential in all communication. This means the brochure website is dead. Not only must your website be interactive, but business must make responding to customers online and offline a priority.
  5. Nothing substitutes for smart goals and good planning. Begin now to define your benchmarks for 2012.

Evaluate your business against these five realities. On a scale of one to five, with five being strong, how confident are you about your current situation? Download the pdf now. Are you prepared?

Business Visibility: What works now?

May 4, 2011 by · Comments Off on Business Visibility: What works now? 

Social media rules if one believes the headlines. At one point during reporting of Osama Bin Laden’s death, Twitter logged more than 4,000 tweets per minute.

Yet, according to Jeremiah Owjang, Industry Analyst and Partner for Altimeter, 41% of all businesses are reactive, not proactive when it comes to social media.

Local experience bears out national statistics like these. Consider the bed and breakfast operator who now uses only Facebook to promote. Or, the feed store now building an email list as well as a Facebook page. No print. No local advertising.

Has social media killed other methods of advertising? Or, are businesses merely reacting to the mode of the day, hoping for dramatic results?

In a presentation for the Albuquerque Independent Business Association’s Local.Lunch.Learn, Mary Ellen Merrigan talks about strategies to successfully navigate today’s gaggle of marketing channels. She draws on stories from locals as well as national case studies to create actionable and pragmatic solutions.

Join the conversation.

Details:
Location:
Slate Street Café
515 Slate Ave NW
Time: 11:30am – 1:00pm, Thursday May 12, 2011
Title: “Facebook, Twitter, Flyers and More – What’s Working Now?”
Reservations required

About Mary Ellen Merrigan
Mary Ellen wrote and published The Six-Week Marketing Master Plan to guide small businesses through the marketing maze. The revised e-book, published in March 2011, serves as the basis for an ongoing series of classes designed to guide individuals through their own marketing plan. For class information, contact the South Valley SBDC. Mary Ellen continues to combine social media with other more traditional channels. She regularly consults with small business owners including some of the best known names in Albuquerque.

Identify Your Master Marketing Plan

January 20, 2011 by · 2 Comments 

Ready to thrive in business and enjoy life?

Begin with a systematized step-by-step plan for marketing.

Join me at EXHIB-IT Trade Show Marketing Experts, 6207 Pan American Freeway, 9am Tuesday, March 1 to discover more.

  • Discover three metrics you can use anytime, anywhere
  • Leverage your core messages
  • Reduce overwhelm with  limited key media
  • Transform your results with tactics you like

For more information, or to register, contact EXHIB-IT! Trade Show Marketing Experts.

Relate More Stories to Generate More Success

March 17, 2009 by · Comments Off on Relate More Stories to Generate More Success 

“If you can do one thing differently next quarter, tell a better story.”

Mary Ellen Merrigan maintains success and online media rooms can be as simple as showing how you help solve a customer’s problem.

“Your job is to tell the story of your business in a way that engages your customers and prospects,” she says. In a presentation for Above and Beyond Networking Mary Ellen discusses how local businesses can maximize their exposure by using the internet more effectively. She lists seven items you might overlook in preparing your story:

  1. Case studies showcase how you might solve a problem for customers. Because a case study offers more in-depth information than a testimonial, it can appeal to a different set of prospects.
  2. Leverage awards you or your company may have received. You might display the logo of the sponsoring company, for example or provide a link to more information.
  3. Use press releases to add quality content in a timely fashion to your website.
  4. Add a biographical sketch or additional information about the owner to your website. People can relate to the person.
  5. Use pictures to further communicate with the public.
  6. Let a blog provide ongoing commentary and interactive communication for your company.
  7. Link to other publicity you or your company has received.

The list of seven is merely a beginning. She suggests dozen of realistic ways any business can promote.

special-report_tell-the-worldIn addition, Mary Ellen offers a ProfitMeister Special Report: Tell the World! Step-by-Step to Publicity: The Starter Kit for Adding an Online Media Room, Press Room or News Center to Your Website which participants can download at any time.

Practical Information to Grow Your Business in Uncertain Times

December 2, 2008 by · Comments Off on Practical Information to Grow Your Business in Uncertain Times 

Take charge of your visibility with a commitment to your media room, press room or news center on your website. In a 24/7 world, the online media room seems like a just-in-time idea.

My message empowers entrepreneurs to begin a public relations campaign by re-purposing business information. Three simple elements set the stage for an online media room: a fact sheet, bio and press release. In most cases, you have pieces of this information already prepared and can easily rearrange them for the web.

As presenter at the second meeting of Sandia B2B Business to Business Networking Breakfast, I’ll show you how to get additional publicity and visibility by putting an online media room to work for you. The Sandia B2B meets on the second Tuesday of each month at MCM Elegante’ Hotel, 2020 Menaul Boulevard NE. Breakfast begins at 7:30am with open networking until 7:45am and a program until 9:00am.

Sandia B2B claims to offer practical information for growing your business in these uncertain times. Fellow collaborator Mary Schmidt listed 3.5 takeaway tips for web success in November. For $15 and the loss of a little bit of shut-eye (for those who don’t like the early morning game) you’ll leave the December 9th meeting armed with a do-it-yourself plan you can implement by year-end.

Participants also receive my Special Report: Tell the World! Step by Step to Publicity; The Starter Kit for Adding an Online Media Room, Press Room or News Center to Your Website, a 14-page collection of practical ideas and real examples. This report, released in November, definitely describes the starter kit pieces and leads readers through creation and implementation.

For additional practical resources on growing your business, visit Profitmeister.com.

Media Rooms Launch Self-Promotion for Home-Based Businesses

November 1, 2008 by · Comments Off on Media Rooms Launch Self-Promotion for Home-Based Businesses 

On Tuesday, November 11, 2008 I’ll be speaking to the Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce Home-Based Businesses about Building Brand and Buzz. This seminar addresses online media rooms, a website or section of your website devoted to publicity.

The presentation, scheduled for 9:00am at Office Alternatives, 4801 Lang NE, is open to the public at no charge. Carolyn Finney, organizer, told me she chooses topics that offer additional education to the home-based business segment of Chamber members.

I believe home-based businesses in particular must design publicity and promotion campaigns to position their business for additional visibility. Not everyone is prepared for the discipline and importance of daily marketing.

One pre-planned marketing activity each day can put you ahead of the competition and increase revenues and profits significantly. Unfortunately, marketing takes a back seat to other business activities.

The increasing importance of the internet makes marketing on the Web necessity. Building Brand and Buzz begins with an assessment of the materials you currently have and a realistic plan to re-purpose them for your website.

After five years as a marketing and publicity consultant, my passion for training continues to increase. My preentations consistently get high marks for practical content and clear, simple-to-implement ideas.

Use Multiple Publicity Tactics and Leverage Them Simultaneously for Increased Impact

August 7, 2008 by · Comments Off on Use Multiple Publicity Tactics and Leverage Them Simultaneously for Increased Impact 

News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DATE: August 7, 2008

Use Multiple Publicity Tactics and Leverage Them Simultaneously for Increased Impact
Add an Online Media Room to Your Website for Visibility

Albuquerque — Mary Ellen Merrigan, Albuquerque marketing and publicity consultant encourages business owners to leverage new publicity tools for increased impact during her seminar “Let the Buzz Begin,” scheduled for 7:00am, Thursday, August 21, 2008 at Mile High Church, Lakewood, Colorado. The hosting organization, Business Honoring Spirituality, emphasizes deeper connections and promotes “A Work of Heart” as the 2008 theme.

Program co-chair for BHS, Karen Van Cleve, commented, “We felt our solo-preneurs and small business owners could really benefit from this marketing tactic. Online media rooms level the playing field, letting microenterprises compete with the big guys.”

Mary Ellen’s presentation encourages entrepreneurs to communicate directly with customers, prospects and members of the media through an online media room, an information-packed resource accessible from the home page. She discusses the fact that our 24/7 continuous news society trains consumers to expect latest information under the “media” heading.

Handouts for her talk include TipSheets for three starter pieces as well as a newsletter about an online media room.  In addition to her content-filled presentation, Mary Ellen will offer her book, “A Guide to Getting it: Branding & Marketing Mastery,” for sale.

About the Presenter:

Mary Ellen Merrigan is a marketing and publicity consultant, who coaches entrepreneurs to combine traditional and online media for snap, crackle and pop in communications. Connecting Point Communications, her company, serves small business owners and service providers as well as non-profits.

For more than 20 years Mary Ellen worked in the competitive arena of radio advertising and directed sales teams in business communications. Her experience “herding cats” and her background in media sales, management and training provide an eclectic perspective to position your business for greater visibility and profitable growth.

In addition to tending two cats, Mary Ellen beads, needlepoints, publishes a monthly newsletter, ProfitMeister, and maintains a blog about all things marketing at http://www.profitmeister.com.