Don’t Know How to Market Your Small Business? Here’s Help!

Not a rocket scientist? No problem, you can still be a good marketer. But, unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. Every business is different. The marketing plan for a small bank is entirely different from one for a beauty salon. But-building a plan, sticking to it and putting in the time and resources it takes is what’s going to make you a marketing genius.Here are some suggestions for making you a rocket scientist in marketing:· Learn how to do it. Remember, knowing what not to do is just as important as what to do. Marketing is a tricky world, so learn what you’re doing before you jump in.· Customers always come first. Know who these important folks are, what they like, what they want and what they need. And stay in touch with them long after the sale, because you want them to come back.· Know your target market like the back of your hand. Just because they can fog up a mirror doesn’t qualify them as a target prospect! You need to be sure that your marketing efforts are focused directly on people who need and want your product or service. That’s the secret to getting those wallets opened.· Remember, marketing is not advertising. Advertising and websites aren’t the only ways to attract business. There are literally hundreds of ways to market your business, so it pays to know which will work and which won’t and eliminate the losers and the ones you can’t afford right up front.· Define your sales goals and targets. Marketing is a numbers game. If a marketing activity won’t bring in the numbers to reach your goals, it’s a waste of your money. So be sure you know your goals for income, expenses, profit, needed inquires and sales.· Ever heard of the four Ps of marketing? Getting your product, pricing, placement strategy (distribution) and promotional strategy humming along and working together is crucial to good marketing.Essential Tools for Good Business MarketingIf you have all of the marketing essentials together, you can’t help but attract customers and get new business. So get it all together into your marketing toolbox so that you’re prepared at all times.Here are a few items to pack into that toolkit:· A marketing plan and a budget: Put together a strong plan that will work for you for years to come. It doesn’t have to be a thesis, but be sure you have it written down. Communicate this plan to your team and act on it EVERY day, even when business is great.· A superior product or service: You can do all the advertising in the world, but if your product or service isn’t something your market wants, values or loves, all of that advertising will just go down the drain. So do your research and listen to those customers before you launch into the market.· A professional brand: A brand is a whole lot more than just a logo. It’s everything that you do in running your business. Everything your customer sees, touches, feels and thinks about your business goes into determining your brand. It’s vitally important that you invest in the development of your brand so that it stands out from the crowd and promises a strong Value Proposition for your customers.· Value Proposition: A Value Proposition is a statement that positions you against your competition in the market and outlines why customers should do business with you instead of any of your competitors. Tell your customers how they will benefit by doing business with you. Everything you do to market your business will revolve around your Value Proposition.· Strong marketing materials: Your business card, sales brochures, sales letters, website, signage, uniforms and car wrap speak volumes about your business and are all contributing to building your brand. Look professional and appealing at all times.· An elevator pitch: Everyone is always asking, “What do you do?” Don’t bore them with ” I own a craft store.” Have a fun and memorable answer to that question at all times. Something like “I own a craft store that offers the most original voodoo dolls from Jamaica and the teenagers are giving them to all their friends for Christmas this year.” (You get the idea.) Keep it short and deliverable by the time you reach the fifth floor.· An awesome website: Your website is your home on the web and must grab attention and give real value. You’ll use this tool to keep in touch with your customers, as well as a means to attract new customers. The Internet can be a scary place for some people, but if you don’t embrace it in today’s business climate, you may not be in business very long.· A simple database: The heart of all good marketing is about building a solid database of past, present and future customers (prospects) so you can keep in touch and communicate regularly via e-newsletters, emails and phone.Clever Ideas to Market Your Small BusinessYou don’t have to spend a ton of money. Some creativity and a strong desire to be different from everyone else can make the difference between success and failure.Here are a few ideas to market your business:· Attend networking events. It’s all about who you know. So meet and greet. You never have too many friends.· Sponsor local events or charities. You’ll feel great when you support the local community. Everyone wins-you, your employees, customers, the sponsor and, of course the whole community. Win, win, win.· Conduct public relations. Getting your name on radio, TV, in newspapers and magazines isn’t really hard to do-especially if you have a good story to tell.· Embrace social media. Create a presence on social-networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Producing your own videos for YouTube or writing your own blog are creative methods of letting people know about you and your business. Believe it or not, it can actually be a lot of fun.· Present seminars and events. Setup your own events and then invite your best customers and their friends. It’s a great way to get to know people and build relationships.· Want to be a public speaker? This isn’t for everyone, but if it’s your thing it’s an awesome way to show your knowledge and get new business.Top Marketing Tips for Businesses on a Low BudgetMost businesses simply don’t have a lot of money for marketing. But there are ways to generate business without spending the big bucks. Here are a few tactics:Try to focus on activities that build relationships-strategies like networking, business alliances, checking in with old customers, friends and previous co-workers.Look for people who can help you with marketing by working on a commission basis, or a university student who’s studying marketing and needs some hands-on experience.Get together with your small business owner friends and form a mastermind group to share low-cost marketing ideas and refer business to each other.Accept the online marketing world and learn how to use Google AdWords, writing blog posts and selling yourself on social media.Don’t overlook the free online directories and post articles on other websites along with links to your site.Don’t jump into the low-cost options until you have the basics covered. Develop your strategy, know your target market and make your product the best in the market.
What are you doing to advance the cause of your business? If you have some unusual ideas that have worked for you, we’d love to hear about it so that we can pass along your solutions to others.

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How Social Media Allies and Upsides Your SEO Efforts?

SMM and Search Engine Optimization are usually given a separate space in the digital marketing arena.

And, quite reasonably, they are the two most decisive factors in the online marketing sphere.

But what we fail to understand is why many businesses do not acknowledge social media marketing as one of SEO’s most influential allies.

Do we intend to say that social media directly encourages your Search engine rankings?

The simple answer could be NO!

You must recognize that social metrics like Facebook likes and Twitter followers indicate social profile authority but have no hand in directly circumscribing the search engine rankings.

Surely, our straightforward answer is confusing. However, we completely believe that SEO and smo are powerful collaborators whose association must be leveraged for digital marketing success.

Let’s dig deeper and express how SMM can merit and warrant your SEO strategy.

The Relationship Between Social Metrics & SEO

Let’s assume that there might have been experiments conducted in the past that determine the use of social-media metrics such as social mentions and engagement level for search engine rankings.

But due to the unpredictable and unstable nature of smo and the weak signals generated, professionals might have dropped the attempts.

This was well elaborated by Matt Cutts back in 2014 in a Webmasters video. He was the Head of Google’s Webspam Team back then, and he revealed that social media provided incomplete signals.

Also, search engine algorithms can’t ascertain the reliability and authority of the smo posts and the profile.

Nevertheless, is there an Indirect way that social media influences search engine rankings?

And, this was embellished in the Cutt’s video itself.

He said that Google treats all social media websites like any other website on the Internet, which means that the same rules apply to Facebook, Twitter and so on as it applies to other websites.

Benefits of Social Media for Business

A Linkable Opportunity

As most social media consists of links to other websites, site owners and content creators can use it to promote their content.

You can employ a particular mixture of organic and paid promotions strategy to maximize your audience base.

Here’s how this happens-

As you use social media, there might have been countless times that some articles impacted you.

The impression an article made is evident in the things you share and communicate on social media. You might often use the information from the article in your other works, giving the source article a reference.

Understand that people cannot relate to something unless they know about it. Social media gives the perfect opportunity to content creators to prompt the audience and share link-worthy content.

You might well concede that SMM has given attention to many websites and individuals who were not known before. Creating Brand Mentions

Now, suppose someone or something (brand, product, service, individual, business, etc.) that has not yet been identified by Google suddenly notices many remarks online. In that case, it will influence Google to categorize them as an “entity”.

These are some unique circumstances that can boost your search engine rankings. This is bound to the context you are being mentioned or how people are talking about you online.

Understand that you are not adjudicated for how high you rank for a thing but what you entail as an entity.

So your website might not be getting a mention for a specific thing right now, but seeing the number of people who put trust in you, they can well start recognizing your business for that particular piece.

This is called the power of positive mentions.

Nevertheless, you need to make sure that positive mentions are not just on social media but on all public forums.

You can spring your brand marketing with your true audience base and inspire positive reinforcement and communication on social media.

Social Media For Searches

You cannot miss the fact that people use social media to search for a particular product or brand, and your audience base is just not limited to Google or Bing.

As you operate Twitter, you will realize that the social media channel with its trends, hashtags, insights and other tools give you a perfect opportunity to collude with the potential customers, making your content visible to the users.

You will find similar responses to Pinterest and Instagram.

Also, if anyone wants to know more about your company, he/she will likely ascertain your presence on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter channels- do a quick search and decide upon if he/she wants to deal with your business or not.

In 2016 Mark Zuckerberg had mentioned that “Now people are doing more than 2 billion searches a day between looking up people, businesses, and other things they care about.”- source Techcrunch.

Facebook had earlier retreated on a semantic graph search engine and launched a true keyword search, which landed in more search queries for media channel.

Twitter, since its onset, has been the leading destination for the population to flock for searches, especially in the event of big global news. Full post search appeared to have worked for Facebook and have expedited query volume.

Changing The Idea Of SEO

We have reached the phase where SEO is not just centered till Google optimization. We need to realize that search engine optimization is extending and converging on smo.

Also, if Google has been unclear about its stand, Bing, on the other hand, has been quite positive in including social metrics in its search engine algorithms.

You may well agree that the audience that reaches the company website, lurking through digital media channels, has already interacted with the company in a very pragmatic sense.

Also, digital media gives users the capability to engage more powerfully and compellingly. Hence, it will be only effective to broaden your social, media capacities and elicit brand awareness and growth.

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Coinbase Review

As the leading mainstream cryptocurrency exchange in the United States, Coinbase has become a standard on-ramp for new crypto investors. Coinbase offers a wide variety of products including cryptocurrency investing, an advanced trading platform, custodial accounts for institutions, a wallet for retail investors, and its own U.S. dollar stable-coin.

Coinbase was founded in 2012 and is a fully regulated and licensed cryptocurrency exchange supporting all U.S. states except Hawaii. Coinbase initially only allowed for Bitcoin trading but quickly began adding cryptocurrencies that fit its decentralized criteria.

Its list expanded to include Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, XRP, and many others with the promise of more as long as its requirements are met.

Pros Explained
Solid variety of altcoin choices: Coinbase offers over 25 cryptocurrencies for investment, trading, and also staking.
Extremely simple user interface: Coinbase is perhaps one of the easiest on-ramps to crypto investing. It is easy to sign up and buy cryptocurrencies within a matter of minutes. It also has a learning program that pays users cryptocurrency to learn more about how cryptocurrency works.
High liquidity: Coinbase consistently ranks among highly liquid exchanges. This protects the investor from serious price slippage in an already volatile market.
Cons Explained
High fees when not using Coinbase Pro: Coinbase has high fees compared to some of its largest competitors. Many newcomers who use the standard Coinbase platform will be subject to these fees unless they use Coinbase Pro—free to switch to and with lower fees—which has more features that could be overwhelming to new crypto traders.
Users do not control their own wallet keys: This is consistent with many centralized exchanges but it still remains a con for all of them. When a user purchases cryptocurrency on an exchange, it is stored in a wallet that Coinbase has control over. This means that the user does not have autonomous control over their holdings, which, in essence, goes against the ethos of decentralized currency or finance. This can be avoided if the investor withdraws their currency to their own personal wallet, preferably a hard wallet.
Not a large enough variety of altcoins for altcoin traders: Coinbase has a good variety of altcoin options for newer investors to dabble in, but those interested in seriously trading of altcoins will not find a great selection here. That said, Coinbase plans to add more altcoins over time.
Cryptocurrencies Available on Coinbase
Coinbase has a solid number of options to invest and trade in and has plans to add more to the list. The following currencies are listed right now:

Aave (AAVE)
Algorand (ALGO)
Cosmos (ATOM)
EThe Balancer (BAL)
Band Protocol (BAND)
Basic Attention Token (BAT)
Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
Bancor Network Token (BNT)
Bitcoin Satoshi’s Vision (BSV) (Send Only)
Bitcoin (BTC)
Celo (CGLD)
Compound (COMP)
Civic (CVC)
Dai (DAI)
Dash (DASH)
districtOx (DNT)
EOS (EOS)
Ethereum Classic (ETC)
Ethereum (ETH)
Filecoin (FIL)
The Graph (GRT)
Golem (GNT)
Kyber Network (KNC)
Chainlink (LINK)
Loom Network (LOOM)
Loopring (LRC)
Litecoin (LTC)
Decentraland (MANA)
Maker (MKR)
Numeraire (NMR)
NuCypher (NU)
OMG Network (OMG)
Orchid (OXT)
Ren (REN)
Augur (REP)
Synthetix (SNX)
USD Coin (USDC)
Universal Market Access (UMA)
Uniswap (UNI)
Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC)
Stellar Lumens (XLM)
Ripples (XRP)
Tezos (XTZ)
Yearn.finance (YFI)
Zcash (ZEC)
0x (ZRX)
Trade Experience
Trading on Coinbase is an extremely easy process and geared toward a beginner. The platform can also be accessed through your android or iOS devices. Coinbase does not offer any downloadable trading software and it is all browser-based, including its more advanced trading platform, Coinbase Pro.

When you log in you are immediately shown your portfolio balance and its performance in a selection of time frames like one hour, 24 hours, one week, and one year.

A banner above your portfolio balance has a “Buy crypto” button where you can enter a dollar value and place market orders for whichever crypto you choose that Coinbase has available. This button also brings up the options to sell or convert your crypto or even set up recurring orders—daily, weekly, on the 1st and 15th, once a month.

Buy crypto Coinbase
On the top right of the page, you will find the options to send and receive. This allows users to send crypto out of their Coinbase wallets or receive crypto from elsewhere into their Coinbase wallets. While most crypto-first exchanges do offer the ability for users to withdraw to their own private wallets, this is unfortunately not the case for some other brokers and exchanges out there. This ability is hugely important to investors who wish to make sure their holdings are safe and secure in their own offline wallets.

Coinbase Pro
While Coinbase is an incredibly simple on-ramp to crypto investment for those who are just starting out, Coinbase Pro offers a far larger and more robust charting and trade experience.

Coinbase users can purchase crypto using market orders that experience high fees compared to other exchange options out there. With that in mind, Coinbase wanted to create a free option for Coinbase users to graduate to when they were a bit more practiced. With Coinbase Pro, users can place market, limit, and stop orders with lower commission fees. Coinbase Pro also has the option of margin trading and has significantly fancier charting capabilities.

Traders using Coinbase Pro can see as short-term as 1-minute candle or line charts and can use overlays like exponential moving averages. Currently, the only 2 available overlays and indicators are EMA (12) and EMA (26). Coinbase Pro also has over 100 trading pairs available worldwide (nearly 40 trading with USD) and more than 40 crypto to crypto trading pairs in 42 regions. Compared to other serious trading tools out there, Coinbase Pro is still bare-bones with regard to indicators.

While the standard Coinbase platform is a great tool to help people understand how easy it is to purchase, store, and move cryptocurrency, Coinbase Pro is, by far, a better platform for those who wish to actively trade or invest with lower fees and more features.

Fees
Coinbase has an incredibly convoluted fee system that is also quite expensive if you are not using Coinbase Pro. The cost of trading on Coinbase’s standard platform is quite high in comparison to its competitors. Those who are new to crypto and are looking for ease of use may overlook this.

Coinbase’s fees vary across different countries and regions, but for the purposes of this review, we will focus on fees within the United States.

Payment Method Coinbase Fee
Bank Account 1.49%
Coinbase USD Wallet 1.49%
Debit/Credit Card 3.99%
ACH Transfer Free
Wire Transfer $10 ($25 outgoing)
Crypto Conversion 2.00%
In addition to these fees, Coinbase also charges variable spreads on purchases and trades. Coinbase says that they typically charge about 0.50% for the purchase and sale of cryptocurrency below $10,000 in value. This fee is significantly reduced for sums between $10,000 and $50,000 (0.35%) and continues to decrease with each pricing tier until maker-taker fees reach 0.00% and 0.04%, respectively, for sums of $500,000,000 and up. Market fluctuations can make this higher or lower.

There is also a “Coinbase Fee” in addition to the spread and the cost of depositing money mentioned above in the chart. This fee is dependent on the value of the purchase, payment type (debit/credit), and region you are purchasing from.

Coinbase gives the following examples of “Coinbase Fees” one might experience on its platform:

If the total transaction amount is less than or equal to $10, the fee is $0.99 | €0,99 | £0,99
If the total transaction amount is more than $10 but less than or equal to $25, the fee is $1.49 | €1,49 | £1,49
If the total transaction amount is more than $25 but less than or equal to $50, the fee is $1.99 | €1,99 | £1,99
If the total transaction amount is more than $50 but less than or equal to $200, the fee is $2.99 | €2,99 | £2,99
Coinbase Pro Fees
Coinbase Pro fees are significantly less expensive and less complicated. With Coinbase Pro, digital assets and ACH transfers are free to deposit and withdraw. Wire transfers are $10 to deposit and $25 to withdraw.

Pricing Tier Taker Fee Maker Fee
<$10K 0.50% 0.50%
$10 – 50K 0.35% 0.35%
$50 – 100K 0.25% 0.15%
$100K – 1M 0.20% 0.10%
$1- 10M 0.18% 0.08%
$10 -50M 0.15% 0.05%
$50 – 100M 0.10% 0.00%
$100 – 300M 0.07% 0.00%
$300 – 500M 0.06% 0.00%
$500M – 1B 0.05% 0.00%
$1B+ 0.04% 0.00%
Security
Coinbase uses a variety of safety measures for account holders. It is important to understand that any crypto on any exchange account is only as secure as the account holder makes them. It is imperative to use strong passwords and to utilize the available security features like 2-step verification.

Coinbase has 2-step verification, biometric fingerprint logins, insurance in the event that Coinbase itself is breached (this insurance does not apply if your account is breached due to your own lack of security measures), and also stores 98% of users’ funds in offline cold storage.

Digital currency is not considered legal tender and therefore is not backed by SIPC or FDIC. Coinbase provides insurance by pooling Coinbase balances and holding them in USD custodial accounts, USD denominated money market funds, or liquid U.S. Treasuries.

Coinbase provides a solid amount of security in comparison to a number of other leading exchanges. This is one of the reasons Coinbase is a great offering for those looking to safely get started investing in cryptocurrency.

That said, the premise of cryptocurrency is to remove intermediaries where possible and to be in total control of your own funds. While Coinbase does provide an easy entry to cryptocurrency investing, it is important to learn about proper cryptocurrency security and storage. Savvy crypto investors may use Coinbase Pro for its reduced fees and then withdraw their holdings to their own secure cold storage.

Opening a Coinbase Account
Signing up for Coinbase is a very straightforward and easy process. First, you enter your name, email, and the password you wish to use. You will then be asked to verify your email address. Next, Coinbase asks you to enter in your phone number to receive a verification code and enter it. Coinbase will later use this phone number to send 2-step verification codes. After this stage, it will prompt you to enter your identification information.

Just like any bank account or investment account, you must prove your identity via state identification. For users in the United States, this will require a social security number. At this point, your Coinbase account will have been created and you are able to add your bank account, credit card, or debit card information to enable deposits and withdrawals so that you can start trading or investing.

VERDICT
Coinbase is an ideal tool for new crypto investors who may not have any other investment experience. While the standard platform is overpriced, its features, like its learn program and the ability to easily set up recurring purchases, provide the inexperienced with a clear path to becoming invested and actually understanding cryptocurrency.

Those with more trading experience will find that Coinbase Pro is a cheaper and more robust option, but it is still lacking in terms of features. If you wish to trade seriously, you may find that Coinbase is not the right fit for you. Overall, Coinbase is designed with the beginner in mind.

Methodology
Investopedia is dedicated to helping those interested in cryptocurrency investing make informed and safe decisions. We are committed to providing our readers with unbiased reviews of the top cryptocurrency exchanges for investors of all levels.

Exchanges are only considered for review if they are safe, secure, liquid, and either regulated by a proper agency or entirely decentralized.

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