Preparing Your Student for Success, from College to Career

School is wrapping up here in Polk County, but for families with high school seniors, the craziness of having a rising college freshman is just beginning.  After the graduation parties and senior nights have come to a close, it’s time to think about extra-long sheets for those dorm-room beds, how many ways you can make Ramen, and just how you plan on making sure your student is covered while they are away at school.  Also graduating here in Lakeland are students from our various colleges and universities, who are preparing to launch their careers and head out into the world.  Much like the incoming freshman, they too need to double check if they are covered in the event of unexpected curveballs, and if that coverage is adequate for their upcoming situation.

Health coverage is usually the first topic that comes up when discussing college students and insurance.  If your (minor) student is currently on your health plan, nothing should, in theory, change about that setup.  He or she will simply take their insurance card along with them, and they should be able to continue with the same coverage.  However, if your child is heading out of the area for school, you will need to do some research about doctors that are in/out of your network, and how that affects your coverage and required payment.  You will also need to find out if the school has any specific coverage requirements.  Don’t currently have coverage on your college student?  Most schools require at least a minimum amount of health insurance, and offer affordable plans through the school, so you might want to check into those options as well.  Adult students, meaning those independent from their parents, should price compare between private policies and those provided through the school before making a final decision.

Auto insurance is another common bullet point on the college checklist.  Again, if your student already has his or her own vehicle, and currently carries coverage, nothing should change about this policy when they head to the dorms.  They will need to double check details of the policy like if roadside assistance is covered for those unexpected flat tires or locking their keys inside, and they need to know who to call for towing in the case of a breakdown.  Adult graduates should plan to compare multiple policies with varying premiums and deductibles, since this is the best way to find a deal that both provides for your needs and fits your current budget.

Finally, some parents choose to take out a renter’s policy for their young college student’s belongings, especially if they are living in an off-campus apartment or house.  These policies offer compensation for items lost in natural disasters or fire due to theft.  Even if your student will be in the dorms, it’s worth looking at their list of possessions and determining if any items need some extra coverage taken out in the event that they are lost, damaged, or stolen.  Laptops, fine jewelry, televisions, etc. could be items that are at risk. Graduates of all ages and from all types of situations should evaluate their own need for this type of coverage, and do their best to fit it into their budget if possible.  The cost of replacing one’s entire life’s collection of belongings is overwhelming at best, and can be easily avoided by simply signing up for an inexpensive renter’s policy.

Insurance isn’t the only coverage needed by college students.  Support from you, whether it be financial, emotional, or both, is equally important to many of them, and we understand that you need to be there. If growing your business is taking valuable time away from your family, Newton Peach Marketing is here to step in and help. We take care of making sure your business is seen by potential clients and customers, and bringing those customers to YOU. All that's left for you to do is enjoy the success of a growing company. Don't spend your valuable time during these fleeting years chasing down opportunities. Let Newton Peach Marketing help you make your business a success, so you can stand beside the ones you love! 

Think Twice Before Posting: How Your Online Presence Can Hurt Your Business

In an age where most of our lives are displayed online, whether with blogs, social media outlets, videos, or even personal websites, it can be easy to forget how much impact the content you place online can have.  When you are in the middle of starting or growing your own business, what you put out on the internet, even on your personal outlets and pages, can have a negative impact on your compony and your professional reputation. 

How? 

Your online activity can be used against you when you hold any kind of authority.  Whether it be a social media post, content written by you on a blog or website, or even a video created and shared, if it contains information that is in any way offensive, derogatory, or otherwise disagreed with by a coworker, client, customer, etc. it can come back to haunt you.  Technically once you put something out on the internet it becomes public property.  While there are some limits to this, and you might have limited privacy, social media typically doesn't fall under these categories, and your information is open to pretty much anyone who wishes to pull it if they try hard enough. 

How then, can you protect yourself without locking down your online presence and feeling like a slave to your job?  It's simple: think twice before posting.  Obviously, don't mix business and your personal life online unless it's in a way that is mutually beneficial.  Another tip would be to avoid connecting with customers and clients personally online unless you feel you can without them getting more information than they need about your own life outside of the business. Mixing business and your home life usually ends up having negative results in the long rung. 

A guaranteed way to keep your online presence managed, and your personal life separate?  Let someone else professionally design and maintain your business internet presence through social media, blogging, and your website.  Newton Peach Marketing is proud to offer all of these services and more to the Central Florida region.  We are based in Winter Haven, and we have clients in Lakeland, Lake Wales, and the greater Polk County area.  Give us a call and let us help you grow your business, without putting your reputation at risk on the internet. 

Luck of The Peach: How NPM Can Grow Your Business

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!  Newton Peach Marketing is seeing green today, and we want your business to see green too, by increasing your cash flow!  Growing your business takes more than a bit of luck though, and it's hard to do on your own. Hiring a marketing consultant guarantees that your name and brand will be well represented while allowing you to focus on the daily operation of your business.  Newton Peach Marketing is one of Central Florida's trusted marketing agencies and we serve clients of all sizes throughout the Polk County area. 

How do we help our clients' business grow? 

Social media.  Social media marketing is the “trend”, and it's incredibly effective if you know how to use it.  Creative and custom content, interaction with followers and friends, and promotions using social media platforms are all key elements in developing a presence online and connecting with consumers.  NPM can take on as many or as few of your social media accounts as you want, and update them daily, periodically through the week, or even just once a month.  Everything is customized to YOU. 

Online advertisement.  From boosting your Facebook posts to creating ads to place in online advertising communities, we handle your digital advertisement from start to finish.  We work alongside you until your ad is exactly what you want, and then we do the hard work of putting it out where YOUR potential customers and clients will see it. 

Blogging.  SEO (Search Engine Optimization) seems complicated, and in many ways, it is. However, what isn't complicated is tying your marketing efforts into your SEO plan to make sure maximum numbers of eyes are on your business and your content.  Newton Peach Marketing blogs for you on a schedule you decide, and we customize your posts to your business, industry, local events, etc.  By tying in key words that are not only unique to your brand and name, but also to the area in which you are located, and to the industry in which you work, your blog can generate traffic toward your website and that means an increase in business. 

If you're ready to grow your business this year, don't think the luck of a shamrock...think peach! Newton Peach Marketing is ready to partner with you to grow your client base in the coming year, and increase your cash flow so you will be seeing green every day. 

So You're Starting A Business?: What NOT to Do

If the time has come for you to launch a new business that you have dreamed about, planned for, and worked hard to bring to life, we know you're excited about the possibilities and potential on the horizon.  We also know that starting a new business means starting lots of other things, like a website, a social media platform, and even hiring on employees to help you with management, office work, or manual labor.  Newton Peach Marketing focuses on the success of our clients, and our desire is to see ALL small business owners achieve success with their ventures.  Unfortunately there are a few key mistakes that are trending among many startup business owners, and we'd like to see you avoid them if possible.  So, here's what you shouldn't  do when you're making your dream a reality...

  • DON'T use personal email addresses, even your own, to build your online platform.  All online accounts, from your website to your Facebook page, require an email address, and if you start using personal addresses to build these profiles, it becomes easy to lose track of the login info you need for each account.  Additionally, if someone else eventually takes over managing those accounts, whether it be a marketing agency like us here at Newton Peach, or an individual staff member in your office, you'll be forced to give them your personal email login to let them monitor and utilize the various social media outlets. 
  • DO create a singular, business-only email (even a free one through a program such as Gmail works) that is ONLY used for social media and online presence for your business.  This way, you know exactly what the login info is for each of your online accounts, and you know that all notifications and needed correspondence about these accounts will come to one inbox. 
  • DON'T lose track of your login info (usernames, emails, passwords).  Forgetting passwords, failing to stay on top of which username/email goes with which account, etc. are all huge issues when it comes to marketing your business in the long term.
  • DO take the time to figure out the username/password combos for each of your social media accounts, and compile them into a list that you can store in your office or your work file.  This is an invaluable resource, especially if you bring someone on to help manage social media and online presence for your business. 
  • DON'T give out your account info to just anyone.  Additionally, don't lose track of who you have placed in various roles in regards to your online marketing.  If you have 7 different people, from your brother to your office manager, with access to your business Facebook page admin rights, it becomes easy for something to get messed up, or for issues to arise over time with passwords getting lost/changed, security being compromised, etc. 
  • DO keep a handle on who plays which role in your online marketing.  If possible, limit each account to 3 people MAX with admin rights on the page/account.  If those roles change, be sure to reflect that ASAP in your account.  Don't let an employee from 3 years ago still have the capability to log into your business account after being fired.

If you are ready to make your dream a reality and kick off your own business, Newton Peach Marketing is here for you!  Our goal is to meet YOUR goals, and we can do that with a customized marketing plan that reflects your own specific needs.  Give us a call to get started, or contact us for more info!  

 

New Year, New Plan: Grow Your Business and Expand Your Horizons in 2017

With the coming of a New Year, many business owners take time to look over their existing company plan and reevaluate their budget and spending, their staff, their inventory, etc. However, one area that might not get the attention it deserves is the marketing strategy for their business.  Oftentimes, these owners choose to either market themselves, or their hire an in-house marketing staff member/team.  Neither of these options is ideal. DIY marketing is not only (typically) ineffective, it's also time-consuming and overwhelming to take on advertisement and branding for your company when you are also responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations.  On the other hand, hiring a full-time marketing employee/team is costly, since it requires paying an additional full-time salary and benefits, in addition to the cost of marketing materials and related funding. 

So, what is a business owner left to do? 

This is where a third-party marketing business comes in.  Outsourcing your company's marketing is not only cost effective but also better for your business in the long run for the majority of cases.  Benefits of hiring an outside marketing business include: 

  • Time savings.  You don't have to take the time to oversee your business's marketing yourself, nor do you have to oversee an employee or staff member hired on to do the marketing. Instead, you simply make your wishes known to your chosen outsourced individual or team, and they take it from there by utilizing your desires and blending them with their knowledge of the marketing field to get optimal results for your business. 
  • Money Savings.  Instead of paying salary(ies), covering benefits packages, and providing the financial backing for all marketing endeavors and materials, outsourcing your marketing is as simple as paying a monthly fee to your chosen company (covering the cost of their services), and then letting them know what your monthly and/or annual marketing budget is.  This allows them to pick and choose where to spend those funds to maximize your visibility to potential clients and customers, and you'll receive the bill for money spent on those things.  Since they have clear boundaries of how much to spend, you won't have to worry about accidentally overextending your budget on marketing. 
  • More effective.  Outsourcing your marketing is oftentimes more effective since you have creative minds working for your business from the outside.  Unlike in-house marketing employees, who are required to focus on the same business daily, outsourced companies have multiple clients.  This means they are current on trending marketing strategies and techniques that, while not specifically for your business type, could still apply to you and your own growth. By employing a marketing service that has their hands on a variety of clients in many fields, you know you are getting a creative, diverse marketing plan that will give you the biggest "bang for your buck". 

If you are local to the Polk County area here in Central Florida, Newton Peach Marketing is here to handle your business's marketing needs.  We handle social media, blogging, website creation and maintenance, graphic design, and more.  We customize a marketing plan for each individual client, so you know that your service is tailored specifically to you and your needs. 

Make 2017 the year for growth, and let NPM partner with your business!

Celebrating Christmas in Polk County with Newton Peach Marketing

The holidays are upon us, and cities throughout Polk County, from our very own Winter Haven all the way to Lake Wales and far Lakeland, are preparing for Christmas festivities. The Lakeland parade kicked off the fun last week, and over the next few weeks, parades, parties, and community events have filled up the county calendar. We love enjoying the Christmas season with our local friends and neighbors, and we don't want you to miss out on any of the fun to be had at the various celebrations going on in our area, so we have compiled a list of some of the most popular Christmas attractions yet to come here in Polk County for Christmas 2016...

  • Downtown Bartow Christmas Parade - December 9, 6:00 p.m.
  • Christmas Notes at Homeland Heritage Park - December 10, 5:00 - 8:00 p.m.
  • Lake Wales Christmas in Toyland Parade - December 10, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
  • Davenport Winterfest – December 10, 5:00 - 9:00 p.m.
  • Mulberry Christmas Village and Parade – December 10, 6:00 - 10:00 p.m.
  • Lakeland's Munn Park Christmas lights display- Nightly, after dark

Additionally, don't forget about the festivities happening at Legoland during their Bricktacular event!  While you're out enjoying the Christmas festivities, you have a great opportunity to support local businesses this year.  Opt for local dining or enjoy a drink or two at one of our Lakeland or Winter Haven breweries or coffee shops while you soak in the holiday spirit that is sure to be felt throughout Polk County at this special time of year.  Shop local for your Christmas gifts this season, and make the holidays special for not only everyone on your gift list, but for the business owners you buy from as well.  After all, they are your neighbors! 

Newton Peach Marketing supports local businesses because we are a local business. Our goal here is to grow our clients' businesses to their maximum potential, and we love supporting small business owners by providing social media content, graphic design, improvements to their websites (or a complete overhaul), and more!  At this time of year, people are out in full force shopping, dining, and enjoying our community.  Make sure your businesses is seen!  Give us a call, and we'll help you get started. 

Celebrate the holidays with Polk County and Newton Peach! 

Hooked on Facebook: Why Personal Social Media Engagement At Work Is A No-No

In today's technology-rich era, social media has taken over both personal and business use of the internet.  Companies use social media platforms to further their exposure to their target audience, engage their customers and clients, and advertise for new business.  On a personal level, social media connects people from all over the world, and offers value in staying active with contacts from both your past and your present, in addition to offering news, entertainment, etc.  Social media, primarily Facebook, are definitely one of the most common sights to see on people's phones, computers, and tablets. 

Unfortunately though, this overexposure to these social media platforms has turned into a near addiction, and that is affecting businesses and productivity more than you'd expect.  Surveys show that almost 70% of employees list logging into Facebook as the first thing they do when they arrive at their desk or work station each day.  This doesn't even account for the use of smartphones and tables to log into personal social media.  Why is Facebook at work such a bad thing? 

In and of itself, occasionally checking in during a free moment at work wouldn't be negative (unless, of course, it directly disobeys company policy).  An occasional check-in isn't the norm though.  Most Facebook users can spend anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour browsing their "newsfeed" for updates from friends and family, trending videos and content, and the most current news.  Over the course of a work week, this adds up to a LOT of time wasted, which means your productivity levels drop significantly. 

Not only are you less efficient when you use Facebook throughout a work day, but you are likely in a worse mood.  Oftentimes, Facebook can be mentally distracting, and can even put you out of sorts if you happen to catch sight of an update or piece of information that bothers you.  A poor mood means you are more likely to struggle with completing tasks, and again, this doesn't look good to a boss who is monitoring hours and output. 

Finally, you might want to second-guess picking up your smartphone and logging into Facebook for security and privacy reasons.  Not only could your information be at risk depending on the security of your workplace's network, but you also stand the risk of exposing information to other coworkers or even your superiors if they catch you on social media and you didn't realize it.  One photo, or less-than-professional post, could be very costly in not only your current job, but your career as a whole. 

Overall, it's best to leave the personal social media at home, and spend your work days focusing on WORK.  An occasional check-in over your lunch break is no big deal, but be sure that you are using company time for company purposes.  Dedication to your job will stand out to your boss and that will benefit you in the long run.  

For us here at Newton Peach Marketing, social media IS our job. We can handle all of your business profiles on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more. We make sure you are putting out quality, unique content that helps target your desired audience. 

Leave the Facebook to us, so you can focus on work! 

Local Halloween: How Polk County Is Celebrating in 2016

Newton Peach Marketing is a huge supporter of local events here in our own community of Winter Haven and the surrounding areas.  After all, we are a local business ourselves, as are all of our clients, and we know that being an integral part of the happenings in our town is how we build relationships that grow community spirit AND businesses. 

With Halloween coming up on Monday, places throughout Polk County are kicking off the holiday with events from today all the way through the big night on the 31st.  Here are some of the top picks for celebrating Halloween Floridian-style in 2016: 

For the fright factor...

-2015 Polk County Sheriff’s Office Haunted Jail Tour
Where: PCSO jail, 455 N. Broadway Avenue, Bartow
Time: 6:00-11:00 p.m. (going on throughout the Halloween weekend)
Details: The Polk County Sheriff’s Office is hosting their annual Haunted Jail Tour to benefit the United Way of Central Florida. PCSO volunteers will present the Zombie Apocalypse.  Saturday will be family night, with treats and games for kids.  The tour will be $5, with proceeds going to United Way.  Visitors will be taken through areas that include the morgue, infirmary, incinerator and jail.

 

-Zombie Farm Paintball Hayride
Where: Smith Family Ranch, Lakeland
Time: 7:00-10:00 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays
Details: Zombie Farm Paintball is a 20 minute hayride, in the dark, that takes you through Zombie Farm’s infectious zones.  There have been reports of the living dead lurking in the night, especially around swampy areas.  The ranch will supply you with a paintball gun for your protection against these creatures.  Admission includes live zombies to shoot at, use of a paintball gun, 200 rounds of ammo and a narrated hayride.  The cost is $30 per person. www.smithranchlakeland.com/zombie-farm.html

For family fun...

-CornFusion Crop Maze & Fall Festival
Where: Smith Family Ranch, Lakeland
Time: 3:00-6:00 p.m. Saturdays, 9:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. Saturdays, 12:00-6:00 p.m. Sundays
Details: Join the Smith Family Ranch for a fun-filled day at CornFusion Crop Maze & Fall Festival. where you will find about 20 acres of fun for all ages including a pumpkin patch, 8-acre Egyptian Wheat maze, corn box, corn cannon, country store, cow train, miniature mazes, pony rides, and farm animals. 

www.smithranchlakeland.com/cornfusion-crop-maze-and-fall-festival.html

-Brick-or-Treat
Where: LEGOLAND Florida, Winter Haven
Time: 10:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays & Sunday (throughout October)
Details: Ghouls, ghosts and goblins descend on Miniland USA transforming it into a haunted adventure with a scavenger hunt in search for these scary creatures that have invaded our famous cities.  This spooky event takes place weekends in October, and features trick-or-treating along the brick or treat trail, super brick build activities, the largest LEGO Jack-O-Lantern in the world, Halloween entertainment and an all-kids costume contest with brick-tastic prizes!

 florida.legoland.com/planning-your-visit/special-events/brick-or-treat-event/

-Ghouls’ Night Out
Where: Downtown Winter Haven
Time: 5:00-8:00 p.m. (tomorrow night, Saturday Oct. 29th)
Details: The City of Winter Haven will be hosting Ghouls’ Night out which includes candy from area businesses, a hayride, food vendors, a DJ, and lots of fun activities for people of all ages.
 
 For little ones/ safe Trick-or-Treating...

-Safe Place to Trick or Treat
Where: Lewis Matthews Complex/Gene Carroll Field, Davenport
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: Enjoy free hot dogs and drinks, cotton candy, popcorn, a haunted house, maze, costume contest and activities.
 
-Just Cares, Inc. 5th Annual Fall Festival
Where: 124 S Kentucky Ave, Lakeland
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Join this safe environment for families that is an alternative to Halloween featuring a petting zoo, games & activities, bounce house, performances, music, candy and more

 
-Fall Fest

Where: Lake Eva Park, Haines City

Time: 1 p.m.- 4 p.m.
Details: NorthRidge Church present this annual fall festival featuring your same favorite free elements and a few extras such as inflatables, food, games, train rides, Ident-A-Kid, Fire Department exhibits, by the Polk County Sherriff’s Office SWAT and Rescue teams, and candy.

We hope to see you come out and support our community this Halloween!  Let the "spook-tacular" fun begin! 

Newton Peach Networking: We Are Part of BNI!

Newton Peach Marketing stands firm on the idea that networking is one of the best ways to not only grow your business, but also grow your brand and reputation in the community around you.  Coming alongside other local businesses is important to us, and recently, we were thrilled to finally have the opportunity to join the Winter Haven chapter of BNI. 

BNI is an international business networking and referral program, in which members join and are then connected with a multitude of other business owners in various fields.  With chapters throughout the world, BNI is a great way to increase your business and build relationships with business owners just like you.  These contacts become invaluable to you, since you are their "go-to" referral when they hear of a need for your services come up.  For example, if you own a pool company and are part of a local BHI chapter, and another BNI member (let's say, a lawn business) hears one of their clients mentioning the need for a pool service, YOU are the first business they recommend to this customer.  Essentially, when you are part of BNI, you have an entire team of people advertising for your business on your behalf. 

We are excited for this new endeavor at Newton Peach Marketing, and we look forward to teaming up with other businesses here in the Polk County area to keep the local economy strong.  Thank you to the local chapter of BNI for bringing NPM on board! 

Want to learn more about BNI or find a chapter in your own area? Check out their site HERE

High Quality Content in Your Marketing Strategy: Why It Matters

Marketing, in today's business world, covers a wide variety of tasks.  Face-to-face interactions and representation at events/expos, consumable materials (flyers, business cards, etc.), and even radio or television advertisement are all viable forms of marketing your small business, but in the last decade, online marketing has taken the world by storm. 

Online marketing is essentially any form of representing your business through a digital format. Social media platforms (like Facebook, Google+, Twitter, or LinkedIn) and blogging are two primary forms of digital marketing, but your website also plays a huge role in bringing potential clients or customers your way.  When it comes to online marketing though, things can get complicated.  The frequency of posting and time of day which you post are definitely factors in making sure you get plenty of visibility, but, the most important part of digital marketing is your content.  The majority of this type of content comes through writing, and that is primary done through your blog.

High-quality content is what will attract potential customers and keep them coming back for more.  Quality content needs to be relevant to the target audience you wish to reach, it needs to be customized for your business, and it needs to reach out to not only potential clients, but also to those who are already customers.  Like we've mentioned here on the blog before, retention marketing is a significant part of a successful business.  Essentially, content marketing is giving something to people without asking them to purchase anything, or commit to you, first.  You are offering information, tips, advice, etc. for FREE.  This makes readers feel as if you understand them and their needs, and you value them without them being obligated to buy from you or utilize your services.  Building these types of relationships with readers will make them much more receptive to your business and what you offer. 

So, where's the proof that quality content actually matters in your marketing strategy? 

Check out this statistic...

"61% of buying decisions made my consumers are influenced by custom content by the seller." (source HERE).

It's no secret among marketing companies that quality, customized content generates more leads for clients than video and visual content combined.  Being able to offer your current customers, and the audience of potential buyers, information that applies to them and helps them better understand what you offer and how it could help them, means that you are essentially doubling your chances at getting their business! 

Do you find it overwhelming to offer frequent, customized content to your customer base or to the general public?  Are you holding back from having an online platform at all?  You could be losing business DAILY if you aren't tapping into a quality-content marketing strategy.  We can help.  Newton Peach Marketing can provide you with quality content for your existing blog platform, or we can start a blog platform for you from scratch and have it placed into your existing website.  We will write and post for you on a daily, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis, baed upon what you need.  The options are endless, and we can customize a plan that will give YOU optimum success. 

Don't miss out on customers looking for what you have to offer.  Give us a call and let us help you offer valued online content to grow your business! 

Tweet and Twitter: How That Little Blue Bird Can Grow Your Business

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The social media craze over the last decade has revolutionized the way businesses represent themselves.  Newspaper ads, television commercials, and personally handing out flyers at public events (while still relevant) have been overshadowed by Google+, Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter. 

Twitter isn't always looked at in the same way by businesses as some of the other social media outlets available.  Unlike Facebook or Google+, you don't set up a "business page", you don't have maps, and store hours and other information are not listed. Rather, Twitter is more of an engaging and networking tool, where people "tweet" (short chats/blurbs) under a chosen username about various topics such as trending news, pop culture, and more.  Hashtags, a commonplace accent in many social media posts across all platforms, got their start in Twitter, where they are used to categorize tweets.  For example, a post about your favorite local Lakeland restaurant could be hash tagged with #Lakeland #eatlocal and it would likely show up alongside other tweets that have mentioned local Polk County dining favorites. 

So, how can Twitter be used for your business growth?

First, it allows you to better connect with people than Facebook or Google+ might.  Since posts are short (140 characters or less) it offers more of a conversation approach to social media.  There are no long responses required (or even allowed), but you can post links to additional information if needed, such as in the case of answering a business question. 

Secondly, Twitter allows you to link your account to various categories (example: a local antique boutique here in Polk County might list themselves under shopping, Central Florida, Lakeland, Winter Haven, antiques, local business, etc.).  These categories mean that your business will be most likely to show up in searches done by relevant clients, instead of randomly being thrown out to the masses, or requiring that someone individually search for your business name. 

Finally, you can follow specific Twitter users, meaning that you build much-needed and beneficial networking connections, but you also have access to trending local topics, and can re-Tweet them to have your name show up in a variety of places.  This not only keeps you current and helps you offer valid and interesting information to your own followers, but it also helps increase your online presence.  The more people that see your name can mean you end up with an increased number of followers.  Ultimately, this can prove to be incredibly helpful with business growth. 

If you think that Twitter might be a worthwhile time investment for your business, go for it!  If you worry that it will be too time-consuming, or you aren't terribly comfortable using social media platforms, give us a call.  Newton Peach Marketing will set up social media profiles for businesses, and then we manage them daily, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly, as dictated by the individual client.  We work closely alongside our customers to make sure their content is personalized, engaging, and ultimately beneficial to their business popularity and growth. 

Let the little blue bird become part of your business.  Newton Peach Marketing can help you "tweet" your way to success! 

 

Why You Should Be Using Google+

Google+ is a relatively new addition to the world of social media, but it has already taken the world by storm.  This platform is user-friendly, and is especially helpful to small business owners.  Unlike Facebook, Google+ is geared toward businesses, and since it is integrated with Google, it automatically syncs with maps, online info about your business, etc. 

So, why should you use Google+ for your small business? 

Cost Effective Marketing

Google+ is not only easy to use, but it's also free!  At no charge, you can set up your account, create a business page, and start being found by potential customers!  This is an extremely cost-effective way to boost your online presence since Google automatically gives higher priority to those with Google+ profiles. 

Networking

Since Google+ operates on a "circle" basis, it makes networking with other businesses, and with customers, incredibly easy.  Basically, you join "circles", and create circles of your own, which are groups of people based on interests, family, etc.  By having the ability to join circles that pertain to your own business, you create networking connections that can be powerful assets to your business and growth.

Good Option for a "Pre-website"

Don't have the money or resources for a website for your small business?  We think it should be a priority to have a website online representing your business as soon as possible, but we recognize that some clients aren't yet ready for that step.  Having a high-quality Google+ profile will at least get your name, business information, location, and samples of your work online for potential clients and customers to see until you can get a full website up and running.  It offers a more professional appearance and layout than Facebook so it can stand in as a sort of "pre-website" for those who are just starting out in the small business world. 

Think that Google+ might be a good fit for your business but don't think you have the time to set up and manage it?  Newton Peach Marketing has you covered!  We will set up your account, manage your profile, and keep you updated with statistics based on the performance of your G+ page.  We can also make sure your Google+ page is integrated with your existing social media outlets, in addition to your website, newsletters, etc. so your clients are seeing as much of your information as possible. 

Give us a call and let us help you grow your business with the multitude of available marketing tools in our hands, including Google+! 

Lights, Camera, Action: Why Video Is Vital to Marketing Your Business

Marketing has morphed into a totally different look over the last decade.  In the past, marketing consisted of flyers, door-to-door contact with potential customers, and if you were REALLY spending cash, radio or television advertisement.  Today though, marketing is mainly an online affair.  While printed materials are still important (especially the classic business card), they aren't nearly as relevant as they used to be.  Modern day marketing takes place through web pages, social media, and visual content, especially videos. 

While video-style marketing (like the television advertisements mentioned above) were previously only available to businesses who could afford professional film work, platforms such as YouTube and Vimeo have opened up a whole new world to the small-business community. Marketing your business through video content is now as easy as pulling out your smartphone, tablet, or other camera device.  Editing, if necessary, has been simplified and social media platforms (Facebook, Google+, etc.) make it easy to share your content to a wide audience. 

Why though, is video so popular and important for a small business? 

It helps your audience personally connect with you (and subsequently, your business).  People feel like they "get to know you" when they are able to watch video content of your expressions, hear your voice, etc.  By engaging potential customers in this way, you are more likely to gain their trust and that means they are more likely to become a client. 

It packs a punch.  Written word, even in the context of social media, doesn't always hold the attention of an audience.  We live in a society where immediate gratification is key, and having to read content sometimes turns people off.  A video allows you to get a lot of information in a very short amount of time, while keeping potential clients entertained with music, mannerisms, etc.  A video allows your message to be heard and shared easily, efficiently, and in a fun way. 

It can make money for your business!  Many larger businesses, brands, etc. are coming on as sponsors with smaller businesses now through video content.  By promoting other businesses and products through your video content, you can not only gain additional income, but also increase the popularity of your own business, since the larger brands have a larger following of clients that will now be seeing your video.  That popularity can turn into big money if cultivated and managed properly. 

Think that adding video content to your existing marketing plan is right for you but don't know where to start?  We can help!  Newton Peach Marketing offers customized marketing plans for each client that comes our way.  From completely original business cards, to web design, to videos that represent you and your business, we offer a variety of services to help you GROW! 

Give us a call, and let us help you make your small business a BIG success. 

Pick Their Brain: How Analyzing Your Target Audience Can Impact Your Marketing

Here on our blog, we have discussed how important it is for business owners to determine their target audience before ever beginning a marketing strategy.  Making sure you tailor your advertising to a specific category means you are more likely to win over your preferred clients. Did you know, though, that even that targeted audience can be narrowed down to make your marketing techniques more effective? 

For years the terms "left-brained" and "right-brained" have been used to describe people and their personalities.  What do these terms mean?  Well, a left-brained person is often logical, analytical, and prefer realism and straight facts when receiving information about a service, product, or subject.  On the other hand (or rather, other side of the brain), a "right-brained person" is usually creative, expressive, and much more emotionally sensitive.  These folks enjoy advertisements that incorporate unique perspective, and take on a artistic or narrative form. 

When you understand the way these two types of personalities work, it's easy to see how marketing to the wrong crowd could completely stunt your business growth.  Everything from your social media content to the individual pages and design of your website can either engage or ostracize potential clients, depending on their personality type. 

So, how do you bets market to each of these categories?  For your right-brained clients: 

  • incorporate colors, patterns, and pay close attention to artistic design of your marketing materials, online representation, etc. 
  • use storytelling-like content for social media and website content
  • engage emotions and feelings with your marketing techniques

For left-brained thinkers: 

  • keep colors and designs clean and simple
  • use facts and statistics when writing social media and web content 
  • engage thinking and analytics with your marketing techniques

If you are ready to take your marketing to the next level, paying close attention not only to your target audience, but also to their personality type(s), is vital.  Not sure how to go about your marketing strategy, or do you currently have no marketing plan in place?  Newton Peach Marketing is here for you.  We customize a plan for each client, whether they are starting their marketing from scratch, or simply wanting to enhance what they are currently doing.  Newton Peach offers everything from designing your branding materials (logo, business cards, etc.) to managing your online representation through a website, blogging, and/or social media. 

Newton Peach is ready to help you reach potential clients effectively.  Make this summer your most successful yet! 

Long-Term Relationships: Retention Marketing for Your Online Business

In today's world of internet-based EVERYTHING, online shopping is how most people make purchases.  While large businesses, such as Amazon, are responsible for a huge amount of these purchases, there are many small-business online stores that offer unique products and options that large companies just can't provide. 

However, the owners of these online businesses often struggle with how to build their client-base and retain customers while still adding new business.  Without face-to-face interaction, customer loyalty can be a tough obstacle, and as every business owner knows, loyalty and customer retention is one of the best, and quickest, ways to grow your company. 

So, how do you market your online business so as to hang onto your customers? 

Win Them Over

It might seem like a given, but customer service goes a long way in customer retention.  In a traditional store setting, business owners could chat with customers, be available for product explanations and demonstration, answer questions, etc.  With an online store, this is not as straightforward since there are often no hard-set business hours, and you aren't able to have in-person conversations with clients.  However, all is not lost!  There are some simple ways to offer great customer service to your online customers.  A few include...

·       Be available for questions through means such as email or online chat.  Consider advertising times that you are online and available for answering questions or concerns.  Make sure your times are accessible for the general public, or for the client base you serve.  For example, if most of your customers are working folks, being online at 2:00 in the afternoon won't be easy for them from their office.  Consider having early morning or later evening hours when they can reach you. 

·       Prompt response is important!  If you receive an email from a customer, answer it within a 24-hour period.  The sooner you answer, the more they will feel like they are being taken care of, and that's a huge way to build customer loyalty. 

·       Let them "get to know you".  Have a small blurb or introduction on your website.  By having a brief description of you, and perhaps a photo or two, customers are reminded that they are interacting with a person, not just a computer. 

Reward Their Loyalty

By offering customer loyalty or rewards programs, you can keep clients coming back for more! Knowing that their continued business is appreciated and valued by you as a business owner is a great way to get customers to purchase from you on multiple occasions.  Want more "bang for your buck"?  Offer a rewards program that encourages them to involve friends in the shopping experience.  For example, a "bring a friend to shop, and you both get 10% off your total purchase" or something like that.  This not only offers your existing customers an opportunity for savings, but it also introduces new faces to your store, meaning you have the chance at winning them over as well! 

Keep It Personal

Not only do customers need to see that YOU are a person (refer to the "getting to know you" idea above) but they need to know that you see them as an individual as well.  If they feel like a number or a check mark, they are far less likely to return to your business.  Make sure you keep the online shopping experience personal for them by including their name in every piece of correspondence, and do your best to include details that pertain to them.  Even if it involves going back into past emails and looking for some specifics, it's worth the effort if it means you are gaining a long-term customer. 

So, be encouraged online business-owners!  You can gain a huge customer following without ever meeting your clients face-to-face.  All you need are some simple marketing strategies. Don't think you have the time, energy, or talents to do this?  We can help!  Newton Peach Marketing specializes in retention marketing techniques, and we will customize a plan for you based on what your needs are and the customers you serve.  We do the hard work, and you reap the benefits.  It's that easy! 

Here at Newton Peach Marketing, we believe in supporting local businesses and organizations. After all, we are a local business and the only reason we are able to continue providing service to our Polk County friends and neighbors is because of people like YOU. 

Because of this local support system, we are always looking for ways to get involved within our community and give back to the people who have made us, and continue to make us, who we are.  This past Saturday we had another great opportunity in the Second Annual Toga Trot 5K hosted by Heritage Christian Academy. 

HCA provides a high-quality, classical education to students in the greater Polk County area at an affordable rate for families.  Small class sizes, a challenging yet personalized curriculum, and committed teachers mean that HCA is a huge asset to our community and the children within it.  We were thrilled to be able to play a part in their annual fundraising event by being involved with the Toga Trot. 

HCA offered not only the opportunity to sponsor this event, but they also gave sponsors the option of participating in the race! We were so excited to do BOTH in addition to our marketing services already utilized by Heritage Christian Academy (design and marketing for the event).  By sponsoring the event, we ensured its success, and we also gained invaluable exposure to the local community.  By participating in the actual event, we got "face time" with people within the Winter Haven community and had a great time not only running the race, but also getting to know our city better! 

We encourage you to get out there and support local businesses and events!  The locals in your own town are what give your area its own unique flavor, and supporting your city and the organizations within it mean your town will continue to thrive and maintain what makes it special. 

5 Marketing Fails That Are Guaranteed to Give You a Laugh

Today (April 1st) is all about laughing and jokes and pranking people.  While some businesses do incorporate humor into their marketing schemes for special days like April Fool's Day, others ended up looking foolish by accident. 

Here are our top 5 favorite marketing fails...

1. Punctuation: It's Important.  Amazing how something as simple as a comma turns a chef into a villain! 

2. Keep Your Target Market in Mind.  Unless you were targeting people inside the van, this probably isn't the best technique.  Businesses, take note: choose a method that fits the customers you want to reach! 

3. Maintenance Sends a Message.  Keep up your business, including the grounds and building. It sends a way bigger message than you realize.  Enough said. 

4. Think It Through.  When running an advertisement, think through the details of the message. Something that looks great might end up confusing your customers.  The Lemonade-lovers out there must have been pretty upset over this one...

5. Take a Second Look.  Don't just throw something out there for the public to see!  Give your work a second look as a whole!  Otherwise, you'll end up looking like this business who is apparently always open...except when they're not.

hile we enjoyed getting a good laugh out of these bloopers (and hope you did too!), we also take the tips mentioned very seriously.  Marketing through advertisement, online presence, signage, and printed materials are all great ways to grow your business, if they are done the right way! 

Newton Peach Marketing makes sure you are represented the RIGHT way, every time.  We are here to help you determine who you want to reach, and the best way to reach them.  When you choose to partner with Newton Peach, we guarantee you will NOT end up looking like the fool! 

Happy April Fool's Day from NPM! 

Celebrate: How Your Business Could Be Seeing GREEN This St. Patty's Day

What do we mean by seeing green?  We're talking about green in your wallet of course!  Spring is almost here in Central Florida, and that means you should be hitting the marketing trail harder than ever since the summer will soon be at the front of people's minds, and snowbirds will be returning to their northern "nests" to escape the soaring temperatures. 

So, how does marketing help your company see more green?  Well, while running your business well keeps customers happy, and confident in your work, it doesn't necessarily bring new business to your door.  If you aren't growing, then you are dying...there is no in-between with business.  It might seem like you are in a "comfortable" spot as a business owner, but all it takes is losing a couple of major customers or clients and you could be looking at some serious problems.  By marketing your business throughout the year, you'll be sure to have clients or customers ready to fill spots that might end up empty, or you'll be able to expand your business to a whole new level altogether.  This type of growth means you will continue to see profit from your business, and that means more green in your wallet. 

So, what can we offer you to make sure potential customers are seeing your name first when they are in the market for a service or product?  Well, we offer a variety of options (and you get to pick and choose what you want us to do!) including...

  • website design and/or maintenance 
  • social media maintenance (including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and more) 
  • blogging
  • graphic design (logos and other branding materials) 
  • help with events and community involvement 
  • ...and anything else to make your business look GOOD to the public. Our job is to do the hard work and you reap the benefits. 

So, if you are ready to grow your business this spring and want to celebrate St. Patrick's Day with a little more green than usual, give us a call!  It takes more than a little bit o' luck to grow your business, and that's what Newton Peach Marketing is here for. 

Happy St. Patty's Day from our business to yours! 

We Represent YOU: NPM at Local Events

Newton Peach Marketing is proud to serve businesses with top quality service through web design and maintenance, blogging and social media, design of printed materials, and more. But, did you know we also offer on-site services for our local Central Florida clients? 

NPM can represent YOU and your business at local events such as vendor fairs and expos, or we can help you host events at your own business!  We assist with events like Heritage Christian Academy's annual Toga Trot 5K and even Open House-style parties like the one we did for Mannix Pools in 2015 (read about those HERE).  

Recently, we had the honor of helping 4 of our clients with representation at a local Vendor Fair at Traditions of Winter Haven.  Traditions is a well-known neighborhood in Polk County, and their vendor fair was a great opportunity for businesses to enjoy face-to-face time with local residents, and spend the morning networking with other local businesses as well! 

Country Boy Pest Control, Carroll Marshall Insurance, Adkins Automotive, and BirdWatching House Sitting Services were all represented at this event, and they are all NPM clients!  We were able to help with table setup, printed materials and marketing ideas for the event, and more! 

If your business needs someone in its corner to be a representative in your community, give us a call!  Newton Peach Marketing will customize a plan for you, and make sure that your business stands out from the crowd from the business cards you hand out to potential customers, to your representation at events and in the community. 

Thank you to Traditions, and to our 4 participating clients, for letting us be part of the 2016 Vendor Fair! 

Marketing 101: Retention Revenue = Prospect Revenue

Thanking your customers for their business is important for growth! 

Thanking your customers for their business is important for growth! 

We often hear our clients discuss marketing in regards to growth, and that "growth" is usually referring to new customers and/or clients.  However, new business, while fantastic, is NOT necessarily the primary or most effective focus when marketing your company or brand. 

In order for marketing to be most effective, it is imperative that you pay attention to your existing customer base in addition to new growth.  Your current customers can be one of the best assets in adding new business if you treat them correctly and are continuing to market to them.  They are the ones using your service or product, so who better to help spread the word about your business?  However, an asset can quickly turn into a downfall if you aren't treating your customers the right way, or aren't advertising to them and making them feel valued. 

Think for a few moments about some of your favorite places to eat or shop, or about your favorite mechanic or tried-and-true lawn care guy.  Don't you love telling friends and neighbors about what great food/products/service you receive?  Without even knowing it, you are helping market those businesses better than any ad or social media post ever could.  Word of mouth from personal contacts is a prime way to spread your business.  However, it's YOUR job as a business owner to make sure you are giving your customers and clients great things to say. 

So how do you make sure you keep a proper balance between marketing to new customers, and making sure you keep your current clients happy?  Make sure you don't forget about your existing customer base!  Great ideas to keep them happy and make sure they feel important include...

  • Thank you notes to let them know you appreciate their business 
  • Offer a special deal or coupon to current customers 
  • Hold a customer appreciation day or similar event 
  • Remember your customers and clients during holidays!  A quick card or even an email to wish them a "Merry Christmas", "Happy New Year", or a "Fun 4th of July" can go a long way in making clients feel like you paid special attention to them. 

Of course, there are many more options when showing customer appreciation and marketing to your existing base, but these are a few general ideas to get you thinking! 

Does any of that seem overwhelming to you in the midst of running a business?  That's where Newton Peach Marketing comes in.  Our specialty is helping you determine the best plan of action for marketing your business to your current and to new customers, meaning you can enjoy optimal growth.  We take the hard part out of your hands, and leave you with the benefits.  We can handle anything from designing custom cards, ads, or coupons for you, to helping you plan and host events. 

Remember, the next time you are thinking about your marketing, that retention is just as important as prospects when it comes to your customers!