My Marketing Tips for the Week of February 2nd – Groundhog Day Edition

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

Happy Groundhog day! Expect to see lots of trending hash tags such as, #GroundhogDag #earlyspring #sixmoreweeksofwinter and #ghd2016. The coming week also offering some great opportunities for promoting your online shop.

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Superbowl Week

It will be everything Superbowl this week. On the day of the game Twitter will be busy with score updates, talk about amazing plays and of course reviews of the #HalftimeShow (it’s #Coldplay #HalftimeShowColdplay). Interact with your customers this week by posting your best recipes and party décor ideas. #Superbowl #SuperBowlCity #SuperBowl50 weekend #SuperBowlAds #SuperBowlCommercials.

UK Mother’s Day

A big selling opportunity for shops that ship to the UK and the Republic of Ireland is Mothering Sunday on March 6th. The UK’s equivalent to Mother’s Day, people are typically looking for the same types of gifts for moms, although it is a Christian holiday coinciding with the fourth Sunday in Lent.

Product Names That Get Press

I have spoken extensively in my marketing ebooks about how the quirky and unusual always gets press. On that thinking, Target has just released their first nail polish line, called Defy & Inspire, and they decided to name the 38 shades after popular titles and phrases from Reality TV. Shade names such as Final Rose, Bachelorette, Toddlers & Tiaras, You’re Fired, Tribal Council, Real Housewife – just to name a few. The quirky names were definitely enough to get them early press from all the major fashion blogs and magazines, so we’ll see how they use these names to also maximize their exposure on social media.

Creative Trends for 2016

Shutterstock released a report covering the top 2016 Creative Trends and I highly recommend you check out the infographic. When you get to “Visual Trends” be sure to click on the actual trend name to see examples. For those of you selling online, you will notice that the “Flay Lay” photography trend is more popular than ever and not just on Instagram.

Trending This Week

  • February 3 – National Carrot Cake Day, #WednesdayWanderlust
  • February 4 – #ThursdayThoughts
  • February 5 – National Wear Red Day
  • February 6 – #SaturdayKitchen
  • February 7 – Superbowl, National Send a Card to a Friend Day
  • February 8 – #MotivationMonday, Chinese New Year (year of the monkey)
  • February 9 – Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday, National Pizza Day

If you like my blog I hope you will please support it by sharing my posts on your social media pages – thanks in advance!

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© 2016 Gail Oliver. All rights reserved.

My Marketing Tips for Online Shops for the Week of January 26th – Pinterest Edition

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

Good Tuesday everyone (“Good Tuesday” is a phrase that trends big on Twitter on Tuesdays). Here is a quick run down of what you need to think about this week to market and promote your online shop.

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Pinterest Trends

Did you know that Pinterest has a board that highlights the top trending searches so far for 2016? Follow it here at PinPicks: Ideas to Try in 2016. It is a great way to get inspiration for new products. Look for a surge in Pinterest searches over the next two weeks for Superbowl Food, Superbowl Snacks, Superbowl Party, Superbowl Desserts and Snack Stadium (look it up) so try and take advantage to draw interest to your shop. 

Product Photography Made Easy

I mentioned Creative Market a while back on my blog and I can’t encourage you enough to check them out. One of their best deals has to be their photography layouts. For example, if you sell art or home décor and can’t afford to do a fancy vignette photo shoot, you can simply buy one of theirs and drop your products in. Check out this value pack from We Lived Happily Ever After on Creative Market with 12 stunning mockups for just $30.

Upcoming Opportunities

Historically, searches for graduation gifts gain momentum in March, increase further in April and then peak in May, which can be too late for some online shops. So start sending out emails for grad gifts to your customers starting in mid March (add a graduation cap emoji in the subject line to really get attention), and if you can prep a special product for this year’s graduates, even better.

Searches for everything prom-related (clothing, shoes, beauty, services, etc.) actually peak in February and March, so this is another category you can be promoting now.

Trending This Week

  • January 27 – National Chocolate Cake Day
  • January 28 – National Have Fun at Work Day
  • January 28 – #republicandebate
  • January 29 – National Puzzle Day
  • January 30 & 31 – NHL All-Star Game
  • January 31 – National Backward Day
  • January 31 – Grease: Live! on Fox
  • February 1 – National Freedom Day (from slavery)
  • February 1 – #TheBachelor
  • February 2 – Groundhog Day

Get My EXCLUSIVE Pinterest Tip!

I have discovered a secret about Pinterest that will get your pins seen by more Pinterest users, get more of your pins shared and drive more traffic to your shop. Simply follow me on Facebook and share this post with your followers, then email me at attentiongetting@gmail.com when you have and I will let you in on the secret!

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© 2016 Gail Oliver. All rights reserved.

My Marketing Tips for Your Online Shop for the Week of January 19th – Spring Publicity Edition

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

January is in full swing, so what opportunities are there for driving traffic to your online shop this week?

PR Opportunities

You need to always be pitching story ideas to the media, and since blogs work about one to two months in advance, some editorial topics they may be working on include:

  • Superbowl parties
  • Mardi Gras celebrations
  • Fashion Week trends
  • Valentine’s Day gift ideas
  • Spring break fashion
  • Spring vacation ideas

Magazines work on lead times of 4 to 5 months, so that means right now they are cultivating editorial for May issues, such as:

  • Mother’s Day gift ideas
  • Spring decorating
  • Spring fashion
  • Spring entertaining
  • Spring organization
  • Summer vacation ideas
  • Memorial Day entertaining
  • Gardening ideas
  • Outdoor living decor

Trending This Week

Try to post images, quotes or comments on social media for the following pop culture events this week:

  • January 19 – National Popcorn Day
  • January 19 to 31 – Australian Open Tennis
  • January 20 – National Cheese Lover’s Day
  • January 21 – National Hugging Day
  • January 21 – Get to Know Your Customers Day
  • January 22 – National Pie Day
  • January 23 – New zodiac sign starts for Aquarius
  • January 24 – NFL Playoffs
  • January 24 – National Peanut Butter Day
  • January 25 – National Opposite Day

Hot Hashtags

Every day new trending hashtags tend to pop up that people are searching on, so take advantage when posting on social media of these ones:

  • #FrantasticMonday
  • #MondayMotivation
  • #TuesdayTips
  • #ThursdayHumour
  • #SaturdayReads
  • #SundaySips

Advertising

Are you running Facebook ads? If so, schedule them only to run on the most popular times on Facebook, such as noon on weekends (EST), 3 to 4 pm on Wednesdays and 1 pm to 4 pm Thursdays and Fridays. It will save you some money and you might get better results. Remember to select desktop newsfeed, mobile newsfeed and Instagram ads if you have an Instagram account.

Be sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest for more tips and advice.

© 2016 Gail Oliver. All rights reserved.

6 Red Hot Valentine’s Day Marketing Tips for Your Online Shop

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

Valentines Day is a great opportunity for any online shop, so I thought I would start you off with a few interesting facts.

Valentines Day Spending Statistics

According to the National Retail Federation, last year Americans spent $18.9 billion on Valentines Day. The average person spent $142.31 with $96.63 of that on a gift for their spouse/Valentine. The leftover $45.68 was spent on other family members, friends, coworkers, pets, children’s classmates or teachers.

On average, men spend $190.53 (with $128.90 of that on his actual Valentine) and women spend $96.58, of which $62.47 was on a gift for their Valentine.

The biggest sellers will be cards, followed by flowers (mostly male buyers), candy, going out, jewelry, clothing and gift cards.

Another interesting stat to note is that the interest in the holiday drops off after the age of 44. Therefore, you might want to spend your time focusing on men, ages 18 to 44, with items in the $100 to $130 range.

I then went over to Amazon to see how people were searching for gifts and noticed a slight difference between men and women:

Men are searching:

  • Valentines Gifts for Her Bundle
  • Valentines Gifts for Her Basket
  • Valentines Gifts for Her Sexy
  • Valentines Gifts for Her Necklace
  • Valentines Gifts for Her Chocolate
  • Valentines Gifts for Her Clothes
  • Valentines Gifts for Her Jewelry

Women are searching:

  • Valentines Gift for Him Sexy
  • Valentines Gift for Him Basket
  • Valentines Gift for Him Funny
  • Valentines Gift for Him Star Wars
  • Valentines Gift for Him Bracelets
  • Valentines Gift for Him Beer
  • Valentines Gift for Him Football

6 Valentine’s Tips for Your Online Shop

  • Change your shop banner and social media banners to advertise Valentines gift ideas.
  • Add a Valentines Gift category to your shop, and if you can specify, “Valentines Gifts for Him”, Valentines Gifts for Her”, “Valentines Gifts for Kids”, etc., even better.
  • Let people know the final order date in order to receive items in time for Valentine’s Day (which is a Sunday).
  • Offer cards and gift wrap either as a value-add or for an extra fee.
  • Add “Valentine’s gift” and related keywords to your Pinterest descriptions, as “Valentines Gifts for Her Pinterest” and “Valentines Gifts for Him Pinterest” were popular Google searches, indicating people will be looking to the social media site for ideas.
  • No later than January 20th, email customers Valentines Day Specials with categories such as “Gifts Under $50” “Gifts Under $25”, etc.

Want to Talk to Me About Your Business? Get the details on my popular (and extremely affordable) phone consultations.

© 2016 Gail Oliver. All rights reserved.

3 Marketing Resolutions for 2016 If You Sell Online

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

Happy New Year!

The start of a new year is always a good time to reevaluate how your online business did last year and what changes you need to make.

One of the most common issues I find with a lot of small business owners is the hesitation to invest in the marketing and promotion of your business. The honest truth is, you do have to spend money to make money, and there is only so much you can do for free before sales peak and then flatline.

There is also hesitation to try something new. Even if things are not working, people will still continue to employ the same marketing tactics. Remember, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Don’t fall into that trap.

Therefore, if there are 3 things I can recommend to you that will make a difference in the success of your online business in 2016, they are as follows:

1. Advertise

Advertising is still the most effective way to drive buyers to your shop, but not all mediums are effective for everyone. I would definitely recommended starting with Google Adwords/ Sponsored Ads. They are affordable as you set the budget, and you can cancel at anytime. I have personally seen that small independent shops who ran Google ads did appear on the first page of results and did have excellent sales as a result.

But if Google is still not for your budget, there are also Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest ads, running ads on popular blogs, as well as print ads in your local media.

2. Sell Other Places

Again, one sales site should never account for 100% of your business, because if it goes down, your business goes down. On my Facebook page today I just posted a news release from Amazon stating that they sold over 23 million items on Cyber Monday, showing how they continue to dominate the e-commerce space. Now, Amazon does take a  higher percentage, but you have to weigh that against a potentially higher sales volume. My point is, they aren’t going anywhere so maybe it is time to give them a try.

I also recommended Gumroad a little while back if you wish to sell right from your blog or website. Very affordable and easy to use, so why not?

While retail does appear to be suffering, the big chains like Wal-mart and Target are still doing great retail sales, and both have programs for indie shops to sell their wares in local stores (not nationwide). Plus, after seeing Amazon’s domination online, don’t be surprised if they both beef up their e-commerce sites and start offering “handmade” or “indie” marketplaces.

3. Innovate

I have always said that if you really want to get publicity for your business, it helps to come up with one product that is strictly for PR purposes, much like Victoria’s Secret Million Dollar Fantasy Bra (only one available each year, and it never seems to sell). Lately, I have been telling a lot of my clients that they need to think of how they can capitalize on the summer Olympics coming up in Brazil this August. Whether it is a product that celebrates patriotic pride or one that highlights Brazil’s culture or a popular summer sport, editors of magazines, blogs and newspaper will be hungry for all types of Olympic-related content starting as early as May.

As always, I appreciate it when you share my content and blog with others, so please use the sharing icons below and leave me your comments as well. Thanks for reading! Gail

© 2016 Gail Oliver. All rights reserved.

My Marketing Tips for Your Online Shop for the Week of December 21st – Christmas Edition

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

First of all I have to congratulate one of my clients, Nadine Savino, creator of The GCap, for appearing on Good Morning America this week and presenting her invention to Joy Mangano (the momtrepreneur whom the movie, Joy, is based on). Be sure to check out Nadine’s appearance here. The GCap is a reusable, stretchable bottle cap for kids drinks. Nadine also received a $10,000 check to help further her business. Congratulations, Nadine!

The week of Christmas can be one of the the slowest for an online shop so I don’t expect you to be doing too much this week, but here are some things you may want to do, if you have the time.

8 Ideas for Shop Promotion This Week

  1. If you have a blog, come up with your own “Best of 2015” list and promote the post on all of your social media sites.
  2. Add a section to your shop that is entitled “Up to 50% Off”.
  3. Email a link to the shop section above to all customers (after Christmas), along with wishes for a Happy 2016!
  4. Find a three-word keyword phrase that describes your most popular item and run a Google Adwords ad based on this phrase, just for a month.
  5. Review your shop traffic statistics and invest more time and effort in the top three traffic sources.
  6. Go through all of your social media followers lists and follow back anyone who is following you.
  7. Post to social media an animated (gif) holiday greeting. There are some free ones here.
  8. Hot trending topics on social media this week: First day of winter (Dec 22), start of Capricorn (Dec 23), Christmas (Dec 25), National Pumpkin Pie Day (Dec 25), National Candy Cane Day (Dec 26).

Have a wonderful holiday, and if you haven’t done it yet, be sure to check out my new site, OnlineShopLove.com and follow on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

© 2015 Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing. All rights reserved.

 

My Marketing Tips for Your Online Shop for the Week of December 14th – Star Wars Edition

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

The new Star Wars movie will dominate the news, social media and pop culture in general this week, so be ready with any products you have in this realm, but also be really active on social media by tweeting quotes from the movie, posting favorite scenes, even commenting on the film’s Facebook page postings. The movie premieres December 18th, but the hype will be starting today. Watch for the hashtag, #TheForceAwakens.

7 Ways to Promote Your Shop This Week:

  1. Email out seasons greetings to all of your customers with a free 2016 calendar printable that has your shop branding on it.
  2. Start prepping for Valentines with special offers, gift bundles, gifts for men, gifts for BFFs, even your own gift guide Pinterest board.
  3. Try something more creative with your Facebook and Twitter banners to really get attention for your shop. See the winter theme Twitter banner that I did for my new site, OnlineShopLove.com.
  4. At least 5 business cards should go in every package you mail out, and make sure your shop name, logo and url is stamped on every box and is part of your return address label. Remember all the people who handle the package see your shop name.
  5. Think of the trends happening in your space and then approach a local newspaper reporter about adding your input to a new year’s article (let’s say you sell pet products) such as, “10 Hot Trends in Pet Products for 2016”.
  6. Here is a little trick that sometimes works. Put a big “sold out” banner across one of your items. Let people know that they can go on an email list to be alerted when the item is back in stock. Put the item back in stock a week later, but tell your email list that there are only 50 available. See how quickly the item gets snatched up (plus you just got people on an email list).
  7. There will be other events that will be trending this week: National #ChocolateCoveredEverythingDay (Dec 16), National #HardCandyDay (Dec 19), #FirstDayofWinter (Dec 22) and #Capricorn (Dec 23).

Finally, have you checked out my new site, OnlineShopLove.com yet? Be sure to follow OnlineShopLove on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to see amazing products every day!

© 2015 Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing. All rights reserved.

My Marketing Tips for Your Online Shop for the Week of December 8th – Planning for Valentine’s Edition

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

This week is a tough one for a lot of online stores because you are busy trying to get orders out in time for Christmas, but you still need to keep visible to ensure those post-Christmas orders. So here is a quick list of what you should be doing this week to promote your online shop:

Marketing To Do List for December 8 to 15

  1. Comment on and like the current posts on the Facebook pages of Amazon, Etsy and Best Buy.
  2. Create a Valentine’s theme banner for your shop so it is ready to launch January 1st.
  3. Send out pitches to relevant blogs for Valentine’s Gift Guide editorial.
  4. The malls are busy right now so leave cards for your shop on windshields in the parking lot.
  5. Follow @mariayagoda on Twitter as she does product profiles for People.com.
  6. More people are searching on mobile these days, so try running a Google mobile ad, just for one month, to see if traffic increases. It will show up in your stats as m.google.com.
  7. Respond to any relevant Help a Reporter Out (HARO) media requests, and be sure to follow the reporter(s) on all social media.
  8. Trending hash tags to capitalize on this week: #NationalBrownieDay (Dec 8), #ChristmasCardDay (Dec 9), #NationalPastryDay (Dec 9), #HumanRightsDay (Dec 10), #PoinsettiaDay (Dec 12), #IceCreamDay (Dec 13), #InternationalChildrensDay (Dec 13), #NationalLemonCupcakeDay (Dec 15), #MondayMorning, #TuesdayTease, #FridayReads, #SaturdayKitchen

Success Story! One of my customers, an adorable jewelry shop called Decadent Minis, grew her Instagram followers to 10,000 in just 3 marketing ideas for jewelry and fashion shopsmonths using the advice I gave her! What was the advice? Well, you can find it in my e-book, Marketing Ideas for Online Jewelry Shops.

Come back next Tuesday for another week of marketing tasks that will get your shop seen.

Gail 

© 2015 Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing. All rights reserved.

My Marketing Tips for Your Online Shop for the Week of November 30th – CyberMonday Edition

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

I have been a little swamped launching a new venture called OnlineShopLove.com that I did not have time to put together my December Marketing calendar. So, luckily for my readers, I will be giving you the tasks here, for free, each week this month.

Therefore, if you are looking to drive traffic and sales to your online shop, here are a few things to try this week.

Marketing To Do List for December 1 to 7

  1. Thank all customers who bought from you on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday by emailing them a coupon for use in January.
  2. Pantone introduces their color of the year on Wednesday and it always trends big on social media. Be ready on social media with any products you offer that match the color they announce.
  3. Send out pitches to print media now for Easter editorial (for fashion, decorating, entertaining, etc.)
  4. Follow all new customers on their social media sites and add them to your email list.
  5. Run a one-day $25 Facebook ad for gift ideas based on products in your shop.
  6. Respond to any relevant Help a Reporter Out (HARO) media requests.
  7. Submit an entry in Instagram’s Weekend HashTag Project and comment on all entries.
  8. Kindly ask friends and family to post a favorite product from your shop to their social media pages.
  9. Trending hash tags to capitalize on this week: #NationalPieDay (Dec 1), #GivingTuesday (Dec 1), #NationalCookieDay (Dec 4), #SantasListDay (Dec 4), #Hanukkah (Dec 6), #MondayMotivation, #ThursdayThoughts, #FridayFeeling, #gifts, #gift, #giftideas.

Need more marketing ideas, advice and inspiration? Then be sure to check out my ebook shop on Gumroad. Come back on Monday for next week’s marketing to do list.

Gail 

© 2015 Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing. All rights reserved.

9 Publicity Ideas for Your Small Business in December

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

Right now is a good time to pitch a story to your local business reporter in hopes of getting some press for your company in December.

December is all about winter, the holidays, and end of year wrap ups, so here are some headlines you could pitch or maybe one of these will inspire one of your own:

  1. How This Local Business is Pulling Out all the Stops for the Holiday Shopping Season
  2. Local Company to Host Food and Toy Drive
  3. Was Black Friday a Boom or Bust for These Small Businesses
  4. Why You Should Shop These Local Businesses This Christmas Season
  5. How a Bad Winter Could Impact These Local Businesses
  6. Challenges and Wins in 2015 for Local Companies
  7. Our Favorite Local Small Businesses of 2015
  8. What These Local Companies Plan to Do Differently in 2016
  9. Advice for Starting a Business in 2016, from 5 Local Small Business Owners

As I have always said, you have to give a reporter a compelling and timely story headline (and then show how your company would fit in the story) as this makes it easier for them to see the value in the pitch. Good luck and let me know if you have success.

Before You Go….

Thanks so much for your support!

Gail

© 2015 Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing. All rights reserved.

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