I found out I was pregnant (with Joey, my first born) on my very first day of work at Shoreline Graphics. It was March, 1990.
Despite the inconvenient timing and the thought of the dreaded conversation I needed to have with my brand new boss, I was pretty excited. I had left a sample at the corner drug store (because that's what we did back then) and on my way home for lunch (it was walking distance from home, a great perk of the new job) I stopped by to get the test results. The woman behind the pharmacy counter (why are they those counters so high?) delivered the results in a very serious and hushed tone. When I started jumping for joy at the news, her demeanor changed completely and she started celebrating right along with me. (I think she may have been slightly more excited than me, actually)
This pregnancy test result giver was very good at knowing her customers. She knew, from experience, that the result of a pregnancy test, negative or positive, could yield a negative or positive response in her customer. She didn't assume someone would be happy about a positive, or about a negative result. Her initial response was appropriate and her timing was perfect.
Being sensitive to your customer's needs is important. Especially when you are building relationships online. (or giving pregnancy news)
As a small business person, the messages you send by email or on social media should be helpful and timely to your audience. Providing good, relevant and helpful information that will help your readers solve their current problems is ideal. You need to know what they need.
How can you tell you're meeting their needs? You'll get likes, comments and shares on your facebook posts and you'll get consistent opens and clicks on your email newsletters.
What if you're not getting good response to some of your online marketing efforts? Take a step back and look at the reports for your email and social media marketing. (I recommend looking at your stats at least monthly.) What content is getting more attention, more clicks? What kind of content is being shared? When you know what your audience likes and responds to, re-direct your efforts to content that is more in-line with what resonates with your audience.
Bottom line. Your stats can tell you a lot. But you have to look at them. And then you have to adjust what you're doing if you're not getting the results you want. Simple.
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The Small Business Guide
Kim Houlahan is a marketing consultant who loves helping small businesses connect with their customers online.