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Are You Accurately Measuring Your Company’s Digital Strength?

There are few business leaders around the world not thinking about digital transformation in some shape or form. Whether improving omni-channel commerce or developing digital extensions to product lines, businesses are working out how to drive profitability through digital. But traditional metrics might underestimate the impact of digital, leaving companies vulnerable to aggressive competitors or pure-play disruptors. Many managers are missing digital signals that could help them better compete. Armed with a hypothesis that the stock market was undervaluing digital, we sought to create the largest known repository of digital data on U.S. companies. Our aim was to prove the link between digital strength and shareholder value, and do so in a way that passes the rigorous standards of hedge funds. We looked at the top 1,000 U.S. public companies, mapped every digital property for those companies, collected 75 billion digital consumer interactions per month over a period of five years,…

How brands can leverage Facebook Groups to improve engagement

Facebook’s latest algorithm change brings a big opportunity for brands to leverage Groups for community building. Here’s how to improve your Facebook strategy. Facebook has decided to update their algorithm to highlight meaningful interactions from family and friends over Pages. This is affecting the organic reach for Pages that won’t be able to reach the same audience anymore. Brands and marketers have immediately started thinking how to maintain a successful Facebook strategy. The key phrase in Facebook’s update was the focus on “meaningful interactions.” Facebook wants to highlight engaging conversations and this should become the primary focus for brands. If you’re not already creating engaging content, then it’s useful to adapt your strategy now. One of the winning features after Facebook’s algorithm change has been the increase in highlighting of Group conversations across the news feed. Facebook Groups serve as the ideal place to start a conversation with other like-minded people. That’s…

Importance of Labor Day- Why Even Entrepreneurs Need a Break

Labor Day celebrates the foundation on which this country was built: work. It’s the contributions of workers and laborers that help ensure the prosperity and strength of the nation. No one knows this to be truer than entrepreneurs, the self-motivated risk takers who value personal passion and success above all. Anyone who has ever put themselves out on a limb professionally knows that it can be hard to take a step back from your work and relax, but that’s exactly what Labor Day is for – in fact, giving yourself time to unwind is an important facet of successful entrepreneurship. Here are a few others. Establish a Routine It doesn’t have to look the same as your fellow entrepreneurs’, but you’ve got to figure out a routine that works for you. Set a schedule for yourself based on what’s going on in your own life, and make a point of…

How to define your tone of voice and use it for marketing

The words you use on your website, in your letters, on your products and in your documentation and marketing collateral literally define how people perceive your business. In other words, writing is branding and your tone of voice guidelines are as important as the logo and typeface you choose. Writing is branding Think about the companies you admire. Virgin, First Direct, Google, Innocent, the BBC, for example, all have very clear, distinctive voices. Even the CIA and MI6 have to think about tone of voice. Many clients come to us at Articulate asking for help with tone of voice guidelines and we like to include it as part of a project for any new client that doesn’t already have their own. We’re working on our own right now, which is why this is a burning topic for me. Also, we’re trying to improve our development process. But here’s what we know so far. Do your research The first stage…

Does Income Make It a Business?

Of all the questions I’ve been posed in the last forty years, the one that usually hurts the most feelings is when a business owner mistakenly thinks he or she is an entrepreneur and I correct them. The fact is, most small business owners are just that – not entrepreneurs, not visionaries – just folks who have bought themselves a job.  They’ll work for themselves for years and then, after all that hard work, if they’re lucky, they’ll sell their company to some other poor soul to labor for next to nothing for a few more decades. Here’s where some of you cry out, “But Gerber!  So-and-so is a millionaire and did it all selling imported widgets online!” NOT an entrepreneur.  Still just a small business owner. Income doesn’t make you an entrepreneur any more than owning a sports car makes you a race car driver, and too many people today…

How To Stop The Decline of Small Business Saturday

Right there between Black Friday and Cyber Monday resides Small Business Saturday. It’s a day dedicated for shopping at your local small business. According to American Express (the sponsor of Small Business Saturday), sales were down this year compared to 2016. This year 108 million shoppers spent $12.9 billion, compared to 112 million shoppers spending $15 billion last year. The survey further shows that the majority of small businesses visited during Small Business Saturday were food or clothing related. Much less in retail and specialty stores. You probably saw commercials encouraging you to shop small, shop local. However, the emotion invoked is guilt. Buy small business because you should help small business. Buy local because you should help your community. Well, guilt can take you so far. $12.9 billion, to be precise, but it is declining. While Dan Ariely may claim that buyers don’t always make pure economic and rational…

Small business tips: 10 steps to cashflow heaven

1. Set cashflow targets One way of controlling cashflow is by preparing and maintaining a cashflow forecast. Andrew Johnson, financial controller for telephone conferencing provider Powwownow, advises that this can be updated weekly, to provide an accurate outlook for the next six to 12 months. He says: “Setting targets for the credit controllers is an excellent way to ensure it is given the attention necessary and provides a level of satisfaction and ownership to hit and beat these.” 2. Agree clear payment terms Establishing clear payment terms from the outset is important as Suzannah Nichol, chief executive of construction industry body the National Specialist Construction Council, explains. “If you don’t start off knowing what your payment terms are, it is difficult to know when you are going to get paid, ” she says. “If you don’t know when a payment is overdue, how are you going to manage your cashflow?”…

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