Utilizing online platforms is a necessary step all small businesses have to take in order to stay competitive. However, everything that takes place on the web involves a certain degree of risk. Internet based services, such as online banking, PayPal, email marketing campaigns, etc. are wonderful tools, but they involve inputting highly sensitive data about you as well as your customers. As a business owner, it is your responsibility to protect you and your customers from identity theft, predatory marketing, fraud, and scams. Remember, when your customers release something private, such as their credit card information, they are placing their trust in you. Breaching that confidence can literally destroy your reputation.
Developing an effective cybersecurity strategy can be difficult for those without experience in these matters. Most people mistakenly believe that cybersecurity begins and ends with reliable anti-virus software. While these types of programs are a cornerstone of web protection, there’s a lot more to safeguarding data than that. That’s why Cox Business and Bloomberg, among other sponsors, are teaming up to bring you a free webcast concerning this important topic. The broadcast takes place on Oct. 28th at 2 pm EST. Speakers include sales engineer Larry Godfry, cybersecurity specialist Rich Kissel, and small business owner John Marshall. Participants will be able to ask questions during the broadcast, so be sure to come up with some in advance. It’s also a good idea to have a pen and paper or word processing program handy for jotting down points in real time.
If you’d like to take part in this presentation, you have to complete the registration form here. This webcast is one of many being provided by The Solutions Center, a leading internet resource for small business owners. They have a collection of articles and podcasts that are available at no cost, although you must register to view the video recordings. We strongly recommend this archive for anyone interested in learning more about marketing, technology, and a variety of other commerce oriented topics.
Is anyone planning on watching the cybersecurity webcast? If so, we’d love to hear your reactions as well as success stories!
LocalPAGES is pleased to announce that some of our staff members will be attending AdTech New York on November 3rd and 4th! We’re really excited about this wonderful networking opportunity and look forward to forging new relationships. You’ll be able to find us in the exhibit hall among the other 272 companies. We’ll be waiting for you in booth # 2018. Just look from the LocalPAGES logo, which will be prominently displayed in a large banner. Several team members will be in attendance, but you’ll definitely want to meet our star Affiliate Manager Imelda Dobbin! She’s an excellent conversationalist who specializes in publisher partnerships. She’s well versed in all things marketing, so be sure to pick her brain!
Any member of the LocalPAGES team would be happy to discuss any of our wide range of products and services. We offer viable solutions for all types of advertisers, such as Local and National PPC Campaigns, Search Engine Management, Contextual Advertising, and Business Profile Directory Listings. Additionally, we provide a complete lineup of publisher solutions, including Thank You Page Offers, Interstitial Ads, Text Banners, XML Search Feeds, In-line Text Ads, and much more.
Of course, this trip isn’t going to be all business. Our representatives will be schmoozing at the delegate mixer, which takes place on Nov. 2nd from 5-6:30 pm in the conference hall. We’ll also be hanging out at the Big Networking Bash with other attendees.
AdTech New York is just two weeks away, but it’s not too late to register for a reduced rate. Procrastinators are welcome to register at the conference, although they will be subject to higher admission fees. Group rates are still available on full conferences passes; these can save you up to 50% off! For more information and registration prices, please click here.
With 2010 drawing to a close, another decade is slipping into the annals of the past. The 2000s saw a host of new advertising platforms, techniques, and norms that everyone is still trying hard to master. But over the last 10 years, one company seemed to know the rules of the game before anyone else even caught a glimpse of the playbook.
Apple, Inc. started off the year 2000 far behind its top competitor, Microsoft. The iMac generated a considerable amount of buzz, but its launch came before the company really came into its own. Always the underdog, Apple’s branding campaigns underwent a metamorphosis wherein the company decided to fully embrace what made it stand out from the rest of the tech crowd. At that time, companies like Microsoft and HP stuck to a hard-line approach that appealed to tech nerds, but alienated ordinary consumers. Apple recognized their drabness, and ran with it. For example, the early iPod ads featured youthful silhouettes dancing in front of bold, neon backgrounds while white headphones prominently dangled from their ears. The message to the viewing audience couldn’t have been clearer: the product exuded hip energy as well as ease of use.
The same can be said for the memorable Mac vs. PC ads, featuring a stuffy corporate guy standing next to a laid back coffeehouse type dude. By visually illustrating the contrast between business oriented interfaces and truly consumer electronics, Apple solidified its position as the brand for Joe cools everywhere. Add in the touch based iPhone ads a few years later, and you’ve got marketing gold.
So it’s no surprise that Advertising Age and Ad Week are honoring Apple with coveted awards such as Marketer of the Decade. Apple’s latest sales figures are booming, proving that the company has staying power even in the midst of a deep recession. PCs remain more widely used than the alternative, and the iPhone isn’t the best selling Smartphone either. But no other MP3 player can touch the iPod, and that’s a major accomplishment considering the wealth of competition. It’s a little too early to make any definitive statements about Tablets, but it looks like the iPad will reign supreme until the next must have gadget comes along. Only Steve Jobs knows what the future holds for Mac, although it’s pretty clear that they’re currently at the top of the industry. Congratulations Apple, on a well deserved win!
As previously stated, many small business owners have a lot of trouble when it comes to creating a solid web presence for marketing purposes. Social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter offer a free platform for companies to utilize, but seeing results from these types of campaigns is a very slow process. Online communities are built on trust, stability, and constant interaction, which small business owners find problematic. The need for multiple, daily updates present an insurmountable hurdle for a solitary shop owner. Such a time consuming venture becomes frustrating when customers do not even seem to be paying attention.
While we recommend taking advantage of all marketing opportunities, Forbes.com highlights the benefits of using WordPress. For those unfamiliar, WordPress is a blogging platform. They offer free hosting with minimal perks as well as inexpensive downloadable software that can be used on any number of sites, including your own. Businesses should opt for the paid version because of the added features that create a professional appearance as well as the large data storage capabilities.
There are tons of blogging sites to choose from, but WordPress stands out for several reasons. First off, using WordPress requires almost no technological expertise. The design simplifies the process of posting text, pictures, tags, and video. This makes it easy to provide a wide variety of unique content that can be edited in seconds. Another reason business should work with WordPress involves the comments feature. Blogs are supposed to facilitate discussions, but this can be dangerous when you are dealing with a disgruntled customer or shady competitor. Small businesses live and die by their reputations, so they have to be careful in guarding their brand name. Fortunately, WordPress requires prior approval of comments before they actually appear on your site. You can also edit all comments to remove offensive language or something of that nature. Other blogging platforms leave you vulnerable to this kind of attack. Forbes is particularly satisfied with the ease of setting up post categories, which enhance the user’s navigation experience considerably.
Maintaining a blog is much easier than managing a Twitter account because of content expectations. Daily or bi-weekly blog posts are perfectly acceptable whereas consumers expect a steam of Twitter updates. There are also widgets available to merge Twitter accounts to the blog itself along with other options. You can start a WordPress blog in a manner of minutes and this is an especially attractive move for those without any web presence at all.