To be social.

Social networking, tools, skills and reasons for your business.

Our very need to innovate which receives attention has lend to more ways to be social, to network and to get communications to our customers that they understand which gives a customer the choice to make an informed decision to purchase.

Social networking tools are another step in the marketing of your business – how you choose to use these social media tools as a strategy should be part of your marketing plan.

Simplicity is the key, if you are a business that needs to be talked about, talked to or social in every way then use more social media tools, and put in place a monthly/weekly or sometimes daily social process. Or, if you are a business that traditionally talks little but produces heaps – why do some desperate necessity just because a seminar tells you to!

Plan it, allow for it, and let a social network deliver your service or product message to more customers. Easy.

One way to deal with ‘the need to be social’ is by activating a simple strategy, set in place a process and integrate business communications into social tools that will help your business. Flying Lizard offers a service where together we set in place your social media strategy. Sort out networking tools, or update what you have – maybe remove tools that are not helping. Document a strategy for staff to follow thru to results that should be looked for. Include new trends and integrate current marketing messages into social networking.

All about Facebook – Should my Business have a Facebook page?

Should we be on Facebook? As a business person, that’s the question you’re asking. More than likely, though, you don’t really even know what it means to be “on Facebook.” You’ve just heard that there are nearly a billion people on Facebook and, of course, a great portion of them must be potential customers. You’ve also heard many stories, some from people you know, about businesses finding customers on Facebook. So, what’s the answer? Should you be on Facebook? Well, yes, we believe you should. But that’s the wrong question. The right question is “Why should you be on Facebook and how does Facebook fit into your overall marketing strategy?” Let’s dig a little deeper…

Facebook should be used as a source for traffic, not a destination. You don’t want customers to find you ON Facebook. You want them to find you FROM Facebook. The reason that you don’t want to build your community on Facebook is that you don’t own the platform. Facebook can change anything at anytime, alienating you from your customers. This fact is something you must realize right here and now: you don’t own your Facebook fans; Facebook owns them. And, whatever Facebook decides, you have to deal with the fallout.

So, If not Facebook, then what?

First, again, let’s be clear about something. We believe that most businesses should have a Facebook page. People still use Facebook and you need to have a presence there to meet them. However, your purpose should not be to build a community on Facebook. It should be to draw people away from Facebook to your website. If you can create a community of people on your website, you will have control over the medium, the message, and the reach. What you need is interactive company information on your website, ie. a blog as example. Feel free to talk to Flying Lizard about what your business needs – we can help you.

Your qualified Flying Lizard team will suggest the products that are needed, or if you only need 1 or 2 things sorted out below are the products you will need to order. Simply click on a product for a description of what you can expect to receive.

Protect Your Domain Name.

Imagine you’re the owner of a successful Web site, but when you logon one day all you get is an error message.

Or worse yet, the domain name now points to a site full of advertisements. That’s right. You’re out of business.

This happens every day because of a perfectly legitimate process known as “drop catching,” where people quickly snag the domain names owners have let expire and try to resell them or use the links associated with the names, which could be extensive, to create Web sites loaded with advertisements. You can easily avoid becoming a victim of a drop catcher by better understanding how the domain registration system works to protect your domain name.

Your Web site, with all the content you have so painstakingly added, sits on a computer with a unique address called an IP address, which is simply a series of numbers. A domain name is an address forwarding service that directs visitors to the site using this IP address. Domain names are used instead of numbers because most people find it easier to remember a name rather than a bunch of numbers. It’s as if you could dial your friend’s name into the telephone instead of his phone number.

You can purchase a domain name by registering it with a provider of domain services such as GoDaddy.com , the largest on the Web, or any number of other registrars. The name can be registered for just one year, for about $10, or for as long as ten years, for around $80. Many register for only one year because it’s cheaper, or they only want the site for a limited time.

At the end of the year, the registrar usually sends an email renewal notice to the owner. If the owner doesn’t respond to the renewal notice, the domain name will eventually be made available for purchase by someone else. Roughly 20,000 domain names become available every day because the owners allowed them to expire, or the owners didn’t realize that their domain name was up for renewal.

According to the rules established by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers(ICANN), domain registrars have 45 days after the expiration date to notify the owner that their domain name is going to be dropped from the registry. If the name is dropped, the guidelines then call for a 30-day grace period during which the owner can still claim the name. After this grace period and then another five-day holding period, the name is dropped from the registry and anyone can claim it.

Since 2004, however, a number of domain service providers, starting with SnapName.com, have created an auction process for expired names which bypasses the original drop process and makes the names available in as little as thirty days. GoDaddy.com begins the auction process even before the names have officially expired, although it does warn the auction participants that the owner could still claim their name.

These providers of domain services each have tools on their sites to make it easier to grab expired names. They provide constantly updated lists of expired names, various auction services, search engines, and other free tools for anyone to quickly and easily find available domain names. Some sites also offer software for sale that further simplifies the search for expired and soon to be expired names.

With the surge in online advertising, drop catchers will continue to seek out domain names from sites with good traffic, anxious to exploit the established links. Protect your site and your business by checking the expiration date of your domain name. Relying on the registrar to send a renewal notice that could easily be sent to an old email address or get lost in the spam catcher, could cost you years of hard work.

You might be tempted to take your foot off the marketing pedal.

Don’t. If you do, you risk un-doing all the hard marketing work you’ve recently put into your business.

If you want to stay on course for success, you have to keep the momentum going – even if your business is booming and you think you deserve a rest.

Maintain good business practices

If you’ve put new systems in place lately (perhaps you’ve asked staff to amend address details when they contact customers or maybe you’ve stepped up a gear on giving great customer service), it’s now up to you to ensure that these continue to run smoothly. You made changes for a reason, so don’t let it all go to waste.

Assess every aspect of your business

It’s easy to focus on the parts of your business that cry out for your attention but try not to overtook all the other areas. Check you’re happy with how every part of your business is operating. Your business can only be successful if all the cogs are turning together

Marketing budgets as suggested by NZ Trade & Enterprise

Marketing budgets are like shopping in a duty free store at the airport: there can never be enough money to cover all that you want. The biggest problem is over capitalising. In other words, spending $5,000 on marketing might bring in the same amount of business as spending $20,000.

Most businesses spend from 0 to 6% on marketing. Zero percent may apply if you are clever enough and word of mouth has built to such an extent that you have the luxury of not needing to promote (the ideal situation). Six percent is likely to apply if you have just started your business and need some awareness, or you are in a very competitive industry. Flying Lizard suggest 3 to 5% is a good range in the current market, but some businesses could and should spend more to target their customers and drive sales.

How should the marketing budget be split among the different methods of promoting your business? Here’s our marketing budget split % guideline for a business in a good location:

  • Personal selling 5%
    Personal selling is where businesses use people (the “sales force”) to sell the product after meeting face-to-face with the customer. The sellers promote the product through their attitude, appearance and specialist product knowledge. They aim to inform and encourage the customer to buy, or at least trial the product.
  • Direct mail/e-commerce 20%
    Direct marketing is concerned with establishing an individual relationship between the business offering a product or service and the final customer. Electronic commerce, commonly known as e-commerce, is the buying and selling of product or service over electronic systems such as the Internet and other mobile devices.
  • Publicity 5%
    At its core, publicity is the simple act of making a suggestion to a journalist that leads to the inclusion of a company or product in a story.
  • Public relations 5%
    The practice of maintaining a healthy relationship between organization and its public/employees/stakeholders/investors/partners.
  • Word of mouth 10%
    Word-of-mouth advertising is important for every business, as each happy customer can steer dozens of new ones your way. And it’s one of the most credible forms of advertising.
  • Sales promotions/merchandising 40%
    Sales promotion is the process of persuading a potential customer to buy the product. Sales promotion is designed to be used as a short-term tactic to boost sales – it is not really designed to build long-term customer loyalty. Merchandising ensures sales – go to great lengths to make sure that your products are visible in stores and are presented in an appealing, ‘sellable’ way. This is called merchandising, which includes product packaging, placement, promotions and pricing to appeal to the target market.
  • Advertising 5%
    Advertising is a form of communication for marketing and used to encourage or persuade a customer.
  • Contingency 10%
    Always have some contingency funds available as there will be times when even the best planning will not foresee events that you can take advantage of (a competitor going bust, or some event like your local sports team winning the competition).
  • TOTAL 100%

Review your business strategy

Revisit your business plan and update it if necessary. It’s likely that today’s business environment is different from when you launched your company – it’s different from even six months ago! And if you started without a business plan, it’s never too late to write one, you’ll find it invaluable.

Refresh your marketing

Make sure you’re promoting your company to the right people. Take a look at how using various direct marketing processes can help you communicate more effectively with your customers. Don’t forget your website – is it working? And what about your sales literature – in need of an overhaul? Review all your marketing activity, refresh, polish and buff as you go.

Stay in tune with your customers’ wants and needs

What your customers want today may not be what they want tomorrow keep up with changing attitudes and new trends. Stay in touch with your customers and ask them what they want. Did you know that many New Zealanders are now inclined to be more careful with their money? Find out more, see some statistics.

Smarten up

You may have pulled your business practices into line but how do you look? Ask yourself what first impressions your company radiates when customers walk in, ring or visit your website. Perhaps it’s time to tidy up your offices, answer the telephone with a smile and improve your website.

Bring your staff together

You need your staff and your staff needs you. Look after your team, talk to them and listen to them. Encourage feedback and work together to make your business successful. Give your team a motivational boost, take them out, do something as a group and be sure to reward outstanding achievements and individual success.

Network like never before

Get some stimulation from others – network. Join a business forum and go to all the relevant seminars and events you can. Talk to people and hand out those business cards. For more on networking.

Make time for your business

If you think you’re too busy to give your business the on-going TLC it needs, set time aside. If you are heading into a quiet period, use this time wisely. Otherwise, draw up a task list and work through it whenever you get the chance.

Achieving and maintaining success isn’t all plain sailing but if you keep on top of the work that needs to be done you can steer your company through.

  • Maintain the good business practices you’ve already put into place.
  • Update your business plan and refresh your marketing.
  • Talk to your staff and your customers regularly.
  • Smarten up, first impressions count.
  • Network, talk to as many people as possible.
  • Set time aside to give your business the TLC it needs.

Flying lizard hopes this helps, we are a business just like yours and use these check points to achieve success!

ORDER SKILLS HERE

Epic Realty, Harcourts, monthly marketing communications.

Epic Realty, Harcourts, NZ.

Flying Lizard began an association with Chris Kennedy in early 2005, develop advertising concepts for press, radio and web for ongoing recruitment advertising and general branding. Graphic design for flyers, brochures and sales materials for real estate sales team. Management of photography for team and offices.

Products to include:

Plan 12 monthly marketing strategy’s focusing on recruitment, brand awareness, teams abilities, effect and knowledge on local market. Updating message’s targeting better the teams ability to touch people. Creative, marketing ideas, radio scripts and messages, press advertising, bill board and bus back advertising. Business launch materials, presentation collateral.

Hi Flying Lizard,
Thanks for getting onto my jobs so quickly for me.
Cheers
Chris Kennedy
Auctioneer/Real Estate Institute of New Zealand 2010 Auction Champion.
Epic Realty LTD, Licensed Agent REAA 2008.

harcourts-a1-poster-01 harcourts-a1-poster-02 harcourts-a1-poster-03 harcourts-epicrealty-ad-busback-1 harcourts-epicrealty-ad-busback-2

Rainbow Confectionery Packaging – The beginnings.

Rainbow Confectionery/Innovex Group Limited, Oamaru, NZ.

Efficient and cost minded packaging brand design.

Rainbow Confectionery Ltd. is a New Zealand owned & operated company based in Oamaru and specialising in the manufacture of confectionery, including: gums and jellies, marshmallows, chocolate products. Supplying customers in the route & retail trades for both local and export markets. Their products are smart yet iconic, and their ideas are packed into good packaging examples.

Flying Lizard was asked to work on Rainbow Confectionery product packaging as they needed something to set there product apart from the other similar offerings in this highly competitive standard confectionery market which they could then build upon with an in house marketing department.

We were initially called in to provide simple illustrative images to liven up product packaging, Flying Lizard was then asked to design and supply packaging design for seasonal product ranges for the entire year.

There were various ways that using Flying Lizard benefited the marketing needs.

With a large product range, it was important to use the correct logo and standard product information in terms of branding, product awareness, unit cost and packaging reproduction cost. Our design team proposed a shortlist of creative ideas and provided design information for each option that optimised the Rainbow Confectionery brand to illuminate the product to the required level. The customers final adjustments provided finished designs to able completion of packaging mockups to work in with the sales teams objectives, while using only the budgeted amount originally proposed for the project.

In addition to the functional packaging designs, Flying Lizard provided the overall creative for the rest of the company’s brand, with an eye on time and costs. Rainbow Confectionery’s logo was used were possible to it’s advantages while keeping low reproductions costs to extended the budget.

In certain cases where the correct brand placement was not available because of visual size constraints, we were able to work out a solution that would meet the requirements of brand placement, product packaging effect and budgetary constraints with printing plate colours.

Within a season of the updated packaging design, our customer had received positive feedback on the marketing of there product, with competition companies now using similar design layouts that we achieved, this particular packaging work was far more effective in raising Rainbow Confectionery’s product in the market.

From 2013 Rainbow Confectionery is placed for strong business growth. The client has implimented their internal marketing and communications department and is underway with a very robust and active marketing drive. Flying Lizard wish Rainbow Confectionery well and look forward to seeing this business still around in many years to come.

This portfolio demonstrates how professional brand design, can give a business a competitive edge and who better to provide that design and marketing knowledge than Flying Lizard, who give business momentum.

Value Packs

innovex-rainbow-value

Christmas Packaging

innovex-rainbow-christmas

Easter packaging

innovex-rainbow-easter

A craft beer bar, Tonic.

Tonic, Otago, NZ.

Reference from business owner

The owners of tonic, a craft beer bar needed a simple marketing plan that would grow custom, build turn over and show that there is more to going out than swilling DB or Lion Nation branded beer. The movement to craft beer was growing when Flying Lizard was approach and New Zealand has great craft and micro breweries up and down the country.

The Flying Lizard set about building a marketing plan, keeping it simple and implementing basic collateral and advertising for the financial year. After 12 months we were able to grow the businesses turn over 25%.

With the GFC/economic recession, a controlled approach was taken to target this figure again or if possible a bit more. The Flying Lizard’s marketing plan is working well, the financial year and the figures are healthy – considering the tightening of customers having ‘a few spare dollars’.

The marketing plan is well one its way for the business owners future needs, of growth and then sale for their own interests.

Highlight promotion – An annual fantastic 2 week beer festival – called bestival of feer, where the bar show cased 24 award winning craft beers from the recent New Zealand Beervana of the year.

Major elements of tonic bar‚ marketing and supplied collateral design include:

Standardized templates for quick turn around posters and promotional items.
Launch into social media – its a bar, it should be a key social player and use new social technologies.
Beer festival with latest music styles.

Here at Flying Lizard, we like helping all sorts of businesses, it is not hard to market your self or your business, just plan it.

Website

tonic-bar-website

Event posters

tonic_bar_posters

Bestival of Feer passport

tonic_bar_bestival-of-feer-passport

“To Whom It May Concern:

In 2008 we approached Dayne Smith of The Flying Lizard to assist us in marketing tonic. At this point we met to decide a marketing strategy and assign a budget for the next 12 months. We worked closely with Dayne and his team creating the marketing collateral needed for the strategy, including an annual, monthly and weekly event idea and collateral to promote and advertise this. Tools to measure the strategy were put in place along with periodic reviews to gauge turnover which allowed for business planning and growth.

Throughout the year we used The Flying Lizard’s ‘goo™’ product (marketing strategy tools) which was extremely useful in communicating and coordinating the marketing collateral. We found it particularly useful as it allowed us to post messages and jobs outside of normal office hours. Flying Lizard’s team was responsible for producing the marketing collateral and website updates for us and we found the team to be very efficient and able to turn around jobs on often tight deadlines.

The marketing strategy helped us achieve a 25% increase in turnover for the 12 month period and we have continued to employ the services of The Flying Lizard to promote our business. It is satisfying to work on the business with a strategy in place and with the knowledge of how our business fluctuates over a 12 month period.

Please do not hesitate to contact me info@tonicbar.co.nz in person should you wish to discuss the services of The Flying Lizard further.

Yours faithfully,
Vicki and Francis Fitzpatrick”