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Digital Marketing

This is going to be a very short post because what we are about to say is so simple.

Print Companies need to be advertising their capability for the printing of signs for those attending protests and demonstrations.

Here are a few ways to get more protest sign sales

  • Design Unique Graphics for the Signs and share online
  • Team up with a groups that are demonstrating and donate a portion of sales to their group (they’ll need to funnel sign purchases)
  • Design & Print demo signs that you can handout for some protesters with a message on one side and your website on the other

We get that everyone has their own opinions on what is going on right now and it’s all very sensitive, but the truth is if you want to keep the lights on “you gotta do what you gotta do” and this is a lucrative opportunity.

 

Regardless of what you do you’ll need to promote yourself.  If you can’t do that on your own we can help.

 

Have Questions? Call Us at 866-357-7422

Or Submit your information below

 

Private Equity Firms are experiencing a similar saturation issue that marketing saw happen just a handful of years ago.

It’s gotten to the point that it feels like everyone is starting their own firm.

This means that firms are fighting for the same pool of investment with new firms claiming similar approaches and opportunities.

 

So again going back to that Marketing example, Private Equity Firms are now having to differentiate in two ways.

  1. They need to be doing new investor lead generation
  2. They need to have a specific focus or specialty. Something that will make you different from other firms.

 

We put New Investor Lead Generation at the top of that list because if you aren’t getting found by investors then Good Luck, but if you are doing that lead gen work then you’re already setting yourself apart by at least being an option.

 

To Answer the Question about How Private Equity Firms Can Generate New Investor Leads

There are actually 3 ways to really get this going and to make it effective.

  1. SEO for your firm
  2. Paid Search & Paid Social for your firm
  3. Email Marketing for your firm

 

SEO is a complex beast for most, but to be honest there are easy ways to optimize your website so that it shows up often for the investment terms you need to be showing up for.  Does your firm invest in Commercial Real Estate deals? Then you need to be getting found for terms specific to those investment opportunity types.

 

Paid Search is similar to SEO in that you can pay to be found when investors search for those terms. Simple and straightforward.

Paid Social is different and Very Powerful! Using this you’ll be able to target investors directly and get those who are in the market to invest to engage with you in learning more about your offerings and investment opportunities.

 

Email Marketing again sounds so easy, but not everyone is doing it. At a minimum you need to be sending a message out to your current investors and prospective investors once a month to stay in front of them with updates and opportunities. But even better is to set up marketing automation to nurture new investment passively to warm up to closing on funding with investors.

 

For More Information on Digital Marketing for Private Equity Firms check out this page: https://acumenstudio.com/private-equity-digital-marketing/

 

Or if You Have Questions? Call Us at 866-357-7422

Or Submit your information below

 

Has getting new sales for your print company stalled or not grown as fast as you would like it to be?

If your answer is YES, then this article is for you.

Print Companies have primarily relied on a sales team to go out and get new business. And it worked. But today doesn’t work as well.

Some print companies rely solely on the owner and other companies have an in-house marketing person to help drive awareness to aid in new business development.

But still many print companies are struggling to get that sales lift they so badly want.

 

What I’ve observed over the past 7 years in the Print Industry is this…

  1. The economy is strong and it doesn’t take a ton of work to increase sales  —  (So if your sales are flat or going down something is up!)
  2. Sales teams are typically equipped to close project sold leads / quotes —  (The customer knows what they want and all you need to do is prove that you can do the work, give them a good price, get the quote back quickly and meet their timeline)
  3. Marketers at print companies are typically design oriented people which is great and very much needed but they are typically less savvy in marketing the business strategy that your customers are actually looking for. —  (Your customers need the items you print for them to “do something” and in most cases that is generate new revenue whether it’s directly or indirectly through some leading behavior like showing up at an event or signing up)
  4. And very few Sales or Marketing team members have deep discipline experience in the platforms and tactics on generating new leads online. —  *This statement may not sit well with some of you, but respectfully if you reflect on the things you can do and do well, is this really one of them? (at Acumen we aren’t printers and don’t claim to be, we leave that to the Pros)

 

And all of this makes sense because Schools Don’t Teach This Stuff! They don’t teach Sales, They don’t teach Lead Generation AND They don’t teach print.

 

So it’s all Doom and Gloom, Right? Wrong!

The ONE thing that would help make your Sales Team and Marketers more effective is to give them the wisdom of KNOWING WHO TO TARGET!

As an owner, executive, manager it is Your (or if you’re in Sales and Marketing, it is THEIR) responsibility to ensure that the entire company knows who your primary customers are and why they are your primary customers.

It’s not just that they need printing, packaging or fulfillment.  They need it for very specific reasons and having your team Armed with that Knowledge they will have the ability to be the Best they can be.  Without it they / you can only go so far.  It really is a limiter to success.

 

What Could You Do?

Outside of working with us on doing Digital Marketing for Print Companies (I’m smiling and winking over here) it would be a good idea to lead a handful of workshops each year on exactly what I shared above.

Let your company know who your primary customers are, why those customers choose you to do that work, why those customers need the products they have you create for them and what the outcomes your customers expect to get when using your products / services.

Doing that will positively Change Your Business!

 

Have Questions? Call Us at 866-357-7422

Or Submit your information below

 

How do you create a Marketing Plan for a Printing Company?

That is the question we here from printers and after doing more research found that a lot of print companies are asking about this online as well.  So we decided to break this down for you better than anyone else has.

 

Here are the 5 Steps to creating a Marketing Plan for a Printing Company!

  1. Define Your Target Customer (who needs / wants your service)
  2. Determine Your Budget (how much you’ll spend)
  3. Agree on Channels (where you’ll show up)
  4. Define a Theme (what you will talk about)
  5. Build the Assets & Launch! (watch the new business roll in)

 

Printing Company Marketing Plan Step 1: Define Your Target Customer

This is what everyone says… “Figure out your target customer.”. But how do you actually do that?

Many print companies will tell us, “Everyone who wants to buy print is a prospect”, of course but can you get a little more creative, come on!

Here are a few ways to do define your target customer and then some ideas on who you should / can actually target.

  • Is there an industry you sell a lot of print to? If so then make sure to consider them a primary target customer.
  • Look at the job titles of the people who buy from you. Are is there a pattern or a lot of the same job title? Consider them a customer.
  • Is there a specific product you want to sell? What industry uniquely uses that product? That’s a target customer (if you promote that product)
  • In general your safe targeting anyone in a marketing decision making position. Director of Marketing, Marketing Manager, Marketing Coordinator, etc.
  • And then you have publishers like Printing impressions that puts out a list of the top 25 Markets for print. Focus on one or more of those!  Here is the list if you haven’t seen it: https://www.piworld.com/resource/top-25-hot-markets-for-print-demand-in-2019-20/file/

 

Once you’ve made a decision here you are ready to move on to the next step.

 

Printing Company Marketing Plan Step 2: Determine Your Budget

Determining a budget is easy.

Some think it will be a huge effort and tedious, but it doesn’t have to be.

If you have a marketing budget that you’ve created each year, then you’re already done because you already do it.  If you don’t then think of any of the marketing activities you’ve done in the past year and estimate how much you spent. If that number is one you feel good about for the next year then use it, if you feel you could invest a little more then add to it.  This doesn’t have to be rocket science.

If you are planning on attending events, having a booth, traveling, etc. then you’ll probably want to put a little more thought into it, but in general as long as you have a number you’re good because you’ll just work backwards from the channel efforts into that number.

 

Got a number? Yes?!

 

Then it’s time to move on the next step, Channels.

 

Printing Company Marketing Plan Step 3: Agree on Channels

There are a ton of good places for printing companies to market, but let’s break it down to 3 primary areas.

  • Offline
  • Online
  • Email (Existing Customers)

Your offline efforts can include national or local trade shows, local events, and direct mail.

First off we’ll tell you… Don’t Do Sponsorships that only show your name and logo somewhere.  It doesn’t help!

If you are choosing to do trade shows you likely know what you are doing or are getting all the details for it, we won’t go into detail on how to choose and set up for one of those, but they can definitely be effective.

Local events are a very successful place to be.  If you’ve chosen a solid target set up at local events where those customers attend and bring printed samples of the things they will need from you relevant to them.  For example if they are packaging people bring samples of packaging! Pretty simple.

And Direct Mail is obvious and you’re all over that, no need to elaborate on our end.

 

For Online Efforts you need to optimize your website to show up in the search engines, post blogs, post to social media, run ads and send email.  Period, it’s that simple!

Here’s an article by us on how print companies can create and run successful ad campaigns  AND here is a page that talks about how to market your printing company online successfully.

 

And Email is again straightforward.  We do recommend using email as a part of your online efforts, but when we separated it out here we mean that you should be marketing to your existing customers past and present by sending emails to them. Literally the more visible you are to them the more they will buy.  The more strategic and creative you are in your email the more they’ll buy.

Here is a page on our site that talks about email marketing for print companies.

 

On to to your Theme (some call it messaging and positioning)

 

Printing Company Marketing Plan Step 4: Define a Theme

Defining a theme can be as easy as saying “I am going to market beverage printing to beverage companies” or “I am going to promote 24/7 availability OR Quick turn printing to Marketing Decision Makers”.

Or it can be complicated and focus on “Tell & Show Industry X, companies in Y geography with 100+ employee head count, job titles of Marketing Directors and VPs of Marketing how easy we make their job by doing ABC things”.

Either way you’ll do the same thing. Distribute assets to them saying and showing those things.

But putting it to paper solidifies it and creates a common idea on what your going to say!

 

Lastly build and launch.

 

Printing Company Marketing Plan Step 5: Build the Assets & Launch

This says it all.

Now you’ll just build out the assets for each of your decided on channels, targeting the people you chose, saying the the things you defined as a theme within the budget you define.

Then Launch, Go Live, Attend, etc.

 

This is Guaranteed to get you More New Business.  More Leads & More Sales!

 

 

Have Questions? Call Us at 866-357-7422

Or Submit your information below

 

 

We’re Excited to share with you our newest Digital Strategist Ashley Myers!

When someone joins us we love to ask them questions to find out more about them and things they like.

Let’s here from Ashley:

 

Where are you from?

I’m from Waterloo, IL which is a small town about 30 min outside of St. Louis.

What are some things you enjoy doing (besides working)?

I am always reading. I also like photography, and hiking and exploring local parks with my Siberian Husky, Murphy. (Let’s Go Cardinals/Blues!)

Favorite Movie Genre or Fave Movie?

I am always up for a psychological thriller or scary movie. I can quote all of Shawshank Redemption or Hot Rod, and The Conjuring is still the scariest movie I’ve ever seen.

Favorite Type of Music and/or Band You’re Feeling Right Now?

My favorites are classic or alternative rock. I am currently going through a lengthy Misterwives phase. All-time favorite band is Green Day.

Place you’d like to visit but haven’t yet?

My answer was always Ireland, but now I finally get to go in August! So, my new answer is Italy. All the pasta.

Drink of Choice (doesn’t have to be alcoholic, but can be as well)?

Schnicklefritz from Urban Chestnut. Really, anything from Urban Chestnut.

Check out the rest of the Team here: https://acumenstudio.com/our-team/

We’re Excited to share with you our newest Account Manager Joe Brenner!

When someone joins us we love to ask them questions to find out more about them and things they like.

Let’s here from Joe:

 

Where are you from?

I was born and raised in West County St. Louis.

What are some things you enjoy doing (besides working)?

I enjoy calligraphy, drawing, spending time with my family, and video games.

Favorite Movie Genre or Fave Movie?

My all-time favorite movie is No Country for Old Men. I also really love the Kill Bill’s, the Godfather, and Predator.

Favorite Type of Music and/or Band You’re Feeling Right Now?

My favorite band is Fleetwood Mac, but lately, I have really gotten into VHS Collection, Ryn Weaver, Yuksek, and Cut Copy. 

Place you’d like to visit but haven’t yet?

I’d love to visit the UK, specifically London and all of Scotland.

Drink of Choice (doesn’t have to be alcoholic, but can be as well)?

Drink of choice: non-alcoholic: Dr Pepper. Alcoholic: either Ying Ling or Jameson, neat.

Check out the rest of the Team here: https://acumenstudio.com/our-team/

Marketing Automation has existed in some form since business started being done on the internet (it just wasn’t always called that).

But now it has become easier than ever to implement, has one of the highest returns and makes it easy to grow quickly at scale.

  • B2B companies are 67% more likely to see quarterly growth when using a marketing automation platform
  • 55% of polled B2B Companies are already using Marketing Automation in some form
  • 91% of marketers said a tool that enables their teams to review, analyze, and act on customer and marketing data would greatly increase ROI across all marketing channels

If you are wondering why your current digital marketing efforts haven’t produced the ROI you hoped for then take a look at these B2B Marketing Automation Templates that will increase your return on marketing and bring clarity to what channels are doing all the work.

Marketing Automation is the Perfect Blend of Marketing & Sales that Closes More Business!

Download Your B2B Marketing Automation Templates

No matter the size of your company, the products or services you offer or how long your company has been around, there is tons of competition out there, especially in the digital space. We often hear “There is no one out that offers what we do” or “My business is so unique we don’t have any competition.” While that isn’t necessarily an untrue statement, regardless of the companies or business out there in the same industry, there is and will always be other companies taking up digital real estate.

 

Why All Competitors Matter Online

You’re probably wondering why you should care if there is competition out there even if they don’t offer the same product or service as your company. Here’s why:

  • They are showing up in search engines for the terms your brand wants to be found for
  • They are providing the valuable content that your potential customers are needing at that point in time in their buyer’s journey.
  • They are putting ad spend behind valuable search terms and showing those that could be your customers, why they are the best

 

Digital Competitive Analysis is Key

When you look at your company’s position online and you realize you hardly show up for important search terms, or that you’re not providing anything valuable to potential visitors through downloadable assets or website content, it’s time to start looking at those that are taking up that space online; even those that don’t sell or offer exactly what your company does. By evaluating those companies online, you are taking the steps to truly increase your digital presence and get ahead of your competitors.

 

Call Us at 314-736-4434

Or Submit your information below

 

At this point you should already realize that social media isn’t just a place where friends and family connect, share photos and like posts.

Social has become a repository of knowledge, similar to the search engines, but more affinity driven by relationships and trusted sources.

If you want to know who to use for internet law, who can help you with an ESOP or what company is building quality apps, then social is a great place to get real feedback and reviews from people who have ACTUALLY used those services or know their work.

A B2B Social Media Strategy

Understanding how your target customers are using social media is key to gaining visibility, providing education to and engaging with these targets.

  1. Customers are asking their network for recommendations
  2. They are qualifying your company on social media
  3. These targets are educating themselves on your products & services

Has Anyone Heard of this Company?

A go to question asked by many business owners, executives, directors, buyers, managers, etc.
This is very powerful.

If an executive reaches out to their network asking for personal feedback on a company and one of their peers responds with good things to say, then you are on your way to landing new business.

While not every business will get a personal recommendation, if you have been marketing yourself well, then someone will at least know of you and respond with something like “I’ve seen this company and they look like they know what they are doing.”.
This is the next best thing, because you have built a small amount of social capital and trust with this target.

This stage of discovery is very important and completes the infinite loop of growth through marketing, which you can see clearly in our content marketing funnel (which is more of an hourglass), where past customers become salesmen for your business.

Who Are You Really?

Once a customer has been made aware of your business, whether it was from a referral on social media or they got nothing on social and asked the wise search engine Google, they will absolutely look your company up on social media.
Again this is a critical B2B Social Media step.

While the majority of B2B product & services companies are served well on LinkedIn, it is important to understand that these same customer targets have social profiles on many platforms and will look to find you where they are at in the moment (this could be Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest in addition to LinkedIn).
Plus, you will have a more diverse result in the search engines with a cross-platform social media presence. More results, Knowledgegraph inclusions, image results, Twitter feed, etc.

These customers will look to see if you are a legitimate business and size you up to see if you are a good fit.
Questions like “Are they too big?”, “Are they too small?”, “Do they think like I think?”, and many more. This is where being clear on your own brand and business is important, because it will qualify buyers for you in a very efficient way, driving better leads into your sales funnel.

At this point two main things will happen.
A customer will contact you via phone, form submission or email (they will find this info on your social profiles, if you have built them out completely).
Or the customer will educate themselves more on a specific product or service.

How Will Your Product or Service Help Me?

This is what most businesses think of as soon as they hear B2B Social Media or Social Media Strategy.
And rightfully so, because it is so critical.

Customers need to understand:

  • What problem you solve
  • What you sell / solution you provide
  • How it works
  • Why it fits their needs
  • Why you are better or different
  • Your process

Social Media is a great place to get this clarifying, compelling and enlightening content in front of prospective buyers.
These customers are comparing you to your competitors and the more you can educate them, the better chance you have of winning that business.

While you will want this content to primarily live on your website, social is the channel you will distribute this educational material to ensure it gets seen and gets the buyer back to your site where you can convert them or reach back out and communicate in other ways.

Types of B2B Content for Social Media

  • Blog Posts
  • Whitepapers
  • Ebooks
  • One Sheeters
  • Video
  • Infographics
  • Research Papers
  • Webinars
  • Case Studies
  • Podcasts

Depending on your product or service the mix of B2B content types will differ and the tactical strategy for each channel can be tailored as well.

B2B Social Media Research & Tactics

As with any marketing you should conduct research to identify key information to that will guide the marketing efforts. B2B Social Media is no different.

Our recommendation is to take the research beyond social as well by using Google search query data (the keywords) and pair it with social media research on your target customers social platforms, including the less thought about forums and groups such as Quora and LinkedIn groups.

Creating an inventory of who your target prospects is very important and taking this even further by identifying the stakeholders in those companies and engaging with their personal accounts on social will drive massive results.

This leads us to a few specific tactics that we recommend for a superior B2B Social Media Strategy.

Following and engaging with the business accounts of your prospective customers, the individual accounts of the decision makers of those businesses and the same for your current customers will create much-needed visibility, awareness, affinity and trust with the organizations that you want to do business with.

  • Like, Comment & Share Posts
  • Favorite, Reply & Retweet
  • Like & Comment using Video

This exposes you to the businesses you want to work with and gets your customers talking about you more, while at the same time you are indirectly getting in front of other potential customers who also engage with the same companies you are targeting.

This works like a charm and very few businesses are doing this!

You can learn more about our approach to social media here: https://acumenstudio.com/social-media-marketing-agency/

How Do I Know If It’s Working?

To be 100% Honest, this isn’t easy for most businesses.
Tracking, monitoring, analyzing, measuring and reporting to identify an ROI on your B2B marketing and social media efforts takes using platforms that can help you measure impact, attribution, and sales.
Most businesses are not equipped to do this (as are most marketers!).

You will either need to educate yourself on using platform specific social media analytics, social media tools such as Hootsuite, Buffer, SproutSocial, etc. or hire an agency to help you with this.

What we can tell you is that social media for B2B companies Pays Off BIG!

 

Download a Social Media Case Study Below to Learn More

Or, You can give us a call now at 866-357-7422 to talk.

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If you’re asking… “How Do I Switch To A New Project Management Software?” or “My Company Needs to Change Project Management Tools, What’s the Best Way?” then read on to see what we did.

 

Project management tools are supposed to be an organizer’s dream come true, right? So you would think switching from a project management tool that no long fits your needs to one that has all the bells and whistles would be a dream come true.  However, making the switch from one project management tool to the next presents a load of issues you would have never thought possible…one could say this is really an organizer’s worst nightmare?

 

Choosing the Right Project Management Tool

Choosing the right project management tool that will fit all of your wants, needs and desires may seem overwhelming and nearly impossible, but the thing to keep in mind and the best way to approach this question is to write out your top three ‘must-haves’ for your new project management tool.  

 

Below are a few features that were important to Acumen when we made the switch to our new project management system.

  • Ability to create task templates
  • Subtasks and sub-folders
  • Ability to send GIFs in a task thread

 

For our needs, it was essential that we found a project management tool that allowed us to create temples we could reuse for our monthly work for all of our clients. This would allow us to cut down the time our team spent creating new tasks every month and assigning them out.

 

It was also important for us to have the ability to create tasks within tasks, sub-tasks or ‘task inception’ if you will 😉 (get it because Inception was a dream within a dream and this is a task within a task…ok cool, just making sure).  Having this ability would allow us to breakdown a larger tasks into smaller ones and for us to know exactly where we were within a project or task.

 

Ok so the last bullet point, “ability to send a GIF” may or may not have been really vital to anyone else but me. I love sending GIFs and use them to communicate roughly 90% of my day.    

 

So in Conclusion on Switching to a New Project Management Tool

As long as you have your list of top ‘must-haves’ for a new project management tool and focus on making sure your new tool has those features, your transition from one platform to the next will be less painful than had you never made that list to begin with….keep in mind, keywords there “less painful”.  Believe me, it will still be painful, but it will be one less thing you need to worry about as you do your research.

 

Call Us at 314-736-4434

Or Submit your information below

 


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