Tuesday, March 26, 2013

What Four Critical Things Are Missing In Your Business?

How to Use Goals, Strategies, Tactics, and Logistics to Grow Your Biz

Goals, Strategies, Tactics, Logistics.  I'm not the first to suggest that a careful assessment of these four elements will make or break your company. 

Thus far in our series of 101 Marketing Secrets from a Serial Entrepreneur, we have built the case for goals, strategies, tactics and seven of our top ten recommended logistical considerations.  If you have not been following this series, and would like to start at the beginning, you can find all 27 (as of 9/3/2012) on http://www.Help4SmallBusiness.blogspot.com

The seven logistical items we have covered thus far are linked below.  Are these elements controlling you or are you controlling them.  Are you proactively evaluating and planning for adequate provisions for the battle, or are you marching into war hoping you'll find ample supplies of critical materials, equipment, and other resources along the way?
  1. Having enough money matters!  A lot.
  2. Suppliers are more important than customers
  3. Lost our lease is more common that you think.  Facilities
  4. Employees are a necessary evil OR your key to long term success
  5. Time is relentless, unyielding, precious. Count it
  6. You and your employees have limited time and energy.  Plan accordingly
  7. Your family is a logistical consideration.  Unhappy families kill businesses
There are three more logistical consideration coming in the next three days.  You might want to subscribe to this blog to catch those tutorials, and the 71 additional marketing ideas, methods, secrets, and tips that will follow over the next 74 days. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

What Is Google Places, Google + Worth? Maybe $5000 a Month

What is Google Places Worth to Your Small Business?

$10,000 a year?  A month?  A week?  A day?  In making decisions about how to spend your marketing dollars, you can make a smarter and wiser decision if you have some idea of the potential profit you might gain from spending nothing, a little or a lot.

So how much should you be willing to spend on Google Places help to rank #1 on Google Places?
How much is Google Places worth?

Start with your average transaction.  Some retailers might have an average as low as $50.  Lawyers might have an average as high as $30,000.  Do you know your average transaction in dollars? 

Next you need to get some idea of how many of your clients would use the internet to find your or make a decision.  I have clients who have close to 100% of all their clients coming in from the internet.  Others, like restaurants, hotels, and many retailers get hundreds of impressions per day and multiple clients per day calling from their Google Places listings.  Others with great rankings only get the occasional call. 

Your investment in an internet effort is determined by average transaction X number of anticipated additional transactions. 

So $50 per transaction and potential for 3 per week is $150 per week or $600 a month.  Margins of 50% would mean $300 a month extra profit.  I wouldn't spend much on SEO for that.

Average transaction of net $2000 in commission.  If one extra per month, I'd happily pay $500 a month for that.

Average profit per transaction $500 and 10 of those possible per month.  Investing $1000 a month for that is a no brainer.

One of the great things about SEO is that it lasts for a long time.  Unlike pay per click or advertising in Yelp or yellow pages, your website, Google Places efforts, YouTube videos, blog posts and other organic methods often work to make the phone ring for months or even years.

One last thing.  If you aren't highly ranked, your competitors are.  The customer they get one time will often turn into a client and a source of referrals or positive reviews.    Now how much is that Google Places listing worth?  Call Randy at 310-910-1848 if you'd like to discuss a budget that makes sense for you.

Want more like this.  This blog alone is the equivalent of a 200 page book.  I have two other blogs that deal with different areas of business management.  Between the three, I try to create 6 - 9 additional posts per week of marketing and management methods that you can employ immediately.

For instance, hundreds of folks have read: 

30 Foundational Elements to Small Business Marketing - Secrets from a Serial Entrepreneur

So you may want to check out my General Business blog:   


Or you might like my blog on creating and managing internet content: 


Friday, March 22, 2013

Cheap Back Links Are So Last Year - Here's the Future

I Never Used Back Links Until February 2012!  Great Timing

First Website Developed on Something Like This - Still a Mac Man

Some quick history.  I've been doing internet optimization since Al baby invented it.  I have worked on national campaigns, and for the past 5 years have concentrated on local.  From 1994 until 2012, I never paid for a back link.  In February of 2012 I met a guy who said he could give me solid content, but not great content, and provide me with some excellent back links.  I decided to give it a try.

From Riches to Ashes in 90 Days

In no time at all I was converted.  I only tested the theory on a few clients who had the most competitive keywords.  Within weeks I was a hero.  I imagined building my fledgeling marketing business into a major powerhouse with a blue-windowed-office building on the side of the freeway.  But alas...Panda and Penguin and Venice and Panda II and on and on and just like that, I was back to where I started from on all the accounts that got the biggest boost.

I count myself fortunate that my SEO guy was a man of character.  None of his links ever cost me to fall totally out of favor with the Google.   I just slid back to neutral.  I stayed in touch with Mike as he worked hard to figure out how to profitably help folks get ranking without the old cheap back link methods.  I am very impressed with and happy to share with you what he has come up with:

Mike Munter - Back Link Guru - Reborn
"Any attempt to manipulate Google’s organic search results may give you short-term results, but if you’re building your business for the long-term, you’re probably best to avoid them.  Know what you’re getting into before you invest and choose carefully."
This is the last paragraph of a great new post from Mike Munter.  He has laid out, in painstaking detail, what it takes to get links that will stand the test of time.  Why will they hold up.  Because they are the kinds of links that Google loves.  They are from trusted sources.  The content is unique, helpful, detailed, well written, and not spammy in any way.

If you want to learn more about how to write great content, try my new blogContent Marketing Is So Internet 2013

What Does It Cost to Create the Kind of Content Google Wants Today

The short answer to this question is 5¢ - 20¢ a word.  It largely depends on the industry you are in.  Content for a bakery or restaurant might be closer to 5¢.  Content for a doctor or lawyer, closer to 20¢.  But there are many ways to use content that gives great value for the spend.  For details on that you might try this article.  Content Management Automation for Dummies

Then there is the added cost of adding the content to media.  And in today's visual world, there is going to be some more money spent on great visual content.   

I'm recommending you check out what Mike has wrought.  You can find his post here:

What Cheap SEO Services Look Like (And What Can Happen If You Invest In Them)


If you are struggling to get the kind of visibility online that you would like . . .
If you are not making the kind of money you think you should be . . .
If you are hoping to take your business to the next level and don't have time to learn every new internet product that hits the little screen . . .

We at Randy Kirk and Associates are on top of it all.  We have:
  •  A Blog Specialist
  •  A Google Places/Google+ Local Specialist
  •  A Pinterest Specialist
  •  A Professional Ghost Writer and Staff 
  •  A YouTube Team with Over 2000 Videos Online
  •  A LinkedIn Specialist
  •  A Website Design and Development Marketing Team
  •  And we have great depth in every aspect of traditional marketing from print to trade shows 
 Call to learn more.  310-910-1848   I answer the phone.  


Monday, March 18, 2013

Google + Content + SEO + Social Media = Visitors and Visibility

Great Content Make The Google Happy and The Google Rewards Those Who Provide Same

The game has changed in the past 14 months in a Major Way.  Penguin, Panda, Venice and their various iterations have put the spammers out of business.  You also might know that another Panda update is coming around March 15.  Bad content has been dealt with harshly, but along with that a substantial amount of good content that was written under the old rules has gone away also.  We have taken a completely new approach in writing for all media, in particular blogs, and our clients are getting huge results.  We now want to pass our discoveries along to you.

In order to better manage the massive amount of free DIY information that we provide to those who are seeking free advice, I have started yet another blog that specifically deals with the complete revolution that has taken place on Google the last years.

Content Marketing Is So Internet 2013  You can save time by just going their now!

In this blog we explore the new way to help Google give us better ranking for all kinds of content:
  • Blog
  • YouTube
  • Press Releases
  • Articles
  • Website
  • Google+

Subjects Already Covered in Content Marketing Is So Internet 2013

If you didn't already take the above prompt to go check out the new blog.  Let me entice your further.  We have basically only dealt with blog content and a little PR up 'till now.  But we will be adding complete instruction on all media in the future.  You can subscribe to this blog if you would like as we will keep you up to date on new posts on the Content Blog.  Or you can also subscribe to the Content Blog and get updates.  We post on that blog about three times per week.  All Free. 


 Content Marketing Is So Internet 2013

Content Is King for Google...and Queen, Jack, Ten ....   The Key to Google's Heart Has Always Been Content!  Now They Mean It.
Content Management Automation for Dummies  -  Content Is Expensive Unless You Use Lean Manufacturing Techniques to Create It
Web Content - Does Size Matter? 400 Words or 1400 Words?  -  Should Blog Posts, Articles, Website Pages Be Short and Sweet or Long and Detailed
Content Writers: Write a 1500 Word Post Like A Pro - All Secrets Revealed  - If You Don't Know How to Write - Here is a How To: Generate Great Internet Content?
Blog Post Failed? Retitle, Rewrite, Reoptimize, Retag, Repost  -  Don't Settle for 3 Views of Your Blog Post.  Recycle and Revive It
Nine Tips to Turn Your Old, but Fantastic Content New Again
7 Amazing Benefits from Online Press Releases  -  Creating an Online Press Release Can Create Massive Return On Investment
The Perfect Blog Post You Used to Love Has Been Updated in 2013 - Don't Miss This One
Love to hear your comments.  If you need someone to help you with you marketing, we are only too happy to provide a full range of services.  Be sure to +1 or Tweet about this new blog.

If you are a content writer, but need additional content written, or if you don't want to or have time to write content, we are a potential source of help.  Our goal is to be your VP of Marketing and help you with your entire marketing effort, including great online content creation.  Call me at 310-910-1848.  I answer the phone.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Google Places Still Most Important Resource on the Internet for SMB

Small Business Owners Continue to Ignore Google Places at their Peril

Last week I published a post Google Places Ranking Factors - Google+ Local Ranking Factors
on another blog I write.  Quoting myself: "But far and away the most important adverting space on the web or anywhere else in 2013 for a local small business is Google Places."  In that post I make the case that some who recognize the power of Google Places are still not spending the time and money they could and should in order to get the ranking that will matter.

In this post I intend to attack the issue from another POV.  Some owners of local small businesses aren't paying any attention at all to Google Places.  And I have no doubt that some in that category are still successful.  Maybe they're doing great with Facebook or FourSquare or YouTube videos or Living Social or a newspaper ad.   Maybe they or you have tons of business, because your products and or service is so excellent that referrals are all you need.  Or in many cases, I'm guessing, you figure it is too time consuming or too expensive to get the results you need.

Some of those same folks who have given up or never tried to get the organic presence through their website or Google Places, seem content to pour $500, $1000 or more into Google Adwords.  And while I know there are those who profit from this strategy, the problem is, the cost never ends, but the benefits end the day after you stop the campaign.

And, while ending some amount of caretaking of a Google Places listing might result in some loss of impressions, the cost per month for keeping Places in place should be in the $100 range or a couple of hours or so per month.


I promised you a peril.  You see, if you are profitable at this time and reasonably happy with your income, whose to say you should invest in making sure Google Places is sending you new clients.  Your competitors are getting some or all of those clients that could have been yours, but "good for them," you might think.  There's enough to go around.

Here's the rub!  Google Places is attached to Google Everything, and I mean EVERYTHING!  And if it isn't attached already, it will be soon:
  •  Google+ - the 2nd largest social media act in the world.  Soon to be #1
  •  Google+ Business Pages - Will someday replace Places, we think
  •  Google Maps - the current #1 mapping project in the world
  •  YouTube - By far the largest photo repository and second largest search engine
  •  Google Search - 75% of all search activity on the internet
  •  Blogger - 2nd largest blogging platform - now linked to Google +
  •  Google Alerts and Google Reader
  •  Oh Yeah!  Android
The list could go on and on.  So imagine that you have created 10 companies that each perform a different, but somewhat related function.  All 10 are wildly successful.  Now you decide to put all of these companies on one campus and have them connected every way possible.  You have the makings of a superpowerhouse.  

You can choose to ignore all this.  You can choose to give it a small nod.  You can choose to allocate a few dollars a month to work on it.  But for most small businesses selling products or services in a local area...You need to be actively infused into this environment.  One or more of your competitors will be.


If this is your first time here, please note that this blog has been set up to provide all the tools and information you could possibly need to set up a Google Places Account.  Feel free to browse through the articles and the pages that give detailed step-by-step instructions, including what not to do, and what actually works to optimize your Google Places Site.

We will shortly begin to offer similar articles and pages on Google+ Local Business Pages.  We feel that Google, as usual, has put this product out way before it was ready.  We have been waiting for the dust to settle before making our recommendations.

Subscribe to this blog and you will receive the updates as we provide them.

If you are a content creator or want to be, you may want to visit my blog on content creation, management, and automation:  Content Marketing for Google