McQueenie Mulholland

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Blogger….or blagger?

PR, DigitalSue McQueenieComment

Thinking about using influencers in your marketing strategy? Read our top tips on how to make sure you get the most out of this type of marketing and reach the right people. 

Customer focus is the key to breaking into a new market

Marketing, StrategyJonathan AlderComment

Want to break into new markets? Focusing on the customer, and not your business is a grest place to start. Read more to find out why.

Top 5 reasons to use print marketing as a small, local business

MarketingSarah ThomComment

Print marketing can sometimes be overlooked. Here are 5 reasons why it shouldn't be, and why you should start using print marketing today. 

The power of clear communication in business

Strategy, DesignJonathan AlderComment

Clear communication can be the difference between success and failure in business. The ability to deliver the right message, to the right people, at the right time, is what sells products and changes behaviour

What does your logo stand for?

DesignJonathan AlderComment

Logos are more than just a badge. They’re a statement about the quality of your goods. What does your logo stand for?

What is Corporate Social Responsibility and how can it benefit your business?

StrategyEmma Cottle

More than ever, organisations are becoming aware of the importance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), and growing more confident in vocalising their own commitments that they have made to society – whether that is in the form of charity donations, changes they are making to help the environment or offering services free of charge. This has come after a shift in marketing which has evolved from product-based to consumer-based to value-based marketing.

First of all, what exactly is Corporate Social Responsibility?

It aims to ensure that companies conduct their business in a way that is ethical. This means taking account of their social, economic and environmental impact, and consideration of human rights. There has been increased pressure from employees, customers and government bodies for businesses to be more transparent about their activities and maintain acceptable standards in their business practice.

Communicating your CSR commitments improves brand trust and loyalty both internally and externally, as discovered by this study by Nielsen in 2014 – who found that 55% of global online consumers across 60 countries would be willing to pay more for products and services provided by companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact.

There have been a couple of excellent examples of this recently. Dell have outlined their Legacy of Good Plan, which details 21 ambitious CSR goals that they intend to achieve by 2020. These include designing out waste and creating a more sustainable supply chain. By highlighting their strategy, Dell are evidencing their long term commitment to society and the environment at large – giving them an advantage over their competitors in a market that is increasingly aware of ethical credentials.

Another example of a great CSR strategy comes from L’Oreal Paris, who have partnered with Prince’s Trust to improve confidence among young people. L’Oreal Paris have evolved from their ‘Because I’m Worth It’ strapline, to ‘All Worth It’, echoing their commitment to boosting young people’s self worth. L’Oréal Paris will run confidence courses quarterly at each of the 18 Prince’s Trust centres, addressing issues such as body language, communication and employability.

These are examples from large organisations, but any commitment – however small – is valuable. Emailing receipts to cut down on paper use and raising funds for a nominated charity are a couple of easy examples of making a commitment to CSR. At McQueenie Mulholland, we have made a commitment to offer marketing support to charities and local organisations and participate in fundraising events.

If you’re struggling for inspiration on what you could do to make a difference to society, we can help. Give us a call today on 01392 423 060.

What you need to know about using social media for your business

Digital, MarketingEleanor Yeo

We recently came across a situation where one of our brilliant clients wanted to start up a social media strategy for the first time. They’d dipped their toe in the water of Facebook on a personal level, and had heard from another marketing agency that they absolutely had to have profiles on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for their business too.

Which begs the question we asked them, why?

Why do you need profiles on all three social media platforms? We weren’t saying that they didn’t, but we were asking them to think about what they felt they would get out of them. When they told us that they didn’t really know, it got us thinking about what advice we can give people when they’re unused to social media.

We are the first people to recommend that clients use a variety of channels and platforms to get their message across, both to customers, to suppliers, to the media and to the wider public. But we also recommend that this is done in a targeted, planned manner, and that a schedule is written as part of a wider marketing strategy. But what should be included in this?

A few things to think about here:

 
  • Do you know the differences (in terms of consumption and demography) between Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat?
  • Do you know your local press and how best to interact with their readers?

  • Are you aware of who your current followers are on each channel? Depending on your product/service, it might be that it’s your suppliers who interact with you on Twitter, whilst it’s your customers who follow you on Instagram. Make sure that you’ve looked at the analytics of each channel – do your research!

  • If you have a newsletter, who is it that reads it?

  • Do your social media posts reflect the messages of your business / brand as a whole? Do they reflect the messages that you put out on your website? In your blog? In your newsletter? Consistency is key.

  • By all means, use Hootsuite or Tweetdeck to schedule some of your social media posts. But don’t rely on this for all your social activity, we recently wrote a blog about how to keep your social media, social. You also need to be able to respond to comments, questions and opportunities as they crop up, and if you aren’t sure whether you are going to be able to manage this, it’s worth getting in some additional support to help you.

 

 

We love helping organisations interact with their customers, their suppliers, the media and their local community. We would always ensure that this is done with the support of a plan, so that messages are consistent, timely and aimed at the relevant audience.

If you need help with this or with any other marketing activity, please contact us today.

How to get the most out of Christmas as a small, local business

Marketing, StrategySarah Thom

Christmas is big business in the UK. Although the holiday sales season may only last 5-6 weeks, it is worth a staggering £70 billion to the UK economy. So, thinking about how we can help local, independent businesses get a piece of this and make the most out of the season; here are our top 5 recommendations for the holiday period:

1.      Rewards: Christmas is a great time to reward your loyal customers and make them feel valued. A lovely way to do this is to give them exclusive deals or discounts during the Christmas period. You could send vouchers or discount codes to their addresses, or through email. It has been found that people who receive vouchers are likely to spend more than the voucher is worth, meaning that there could be a lot to gain.

2.      Acknowledgment: Another way to thank your customers and make them feel valued is to send them Christmas cards. This has two functions; it makes them feel valued by your company and also serves as a gentle reminder that you are there. This combination means that they will be more likely to return to you for your services. You could even send out ‘Thank You’ emails that are Christmas themed, thanking them for their custom through the year and wishing them a Merry Christmas.

3.      Contests: This is a great way to get your customers to engage with your business. Use social media and your website to promote the contest and ask people to submit their entries for a prize. This is a fantastic way to promote your business and engage people in a fun way.

4.      Collaborations: Work with other local businesses to provide giveaways that will get people talking. Both businesses will benefit from the extra exposure during the Christmas period and it may even lead to further collaborations in the future, as well as reaching out to both customer bases.

5.      Giveaways: Another way to promote your business this season is to have a giveaway. This entails giving each customer a small token gift with their purchase. These are fantastic as your customers will talk about your giveaway to other people, both promoting your business and also potentially leading to more sales from new customers.

These are just 5 of the great ways that you can increase customer interaction and promote your business this Christmas season. Get in touch with us today if you would like to discuss how your business can benefit from the season and what we can do to help.