In business and in life, creativity is king. When setting goals and developing strategies for success in 2012, it is important to embrace the tools that help businesses create connections, build relationships and expand in positive directions.
Rather than fear the rapid rate of exchange on the Internet, get in on the action! Twitter, Facebook and YouTube are three great places for businesses to start building a following. Establishing a “tribe” of interested people (past, current and future consumers) goes a long way in helping any business to stand out from the crowd.
Other Online Communication
Communicating with consumers through a business website is simple and effective. Business owners are advised to keep websites current and to start a blog with content regarding their area of expertise. Email blasts are another fast and easy way to capitalize on the power of internet communication.
Planning a special event is an ideal way for business owners to connect with their customer base. Whether it’s a wine and cheese night or special celebration for loyal customers, events give individuals a reason to feel special within the commercial domain.
To succeed in today’s economy, business owners must identify and sell the facets of their company that make them distinct from other businesses in their industry. Businesses that identify and tell the story of what makes them unique are better able to stand out from the crowd.
In this new era of business, creativity and connection are not an option, they are a necessity. By getting creative and embracing the new tools available, business owners can enjoy success in 2012 and beyond.
Business In Transition
An Interview With Marketing Expert Lynne Meredith Golodner
There’s no doubt that the keys to operating a successful business in today’s economy have changed from years past. E-commerce, social media and the fast paced lifestyle of most American consumers have drastically altered the way that businesses must operate. Considering that January is a natural time to make resolutions for positive change, Natural Awakenings sat down with Lynne Meredith Golodner, the owner and chief creative officer of Your People, LLC, a Southfield-based company specializing in marketing and public relations. She shares her opinion on what the changes in today’s marketplace mean for modern business owners.
NA: What are the biggest changes that have taken place regarding business and marketing, and how do they present a challenge for the modern business owner?
LMG: The industrial era created schools and systems designed to churn out diligent, obedient workers who show up, punch a clock and wait for a paycheck. This isn’t effective any longer. Basically, the business model we were raised on has crumbled and many business owners have been left with their arms open to the sky, wondering what to do next.
NA: As a PR specialist, what do you tell business owners looking to ensure lasting success?
LMG: I say, we must rethink our business philosophies and everyday tasks to reflect our new reality. Marketing guru Seth Godin has termed this the ‘Era of Connection.’ People are looking for connection; if you’re a smart business owner, you find a way to provide that.
NA: So, finding a way to connect with consumers is really what it’s all about?
LMG: Yes, public relations is the art of building relationships with the public. It’s not just about publicity; that helps, but it doesn’t inspire people to buy what you are selling.
NA: It sounds like just getting ad space or column inches doesn’t cut it in today’s economy.
LMG: Exactly. Identifying your ideal audience and building authentic relationships withe them is the key to doing business in the 21st century. Marketing should be a multi-tiered approach to connecting with people, online, in person and where they want to be reached, whether it’s through print, mail or friends.
NA: In your opinion, is success in the modern marketplace accessible to all business owners?
LMG: I believe that every business owner has all the skills needed to succeed. Sometimes it is necessary to step out of our daily environments to gain that clarity. The solution to the problem is to trust your instincts, get creative and don’t give fear a voice. A 2008 Harvard study revealed that creativity is 85% a learned behavior. This means that nothing stands in the way of local businesses coming up with that innovative step that helps their businesses soar.
Business-building books and seminars to help dedicated business owners reach new heights of success.
Stand Out from the Crowd: The Your People Guide to Beside-the-Box, Funky, From-the-Heart DIY Marketing, PR & Social Mediaby Lynne Meredith Golodner. YourPPL.com.
Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable by Seth Godin
Building Bridges: Essays on Business, Technology and Innovation by Nicholas Carr
The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries.
Your People Business Building Seminars – Classes on Public Relations, Marketing and Social Media. Learn more at YourPPL.com/Seminars
ZingTrain – Training Seminars to grow your business – ZingTrain.com
Lynne Meredith Golodner is the owner and chief creative officer of Your People, LLC. Visit YourPPL.com to learn more about public relations, marketing and business-building seminars.
Source: Natural Awakenings Magazine of Wayne County