What’s In a Name?

As it turns out a lot! Remembering a person’s name is particularly important when garnering new business. When you remember a person’s name after a brief meeting it sends a message that the interaction was important to you.  This skill can make others feel valued and can open many doors to new connections.

Some people may have the gift of remembering names, for others it’s more of a learned skill. Every introduction is an opportunity to practice recognizing faces and as you improve others will perceive you as a valuable connector in business.

Repetition helps your brain form connections that is necessary to retain information. Repeat names often throughout the exchange. Make sure to refer to the person’s name upon greeting as well as repeating the name as parting.

Make a visual connection with a person’s name with something memorable in your world. Make mental associations.

Study names in print. When someone is wearing a nametag at a meeting create a face to face association. As soon as you receive a business card make sure to glance at the name and say “Thank You John.”

If a new acquaintance has a name that is difficult to pronounce by all means simply ask him or her to repeat their name. They say it to yourself again for verification. This extra effort will speak to your attention to detail and gain clarity.

If you forgot a name. Address it head on. If you absolutely cannot remember a name, try to offer any information that you can remember, such as where the two of you may have met. You can use the alternative and shake hands and introduce yourself first. Most likely your contact will follow your lead and introduce themselves.

If you think you know someone’s name, but are unsure, venture a guess. ”John, right?’ Or you could just simply apologize and say, “I’m sorry, I’m a little forgetful at the moment. Don’t worry, this happens to everyone at one time or another.

 

Christine Fiorenza – Debi Surmanek

Partners at Ivy Branding and Marketing Group

718-448-4880

www.ivybrandinggroup.com

Consistent Branding Efforts Strengthen Your Brand Presence

Building a top business brand is easy when you understand basic concepts. Remember, your business is unique and you need to stand out from the crowd. So should your logo, your brand- your message.Small companies should build brands like big businesses. Whether you already have a logo or not you should start building some brand management into your small business marketing plan. Take the time to evaluate all the areas of where your brand exists. Be consistent with all elements of marketing including your website, social media, business cards, brochures and trade show materials. Make sure to utilize the same color scheme, tagline and marketing messages throughout all your marketing campaigns. If you realize that your marketing plan isn’t working for you or your logo is not what you wanted for your marketing plan contact a professional marketing agency. A marketing agency can direct you with professional marketing and graphic design.

Christine Fiorenza and Debi Surmanek
Partners at Ivy Branding and Marketing Group
Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com
Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com 718-448-4880

Seven Important Steps You Will Need to Showcase Your Brand at a Trade Show

1-Attract guests to your booth with eye catching banners, banner stands, giveaways, literature and contests. Interactive elements such as touch screens to demonstrate a product, gather customer information or conduct a survey makes your booth interesting, fun and engaging. Key sales and marketing messages, eye catching signage and appealing giveaways will generate a higher volume of booth traffic.

2-Determine which trade shows are appropriate for your business sales and marketing goals. Research all details and gauge which trade shows will yield the highest return on investment.

Once you have decided which trade shows to participate in, register as early as possible for best placement or in some cases a discounted rate.

3-Advertise your attendance at the trade shows through your website, newsletters, on your blog, through social media sites, email blasts and lastly email signatures. If you plan on holding a contest or drawing make sure to include that information to attract more people to your booth. Make sure to state your booth location so that guests can find your company easily.

4-A contest or prize drawing is a great way to attract people to your booth. Ask attendees to visit your booth to complete a leads qualification survey or drop their business card into a bowl to be entered into the contest or drawing. Choose a prize that relates to your business or services or a prize that has a broad appeal to current and potential clients.

5-Be sure to bring sufficient amount of supplies to give out at the trade show. You do not want to run out of literature, brochures, business cards and giveaways. That’s a big no no!

6- Encourage your staff to participate and be well versed in your business to be quick and ready to answer any and all questions pertaining to your business. Have your staff mix and mingle amongst all the other vendors and give out their business cards and giveaways.

7- Lastly, your table presentation should be top notch. All of your signage should include your logo, brand and message. Do not use an old rolled up tablecloth. Purchase a vinyl table banner with a matching retractable banner that has been professionally designed by a graphic artist. Keep your theme consistent throughout.

 

For all your trade needs contact Ivy Branding and Marketing Group. No budget too small or too big. “Watch us make your business grow”.

 

Christine Fiorenza and Debi Surmanek

Partners at Ivy Branding and Marketing Group

718-448-4880

www.ivybrandinggroup.com

Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com

Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com

Your Business’ Network Potential

Reputation management is critical to your personal brand. For business your email address needs to be a professional email address and not an amateur address. Clients and business associates may not perceive you and/ or your company as a serious business.

Free email service is not suitable for business. If you are using any of the free email services, it is suggested that you make a switch that is suitable for your business. If you have a website it is very easy to set up an email address with that domain. Doing so will bring a much needed level of credibility to your business.

There are all kinds of powerful tools to create professional email signatures. It is a great idea to list your name, title, contact information and logo in your signature. What would not make a good presentation would be a large font, blue type, giant logo and a sales pitch in your signature. You want to make a good impression and keep it professional.

Now that you have cleaned up your email and your email is coming from a real company domain it’s now time to address your website. Anyone that you are hoping to do business with at some point will click through your website. WordPress has thousands of quality templates available at low or no cost.

People can now Google you and can get a lot more information about you and your company. If what they are looking up doesn’t give them the right impression, you’re not likely to make the connection you want.

Start by searching your name and sifting through the results. If you have any negative presence it may be worth hiring a reputation management firm to clean it up. Its takes a lot of time and is quite costly but, it can be worth it.

Social media presence may be unimpressive. Potential connections are bound to come across your social media pages. Do not post photographs that show you or your company in a negative way.

Remember, any one of these online faux pas might change a persons’ perception of you. To maximize the impression when you network online make sure that are all in check.

 

Christine Fiorenza and Debi Surmanek

Partners at Ivy Branding and Marketing Group

www.ivybrandinggroup.com

718-448-4880

Make Your Customers Love Your Brand

Did you know that brand loyalty is not a mental act but, rather an emotional one? Brand loyal customers  have an emotional relationship with the brands they are faithful to. A challenge for many brands is how to ignite that emotional relationship and then keep it going. Here are some steps in creating a successful brand- consumer relationship.

Tell everyone exactly what you are looking for. You must align yourself with people and companies that will get you in front of your type, the ideal consumer. These companies are the influencers and have a direct connection to your type. These companies also have the consumers’ attention and trust. As a business trying to connect with a certain type of consumer, you need a comprehensive profile of the consumer. You need to be as detailed as possible. The more detailed your profile is the greater number of potentials your product and/ or service will receive.

Find a way to partner up with established businesses. Enable these established businesses a vested interest in your success. Make this a win- win situation for all parties involved.

Create a two way conversation with your clients. Make sure that they know that you understand exactly what their needs are wants are. Make sure that your brand delivers exactly what the client needs and wants. Show them that your product and/ or service has value.

Finalize the relationship between your company and your client by asking for a commitment in the form of payment.

Re- energize your relationship with your clients by creating targeted campaigns that will attract past clients to engage but, also attract new clients. Re-energize your message on a regular basis and most of all ensure the relevance of your brand.

Applying these steps will help you to obtain lasting, beneficial relationships with your clients. Effective branding is more complex than ever. Clients are more savvy and discerning. It takes real vision, creativity and ingenuity to sustain the emotional connection with your clients that keeps them coming back time after time.

Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com

Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com

www.ivybrandinggroup.com

718-448-4880

Naming Your Business

Why is the right name choice so important? The right name differentiates a new business from its competitors. The right name helps brand build and to spark an emotional connection with its customers. Naming your business is the first and most significant decision for a startup. Choosing a name that is difficult to spell, pronounce or is too close to a competitor could have major detrimental effects on your brand and SEO.

A good name has layers of meaning and association and will evoke association. You can choose a name that is fun to say as people will repeat it time and time again. Your business name has to be different for a good reason. Most of all consumers will need to be able to spell and pronounce your company. A name that is impossible to spell will make it impossible for customers to find your company.

Some businesses will rule out certain good names because of their dictionary definitions. Just to let you know- no one cares about the official definition. A good company name will demonstrate exactly what your business is all about. Remember, you are not naming a company, you’re naming its positioning.

 

Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com

Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com

www.ivybrandinggroup.com

718-448-4880

The Do’s and Don’ts of Social Media for Small Businesses

Most small businesses today ponder the idea of a social media strategy should we or shouldn’t we? The answer is yes! The process of setting up an effective social media strategy is not so simple.  It’s not just about starting a Facebook page or joining Linked in. It is about having clear goals and sending out the right message for your business.

Don’t sell or market on Facebook. Facebook is not your store window. It should be a place to showcase your business, your employee’s passions, inspirations, show gratitude to your customers and possibly educate them. Don’t worry about negative comments from your community however, monitor and manage them in an effective manner. I know you might be tempted to delete these posts but, remember you are asking your customers questions. Respond and show that you really do want to engage.  Most importantly respond as soon as possible.

Don’t forget that you are competing with the worlds newsfeeds so be original. Make sure that your posts fit the environment and stand out amongst your competitors in an interesting fashion. Reward your Facebook followers via taking the time and effort to like comments they have posted on your business page. Think of it as a customer loyalty program and run exclusive offers and competitions on your page.

Most importantly think about how you’d respond to people in a social setting and try to respond in a similar vein on all your social media networks. Decide your social media strategy and what it is intended to achieve and keep your focus on that. Think about how your business is going to appear. Is your business predicable? Unpredictable? Once you have decided on what your long term goals are and what your company needs to achieve- JUMP IN! Remember, when you respond you are talking to the world at large. You never know who is reading your newsfeeds.

 

 

Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com

Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com

718-448-4880

 

Using Social Media to Widen your Sphere of Influence

Marketers are looking to build relationships with clients are rapidly noticing the benefits of social media. The traditional business to business buying cycle has changed beyond recognition. More job functions, more people and more territories now need to be influenced over a longer period of time. Expectations, triggers and needs have changed greatly.

Marketers can no longer market solely to their direct targets. They must step into the shoes of buyers and understand their sphere of influence.

Social media affords marketers an opportunity to earn access to audiences over an extended period of time via using content, commentary and insight to build a following.

To get this right you need to invest in social management, editorial and analysis to ensure that your threads are relevant and thought provoking. This requires sellers to understand different points of influence and build a timely, meaningful narrative that positions your company the right way and the right time.

A content driven social media strategy can support your positioning and help you target clients grow their own expertise and knowledge. A better understanding will predispose buyers to your services and brand.

To obtain social media success you must engage and educate your clients, create a buzz, create meaningful content and most of all stay on top of your game.

 

 

Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com

Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com

718-448-4880

The Do’s and Don’ts of Social Media for Small Businesses

Most small businesses today ponder the idea of a social media strategy should we or shouldn’t we? The answer is yes! The process of setting up an effective social media strategy is not so simple.  It’s not just about starting a Facebook page or joining Linked in. It is about having clear goals and sending out the right message for your business.

Don’t sell or market on Facebook. Facebook is not your store window. It should be a place to showcase your business, your employee’s passions, inspirations, show gratitude to your customers and possibly educate them. Don’t worry about negative comments from your community however, monitor and manage them in an effective manner. I know you might be tempted to delete these posts but, remember you are asking your customers questions. Respond and show that you really do want to engage.  Most importantly respond as soon as possible.

Don’t forget that you are competing with the worlds newsfeeds so be original. Make sure that your posts fit the environment and stand out amongst your competitors in an interesting fashion. Reward your Facebook followers via taking the time and effort to like comments they have posted on your business page. Think of it as a customer loyalty program and run exclusive offers and competitions on your page.

Most importantly think about how you’d respond to people in a social setting and try to respond in a similar vein on all your social media networks. Decide your social media strategy and what it is intended to achieve and keep your focus on that. Think about how your business is going to appear. Is your business predicable? Unpredictable? Once you have decided on what your long term goals are and what your company needs to achieve- JUMP IN! Remember, when you respond you are talking to the world at large. You never know who is reading your newsfeeds.

 

 

Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com

Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com

718-448-4880

 

Creating  Your Brand Message

You only have one value proposition and you want to stick out in your clients’ minds.
How do you determine what that one clear message should be? Look for three perspectives
to identify your promise, the clients’ perspective, internal perspective and marketplace perspective.
Find out what matters most to your clients. Do not presume. Survey, interview your clients.
Pay attention to your clients on social media. Start thinking about what your clients’ value the most and keep track of keywords that you either hear or see from them repeatedly.
For a brand promise to be e effective it must be true. What is it about your product or service that makes it unique?
Where does your product or service create value?
Only one brand can own a position. Look at your competitors tag lines. How do your competitors position themselves? Make sure to read their about us on their websites.
Make your value proposition distinct. Once you have your insights, divide them to determine where these perspectives intersect and how. Another key aspect that is important for your brand messaging is to look at the future and potential for growth. Remember whether you’re involved in a non- pro t doing great things for your community or you’re selling real estate or jewelry you need to get your message across through your own branding message.

Christine@ivybrandinggroup.com

Debi@ivybrandinggroup.com

718-448-4880

New Location

Same Business

Same Partners

New Location

12 Eltingville Blvd. S.I.N.Y. 10312, 2nd Fl Suite

718.356.2867