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The Promotion Trends Report by Promo Magazine revealed that promotional marketing was part of an overall marketing strategy for over two-thirds of all firms. The line is blurring between advertising and promotions budgets. This signals a strong trend of businesses adding promotional marketing to their overall advertising budget. Promotional Marketing Promotional marketing is a business marketing strategy designed to stimulate a customer to take action towards a...

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Direct marketing is just what it sounds like. A marketing professional is directly reaching a market base (i.e., customers and potential customers) on a personal level (such as a phone call or via a private email message) basis, or on a mass-media basis (in the form of infomercials, magazine ads, etc.). Direct marketing (often known for its aggressive tactics that attempt to reach new...

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Negativity often sways business away from social media. There is a fear that social media will discredit the business or destroy the reputation of the business. We all know that dealing with negative comments in social media can be uncomfortable and unpleasant, but you can ease that by having a plan on how to handle the negativity in a way that protects your company and engages your social...

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Your value proposition must be relevant to your target market. This means your target market must be identified and clearly defined. In my experience, it's not uncommon for a business to have to refocus and revisit their targeting, especially if it was not clearly identified in the beginning stages of business. It's important in this process to find the right balance when defining your target market in a...

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What is a brand really worth? In companies where budgets are tight, how do you go about explaining the importance and the equity that brand can carry? A brand can often be seen as something intangible and it’s difficult for people to understand the value that brand brings into a company. It’s important when sitting down to create a brand valuation to determine what your brand...

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Developing a brand strategy can be one of the most difficult steps in the marketing plan process. It's often the element that causes most businesses the biggest challenge, but it's a vital step in creating the company identity. Your brand identity will be repeatedly communicated, in multiple ways with frequency and consistency throughout the life of your business. Your brand strategy identifies three core components of your business, which...

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Imagine being the media director for a state lottery. Unless something really, really goes wrong, your job is 100 percent good news. The press releases you send are about a grandmother winning $50,000 or a single dad working two jobs hitting the MegaMillions for $125 million. The real challenge is handling bad news, right? Disasters and scandals. Things you can't control. Except that's not the worst thing...

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What are social media hashtags?  A hashtag is a short link that is preceded by the pound "#" symbol.  While hashtags tend to confuse many, they are an integral part of how we communicate and market online. Hashtags turn phrases and words into searchable links. This makes it easy to find content that you are interested in. A hashtag is used to unite posts about particular topics. It's a way...

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