Focus on "soft conversions" to optimize Facebook ads | When product differentiation backfires | 4 tips for analyzing your Instagram marketing
March 24, 2017
News for retail entrepreneurs
Connecting with Customers
Focus on "soft conversions" to optimize Facebook ads
It would be nice if everyone who saw your Facebook ad immediately made a purchase, but generating these types of "hard conversions" can be difficult. Focus on getting "soft conversions" such as having customers sign on to receive your emails, and then use retargeting tactics to close the sale, writes Kane Jamison, founder of Content Harmony.
Duct Tape Marketing (3/23) 
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When product differentiation backfires
When product differentiation backfires
(Andrew Wong/Getty Images)
Sometimes it pays to focus on the same product attributes that your competitors emphasize in their marketing rather than trying to differentiate your brand, write Yi Zhu and Anthony Dukes. That's because too many differing marketing messages in a crowded field can confuse and distract consumers, producing a "dilution effect."
Harvard Business Review online (tiered subscription model) (3/23) 
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4 tips for analyzing your Instagram marketing
Using Instagram Insights can help you analyze your sales funnel and develop a plan to improve your results on the platform, writes Alexandra Lamachenka. Also, monitor changes in your follower numbers and analyze comments on your photos to gauge sentiment. (3/21) 
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Keeping Shop
Don't let your business burn you out
When you're running your own business, just keeping on top of things can feel like an impossible task, writes Warren Webster, president and CEO of Coveteur. It's important to allocate time for strategic tasks, schedule free time on your calendar to unwind and find a hobby to relieve some stress, he writes.
Fortune (3/23) 
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When to worry about a new employee
Entrepreneurs share what bothers them about a new hire's behavior or outlook. For example, John Rampton of Due advises managers to look for a "lack of positivity," while Kelsey Meyer of Influence & Co. says "not asking questions" should be cause for concern.
SmartBrief/Leadership (3/22) 
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Managing the Money
Using home to back a business loan can be risky
Using your home as collateral for a business loan runs the risk of foreclosure, write Ilyce Glink and Samuel Tamkin. Some lenders have loan covenants in place that allow them to call a loan due even if a borrower is current on his or her payments.
The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (3/22) 
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Policy & Trends
Mild winter has mixed effect on small-business owners
This winter -- one of the warmest on record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration indicates -- proved challenging for retailers that sell winter gear and other businesses that thrive on cold conditions. Meanwhile, businesses focused on outdoor activities saw an earlier start to the spring business season.
The Associated Press (3/22) 
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Stories from the Street
Couple's natural products featured in N.M. gift guide
After relocating from California to Silver City, N.M., Brenda and Kevin Stratton opened a shop selling natural deodorant, soap, lotion and other products. Their company, called Ziryab's Body Brew, has been featured in the New Mexico True Certified Spring Gift Guide, which was unveiled by the New Mexico Tourism Department.
Silver City Sun-News (N.M.) (3/22) 
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NRF News
3 generations of top-notch customer service and products
Debbie Schaeffer is the third-generation owner of Mrs. G, a New Jersey-based independent home appliance retailer that's been in business for more than 80 years. STORES magazine spoke with Debbie about the company's strong tradition of customer service and community support and about refreshing the business for the next generation of home appliance shoppers. Read more.
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SmartStat: March 24, 2017
Athleisure clothing brand Rainbeau implemented a social advertising strategy that expanded its reach internationally and saw a peak return on investment of 256%. Source: STORES Magazine.
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A later Easter is expected to bring record spending
Americans will spend more than ever as they celebrate Easter nearly three weeks later this year than last. According to NRF's annual survey, spending for the holiday is expected to reach $18.4 billion, a new all-time high in the survey's 14-year history. Read more.
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Change is what keeps a business moving forward and successful.
Nicole Munoz of Start Ranking Now, as quoted by SmartBrief/Leadership
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