Why Use Business Promotional Products

Business promotional products can greatly help you in making your business successful. Giving away free gifts is another way to attract customers and increase sales. Use these cost-effective items together with other promotion and marketing strategies to improve your business. They will allow you to generate more leads and promote your business in a unique fashion.

You can distribute your business promotional products during exhibits, seminars, road shows, trade shows, product launches, and special events. You can also set up booths at stadiums during ball games and concerts to give away promo items. In addition, you can go to public parks and plazas to attract more customers.

However, you cannot just use any item as your promotional product. There are certain niches which would require a promotional item that is relevant to the business. Also, it should be durable and useful. Surely, you will not want your promo item to be left at the back of the closet or gather dust on a shelf. When choosing which business promotional products to use, keep your target customers in mind.

Pens and notepads are perhaps the most practical items you can use for promotion. They are inexpensive yet really effective. You can buy them by the bulk and have your business name or logo printed on each piece. It is more ideal to give them away in sets, though. Just think about this; if you give five pens to someone, that person can use one and give the other four to colleagues or friends. Thus, more people will be aware of your business.

T-shirts and jackets are also ideal business promotional products. They have a wider space for your business name, logo, and even slogan. You can also use caps and bags. The more people wear them around, the more customers you can attract.

In addition, instead of using conventional materials, why not go for eco-friendly materials? You can use jute, for instance, for your promotional bags. Jute is a vegetable fiber. It is abundant, versatile, and affordable. It is perfect for making tote bags. Of course, it is also advisable to use cotton for your promotional shirts. Not only are they eco-friendly and affordable, they are also comfortable to wear.

Other great items for promoting and advertising your business are mugs, water bottles, and cups. Food containers and plates are cool too. They are useful and reusable. Hence, they can leave a long-term impression. The more often people use them, the more your business name and logo are exposed to prospective customers.

While it is alright to give away edible promo items such as candies, mints, and chocolates, it is still better to opt for non-edible options. When your customers have consumed the tasty treats, they will most likely throw away the container on which your business name or logo is printed. Edible promo items only give short-term impressions to customers.

Your business promotional products do not have to be expensive. You just have to be creative and patient. There is no guarantee that your business will be successful overnight, although you will have a greater chance of attracting customers if your promo items are good.

Google Re-Launches Small Business Portal: Google My Business

Google has launched a new portal catering to smaller, local businesses, designed to streamline the management of your Google presence. From this new single interface, you can now control your Google Search presence, Google+ and Google Maps, updating your business information across multiple platforms simultaneously. Beyond the obvious time savings, Google’s My Business portal holds more promising potential for SMBs.

Automatic Migration for Google+ and Google Places

If you’re already using Google+ or Google Places, you won’t have to do a thing – you’ll be automatically migrated to the new Google My Business dashboard. That means you’ll see some new features and have access to additional channels where you can gain visibility, without having to make sense of some complicated, manual migration process.

So, say you’ve used Google Places but haven’t made use of Google+ just yet. This move will expose businesses formerly using just one of the many Google properties to other beneficial outlets for gaining exposure.

Not using any Google property to promote your business? Go to Google My Business and click the blue “Get on Google” button in the upper-right area of the page. Fill in the information about your business, and you’ve just created a public persona on Google.

What Can You Do with Google My Business?

In addition to simply updating your business information across multiple platforms at once, there are other ways you can use the Google My Business dashboard:

Foster follower growth on Google+. Google’s social network hasn’t reached the epic proportions of Facebook for everyday conversation, but given its tie-in to everything Google – including organic SEO – it’s an opportunity you don’t want to pass by. By sharing informative content, you can engage followers and even earn new business through Google+.

Get +1s and positive reviews. Encourage your followers to write positive reviews and +1 your content for an SEO and reputation boost. Users can endorse products on Google Search, Maps, and even ads.

Track user engagement. You won’t be flying blind when it comes to figuring out what’s working on Google+. Track user engagement for your Google+ Pages and posts for valuable insights. Once you identify the content that resonates most with your audience, create more of it to increase your exposure and boost your organic reach.

Get information on other Google channels. In addition to Maps, Google+ and Search, the My Business dashboard includes information on your Google Analtyics and YouTube channels.

Create and track AdWords Express campaigns. Yes, even paid search is present in Google My Business. You can not only create AdWords Express campaigns, but monitor performance as well, straight from your My Business dashboard.

Do you have a multi-location business? Not to worry: There’s a bulk-upload tool that will allow you to add them all at once, so that they can be managed from within a single My Business dashboard. Go to My Business Locations to access the bulk uploader.

Benefits to Google My Business

All of this absolutely provides time-saving benefits to business owners. But beyond that, there’s a lot to be gained from Google My Business:

Put your company information at users’ fingertips. Google’s platforms, like Maps and Search, are already mobile-optimized. That means users searching for a business like yours using a smartphone or tablet can quickly locate your business, get directions, or call you directly from Google. For local businesses, this type of on-the-go visibility is increasingly important.

Start conversations with people who matter. Google+ makes it easy to engage with your target audience. For instance, customers who review your business can make exceptional brand ambassadors – and when they post a review, they’re essentially giving you the opportunity to further engage them. Take advantage of it.

Keep improving your Google presence. With Analytics built right in to your Google My Business Dashboard, you’ll have quick and easy access to key metrics. Organic visits took a nosedive this week? Seeing this in your dashboard will prompt you to investigate, allowing you to pinpoint problems before they wreak havoc on your profits. Ramp up your presence on Google by adding photos, responding to feedback, initiating conversation, following thought leaders and influencers, or starting a Google+ Hangout. The world of Google is at your fingertips.

Easily add PPC to your other marketing efforts. With AdWords Express integrated with Google My Business, you can implement PPC campaigns that compliment your other marketing efforts – all with a complete overview of your current Google presence so that you can more closely integrate your marketing initiatives and achieve your goals.

Manage it all on your mobile device. The Google My Business app lets you manage all of this from your smartphone or tablet, wherever you are.

Gain valuable customer insights. Google My Business offers Insights, providing key data on how your customers are finding you. Easily see the number of clicks, how many users requested driving directions to your physical location, and more with Insights.

There’s a lot to explore within Google My Business. If you don’t yet have a Google My Business account, sign up now and start exploring the many ways you can get more visibility with Google.

How to Name Your Product: Giving Your Product a Compelling Brand Name

Were you ever been caught in a situation where you have a great business idea but you’re clueless on where to start? You have a great product or service, and you firmly believe that this will be the next big thing. But then you ask yourself, “How shall I name my product?”These are hurdles that hinder aspiring entrepreneurs to transform their ideas to reality. Branding can be daunting task. And if not done right, it can significantly tarnish your brand image. Creating a name with the perfect fit is a challenge for most us. Choosing a name requires an exhaustive research and usually consumes a lot of time. A brand name is one of the most powerful piece of messaging. It’s also one of the most ubiquitous components of any branding program.A research conducted by the Japan Economic Times reveals that out of 139 marketing professionals, a majority said that the brand name is the most important element in branding. More important than the slogan and the logo. Moreover, According to Al Ries, a world-renowned author and a marketing strategist:”Your name stands alone on the internet, so you better have a good one.”- Al Ries, The Law of Proper NameDue to the complexity of the branding process, people come up with their own strange ideas to cut the chase.In Egypt, a couple named their firstborn daughter “Facebook”. They were inspired by the role Social Media in the Jan 25 2011 revolution in Cairo’s Tahrir Square. The father, Jamal Ibrahim, was so happy with Facebooks’s role in organizing protests in Tahrir Square and the nearby cities. He named his daughter “Facebook Jamal Ibrahim.”Filipinos on the other hand, are such creative lads. They never run out of ideas. They can come up with a plethora of permutations combining their children’s first names. They always show off an uncanny output. Examples are Rubylyn Bakeshop (names Ruby and Lyn combined) and Lilyma Enterprises (Lily and Mario combined), just to name a few. In the eyes of the owners, that’s the best brand name ever created.Though they were relieved from going through the tedious branding process and avoided paying off the Branding expert’s hefty fees, this tactic is ephemeral. This may work locally, but will eventually falter when the product reaches the international scene. So if you want to build a great brand, don’t name your dog Blackie. Don’t just be creative, be smart. Always anticipate that overtime, your brand will go global. It pays to be ready.OK, let’s get into it.Here are the 3 characteristics of a great product name:1. Limit your name to under 10 characters.Using about 6-7 chars to a name is ideal. Of course, there will be exceptions. This is not carved in stone. There are some great brands that are longer that 10 chars. Like National Geographic, Harley- Davidson, and Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf (CBTL). However, overtime these long brand names discovered the benefits of using a shorter version of their names via abbreviation or the use of acronyms. Network Solutions eventually bought Netsol.com for ease of use. Ergo, if you can create a short name early on, the better. Shorter names are ideal for so many reasons:

It’s easy to remember,

Easy to type when people search in Google.

Easy logo placement in advertising mediums.
2. Remember “USSR” – Unique, Easy to Say, Spell, and RememberUniqueIt’s a noisy world. We are bombarded with more than 300 messages a day. How will you stand out from the sea of advertisements? One way to be distinct is by combining root words like Facebook, Scotch Tape, Band-Aid, Post-it, etc.Portmanteau defined:”Portmanteau is the combination of two or more words into one word.”Some well-known brand name portmanteaus are Microsoft, Groupon, and Amtrak. You can tweak and blend words like Netflix, Pinterest, Kleenex, Tweeter, and Krispy Kreme. Use abstract names. The likes of Xerox, Zipper, Jacuzzi, Velcro, Taser, and Kraft, these became big brand names. Avoid using hyphens or prefixes like “my”, “super” or “the” then attaching the company name. Stick with root words whenever possible. Cut the prepositions.Easy to SayIt is easier to ask for a product, when you’re at the shops, if the name is easy to pronounce. For example, take Façonnable (fa-SON-ah-bluh), the French apparel brand. This is challenge to pronounce and difficult to remember.Easy to SpellYou don’t want to use the color Fuchsia as part your brand name. No matter what I do, I can’t spell this right. This will also complicate your optimization efforts in Search Engines (SEO). More of this in another article.Easy to RememberThe most memorable way to name a brand is by using alliterations.Alliteration defined:”Alliteration is the repetition of a sound in multiple words.”Great examples are Johnson & Johnson, Gumgum. And we have our share on this. Our very own Nognog – a famous brand of deep fried crunchy corn during the 80′s and 90′s that’s loved by everyone. This became a staple in every drinking parties. Another of course is Tira-Tira. An elastic, chewable candy made from sugar and coconut milk. This candy became every kid’s favorites because of its sweet taste and chewable nature. The Pinoy ingenuity never fails to impress.3. No negative connotations.Here are some words, when translated to another language or used in other forms, may connote a different meaning. So make sure you choose a name that’s not offensive to others.Ex. P&G launched a new soap in the US named “Dreck.” “Dreck” sounded like a German word for dirt, garbage, body waste and a four-letter expletive that cannot be published elsewhere.In Japan, automakers have marketed the Mazda Laputa. Unfortunately, these brand name will not sell to Spanish-speaking countries where “laputa” means “the prostitute.”Similarly, during the 1950s, there was a Swedish car magazine named “Fart.” “Fart” is a Swedish word meaning “speed.” Though is OK in Sweden, this would cause considerable embarrassment when the magazine goes international.You should also consider how people will relate to a name’s meaning. Pen Island, when used as a domain name (penisland.com), is not acceptable and will be obscene to others.In other words, naming your product doesn’t have to be that onerous after all. Just follow these simple guidelines, know your product, do a little research and there you go. You can create a compelling brand name in a breeze.