Buca di Beppo

Home/Tag: Buca di Beppo
28 04, 2013

Is There Such a Thing as Customer Service for Social Media?

By |2017-03-03T12:07:01-05:00April 28th, 2013|Categories: Blog, Social Media Marketing|Tags: , , , , , , |0 Comments

Share This:

Social media and customer service

Yes, Social Media is the ‘next hot thing’ for your company. However, like any other marketing strategy, it must be capable of bringing in customers, and you must be able to measure its effectiveness. Check out this Forbes article on social media and customer service.

Don’t get fooled into thinking that web traffic ‘likes and followers’ will bring you in customers.  Popularity and being liked is one thing, being trustworthy and believable is another thing. Both are at the base of bringing in customers. I’m talking about your ability to  influence someone’s decision-making process.  In order for a customer to want to buy from you, you must be trustworthy and believable. All of these things—web traffic, followers and likes to have nothing to do with your ability to build a connection to the customer.

Building connections falls within the realm of customer service. Knowing your customer also falls under customer service. If you don’t take care of your customers, Facebook will not save you.

Social media is not a panacea for your company. If you’re going to have an effective strategy, you must have one person who is focused on building your social media campaign.

The purpose of social media is not to send out advertisements. Its purpose is to provide a place for you to connect with the customer. Connecting and building relationships is a skill; if you’re not good at this is your brick and mortar role, it’s unlikely you will be effective at social media. This is why I tell business owners that anyone, including your 14-year-old nephew can build a Facebook page, but can he build a marketing strategy.  Your company must be presenting more than a page for people to connect with.

You need to tie your marketing and social media strategies together. Determine how you will integrate your social media  strategies and your landing pages. It can be a special offer that must be redeemed in 24 hours or something similar. Restaurants, including my personal favorite, Buca di Beppo, do this regularly.I received an offer for a free dessert on my birthday and the coupon had to be redeemed within one day.

Once you have an offer,  create a landing tied to the offer so you can tell how many people have  downloaded your coupon. This way, you’ll   know if anyone is taking you up on your offer. Isolating the effects of Facebook or Twitter, for example, on a landing page optimized for the audience your company has on these social-networking sites will quickly tell you if you are converting clicks to prospects.

Decide which social media strategies are best for your company and your goals. Twitter is quickly paced and provides a way to do direct messaging. Facebook’s fan pages are for companies that want to show their human side to the customer. If you’re a customer service based company, Facebook gives you a place to connect with your customers. It also works well for those who have a strong following. You will have to determine which one works best for you.

Google Analytics can get you real-time results of strategies using social media. Once you’ve decided which platform to use, it’s time to measure the results. Google Analytics is a free service that will measure your landing-page performance.

None of these strategies will be effective unless you  add content to your site. You must continue to write blogs, offer timely advice or anything that is valuable to your customer. Not sure what they want to hear, then ask them. Paying it forward has never been  more important.

Try various strategies to see if your campaigns are leading to conversions. Remember, connect with and talking with your customers is customer service. It’s important to know if what you’re doing to connect is making a difference.  If it doesn’t matter to the customer why bother to do it?

 

Lisbeth helps businesses build loyal relationships with their customers through social media marketing and customer service training. Her book, Red Hot Customer Service, can be purchased through her web site. www.Lisbethcalandrino.com.

 

Share This:
16 11, 2011

What’s the Key to Successfully Marketing Your Business? You Need to be Consistent

By |2017-03-03T12:07:07-05:00November 16th, 2011|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |2 Comments

Share This:

Marketing and advertising are illusions for many people; their theory, throw something against the wall and hope it will stick. Not so according to Alan Baker, President and Founder of Creative Marketing Concepts in Latham, New York. Alan,  a guest on my radio show indysmallbiz.com  gave me the scoop on what it takes to make it work. By the way, indysmallbiz.com provides information and tools for small business; look for blogs and podcasts by authors like myself who work with small businesses.

“Good marketing starts with good communication, says Alan, you must know who you are, what you do and know why a client should do business with you if you want to make it work. After that it takes lots of persistence and focus. With business being soft many companies start cutting expenses and often the first to go is the marketing. Businesses should cut programs that don’t show results but a good marketing program should be measurable. ”

Alan’s positive outlook shows in how he works with businesses. The key is to spread the word so that people know who you are even if times are tough. There are still customers with money and your job is to find them and entice them with your offers. A promotional piece is designed to provide added value to your customer and keep your business in the front of their mind. One of the things I found interesting is what Alan calls the “hobo pen.” I thought people bought pens so they could give them out for their customers to use. Alan assures me that the pen’s job is to travel from business to business and eventually wind up in a buyer’s hand. His trick; sign the restaurant   check with their pen and replace it with his pen!

Alan left us with three tips for using promotional materials that are worth noting:

1. Promotional materials are good for all size companies. Even the littlest of companies should have something to give their customers which has their brand and their logo. Products will successfully get your name out and keep it prominent in the market. I know whenever I pick up a pen, I always look at the name and the design of the pen. Promotional items can range from the usual coffee mugs, magnets, blankets, first aid kits and toys. In my case, I bought hot sauce bottles and Alan had a Red Hot Customer Service label made for me and a photo of my book.

2. Think about “spreading your name around” wherever you can. The object of promotional products is to maximize your profits and your investment. Before you choose your products set precise goals for your promotion. This will help you choose the right products for your business. Are you using the products to increase sales, show appreciation to loyal customers or to thank customers for buying your products? Not one size fits all so it’s important to have set goals.

3. Plan your promotions for the year. It’s wise to have a calendar for the year so you can plan how to spend your dollars. Holidays often mean larger expenditures, especially for your better customers so it’s wise to know what you have to spend.  Alan often helps his clients plan for the holidays as well as creating new ones for his customers. If Buca di Beppo can have a “Meatball Day” why can’t a mechanic have a “Wrench Day” and send out tiny wrenches with his name on them?

4. Get involved in Small Business Saturday.  This year (again)  it’s all about the SATURDAY following Thanksgiving when we continue to show our gratitude by supporting the lifeline of the American economy – our small businesses.  According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there were nearly 28 million small businesses in the United States last year.  Over the past two decades, they created 65 percent of net new jobs.  Directly supporting the communities in which we live, every $100 spent in locally-owned, independent stores, $68 returns to the community through taxes, payroll and other expenditures, according to the small business advocacy group The 3/50 Project. My suggestion, go big, go Made in America, tout your small business and be proud of what small businesses have done for our country.

You don’t have to make this one up; American Express is out there again waving the flag for small business and investing plenty of dollars in our behalf. According to the Small Business Saturday Consumer Spend Survey 2011 61% of consumers plan to shop at locally-owned clothing and accessories stores on November 26.

Check out on Facebook  for  Shop Small on November 26th.

Marketing tools and instore signage : http://bit.ly/sT1Xb4

You still have a few days left to get the “traveling pen” out there for Small Business Saturday.

 

Share This:
21 03, 2011

We Would Like To Espresso Our Thanks For Your Business

By |2017-03-03T12:07:09-05:00March 21st, 2011|Categories: Blog, Competitive Advantage, Customer Satisfaction, Customer Service|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |0 Comments

Share This:

While talking with some retailers about their business  they showed me  a thank-you note with the above as the greeting. Inside the note was a small packet of espresso coffee. Really clever huh?

How about World Nutella Day? This isn’t until February 5, 2011 but what could be better? You have plenty of time to buy up all the Nutella for your customers.

How about create your own special day? I just read that  Buca di Beppo is announcing spaghetti day. Is Meatball Day far behind?

I keep thinking I’ve seen everything but it’s not true. There are so many creative and fun ways to thank your customers and most of the great ideas have come from people like yourself.

The holidays are  upon us, it’s time to get in the swing of things. What will you do to thank your customers? Check out foursquare a mobile application for your business.

What is your passion; is it coffee, fishing, hunting, playing golf, making doll houses? Build an event around what you love and it won’t be difficult.

What about your customers; can you build around their passions? Do you know what they love?

Holding on to your  customers is a lot of work. It  takes more than Constant Contact and an email to keep in touch. Connect a video or an offer to your email and create something special. It may take  some creativity on your part but there are plenty of ideas in cyberspace.

Your marketing budget should also include funds for a survey of lost customers or an advisory panel of your customer advocates.  Unless a business is paying very close attention defecting customers will be lost forever. Unfortunately they don’t let you know when they’re leaving. If you believe your business is about outstanding customer service you must practice it 24/7. Don’t forget your on line customer service; the internet is open 24/7 also.

What can you do to give back over the holidays?  Have you thought about caroling? Get a group of customers and take to the streets. The key is to turn customers into evangelists.

How about raising money for your local food pantry? You have plenty of time to plan,  it’s never too early for Christmas in July. Think what you can do for others. Get a group of customers together and deliver meals-on-wheels for the holidays.

What about Memorial Day or July 4th? Everyone is dying to know what you’re doing for the holidays. Drop me your ideas and I’ll post them!

Share This: