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Author - Sarah Gemmell
Category - Small business, Marketing, Twitter
Posted - 06/24/2011
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That's one smart biz! : Naked Pizza in New Orleans, LA
naked-pizza-twittersign_1.pngNaked Pizza: the name alone will get your attention! But what's keeping customers coming back is Naked Pizza's smart use of Twitter.

Naked Pizza offers "the world's healthiest pizza," with a fraction of the calories and fat of a normal slice of pizza. In 2009, they replaced their big "Call for delivery" sign with a "Follow us on Twitter for specials" sign, causing a bit of stir. TechCrunch called their sign change "a sign of things to come," etc.

Two years later Naked Pizza has more than 12,000 followers, not to mention thousands of followers on their individual chain Twitter handles.

Why this is a smart move: Essentially, Naked Pizza gets to advertise to 12,000 people daily -- for free! By offering specials and simply tweeting about pizza shop happenings, Naked Pizza gets to remind its customers they exist, and entice them to come in and buy some cheap pizza.

Moral of the story: If you own a shop, restaurant, bar, or any other type of retail business- get on Twitter! You don't need to tweet specials often-- just occasionally-- to get customers excited. Let them know what's going on in the store, post pictures of happy customers, daily specials etc. You'll remind customers you exist, and get them walking through the door before you know it.

Read our last That's one smart biz! post about McMills Construction here.



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Author - Sarah Gemmell
Category - LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Online Marketing
Posted - 06/16/2011
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LinkedIn is now the most important social network, and what this means for your business
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An interesting new study (by Performics and ROI Research) was just published stating that social networkers now view LinkedIn as their most important social media account (59% of users), followed closely by Twitter (58%).

social_media_2011_research_ROI_polls.jpgWhat's interesting about this is that last year, Facebook was the favored social network with 56% of social network users considering it the "most important."

As MarketingProfs deducts, this leap ahead for LinkedIn could be the consequence of a turbulent economy and job market: people are prioritizing business networking and job-seeking over social interactions on the web.

So what does this mean for your small business? It means your business should be on LinkedIn! Creating a company page only takes a few minutes and -- when coupled with a lively Twitter stream (which you can have fed into your LinkedIn company page) -- equals a big amount of exposure for your brand where your customers are gathering online.

Now, a reason to join Twitter: the study shows that users who follow a brand/business on Twitter are more likely (59%) to buy from and recommend the business than on Facebook (53%).

The study is fascinating and represents a pretty big turn in the world of social media and social networking. We highly recommend reading the whole thing


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Author - Sarah Gemmell
Category - Small business, marketing
Posted - 05/17/2011
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National Small Business Week: Events you won't want to miss
Did you know it's National Small Business Week this week? Unlike some other "official" holidays and national weeks, Small Business Weeks is a full-fledged celebration of America's small businesses and small business owners. After all, "small businesses are the backbone of our economy and the cornerstones of America's promise," as stated by President Obama on Monday morning.
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Small Business Week chock-full of great webinars, business freebies and local workshops featuring some of the most highly respected small business experts around the country. In fact, there's too much going on this week to possibly take it all in, so here are our top 4 recommendations for online and offline small business events you won't want to miss!

  1. Small Business Week blog posts featuring 5 experts each day and 5 iPads to give away: On the Duct Tape Marketing blog. Each day has its own topic (Ex. I'm Creating Content But How Do I Get Someone To Read It?) and 5 corresponding blog posts written by marketing experts. I've honestly never seen so many small business marketing pros in one place!
  2. A free professional analysis of your business's website & online presence: (Begin shameless self-promotion) Addwater is offering a free web analysis of your business, including an SEO and web design audit of your site, comparison to your chase_instant_storefront.pngcompetitors, recommendations for improvements and more. Simply visit our Facebook Fan Page to find out how to receive your free analysis. (Absolutely no obligation.)
  3. Big discounts on eCommerce solutions & a $1,000 cash incentive: Offered by Chase Banks. For this week only, receive $1,000 when you sign up for a Chase card for your small business. And if you've been contemplating jumping into the world of eCommerce, now's the time to start! You'll get $100 off your Instant Storefront, plus a $100 credit in Google Adwords and tons more. 
  4. Networking seminars and financial workshops all month: Offered by CitiBank, all month long. CitiBank will be hosting all sorts of small business and chambers of commerce events during May, featuring industry experts. Examples include Hospitality workshop in NYC with restaurateur Danny Meyer and the Washington Business Journal breakfast panel in DC.



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Author - Sarah Gemmell
Category - Small business, Marketing
Posted - 05/12/2011
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That's one smart biz! : McMills Construction, Woodside, CA
I came across this post on Curbed SF recently entitled, "Upper Haight Features World's Coolest Garage Door." Included was the video below, which shows a seemingly historic front facade of an old Victorian home in San Francisco transforming into a garage entrance!

Apparently, the owners of the building were sick and tired of searching for nearly-impossible-to-find parking spots in the Upper Haight, but were prevented from constructing a traditional garage because of a recent mandate limiting historic buildings front facades.




So, McMills Construction started thinking outside the box. They took advantage of Corey McMills's background in mechanical engineering to come up with the folding front facade concept.

Why this was a smart move: Constructing the garage door pleased McMills's clients, was useful and extremely unique. Because of this, it got recognition on a popular real estate and home design site, Curbed, and was dubbed the "world's coolest garage door." Not only that but the post on Curbed was tweeted 48 times, "Liked" on Facebook 168 times and shared a total of 688 times. And -- drum roll please -- it's had more than 2.5 MILLION views on YouTube.

Moral of the story: Always think outside of the box, but not just for creativity's sake. Make what you do useful. And if it makes sense, video tape it!


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