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Blog and Commentary by Miller Finch

Old Technology Won’t Cut It For Businesses

Old Technology Won’t Cut It For Businesses

By on Jan 20, 2015 in Blog and Commentary by Miller Finch | 2 comments

When it IS broke, fix it. My 20 yr. old tech-crazed kid recently demanded that I upgrade my IPhone from the ancient 3GS that I’d been using. She was horrified that I had such an old phone. I was always getting her hand-me-downs, and had her IPhone 4-something that I used for apps that needed IOS 7 in order to run.  I still had plenty of working apps on my relic of a phone, so I didn’t care that I didn’t have the latest phone. I go for function over form. However, when my banking app that I use all the time suddenly said I needed IOS 7 to make it work, my old phone just didn’t cut it anymore. It could not function in the way it used to and for what I wanted it to do. I had to get a new phone to make my life easier. Old technology was failing my needs.  I could have just moved my phone number over to the IPhone 4, but that would have been a temporary band-aid for a longer-range problem. So off to the phone store for a new phone. I wanted the IPhone 5S 16GB in Gold. I figured if I’m going for it, I’m going all out. And no, IPhone 6 was not in the cards, and didn’t offer anything more necessary than the 5S did. After waiting 30 mins. to see the store rep, she got my info and then launched into a spiel about their different programs and how this one doesn’t exist anymore, that one can save me money, and this here one…..well, she lost me. It was too much thinking and rigamarole for that late in the day.  Especially when we didn’t know if the dang Gold one was available!  All I wanted was a phone, but there was more to it than just a phone in hand. After stopping my resistance to these new options, I got focused and sorted through the phone plans, got the new Gold phone (yes, it was in stock!), signed the deal, and it was done. I’m thrilled with the new phone — it has much more space than the old ones, has a super fast speed,...

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15 Facebook Page Quick Tips

15 Facebook Page Quick Tips

By on Sep 23, 2014 in Blog and Commentary by Miller Finch | 0 comments

FACEBOOK PAGE QUICK TIPS: 1. Invite people to like your page when you have at least 10 posts on it. People have to know what they are liking before they do it. People don’t want to like a basically empty page, so ask when you are well underway with it before sending invites. 2. You need a minimum of 30 fans on your business page in order for you to see the Facebook Insights for your page, so ask your friends (see above) or advertise to gain fans. 3. Don’t post on your FB business page as yourself! Post as the page!  If you post as yourself, your posts will go off to the side of your business page in Posts By Others. They will NOT appear in the Timeline of the page and people will not generally see what you have posted unless they go looking for it on the side panel. Facebook has just now (Sept 2014) made this easier by showing tiny icons of your page, dropping down to show your personal profile pic,  for you to choose under what to post as. 4. You can like your own business page posts as yourself, but don’t do it for all posts. 5. Share your business posts onto your personal FB profile once in awhile to let people know what you do and for a post that would have general interest. 6. Do Not link your Facebook to Twitter! This is the lazy way out, and the Twitter audience knows you’ve sent a FB post to Twitter from the URL of it which starts with fb. 7. Do Not link your Twitter to Facebook! This is even worse than FB to TW. Tweets are brief,  the links do not expand when appearing on FB, nor do images, and it is just bad form. 8. Facebook page names (the URL) generally can’t be changed after reaching 200 fans, so choose your name wisely. If you have two business pages for the same business and want to merge them, be sure the names of the two pages are exact, not just similar. You may also need to provide proof to Facebook, such as an official business license, as ownership of...

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Social Media Changes for Summer/Fall 2014

Social Media Changes for Summer/Fall 2014

By on Sep 11, 2014 in Blog and Commentary by Miller Finch | 0 comments

Social media platforms are always changing something and unless you are plugged into that universe like we are, it’s difficult to keep up. So here are a few changes that have happened recently to Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn:   Facebook has put a halt to “click bait” — those sensational articles or pictures that tell you to click them without really telling you why.  “According to Facebook, click-baiting is when a publisher posts links with headlines that encourages people to click to see more without offering much information about what will be viewed.” Facebook is also stopping links within pictures, they want links shown separately so viewers can tell what they are actually clicking on. More info on Facebook changes here: Facebook Killing Click-Bait and Mystery Links   and  Facebook Takes Steps Against Click-Bait Articles Twitter has now opened its Analytics to everyone with an account older than 2 weeks, not just advertisers.  Check yours here:  Twitter Analytics Twitter possibly changing its real-time feed to an algorithmic one. This has caused an enormous amount of angst among regular Twitter users who rely on it for seeing updates from every account they follow, and for breaking news as it happens.  The fear is that Twitter will become like Facebook with a watered-down curated feed.  I would prefer Twitter stay as it is since we self-curate by following those accounts of interest to us, and for up-to-the-minute news as it happens. For example, while Facebook was full of the fun IcebucketChallenge, Twitter was showing breaking news from Ferguson as it happened. People from other countries in war zones also rely upon the breaking news aspect of Twitter; without that ability, news will be tough to get out. More on the Twitter newsfeed: Killing Twitter: Why Algorithmic Timeline Spells the End of the Revolution  and  Twitter Will Never Be Like Facebook – And That’s A Good Thing  and  Twitter May Be Moving Closer to Filtered Feeds – But Don’t Freak Out Yet LinkedIn has a new-ish Publish feature and the ability to Follow people that you aren’t connected to if they use LI Publish.  The Publish feature (you’ll see the pencil icon in your update box on your home page) enables you to write...

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Old Marketing Tactics Get Old Customers

Old Marketing Tactics Get Old Customers

By on Jul 7, 2014 in Blog and Commentary by Miller Finch | 2 comments

What happens to your business when all your customers die?  I’ve seen this now a few times where the business has an old clientele and has done nothing to find new, younger clients.  And they’re OK with that.  Until eventually they aren’t. Old folks eventually don’t need your services. They die, move to a care home, have their children take care of them, and/or become incapacitated. We all get to that stage, it’s inevitable.  But what isn’t inevitable is letting your business grow old, becoming incapacitated from lack of clients, and dying.  If you don’t appeal to a younger audience and market to them, your existing elderly clients will soon no longer exist and your business becomes a graveyard. There was a funny post I saw on Facebook recently that was a photo of a local newspaper ad for a hair salon — the beauty parlor they called it. The ad stated that all their lovely elderly ladies (their clients)  have passed on and they are looking for new clients.  And they have plenty of chairs! Yes, I’ll bet they did.  Funny ad, but a sad one too.  Don’t wait to fill your marketing funnel with new clients. Do this all the time, not just when your regular clients are dead. If you wait, it may be too late. In talking with a potential client, I asked what marketing they do now. Coupon books and a Yellow Pages ad. (!!!)  So I asked what clients they get from those endeavors and she said “the elderly“.  Yep, that’s about the size of it.  The elderly are not avid users of social media, but Boomer-aged women and younger ones are.  They can fill the ranks of your target audience if you appeal to them. Social media can be used to attract new, younger business, so long as your other business methods are not stuck in the past.  Read how business has changed: 10 Reasons Why Running My Business Today is Different Than It Was 20 Years Ago  Parents complain about advertising to kids, but these big companies know that they have to start when the audience is young to build up the continual repetition required for marketing and advertising and to gain new...

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Are You Slacking in Your Marketing Efforts?

Are You Slacking in Your Marketing Efforts?

By on Jun 23, 2014 in Blog and Commentary by Miller Finch | 2 comments

  Small business owners, if you’re not doing your small share of the marketing efforts for your small business, nothing we do can make up for it — unless you want to increase your budget and have us handle everything except personal networking. A small business owner IS his/her business. You aren’t Home Depot or Proctor & Gamble. YOU are the representation of your business.  And if you can’t add an email signature, or social icons to your website, or write a blog once in awhile, or budget for advertising, or (most importantly) fix the causes of your bad reviews, social media marketing will be treading water. Social media marketing is not a stand-alone activity, all efforts must be integrated, and some of those efforts fall on you as a small business owner. Social media is an essential tool in marketing now. A small business owner needs to add the connective information of their accounts to all other marketing efforts – advertising, print collateral, emails, newsletters, website icons, and more.  See below. Here’s a post I recently updated on what simple participation the client needs to do. Top 20 Client Essentials for Social Media Marketing  Here’s another post about Small Business marketing on social media: Social Media Marketing for Small Business Can’t Operate in a Vacuum   Social media marketers, whether Miller Finch Media or others, do the work we are hired to do. Oftentimes, that involves a fairly small budget from the small business, so it’s not as full-fledged as a corporate in-house marketing employee or full concierge service (though that service is available). That then leaves it to the small business owner to participate to some extent in their own marketing efforts. We can’t want success for you more than you do. It’s your business. Get off the sidelines and get involved.   If you are ready to get involved in your own success, give Miller Finch Media a call at 770-289-5681 and we will go to bat for you, full out.   Author: Miller Finch...

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Online Marketing Begins With Your Website

Online Marketing Begins With Your Website

By on Jun 20, 2014 in Blog and Commentary by Miller Finch | 2 comments

One of the things we do when a client comes to us for marketing is to first look at their website.  Since marketing will drive the audience to the client website, we want to be sure there is something there that is useful, informative, easy to navigate, is well-designed and current with modern website practices. If their website is still using Flash, has popups and banners blinking and twinking everywhere, or the information hasn’t been updated in the last 3 to 6 months (and that’s a stretch), then we advise the client to first create an updated website before doing marketing that points to it. Marketing will only emphasize what is already there, and if the website gives a negative impression, why market it? We recently were asked for a marketing plan for a potential new client. OK, we started with a look at the website. In this case it was websites plural as there were 4 or 5 of them all under that same brand but selling different products or services….we think. It was hard to tell actually.  There was so much going on — popup bobble people that made one’s eyes want to look away, moving banner tickers, popup chat boxes, announcement sounds, videos using Viddler (that’s still a thing apparently), missing tab information, lack of proper links, a mishmash of colors, a weird unknown star review system, and old posts from 3 years ago.  It was a mess.  But OK, we took the challenge and wrote them our lengthy recommendations, which took awhile to analyze it all and to propose solutions.  Well, evidently this was not received well as we were told that the client is “going in a different direction”.  What that might be, we have no idea, but hopefully they start with a new singular website. Websites don’t have to be $20,000 sites to be effective and useful, but they shouldn’t be $100 or free sites either. Our site isn’t perfect, we know that, but we do try to continually improve it and stay current with modern design and practices. Online Marketing begins with your website. Starting a marketing campaign without a good website is wasted money.  We have turned away clients due to their websites not...

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