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Monthly Archives: June 2016

30 June2 Steps to Proper Brand Management

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What does your branding say about your business? If you cannot answer that question with certainty, neither will your potential customers. Similar to your reputation as an individual, branding is what people think of when they think of your business. Comparable to the Amazon being known for their 2-day shipping, it is what your business is known for; for better or worse. Over time, your branding will evolve and grow with your business. It is important to make sure to express this evolution to the public. To help, we have listed 2 Steps to Proper Brand Management:

Social-cleaning-300x202Brand Clean-Up

One of the first things you can do to refresh your branding is to eliminate old information. Did you stop carrying older products in lieu of newer product line? Take inventory of all of your platforms including, website, blogs, and social media pages and update the products you sell and services you provide. You can also check to see if there are former employees still listed on your website. Now is the time to purge your brand of all obsolete information.

Revamp WebsiteRevamp Your Website

After cleaning up your platforms, the next step is to concentrate on your website. To your customers, your website is your digital storefront. It is what people see when they decide to do business with you. That said, it’s important to keep the look and functionality of your website updated. You can start by asking yourself, how old is my website? There have been a lot of changes made to how we view websites in the past 5-years. If your website was designed before the introduction of smartphones, it may be time to give it a face lift. Since, the smartphone boom, people view more websites on mobile devices vs. computers. It is important your website is mobile responsive. This is when the website is scaled to fit the size of a mobile device. For more detail on how to check if your website is mobile responsive see our previous article, 2 Keys to STOP Losing Business to Competitors.

16 June2 Tips to Help Your Business Strive on Social Media

Social Media Feature

By now, every business should have their social media profile(s) established.  Even if the business doesn’t post regularly, the profile should be setup.  There is a difference between striving and surviving on social media.  Surviving is when you are struggling to keep up with maintaining your page.  Striving is when you look forward to posting content because you know it will increase your engagement and traffic rate.  To help make social media more enjoyable for you, we are sharing 2 tips to help your business strive on social media:

 

Plan Your Posts

Rule #1 for striving on social media is to post content constantly.  Some businesses see it as a chore to maintain their social media pages because it’s not easy.  However, planning your posts can help take the pressure off.  Developing a posting strategy is the first step.  Choose how many posts you want to share on a daily or weekly basis.  Then plan your content around that number.  Usually, you would share original content but this is social media.  You can also repost shared content from another source.  If remembering to post is an issue, you can use social media management tools like Hootsuite and Buffer to schedule your posts.  These tools will automatically post for you.

 

Know Your Platform

There are a lot of social media platforms out there and they all have their own specific voice.  It’s important to tweak your content based on the specific platform you are on:

Facebook is great for relationship building.  You can promote your brand, original content and speak directly to your customers in a casual manner.  Facebook Advertising allows you to target specific customers to increase sales but if buying ad space on social media isn’t your thing, skip it and focus on building a loyal following organically.

Twitter is great for establishing a dialog with your customers.  This platform allows you to share your thoughts and create a voice for your brand.  You can also respond to people who want to talk to you directly.  This is great for building rapport.

Instagram is great for sharing visual content.  If you have great looking photographs of your products and/or demonstration videos, this is the platform for you.  Unlike Twitter, Instagram is not the platform for holding a conversation.  This particular platform is ideal for making visual statements.  So, if your brand has something to say, create a meme and share.

 

3 June2-Ways Tech Manufacturing Startups have Changed

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Technology is ever changing. So much you can barely keep up. It seems like as soon as you get the latest laptop or camera, it’s already outdated. This is great for the tech manufacturing sector. From touch screens to voice control, Innovation keeps that industry thriving. If you have a desire to jump into the tech manufacturing business and you’ve seen the 4-movies (and counting) about how Steve Jobs started Apple, you may be thinking this could be your story. However, starting a tech manufacturing business isn’t the same as it used to be. Here are 2 major ways the landscape of Tech Manufacturing Startups have changed:

START UP COSTS:

Then:
Before the tech boom, work was more labor driven. The UNIVAC I (UNIVersal Automatic Computer I) was the first desktop or tabletop computer as it was huge. To make one UNIVAC I took 67 staff workers. The good part was it was enough labor to go around. This was a big advantage for start-ups. Back then, an hourly worker was a cheaper solution for tech manufacturing.

Now:
Work is more machine driven. The cost for surface mount technology machines, which build circuit boards for cell phones and laptops, has tripled. Not to mention you also need equipment to test you’re the board’s quality assurance. Between product testing and storage costs for inventory, the expenses can add up to the hundreds of thousands very quickly. Just know if you are a planning to start a tech manufacturing business, you need to start pinching your pennies yesterday.

FUNDING:

Then:
If you had an idea for a new product that would enhance people’s lives, you saved your own money to pay for it. Bootstrapping is a term for an entrepreneur who starts a company from personal finances. You and a co-founder would completely pay for everything by pooling your savings together and borrowing less. The good part is once the business begins to make money, you and your co-founder are in control of all operations with very little input from investors.

Now:
Today, securing funding is a lot different. Bootstrapping is still possible but difficult because technology costs have increased. It’s very possible you may need over a million dollars in earnest money before mass production can begin. This leaves entrepreneurs needing venture capital from an investor. To secure the funding, you may have to give a percentage of your business away to the investor. Once the business starts to make money the investor backing you calls all the shots and you become a supervisor of your own company.
That said, it’s still a great time to start a tech manufacturing business. Sure, things have changed but it’s even more reason to try. Who knows, you may create the next big technology must-have. Innovation is more rewarding than start-up growing pains. Go and start the next tech manufacturing business. The industry needs your creative ideas.