Social Media Marketing: Utilizing it as an Effective Tool

The average person uses social media websites for approximately 136 minutes a day, and as the number of social platforms increase so does the time being spent on them. Time spent on social media is greater than time devoted to grooming, eating and drinking, or even in-person social interactions. Using social media as a marketing tool is the most cost effective and resourceful way for a small business to grow their audience, which is why 97% of marketers are using it.

Why social media? Simply put, your customers are there and consuming colossal amounts of content daily.  It’s estimated that 70% of the U.S. population has at least one social media profile, and that there are more than 2.5 billion social media users worldwide. With the boundless number of consumers using social media platforms each day, small businesses are presented an unparalleled marketing avenue. It is necessary to be present and active on the channels that your target audience is using most often. Refusal to affiliate your business with social media pages neglects potential engagements that you could be having with your current and new customers.

Social media is a place where we connect to the world, expand our network, and keep in touch with our friends and family. The users of these platforms aren’t necessarily there with the purpose of being marketed to, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t following the brands they find valuable. Social media outlets allow you to unmask a more personal side of your business, demonstrating your voice on an intimate level, and supports authentic connections. Consumers are overwhelmingly more responsive on social media than they are to traditional, direct marketing messages. Brand recognition and visibility are increased as your content presents your business’ true voice and nature. While the consumer may have never heard of your company before, they are more likely to explore and become better acquainted with your business after noticing you across various social networks.

Another benefit of social media is that it allows you to more specifically target your audience, rather than broadly putting a message out for anyone to see. Targeting your audience will generate higher quality leads, and eventually boost your conversion rates. While not only being a more objective advertising avenue, it’s also more financially worthwhile than conventional advertising. Social media is estimated to be at least 3 times less expensive for paid advertisements than traditional media, but you also have the option of using it entirely free.

 

By being more active on social media, your search engine exposure increases. Search engine algorithms are alerted by links to social content, shares, likes and comments. The livelier these engagements the better your organic growth and visibility on search engine sites. Your competition can also be found on social media and search engines, so this engagement favors the diligent.

Consumers also use social networking to find recommendations. A survey found that 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations! Use customer feedback, positive or negative, to thank them for their support, expose necessary areas of growth, and to boost your glowing reputation! Ask your current customers to leave reviews of their experiences, because 90% of future buyers rely on positive reviews to influence their purchasing decisions!

When executed correctly, social media is an unbeatable device. To feel like you aren’t getting the reciprocation deserved when investing your valuable time and effort is defeating to say the least. Before giving up on social media, ask yourself these questions: Are you posting the right content for your market? Are you posting enough? Are you simply posting at the wrong times? Research the various social media outlets to find the optimal times and days of the week that each platforms’ users are most active!  Know your audience, be persistent, and share content of value regularly! Best of luck in your social media endeavors!

 

 

 

 

Sources Cited:

Asano, E. “How Much Time Do People Spend on Social Media?” Social Media Today, January 2017.    Retrieved from https://www.socialmediatoday.com/marketing/how-much-time-do-people-spend-social-media-infographic

Smith, K. “15 Reasons Why Marketing Through Social Media is a Must For Every Small Business.” LYFE Marketing, January 2018. Retrieved from https://www.lyfemarketing.com/blog/marketing-through-social-media/

Bhat, U. “4 Reasons Why Your Social Media Posts are Not getting Engagement.” Cloohawk Blog, July 2018. Retrieved from https://www.cloohawk.com/blog/4-reasons-why-your-social-media-posts-are-not-getting-engagement

4 GOOD reasons to buy an Educational Franchise!

Here are 4 GOOD reasons to buy an Educational Franchise!

Are these 4 simple, yet good reason to buy an educational franchise? Ultimately, you need to ask yourself if an education franchise is what you want to build your future around. High Touch High Tech is one of the premiere science education franchise opportunities and working cooperatively with them can help you achieve your dream of owning a successful franchise.

  1. Building for the Future with Fulfilling Work:  Younger generations will become the leaders of tomorrow, and without the right tutelage, they could fall short in their endeavors.
  2. Work with a Proven Business Model: Working with a proven business model jump-starts your chances for success.
  3. Support for Yourself While You Support Others: Just as you are invested in the people you mentor, your franchisee is invested in your business. This is a perk that comes with opening an education franchise. Having a larger company supporting your success can add different levels of backing to your business.
  4. Brand Recognition and Marketing Support: rand recognition and marketing can play an integral part in your advertising campaign. Advertising done by the parent company and other franchisees will directly and indirectly support your business.

For more information, please contact HTHT at 828.684.3192 or check out our website at ScienceMadeFun.net.

 

 

 

Smarter, not harder! Social Media

As a small business owner, you have to wear many different hats to keep your business running and growing. Between staffing, scheduling, purchasing, customer service, marketing, and all the other tasks, you’ll start to wish you could clone yourself just to get it all done! Well, any successful business person will tell you that success comes from working smarter, not harder!

With this in mind, today’s blog is about the use of social media. Now, our company currently has a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a YouTube ChannelPinterest Pin Boards and a blog. In a small office like ours, it takes an army just to keep all of these mediums current and engaging. Now, you may notice, we’re missing on of the “biggies”, namely, Linked In.

Needless to say, we were ready to dive in head first when we got our hands on a step-by-step guide of how to use Linked In company pages for marketing. Our eyes lit up and our imaginations ran wild as we reviewed the guide, researched other company pages and quickly scheduled a meeting. However, we were somewhat underwhelmed by what we saw and began to realize that our initial thoughts and goals for launching a Linked In page might not align with what they have to offer. Our enthusiasm quickly began to deflate when we realized the amount of work necessary to set up the page, build the connections and maintain the page. It was at this juncture that we determined our investment (time & effort) might not yield the desired results.

In lieu of building a Linked In page, we took a step back, evaluated the benefits of our current social media outlets and asked how we could do better with what we’ve already got. Ultimately, we want to generate leads, so we asked ourselves how else can we drive traffic to our websites, increase our brand awareness and educate our customers about our products and services. The result: revised Pinterest Pin Board themes with brand specific pins and website link backs; SEO aligned descriptions on all YouTube videos with website link backs; new photo albums and engaging content on Facebook; and the list goes on and on.

So a meeting that started with the goal of introducing a new social medium to our arsenal, which would have added to our overall workload, ended with more than a dozen, actionable ideas for enhanced user experience and interaction on our existing social media outlets.

Efficiency is key and making the most of your time and resources is critical to your overall growth and success. Stick to your strengths and maintain social media efforts that can actually be maintained by your current resources. Don’t get in over your head! It’s easy to get sucked into the “social media machine” and jump onboard every opportunity in every medium, but sometimes, less is more! Social Media outlets that are out-dated or not maintained on a regular basis can be just as damaging as not being involved in social media at all.

If you want to check out what we’re doing, visit any of our social media outlets. We’d love to get your feedback!

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/HTHTWNC
Twitter:  http://twitter.com/@HTHTWNC
YouTube:  http://www.youtube.com/user/HighTouchCorp
Pinterest:  http://pinterest.com/hthtworldwide/
Blog:   http://sciencemadefun.net/blog/

To learn more about franchise opportunities with High Touch High Tech, visit us online at ScienceMadeFunFranchise.net.

High Touch High Tech is the leader in innovative hands-on science and nature experiences for children, serving over 4 million children annually with 27 franchise locations across the United States, Canada, Turkey, Singapore and South Korea.

7 Tips for Starting Your Own Business

1.Be Clear on Why You want to Start a Business
While the idea of starting a business may be daunting, the fatigue of looking for a job may be even greater. Taking control of your working life by venturing out on your own may be scary, but doing nothing can be worse. That said, don’t start a business because you’ve run out of options. If you’re truly interested in doing your own thing and you’re ready to go for it with gusto, then small business ownership can be the most frustrating and the most freeing avenue—with the possibility of the greatest financial security. A great business to start and do your own thing, is working with children. Within this industry, one franchise stands out, High Touch High Tech.

Business Opportunity & Demand

2.Determine Your Business Type
You don’t have to reinvent the wheel. The best idea for you may be tried and true with your personal twist. Look into franchising. It’s a great way to start a business with the help,  leadership and experience of the franchisor. Franchisees are people just like you, that found a franchise they could relate to and get passionate about. This leads to lots of satisfaction with your business.

Meet Our Franchisees

3.Create a Simple Business Plan
Most new aspiring businesses owners think they’re supposed to sit down and write a detailed and lengthy business plan, making all sorts of wild assumptions about how much money you’ll make in five years, and so on. Some people worry so much about dotting every “i” and crossing every “t” until their plan is just perfect, they never start their business. For a basic business, I favor a one-page business plan that covers what you offer, who you’re targeting, how much you’ll charge and what you’ll do to make it happen. It’s a fluid process that will change once you dive in, so keep it simple at the start. If you consider a franchise, you learn the successful business plan from the franchisor, during your training.

Curriculum

4.Nail Your Target Customer
Determine exactly who your customers are with great specificity. If you’re creating a skin cream, don’t say “all women” or “everyone with skin” could buy from you. Is it targeted to women who visit a dermatologist for monthly facials or to women who grab anything from the drug store aisles? Your ingredients, process, packaging and pricing will all determine who the customer is. Be specific: I’m going to provide bookkeeping services for restaurants; I’m going to create social media campaigns for self-published authors. The more you can pinpoint your targeted client, the more focused your marketing efforts will be to reach them. You’ll be able to ask for the right referrals and you’ll know who and what to search for on the Internet.

Marketing

5.Perfect Your Pricing
Your pricing shouldn’t just cover your costs; it must also generate a profit for your business. Don’t undervalue your time and talent, which is a classic mistake. One option is to work the numbers from the top down: What are you looking to make annually? How does that break down monthly and weekly? How many products must you sell or how many clients will you need to bring in to meet those numbers? What are all of the costs associated with delivering that product or service? None of this requires fancy charts or advanced accounting skills. Play around with the numbers so you know what’s realistic as you get going—and revisit your numbers monthly. Pricing however, is not the only path to success. It turns out it matters what you do. Try to help people in some way.  A business that helps children is very rewarding.

Why High Touch High Tech

6.How to Find Start-Up Money
Until you start bringing in sales, you must keep costs down. Think creatively: it would be great to rent a fancy commercial kitchen to bake those cupcakes, but use a cheap or free church or community kitchen in off-hours instead. I worked with a woman to launch a series of art classes for kids, but she didn’t have money for supplies. The solution: she required parents to purchases the supplies and pay for the courses upfront. Forget hiring a full staff; ask friends for help and train interns. Barter for key services.

If tapping personal savings isn’t an option or if you need a more creative financing option, one of the fastest growing now is crowdfunding, which allows your network of friends and family to contribute to your start up costs if they like you and want to support your small business idea.

Another avenue is franchising. Many franchisors have their own financing that you can arrange with them. This financing is really helpful, and you pay the loan back with your profits!

Financing

7.Go Out and Get Customers
This is where the magic happens. Nothing else matters if you don’t have customers. The majority of your time and effort must focus on sales. Having a smart marketing plan to attract interested people, and then convert them to customers is your number one priority. Don’t get overwhelmed about how to dive in: just start where you are. Create a list of 50 potential prospects that you’ll go after and begin making calls one by one. Build a serious social media presence for your business where you can engage directly with your target market.

Dreaming about how fabulous your business can be is good; but doing something to get it there is sensational. It’s all about the hustle: the decisions you make and the actions you take each and every day – that’ll get you where you want to go. Take that dream and look at all your options with franchises. Does any of these franchise opportunities resonate with you? Try to find a franchise opportunity that you can be passionate about. This is the path to success.

Mission Statement

To learn more about franchise opportunities with High Touch High Tech, visit us online at ScienceMadeFunFranchise.net.

High Touch High Tech is the leader in innovative hands-on science and nature experiences for children, serving over 4 million children annually with 27 franchise locations across the United States, Canada, Turkey, Singapore and South Korea.

 

Hints for Starting a New Business

Hints for Starting a New Business

In our recent blog posts, we’ve defined a franchise and provided reasons why investing in a franchise might be an idea to consider. In today’s blog, we’d like to discuss some helpful tips to follow when getting a new business off the ground. High Touch High Tech (ht2) has been in business for nearly 20-years and we’d like to share some of our experiences to help you make what could be a life changing decision.

One of the most important things to consider is whether you truly have a passion for your business. Can you see yourself engaged, in this business, years down the road? While passion isn’t always necessary, your chances of being successful are considerably higher when you love what you do. When you truly love your business, you will be more inclined to work at it tirelessly and will have the motivation to keep going if things get difficult. On the other hand, a lack of commitment can often lead to the demise of a business and the loss of time and money.

When starting a new business, it’s important to cover all the bases and be as prepared as possible. Consequently, it’s imperative that you do your homework and have a realistic business plan before getting started.

You should conduct a sufficient amount of background research until you know all the ins and outs of your industry. Once you have a clear understanding of factors such as your target audience, competitors, existing products or services you should create a business plan. This includes outlining potential expenses you may have along the way including rent, insurance, employee wages and taxes, etc. You should also know how much in sales it will take in order to break even. Taking the time to get organized and familiarize yourself with your market should prepare you for any unforeseen events that come your way.

In addition, you should have a clear idea of which marketing techniques you will need to employ to get your product or service to consumers. For example, you may want to stick solely to internet marketing or you may want to have a combination of offline and online strategies. Being prepared in this area should make the acquisition of customers much easier.

The decision to start a new business is personal and emotional. It requires the support of family and friends. Although the hints outlined above do not cover every aspect of starting a business, they touch on some of the key success factors to building a business that will survive and thrive. We wish you luck as you take on this new endeavor!

To learn more about franchise opportunities with High Touch High Tech, visit us online at ScienceMadeFunFranchise.net.

High Touch High Tech is the leader in innovative hands-on science and nature experiences for children, serving over 4 million children annually with 27 franchise locations across the United States, Canada, Turkey, Singapore and South Korea.