Small Business Archives
[SLIDESHARE] The Importance of Lead Validation

[SLIDESHARE] The Importance of Lead Validation

Is Your Lead Generation Marketing a House of Sand? Lead validation is the incredibly important process of separating online sales leads from other website conversions, by reviewing all form submissions and listening to recordings of phone inquiries generated by marketing campaigns (SEO, PPC, email, etc.). If you aren’t validating leads — and the vast majority of companies and real estate agents are not — you are basing your marketing investment decisions and campaign testing on faulty data. By using faulty data, you are very likely overspending on underperforming campaigns, and “improving” them in ways that make them worse. Because lead validation is so poorly understood, we created the in-depth presentation below, The Critical Importance of Lead Validation in Internet Marketing. We think it will help you set up your lead generation campaigns on a solid foundation, with the result being many more leads and a much higher quality of leads. Check it out below: Importance of Lead Validation Study by SEO service company, Straight...
The Holiday Marketing Guide for Small Businesses

The Holiday Marketing Guide for Small Businesses

The holidays are fast-approaching. Are you ready? If you’re not, it’s time to get started. Shoppers are most active during holidays and eagerly looking for the best propositions every year. And small businesses that are ready for it will win out over the stragglers. Besides getting an early start, here are some other ways to make sure this is a successful holiday season for your small business: Marketing for Small Business: Optimize Your Mobile Site: Mobile holiday shopping increased by 59% in 2015 vs. 2014. Marketers are arming themselves with mobile strategies and there’s no reason why small businesses shouldn’t be on board. Here are some important factors in mobile optimization: Loading time. People have less patience on mobile than they have on desktop, and that’s already not very much. 50% of smartphone users expect a page to load in 2 seconds or less. Make sure your photos and images are light enough for fast mobile-loading so you don’t risk shoppers skipping over your slow site for a faster one. Make sure your check-out process is geared for mobile. Enable autofill and keychains, use drop-down menus and ask only for the most essential information. Mobile shoppers are prone to interruptions from the very devices they’re using to shop, so the more seamless you make your mobile checkout, the lower your cart abandonment rate. Prepare Early: Online shopping means that customers don’t have to wait until businesses pull out their Christmas merchandise. Holiday shopping is starting earlier and earlier with some retailers courting shoppers as soon as August. In 2015, 56.6% of shoppers already started making purchases by the beginning...
3 Reasons the Customer Isn’t Always Right

3 Reasons the Customer Isn’t Always Right

The customer is always right, except when they’re wrong When retailers started incorporating the oft-repeated motto “The customer is always right” in the early 1900’s, they had the best of intentions. Hoping to improve customer service, increase customer satisfaction, and encourage customer loyalty, the motto gave life to a new era in customer service. And while many companies still live by this motto today, a new breed of customer-facing companies and organizations are starting to sing a different tune. When growing your brand and your business, it’s important to consider the kind of company you want to become. Balancing and responding to customer complaints isn’t an easy job, but someones got to do it, and that someone probably shouldn’t assume the customer is always right. What was good for business in the 1900’s isn’t necessarily good for business now and taking a “sometimes the customer is wrong” approach won’t damn your business like some business folk might have you believe. 3 reasons the customer isn’t always right 1. Sometimes the customer is wrong and employees shouldn’t suffer for it You hired an amazing staff and you hired that staff to fill specific roles within your company. At a certain point you have to trust that your employees know how to do the job that you hired them for (if you don’t trust them to do that, perhaps you need to consider why). With an understanding that your employees are good at their jobs, understand your product, and want the company to succeed, it stands to reason that they are occasionally (if not usually) right. Your employees should understand your product...
Why We Love Our Support Team

Why We Love Our Support Team

When something goes wrong… Let’s address the horrible, awkward elephant in the room — sometimes, you don’t have the experience you want with Contactually. Something might be broken, or have changed, or could just be confusing and weird. It happens. We try to anticipate as many of these things as possible, but believe it or not, you lovable customers are all so DIFFERENT! You use Contactually for different things, in ways we couldn’t imagine (which we love, but can be scary for us), in different places at different times. Sometimes, we’re like a hockey team in a big game where there are 5,000 guys on the other team, and they all have pucks. What the heck, let’s run with the metaphor a little longer. Our Customer Success team members are our defenders, running around and trying to intercept problems before they get you stuck. But behind them, always ready, is our last line of defense. It’s the goalie, Contactually Support. Where would we be without Penny? At some point, our metaphor breaks down, because we actually have more than one goalie. We have a bunch of them, and they work their asses off, often with people on our Product and Sales teams, to try to make things right in a crazy variety of problem scenarios. But as we get more and more users, who’s making sure that system works? Who keeps those goalies fired up, ready to go, and equipped to help the most frustrated Contactually users at their most challenging moment? Penny does! And for the last two years, she’s been doing everything she can to make a...
7 Important Things to Do When You Join a New Team

7 Important Things to Do When You Join a New Team

What can you learn in six months on the job? As I mentioned the other day, I’ve now been at Contactually for six months. That means it’s official — I can now quit without looking like a flake. JUST KIDDING, GUYS. Still, while I’m not going anywhere, there’s something about working somewhere for six months, isn’t there? For most people, getting a new job is kind of like the opposite of being elected President. Instead of your first one hundred days being your best chance to enact sweeping, positive change, most jobs involve a pretty decent feeling-out period, especially if you’re building a new team within an organization, or are the first person performing a new job. Sure, you’ll try to get right to work, but every business, every market, and every product is a little different. It simply takes time to figure that stuff out, and it can be really frustrating at times if you’re eager to make a difference (but hesitant to break anything important). I’ve gone through this process a couple of times, and I think my time at Contactually has been as instructive as anywhere. So based on that experience, here are some new-employee goals that I think can help anybody acclimate, win over, and improve their new organization. 7 Important Things to do When You Join a New Team #1 – Figure out what’s working already One of the hardest things to balance is the success a company has had without you, and the reasons they felt compelled to hire you. Let’s start with the first one. Remember when Meg Whitman took over HP a few...

Is Everything You Thought You Knew About Marketing and Advertising Wrong? (Part I)

At Contactually, we have business owners come to us all the time needing help to grow their business, get more leads and convert those leads to customers.  It’s really what Contactually is all about. As such, I wanted invite Jason Economides, CEO of ECO Business Academy and one of our esteemed partners for some marketing best practices and tips that any business owner could use immediately.  We interviewed Jason recently, and he gave us some really great answers to some pretty pressing marketing questions. Read on to learn more! Contactually:  Hi Jason! Thanks so much for taking the time to talk to me today. We really value your input and know from all of the sold-out webinars we have done with you, that businesses can really benefit from your knowledge and expertise.  I know how valuable your time is, so let’s dive head first into the interview. So, first off, what do you think are the most important resources (e.g. collateral, tag lines, etc.) for a business to have when first getting started? Jason Economides:  Well, frankly – and this always sounds like a sales pitch, but it really isn’t, the first key resource businesses need to get is professional help. Contactually:  You obviously don’t mean a psychotherapist…. Jason Economides:  No!  And I also don’t mean SEO or ‘link generation’ service providers, but actually getting professional advisors who have helped businesses set up.  This is something we talked about in the last webinar I did with you earlier this year, which you can access by clicking here . Think about it this way. If you woke up one morning and decided you wanted to sail around the world, solo, in a dinghy…..What’s the...