Tag Archive for marketing

Self-Marketing Ideas for Small Businesses, Non-profits, and Schools

Self-Marketing Ideas for Small Businesses

If you are running a small business, or a non-profit, or a school, marketing budgets tend to be very small. There’s just not a lot of money to spend. But institutions that are lacking in money can use time — of their volunteers, family, friends, staff, and students — to support their marketing and PR efforts and to generate some buzz about their organization, work, and services. The chart below focuses on just five media outlets: LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and a blogging platform WordPress (other blogging SMS systems can be easily substituted). The idea is to spend time to continuously generate fresh and relevant-to-your-industry and audience content and then share it. Some things are very easy and don’t take much time: sharing articles and photos, tweeting and retweeting, liking and favoring, and pinning. Other activities take a bit more time: writing reviews and comments, creating galleries and image collections, etc. The hardest is blogging — this can take a lot of time and small organizations have to be careful how they allocate their time. But students and friends and volunteers can help. Used together, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and an organization blog, can form a powerful do-it-yourself marketing strategy:

Building and Sustaining Online Communities

Pope Francis said an interesting and insightful commentary on online social media: “The Internet, in particular, offers immense possibilities for encounter and solidarity… The speed with which information is communicated exceeds our capacity for reflection and judgement, and this does not make for more balanced and proper forms of self-expression. … The variety of opinions being aired can be seen as helpful, but it also enables people to barricade themselves behind sources of information which only confirm their own wishes and ideas, or political and economic interests.” In other words, communities have the power to limit the range of views to only those that they seems culturally appropriate — a small subset of active users can completely change the group dynamics of a community. The responsibility of the managers to find their way to create and sustain healthy communities. I’ve been building and supporting communities for a while. It happened organically — I needed to help a client start a project and build a following around it; then another client needed something similar; after a dozen years (or more), I’ve found myself creating guidelines for communities and the people who help manage them. Below is some of my “wisdoms” from…

Kurisumasu ni wa kentakkii!

Who would have thought that our KFC fried chicken would be an object of desire in Japan? But perhaps all it takes is some very good PR (and some luck), and a product designed to please a very specific audience finds a new user group… Kentucky Fried Chicken for Christmas Dinner Japanese tradition started in 1974. While Japan is not a Christian nation — most Japanese (84% to 96%) identify themselves as Shinto or Buddhists — people do celebrate Christmas. There are Christmas office parties, people put up trees and give gifts, and families and friends eat Christmas dinners together. But unlike here in U.S., Christmas turkey dinners are not common — it is almost impossible to get a turkey at a local supermarket. To celebrate the Christmas spirit with an authentic American flavor, Japanese turn to KFC! The Kurisumasu ni wa kentakkii — or Kentucky for Christmas — is so popular, that people have to order their Christmas fried chicken buckets a month in advance! This is the power of advertising.

Re “A New Name for High-Fructose Corn Syrup”

Parker-Pope, T., (2010). “A New Name for High-Fructose Corn Syrup.” New York Times Online. Visited on October 3, 2010: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/14/a-new-name-for-high-fructose-corn-syrup/ As this article describes, corn syrup producers in the United States have begun to push for a re-naming of their products. While it may sound innocuous, this is in fact a major change in the way that High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is marketed to the public. Due to a combination of structural factors such as the widespread success of processed foods, corn production subsidies, and the natural human inclination towards sweet foods, HCFS is present in an astonishing array of food products. Recently, however, there have been indications of a backlash against the prevalence of HFCS in the American diet. Some health professionals and consumer groups have even advocated for its removal from many processed foods. This recent trend in the public perception has left HFCS producers in a bind. They have an economic interest in continuing to produce HCFS at low cost and having it utilized in as many products as possible, but they are not able to change any fundamental features of their product. As a simple mixture of glucose and fructose refined from corn, there is nothing to add to or remove from HFCS to improve it in the public’s eyes. The main lobbying…