Who do you think you are? And who does everyone else think you are?
In Robert W Chambers’ classic collection The King In Yellow, the Repairer of Reputations is a man whose skill lies in mending the public perception of people who have somehow transgressed the social order, with tragic consequences.
Sharing and communicating
In the modern world, reputation management is every bit as important as it was in Chambers’ story, it’s a far less arcane practice in real life, the consequences of neglecting can be severely damaging to a business. However, the benefits, when it is handled correctly, can deliver fantastic results. At its most basic level, online reputation management is a combination of sharing/communicating consistent messages whilst monitoring and responding to noise about your organisation.
A large business in the public eye, for example, may pay a press monitoring agency to sift through the day’s news and collate all references to that business, enabling them to see how they are perceived by the media and therefore also by the public.
A large restaurant chain with a reputation of being damaging to the environment can take steps to address this, perhaps by launching a new pledge or initiative to promote their environmental consideration and help combat their poor reputation.
A company looking to sell or float will work hard to promote and manage their reputation and the content produced by them/for them. Establishing an organisation as profitable, successful and interesting is key to driving a sale.
At a deeper level online reputation management concerns itself with the amount of attention a company receives from its target audience. All the popular search engines such as Google operate according to a complex set of algorithms which determine how high up in the search results any individual page or site will be, meaning reputation management depends on gaming the system to ensure that your company has high online visibility. In the early days of the internet, users would stuff their home pages with irrelevant references to popular TV shows or bands in order to attract more hits. Search engines got wise to this and realised it was making their platforms useless, so have been constantly developing and adapting algorithms to keep systems working properly, with more genuine content.
It is worth noting that online reputation management is not about cheating the system as such; it’s about understanding how the system works and turning it to one’s advantage.
Search engines can be one of the most powerful allies a business can have, and public perception is what will ultimately determine the uptake of your goods or services. So vague and intangible as it may seem, allowing a budget for reputation management will always be money well spent.
We help both high profile individuals and businesses with their online reputation. For more information please contact email@example.com
We’ve collated some excellent top tips from members, associates and contacts to whet your appetite for learning more.
STEVE CHEW – Magnificent Stuff
- The brain is designed to learn. If you don’t learn it will atrophy.
- Technology changes ridiculously quickly – constant training is imperative.
- I know it’s unfashionable but… READ things!
GARY BENSKIN – TaxLocal
- Training – you can never be ‘too smart’; there is always something to be learned from someone, no matter how lowly you consider their current position to be.
- Development – one thing we can always be sure of is change. Try to be positive about change. A flexible mindset will help you cope.
- Growth – This ought to be contained within your business plan. Who are your ideal clients? How do you approach them? Who are your competitors?
IAN HUDSON – HDCC
- For start-ups, when writing a business plan double the costs and half the income forecasts.
- Pay invoices within 30 days and you will be more likely to be paid quicker.
PAUL BARTLET – Price Bailey
- Look for changes in the sector you are in. Are there opportunities for new service lines? Keep things fresh!
- Listen – there is a reason why we have two ears and one mouth and the key is using them in proportion. The difficult part is mastering the skill. Listen to learn rather than listening to respond.
- Learn – explore opportunities to broaden your skills.
TREVOR STANESBY – Blue Pig Creative
- Keep to your word.
- Do not over promise on what you can do.
- Listen to your client.
ED PEARSON – Entrepreneurs Network
- Make sure you’re embracing the right problems.
- There is always stuff popping up in business that can potentially derail you but solving the right issues that get you moving towards your goals and ensuring growth.
LYN REED – Best Mailing Services
- Build a strong relationship with your client.
- Stay connected.
- Pick up the phone! It is not all about email.
- Go that extra mile & be proactive.
- Offer help & knowledge for free; it doesn’t have to be about something you can charge for.
- Be happy, stay positive and show interest.
If you would like any help with any of the topics discussed please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
My first 6 months as an Account Manager at Magnificent Stuff has been an absolute whirlwind to say the least! My passion for marketing has grown day by day which was injected with excitement and delight when I received an email saying that we were finalists at the Essex Digital Awards 2018. Our category was Social Media for Business which, as all of our wonderful clients know, we strive to be the best at! The Magnificent Stuff team had a fantastic evening which is why we want to share it with you all!
The event was held at Hyland’s House which is a truly stunning venue located in Chelmsford. Besides being an awards evening, the event brought over 100 people together all of whom share the same passion. This, therefore, made the networking opportunity second to none.
The evening kicked off with a welcome drink, photos and mingling in the main hall. We then moved into the marquee where a delicious dinner was served and the awards began. The support and sponsorship in the room was incredible and it made me feel lucky that I was a part of the industry, let alone this event.
Magnificent Stuff are delighted to welcome their latest hire, Rebecca Hartgen, who has joined the Magnificent Stuff team as Account Manager.
After studying Events and Marketing at the University of Greenwich, Rebecca started her career as a Marketing Manager for a 5-star hotel in Essex. went onto work for a well-known flooring company developing and delivering a complete rebrand including 3 new websites, new logos and a digital marketing strategy.
Rebecca brings to Magnificent Stuff a fresh and innovative flare for digital design and more importantly fantastic technical expertise.
“I am thrilled to be part of such a talented team and I can’t wait to put my ‘stamp’ on the business. I’m really looking forward to seeing what the future holds for Magnificent Stuff! Watch this space!”
Rebecca is already working across a number of Magnificent Stuff’s projects and clients couldn’t be happier with her support and fresh perspective
Steve of Magnificent Stuff says “Rebecca’s talent not only lies in her attention to detail but also her ability to really get under the skin of our clients businesses. She fits in perfectly we are really excited to have her on board”.
For more information about the work we do at The Marketing Hub and Magnificent Stuff, please contact email@example.com or call on 01992 522452.
Magnificent Stuff announce sponsorship of Harlow Town Football Club
Magnificent Stuff announce sponsorship of Harlow Town Football Club. Magnificent Stuff are delighted to announce a sponsorship deal with Harlow Town Football Club. The deal includes, amongst other assets, sponsorship of perimeter boards at the McCulloch’s Arena and sponsorship of the Under 8’s team training kit.
Magnificent Stuff are always keen to get involved with and help the local community, having worked alongside numerous local charitable causes including Mikes Den, Cazfest, TEDx Chelmsford and the Victoria Hall Theatre amongst others.
Already the relationship has proved fruitful for both parties with new introductions and in turn collaborations. Director of Magnificent Stuff, Emma Knewstub says,
“We chose sponsorship with Harlow Town as we have been so impressed with what they are trying to achieve in the wider community. They are establishing something very unique both on and off the pitch. Their support of the wider business and local communities coupled with the benefits they offer young people locally, makes them an ideal partner for us. Harlow Town FC are extremely ambitious and we’re really looking forward to supporting the whole team during the seasons ahead.“
Harlow Town Football Club Director, Paul Wilson comments
“We are delighted that Magnificent Stuff have joined us as a club sponsor, and we look forward to a mutually beneficial relationship over the coming years.”
Magnificent Stuff at the Marketing Hub are thrilled to announce the appointment of former Premier League and Supporters Direct employee, Laura Knewstub as Head of Operations.
Following a 3 year course at The London College of Fashion Laura Knewstub started her career working for the Premier League, in the Chief Executive’s Office before being promoted to work in the Press and Communications team.
Moving alongside Phillip French, (now a Director of the International Olympic Committee) to Supporters Direct, a not-for-profit he had helped set up nearly 20 years ago to assist supporters influence in the running and ownership of football clubs. Laura spent 11 years supporting the organisation through a period of significant growth and promotion.
Now moving into our fourth year of trading Magnificent Stuff has needed to expand in order to streamline processes and better manage the continuing growth of the business. Alongside exemplary organisational, managerial and HR skills Laura brings to Magnificent Stuff a black book of connections and nearly 20 years experience in the sport, leisure and charity sectors.
“After years of working in London I’m really excited to be welcomed into Magnificent Stuff and the Marketing Hub and am looking forward to supporting the growth of the business and its activities” Laura comments.
Co-Founder Steve Chew “Not only is it an incredibly exciting time for Magnificent Stuff, as our Management Team expands, but Laura has brought with her a breath of fresh air, new processes and loads of new opportunities.”
Magnificent Stuff work with clients including Harlow Town Football Club, Hoppily, Clifford Thames, Professor John Celin, Secret Quote, HDCC, Bishop Stortford Chamber of Commerce, Taylor Milburn, The English Cream Tea Company and The Transition.
For more information about the work we do at The Marketing Hub and Magnificent Stuff, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 01992 522452.
Magnificent Stuff and Best Mailing Services are thrilled to announce the launch of their creative services, marketing & fulfilment hub.
In response to growing demand, the strategic partnership will deliver a one-stop marketing & fulfilment solution for clients. Meaning both consistency and efficiencies can be passed onto clients.
“As client confidence in decent agency offering continues to be challenged, creating an exceptionally high standard of service with a trusted one-stop solution is more important than ever. Our knowledge and understanding of the industry fused with the years of experience we have between us allows us to work on some very exciting projects together. The multi-function offering means we can develop innovative solutions from initial research stage right through to fulfillment and the measurement of effectiveness. It’s a really exciting time”.
Continuing to operate under the Merlin Way address, on the perimeter of North Weald airfield in Essex, BMS have been joined on-site by creative content marketing and digital specialists, Magnificent Stuff.
The development of the marketing & fulfilment hub is in response to a clear and very obvious requirement to deliver clients of all sizes a fully integrated solution.
“You tend to find that so many local agencies are really just designers pitching themselves as a marketing agency. Where we differentiate, and offer value is by fusing design, content marketing, reputation management and now fulfillment together seamlessly to provide clients with a multi-discipline offering under one roof.”
Given that BMS, who have been established for 32 years and have worked with clients including, BAFTA, LAING and Hilton, have been collaborating on a number of projects with Magnificent Stuff over the last few years making the hub feel like a very natural progression. Magnificent Stuff has been trading for 3 years and this move marks the significant growth experienced by the agency.
“With the re-launch of the HDCC B2B magazine we were very keen to explore how we could further expand our offering to clients. In BMS we have found not only a hugely experienced partner, but one with genuine enthusiasm, knowledge and creativity”.
For more information about the hub or to contact us regarding work please call +44 1992 522452 or email email@example.com.
When was the last time you picked up The Yellow Pages? Or a hard-copy Local Directory for that matter? Five years ago? Six? When you needed an electrician or a plumber when did you last look in the back of a local paper? The same can be said of your customers too. The percentage of marketing that was digital (ie online) stood at 25% in 2013. Last year it was 75%.
In my role as Co-Founder and Head of Content for marketing consultancy, Magnificent Stuff I must have met upwards of 250 business owners over the past year or two. At risk of generalising they do fit a certain demographic: normally male, normally between 48-55, normally heading up an established SME. In those two years I have met only a handful of business owners who’s digital marketing could be described as ‘good’ or ‘excellent’. It’s no coincidence in my mind, that these people happened to be in their 30’s.
The so-called ‘millennial’ generation have grown up with digital marketing and advertising. In simple terms they ‘get it’, however it can be a steep learning curve for those of us who grew up in the seventies and eighties.
It’s not my place or intention to be alarmist, however the next generation of business owners, our ‘millennials’, are way ahead of the game here. They are tech-savvy, digitally aware and ambitious.
Take social media, for example. Which of us would not like our Facebook or Twitter presence to generate leads and clients? To engender enthusiasm and customer loyalty? Every MD knows that they should be using social constructively for the benefit of the Company, but do they? Chances are unless the Business Owner is under 35 social media not being used effectively or used at all. Why? Three reasons. Firstly, we don’t know how to. No-one’s actually shown us. Secondly, we do know how to but we don’t know what to say and, thirdly (and most commonly) we simply haven’t got the time or resources. Have you got an extra two to three hours per week to spend on social media management? Do you have enough time to blog fortnightly? To create newsletters? Do you even consider such marketing to be useful?
In 2016 digital marketing is not simply important but – in my view – intrinsic to business growth. But then, I would say that wouldn’t I? Here are a few stats:
- 80% of customers do “a lot” of online research for considered purchases.
- 46% count on social media when making such decisions
- B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads per month than those who do not blog
- The average return on an e-mail marketing investment is £29.14 for every pound spend
- 93% of marketeers use social media for business
Of course every business is different but ultimately without digital and content marketing of some type, your company will be missing leads and clients. If you’d like any advice on how to make digital marketing work for you please get in touch, we live and breath content.
Steve Chew is Head of Content at Magnificent Stuff Limited, Old Harlow. You can contact Steve via the link above 0r on 07723024865.
…and madness drives us on!
Nearly 2 years since we first set up and we’re going from strength to strength. Year on year we continue to grow followers, Likes, client base, knowledge and turnover.
Thank you for your support to date and please continue to like, share and talk about us and the work we do. No marketing is more powerful than word of mouth and personal recommendations!
Every day we face a new challenge and sometimes a new battle to juggle or beat but we genuinely love what we do and we do it because we love it.
email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
We love this post from accountancy firm www.Bird-luckin.co.uk with some great tips for marketing a business. We offer support, consultancy or delivery on all of the below, call Steve for a no obligation Meetup or chat.
Our favourite and sure-fire winner is networking. We know not everyone is great at networking and certainly many don’t enjoy it so we offer a hand holding service which means we coach you through do’s and dont’s in realtime, so we attend an event with you and help you represent your organisation.
Whether it’s a conference, a coffee or a presentation we can be your right hand man and help get your business noticed. Contact Steve on 07723024865 or Steve@magnificentstuff.net
1) Attend as many free networking events as possible
If you take a look on sites like Meetup, Eventbrite, Facebook or in any free local business magazine, you will see that there are many free networking events for businesses like yourselves. These events tend to be well attended and are a great opportunity to meet like-minded business people. While you may not get work out of the first meeting, regular attendance will mean that you are remembered when an opportunity does arise. Just don’t forget your business cards!
2) Offer a consultation
If you are struggling to get people through the door, offering a free initial consultation can be a great hook to get people in to see you. Once there, it is up to you to demonstrate the reasons why they need you, but chances are that if they have already come in to see you, they have a problem you can solve.
3) Optimise your website
Websites are becoming the shop window for most businesses. It is important that your website gives off the right image but also that your customers can actually find it when looking for you. Make sure that you regularly add relevant content full of keywords appropriate to your services. When marketing a business Add your site to all the free online business directories and offer to write guest content for other sites, which include a link back to your own site. Search engine optimisation basics are easy to do in-house and there are plenty of business books out there to help.
4) Public Speaking
There are hundreds of business conferences taking place each year and they are always on the lookout for good public speakers to come and present or run workshops during the day. It is a great opportunity when marketing a business and skillset to a captive audience and really demonstrate your knowledge and expertise.
5) Run a free seminar
Running a free seminar or even webinar is a great way to demonstrate your knowledge to potential clients. You could partner with another local firm offering complimentary services or products to your own and run a joint event, which then gives you the opportunity to market yourselves to each other’s client bases. Publicise on Eventbrite, or get in touch with your local Chamber of Commerce who may also be able to promote the event to their members.
6) Brand yourself
It is important that you have a consistent brand image which conveys professionalism and attention to detail. Make sure that your business cards match your stationery, make sure your website matches your email footer and ultimately ensure that they all tie in together to form one brand identity. Don’t have your logo in different colours on different promotional items; ensure you have a corporate style that everyone in your company adheres to.
Blogs are a great way of showing the world you are an expert in your chosen field. They are also a great way of attracting people to your website, as they will show up in search engines and bring people looking for solutions to their problems, solutions that you provide.
I am not just talking getting out and meeting people face-to-face – although that is vital – social media is a great way of generating leads for your business. Post engaging content and encourage people to join in on discussions. Comment on other professionals posts with helpful advice relating to your product or services. But most importantly, make sure you post several times a week as this is shown to increase the confidence of potential clients in your ability and encourage them to pick you over your competitors.
9) Email newsletters
Email newsletters cost nothing to send, although we would recommend using a package such as Mailchimp to make them look professional. They are a great way to keep your clients up to date with new promotions, exciting news or press releases and they allow you to put a voice to your brand. You don’t have to write lots of content and a picture speaks a thousand words. Just be sure to include a catchy title to ensure people click to open your email. Statistics show the best days to send email newsletters are Tuesdays and Thursdays between 12 and 3pm.
So a customer has just purchased from you, do you follow this up with a call or email a few days later to make sure the customer is happy? And most importantly do you offer them an exclusive discount if they purchase a related product or service with you now? It is easier to sell to existing customers than it is to find new ones. Plus if they have just received your product or service and they are happy with it, now is a great time to offer them an incentive to buy more from you. You can even extend the offer to their friends and family and encourage them to refer you.