Category Small Business Online Marketing

Beta Release of StoneMarkets.com

FireUps has just released a very innovative new site for marketing your products and service on the internet. By listing your products on stonemarkets.com you will gain top listing for local organic search based on the products that you list with us. These products are presented next to your company's description and contact information. All for Free! The free service is limited to the number of listings you may have. With your account you have access to projects posted by customers in your market. We will send you email notification when a project matches your account settings. These will be free of charge until we have good penetration across the country, So get in now! Special rates will be adopted for early users. For a small fee we will setup all of your listings for you or you may set them up yourself once your account has been created. Check it out by visiting http://www.stonemarkets.com/ FireUps® is the granite and natural stone installers source for instant exposure to local and national markets with strategically Targeted Online Marketing Campaigns and proven Web exposure. FireUps provides local online marketing services for the small to medium sized granite surface installers with a focus on the proven results that will increase your bottom line. Our teams expertise in direct to consumer marketing is second to none, and we want to share how we can help ensure your business is found by the pro-active customer who is searching for counter tops made from granite, stone, marble or other stone surfaces. Just the niche product or services you provide!
FireUps® will put your counter top product, installation service and surface remodeling company on the virtual map and generate a buzz that you could never have imagined. We focus on maximizing your return on investment through a clear understanding of your business objectives and by translating your value proposition to your customers! If you want to do more counter top installations tomorrow,
partner with FireUps® TODAY! 603 617 3877

How the Web was won.

To be successful on the internet is not rocket science. There are no real tricks. It’s all about marketing. Below you will find an online marketing strategy that I recommend you follow from a business perspective. Forget talking about SEO or SEM or “you have to be number #1 for a keyword” or “PPC is the way to go”. Approach this like a business person.

Selecting a provider:
Select a provider that can show you current results and that you can connect with, see how they market themselves online.

Setting Goals:
Then set your goals and a target ROI. If your request is reasonable and you understand that it takes money to make money you are on the right track.

PROMOTION… PROMOTION… PROMOTION…
If after your competitive analysis you can’t compete either in price, value, experience or quality with the other players online in your market don’t read any further and go back to your referrals or wholesale channels and use your website as a virtual brochure that you hand out when someone calls.

Setting a marketing budget:
CPA (Cost Per Acquisition) or CPS (Cost Per sale) is the best way to set a marketing budget. What can I afford in advertising to generate one sale on average? Then multiply that by the number of sales that you want for a given month. TADA… Budget! This is typically between 5-10% of sales depending on how aggressive you want to be. Give your marketer a reasonable amount of time to meet your numbers typically a few months.

1. Competitive Analysis
A competitive analysis will help you understand your position in the marketplace. It will help you to define who you are, why you are different and why a customer will choose you over the other guy. This is an important step in the process because it helps to identify strengths and enables the website designer to focus on the proper message with visuals and design.
2. Define Competitive Advantage
As the opportunity of sales decreases and the competition to attract customers becomes more difficult it is imperative that you know what makes you more attractive and be sure that your customers know it. This is an ongoing process of understanding your customers and the completion. Providing this information to your website designer will help them to evaluate these differences.
3. Branding /Domain Selection
To decide not to brand is to actually branding your company. This is not the recommended approach but it is an approach. Defining your mark, colors and content are all exercises in branding. The more time you spend here will define you better for the future but remember that your brand will evolve and all decision you make today will help you to determine your overall brand strategy.
4. Communication Strategy
Are you "Shock and aw" or are you "Straight to the point". How you communicate your business in a successful sales call is how you want to communicate your products/services online.
5. Keyword Analysis
Stop and think about it for a minute.. When you look for something.. What do you do? If you are thinking about upgrading your kitchen with granite countertops do you do a search for watermelons.. No. You search for granite countertops and sometimes you even add your values to that search like quality or sale or cheap or price. You add localization identifiers and specifics of the product or service in question. These words need to be placed in specific places on the website and in the code of the website and are key to increasing your exposure in organic search.
6. Content Development
Content is king and will always be king. Write content based on the products and services that you provide. Be clear and include words that relate to your business. If you target audience is college graduates write to high school level. We live in a snack food society so when creating your content keep is short and concise use lists and a clear priority of information. Don’t keyword stuff you pages… Make your pages human readable.
7. Call To Action
Just Have One on Every Page.. Please!
Tell your visitors to your website what to do.. Don't make them decide for themselves. They have never been to your website before. Be kind and direct them to the action you want them to take. Drive them through 3-5 pages and then ask for the sale.. and ask often. Clearly define the action..
8. WEBSITE DESIGN
Your site should reflect your values it should be easy to navigation and should quickly communicate the pages objectives in the first couple moments of looking at the page. If your headers and content that jumps of the page does not clearly express the purpose of the page.. the page is useless.
9. Online Marketing Strategy
Set a budget that makes sense for your business today. Track your return on your investment and be sure that you are maintaining your target return. Adjust your budget accordingly. Once you have this in place you should be able to control new business like a faucet, the more you spend the more sales you make, once the ROI is stabilized.
10. Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
Some have the perception that this does not work for them. For the most part all this really means is that it was done incorrectly or the wrong person was doing it for you. This is an extremely powerful tool for monitoring the success of a website. It is also very powerful way of generating traffic to your website. It also provides direction to supplement your spend with your Organic Strategy. See point 9
11. Linking
Once your site has been created start your link building strategy. Quality over quantity is the rule. Don’t short cut this as this is the most important part of gaining top placement BUT… everything listed prior need to be addressed first.

By working from a budget and not based on specific services provided you enable the marketer to build your brand using the best tools for your specific niche. For them to evaluate your market and see what is successful and to make adjustments to campaigns to ensure success. If you are not seeing results in the time frame you have set move on. Find another provider that can produce the results you desire. The key is to do your research first. Review the results that they claim, call on references that match up with the results that have been presented. If everything lines up you should be on the road to success.

FireUps® is the granite and natural stone installers source for instant exposure to local and national markets with strategically Targeted Online Marketing Campaigns and proven Web exposure. FireUps provides local online marketing services for the small to medium sized granite surface installers with a focus on the proven results that will increase your bottom line. Our teams expertise in direct to consumer marketing is second to none, and we want to share how we can help ensure your business is found by the pro-active customer who is searching for counter tops made from granite, stone, marble or other stone surfaces. Just the niche product or services you provide!

FireUps® will put your counter top p
roduct, installation service and surface remodeling company on the virtual map and generate a buzz that you could never have imagined. We focus on maximizing your return on investment through a clear understanding of your business objectives and by translating your value proposition to your customers! If you want to do more counter top installations tomorrow,

partner with FireUps® TODAY!603 617 3877

Granite Marketing Plan

Developing a marketing plan is a major step in starting a countertop business as well as taking your fabrication business to the next level. In this article we will look at parts of a granite marketing strategy that will help you to implement your strategy.
How many installs do you want?
If you know how much business you want this is the first step. By defining the amount of business you are looking to gain you now have a touch stone to measure success. We then attribute the cost associated to generating this business based on general market intelligence and we are then able to project your return on investment.
How many installs can your current infrastructure handle?
Are you the one man shop, sales team with install crew and fabrication crew or are you bigger than this? If you can project out where problems begin with too much business you will have a realistic view of the top line for cost to do more business. To much business is measured by a decrease in quality of service, and reduction in profit due to sales force limitation, fabrication crews over worked and installs going bad based on teams rushing to complete work.
What is your competitive advantage and value proposition?
How will do we differentiate you in the market. Look at your competitors and see what they do. How they do it and see who is winning the work. Take this and apply it to your values and see if that lines up with your values and your message.
How much should I spend on adverting?

Zero. Spend your money on marketing. You can't measure what you don't track. Marketing is advertising but includes measuring and tracking effectiveness of every advertising dollar spent. Once you have tested various channels and have developed your message to drive new business your marketing budget typically reflects 15-20% of sales to sustain this flow of new business.
Where do I start?

Start on the Internet. Why? it is the best medium to test creative, define your competitive advantage, build you brand and effectively understand the specifics of your market. Learning so much about the customer by driving them to a well formed website will provide you insight into how to define your marketing strategy and provide you with more confidence as you build out your marketing mix(Internet, Print, TV, Radio, etc.) Granite Countertops and Stone Marketing is a great niche' to market online. Track all channels with tracking phone numbers and track-able call to actions. This is very cost effective way to monitor the effectiveness of one channel over another and manage where your money goes when advertising.
How do I manage customers effectively?

With a online CRM or lead management solution. You may be able to manage your current work flow in your head or in your day planner but you dont want to be the bottle neck in your business. by managing your work flow online certain aspects of your business can be managed for you to allow you to allocate more of your resources to other tasks like sales , process , and your competitive advantage. A Granite Countertop lead management system monitors the effectiveness of each channel and while you track the progress of each sale you will be able to see trends, monitor closing rations and truly measure the effectiveness of each channel.
Example marketing mix:

Internet buy: $2500 : 50 phone calls 40 emails 17 sales = $147 Cost per Install (CPI)
Radio buy: $2000 : 40 phone calls 2 emails 3 sales = $667 (CPI)
Print buy: $3500 : 60 phone calls 10 emails 12 sales = $292 (CPI)
Marketing Budget $8000 for 32 installs = $250 (CPI)
Projected sales $2500 x32 = $80,000 Sales per month @ 10% of sales
Who are you?

We are online Granite Marketing experts that focus on specific markets. We take these specific markets and take the best online marketing tactics and strategies and apply our knowledge of specific verticals to put together a program that can't fail. We do not take on every customer we don't work in every market. We pick specific verticals that we have a passion about and can make a difference for small to medium size businesses. We are online marketers that specialize in you, the Granite Shop.

5 Keys to Local Online Marketing

Small Business Online Marketing System

Online Marketing should be the first channel a small business or a new business Looks at. You can gain instant understanding of your market. Triggers that drive sales. You can learn price point and values of your customers in just a few weeks. Then apply this knowledge to your traditional marketing materials to solidify your brand strategy. These next 5 keys define how we impliment, execute, monitor and maintain your online strategy:

  1. Define your Value Proposition.
    What sets you apart from your competion. Use this to leverage your offer and drive new customers to your sales pipeline. Market your best value clearly and straight forward. Avoid the bait and switch and be clear on what is included in the offer. (In this economy marketing price over value is the first step, customer loyalty has taken a back seat to saving a dime)
  2. Make sure website communicates the same way your sales force does.
    You have spent countless hours training and selling and you know what works when you have the attention of your customers. Use this knowledge online and construct a website that follows these same values
  3. Always ask for the sale!
    On every page of your website ask for the sale. Give the visitors a clear path to contact you. The sooner the customer is able to make the connection with your sales path the higher the chance they will purchase form you.
  4. Your website is your extended sales force.
    Make sure it is up to date and has your message. When Your website is developed correctly it will generate calls, emails or foot traffic of customers that allready know who you are and what you can do. They will have very specific questions concerning details that we leave off your website on purpose. This is a huge step forward from cold calls from third party lead generators because the customer allready knows you. They are not in the position of being approached by 3+ other vendors with the same story.
  5. Customer Service
    This is the best way to get a bad rep online. If a customer does not get what they paid for an was not clear in understanding what they are going to get the online customer knows how to affect your reputation online. Just be sure to set expectations of service with the customer right away.

Marketing your small business online can drive huge amounts of traffic. The idea is to market to specific words that will convert to good traffic. Monitor the efectivness of the website.. Number of pages viewed.. Bounce rate... time on site.. if the customer is consuming the content as it has been designed you are positioned for success. If we have an online campaign that is driving traffic to the site and we have visitors consuming the content your call to action should be happening at a specific frequencey.. I target 1-100 (1 sale to every 100 visitors - every situation is different but for discussion piurposes lets use this)

If your porduct or service has a value of $1000

Average semi specific keywords may cost $1/click

This would then cost $100 to generate the sale

If you currently sell 10 units per month you gross $10,000 with no new ad costs

If you wanted to grow to 20 units per months you would gross $19,000 with $1000 in ad costs.

After the first month your ad costs come from new revenue so the impact on your cash flow is Positive 9k

All we have to worry about now is if your capacity can handle the new workload.

This is the theory I use with all my customers. Once we have the system in place we simply monitor the competion and ensure that we are competitive and monitor the numbers to ensure that we maintain the system. This is all part of your ad budget. You have control over this budget in order to control your sales. No Long term Contracts! Its Like having a full time Marketing Department in your corner maintiang your message and driving new business.

We specialize in small business products and services companies and have signifigant knowledge of home remodeling such as kitchen remodeling, granite countertop sales and the construction industry. We compete with the box stores very well 😉

Contact Us for a FREE Consultation! Ask For Paul!