Category Archives: Small Business – National

Sending The Right Message: Best Practices For Marketing Your Small Business Via Email

 
According to Statista, there were 233 million U.S. email users in the United States by the end of 2015, which will reach nearly 254.7 million by the end of 2020. Email marketing spending in the U.S. is expected to increase from 2.67 billion in 2016 to over 3 billion in 2019. In order to thrive in today’s economic landscape, it’s important for small businesses to get involved in digital marketing to help reach not only a broader audience, but to also communicate with existing customers. The stats show a prime opportunity to capitalize off a growing market with creative, thoughtful, and personalized email marketing campaigns that speak to the lives of customers. All of these tactics bring about better engagement. The goal is to send the right message to the right person at the right time. Here are some of the best practices for marketing your small business via email.
   
Get personal with your email messaging A personal touch in email messaging can go a long way in capturing your customers attention. According to a Cheetah Digital Q1 Email Benchmark Report in 2017, birthday email marketing campaigns have become highly successful and out-performed promotional mailings on opens, clicks, transactions and revenue. Not to mention, personalizing the email by including the subscriber’s name in birthday mailing subject lines boosted open rates by almost 18 percent. Don’t be generic with your email messaging, speak directly to your customer like they’re your friend. There’s an old saying, which states friends support each other.  
Your customers are mobile, and you should be too While desktop and laptop use will always essentially be a worthy way of communicating, your customers are mobile, and you should be as well. According to Email Client Market Share, as of May 2017, Apple iPhone leads email client market shares with 31 percent, followed by Gmail at 22 percent. Consumers are opening more emails on mobile devices than any other device. Creating strategies around mobile email marketing campaigns to engage with customers will help increase open rates of your email marketing campaigns. Convenience is the new way of email.  
Thoughtful persistence can help your customers follow through Often customers will attempt to make a purchase on your website and leave in a hurry, with items left in their shopping cart. What happened in the buying process? How do you encourage follow-through with their purchase? According to Experian’s 2016 report, e-commerce customers who received multiple abandoned shopping cart emails are 2.4 times more likely to complete the purchase than those who receive only one follow up email. It’s important to stay persistent with your customers throughout the entire buying process, even in hesitation within the buying process.  
Be creative and take the risk According to a Campaign Monitor article titled “7 Email Marketing Predictions for 2017,” Matthew Smith of Really Good Emails states, “There will be a revolution in email design.” The change in email design will be a key component in winning the email marketing game. When designers, coders, and content writers come together, it will enable fewer decisions and less time in the design of emails allowing focus to shift to creating more meaningful content. Mixed with great marketing automation, small businesses have the capability to stand out from their competitors with clear concise messaging that can deliver relevance at scale, and turn their email campaigns into revenue generating machines. Campaign Monitor Review reported in 2016, that for every dollar spent on email marketing, an average of a $44 in return on investment is realized. Expect that ROI to increase in the coming years.    
This article was written by Marlena Turner for CBS Small Business Pulse

Sending The Right Message: Best Practices For Marketing Your Small Business Via Email

 
According to Statista, there were 233 million U.S. email users in the United States by the end of 2015, which will reach nearly 254.7 million by the end of 2020. Email marketing spending in the U.S. is expected to increase from 2.67 billion in 2016 to over 3 billion in 2019. In order to thrive in today’s economic landscape, it’s important for small businesses to get involved in digital marketing to help reach not only a broader audience, but to also communicate with existing customers. The stats show a prime opportunity to capitalize off a growing market with creative, thoughtful, and personalized email marketing campaigns that speak to the lives of customers. All of these tactics bring about better engagement. The goal is to send the right message to the right person at the right time. Here are some of the best practices for marketing your small business via email.
   
Get personal with your email messaging A personal touch in email messaging can go a long way in capturing your customers attention. According to a Cheetah Digital Q1 Email Benchmark Report in 2017, birthday email marketing campaigns have become highly successful and out-performed promotional mailings on opens, clicks, transactions and revenue. Not to mention, personalizing the email by including the subscriber’s name in birthday mailing subject lines boosted open rates by almost 18 percent. Don’t be generic with your email messaging, speak directly to your customer like they’re your friend. There’s an old saying, which states friends support each other.  
Your customers are mobile, and you should be too While desktop and laptop use will always essentially be a worthy way of communicating, your customers are mobile, and you should be as well. According to Email Client Market Share, as of May 2017, Apple iPhone leads email client market shares with 31 percent, followed by Gmail at 22 percent. Consumers are opening more emails on mobile devices than any other device. Creating strategies around mobile email marketing campaigns to engage with customers will help increase open rates of your email marketing campaigns. Convenience is the new way of email.  
Thoughtful persistence can help your customers follow through Often customers will attempt to make a purchase on your website and leave in a hurry, with items left in their shopping cart. What happened in the buying process? How do you encourage follow-through with their purchase? According to Experian’s 2016 report, e-commerce customers who received multiple abandoned shopping cart emails are 2.4 times more likely to complete the purchase than those who receive only one follow up email. It’s important to stay persistent with your customers throughout the entire buying process, even in hesitation within the buying process.  
Be creative and take the risk According to a Campaign Monitor article titled “7 Email Marketing Predictions for 2017,” Matthew Smith of Really Good Emails states, “There will be a revolution in email design.” The change in email design will be a key component in winning the email marketing game. When designers, coders, and content writers come together, it will enable fewer decisions and less time in the design of emails allowing focus to shift to creating more meaningful content. Mixed with great marketing automation, small businesses have the capability to stand out from their competitors with clear concise messaging that can deliver relevance at scale, and turn their email campaigns into revenue generating machines. Campaign Monitor Review reported in 2016, that for every dollar spent on email marketing, an average of a $44 in return on investment is realized. Expect that ROI to increase in the coming years.    
This article was written by Marlena Turner for CBS Small Business Pulse

What Does Open Enrollment Mean For Your Employees?

 
For small businesses, your employees can only change their health coverage during the open enrollment period. Open enrollment occurs once per year, unless of course there is a qualifying life event. These include loss of health coverage, child birth, adoption, marriage, divorce or death, to name a few. You can see if you qualify at HealthCare .gov. The next open enrollment for 2018 runs from November 1, 2017 to December 15, 2017. However, it is important to note that job-based plans may have different enrollment periods. What does open enrollment mean for your employees? It is an opportune time for employees to change coverage, ask questions, and even receive early signing incentives. In addition, it gives access to health care and choosing the best option for your needs.
   
Missed last open enrollment If you missed the last open enrollment, then this is a good time to add coverage. In addition, it is also an opportune moment if you were late for your window during a special enrollment. Be sure to come prepared with a list of questions.  
Change policy or coverage With the high cost of deductibles and premiums, perhaps you need to upgrade or downgrade your current policy or coverage. For instance, you might need to switch to a higher deductible if your monthly premium is breaking the bank. Take the time to shop around and research your options. However, don’t take too long and miss another opportunity for coverage.  
Rewards and signing incentives It has become practice among some small businesses to offer a reward for employees who have already registered. It could be a minor mention in a meeting or a nice lunch. Whatever the incentive, it is guaranteed to boost employee morale. Be sure to tell your employees if there are any early signing incentives.  
Insurance brokers and online tools It has become common to have insurance brokers and online tools handy for employees to choose the best health coverage during open enrollment. Brokers will have the answers to all your questions because they are the party selling the insurance. In addition, online tools are ideal in selecting scenarios that suit your needs such as out-of-pocket costs, participating physicians, etc. Again, it is imperative to come armed to the table with any questions you might have.    
This article was written by Deirdre Haggerty for CBS Small Business Pulse
 

What Does Open Enrollment Mean For Your Employees?

 
For small businesses, your employees can only change their health coverage during the open enrollment period. Open enrollment occurs once per year, unless of course there is a qualifying life event. These include loss of health coverage, child birth, adoption, marriage, divorce or death, to name a few. You can see if you qualify at HealthCare .gov. The next open enrollment for 2018 runs from November 1, 2017 to December 15, 2017. However, it is important to note that job-based plans may have different enrollment periods. What does open enrollment mean for your employees? It is an opportune time for employees to change coverage, ask questions, and even receive early signing incentives. In addition, it gives access to health care and choosing the best option for your needs.
   
Missed last open enrollment If you missed the last open enrollment, then this is a good time to add coverage. In addition, it is also an opportune moment if you were late for your window during a special enrollment. Be sure to come prepared with a list of questions.  
Change policy or coverage With the high cost of deductibles and premiums, perhaps you need to upgrade or downgrade your current policy or coverage. For instance, you might need to switch to a higher deductible if your monthly premium is breaking the bank. Take the time to shop around and research your options. However, don’t take too long and miss another opportunity for coverage.  
Rewards and signing incentives It has become practice among some small businesses to offer a reward for employees who have already registered. It could be a minor mention in a meeting or a nice lunch. Whatever the incentive, it is guaranteed to boost employee morale. Be sure to tell your employees if there are any early signing incentives.  
Insurance brokers and online tools It has become common to have insurance brokers and online tools handy for employees to choose the best health coverage during open enrollment. Brokers will have the answers to all your questions because they are the party selling the insurance. In addition, online tools are ideal in selecting scenarios that suit your needs such as out-of-pocket costs, participating physicians, etc. Again, it is imperative to come armed to the table with any questions you might have.    
This article was written by Deirdre Haggerty for CBS Small Business Pulse
 

How To Choose The Best CRM Software For Your Small Business

 
A customer relationship management (CRM) software package is a very useful tool for small businesses. It helps to easily organize and keep track of all clients and potential clients. According to Business News Daily, there are four types of CRM’s that small businesses should look into. Whether needing a free option or one catering to very small businesses, each of these have their own benefits.
   
Salesforce Easily one of the most well-known CRM programs, Salesforce is a great option for small businesses as it is all-inclusive and cloud-based. In fact, they claim to be the ‘World’s #1 CRM.’ They also have a package specifically catering to small businesses, which is a little more cost effective than those available for large businesses. Salesforce’s all-in-one software features include contact management, lead generation, opportunity management, sales forecasting, workflow automation and collaboration tools, among other options. As it is cloud-based it also allows access anywhere from any device.  
Insightly For entrepreneurs with very small businesses, Insightly is a great option. The program is free to those with one to two users and fewer than 2,500 records. Multiple paid plans are offered to allow your software to grow as your small business grows. Insightly’s features include contact management, project management, and detailed sales reports. The main goals of this CRM are to help businesses accelerate sales, build relationships and deliver projects.  
Zoho CRM Compared to other free CRM software packages, Zoho CRM offers the most features for its free version, which can be used with up to 10 users. In fact, Business News Daily votes it the best free CRM in their Best CRM Software 2017 list. This program boasts some hefty stats that include 300 percent improvements in lead conversion rates, 41 percent revenue increase per sales person, 27 percent improvement in customer retention, 24 percent decreased sales cycles, and 23 percent decreased sales and marketing costs. Among many of the features available for free include social integration, user-friendly mobile app, and automation.  
HubSpot One of the biggest selling points of HubSpot is they have a free version for all users at a business. It was voted as the best CRM for startups by Business News Daily. This software program works seamlessly with businesses’ marketing and sales efforts as they also offer various marketing & sales software for purchase, and for free. This easy to use and clean interface software program offers a wide range of CRM tools. One great feature is their super enhanced contacts directory that allows users to not only store contact information, but easily and quickly organize them all by any aspect, and track all notes and interactions.
 
   
This article was written by Suzy Fielders for CBS Small Business Pulse
 

How Legal Marijuana Can Affect Your Small Business

 
Marijuana laws are changing state by state and blurring the lines in the workplace. Small business owners can add legal medical marijuana use, and in some cases, recreational marijuana use to a long list of items to navigate in order to stay current with legislation. It’s important to take the time to look at business place policies to ensure compliance, as well as to preserve the workplace culture you’ve established.
   
Is marijuana no longer illegal? This is confusing at best. Small business owners are correct to question if marijuana is no longer illegal for purposes of clarity and re-examining their HR policies. Considering that the federal Drug Enforcement Agency still prohibits marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act, passage of state provisions does raise issues for employers regarding enforcement of their own drug-free and smoke-free workplace policies.  
Where are marijuana laws being relaxed? A state-by-state rundown indicates a shift in public opinion. Currently, in 29 states and the District of Columbia, medical marijuana use in some form is legal. The eight states that have legalized recreational marijuana use are Alaska, California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Maine, Oregon, Nevada, and Washington. Ones to watch for in 2018 include Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, and West Virginia.  
Can employers still conduct drug testing? Employers can most likely conduct drug testing, but it is not the same everywhere for the moment. Legal experts say the waters are murky at best, at least for another couple of years. The key takeaway here is to refer small business owners to local legislation in the relevant state. For example, in California when Proposition 64 decriminalized marijuana use, it left employers free to enforce a drug-free workplace.  
How is medical use determined? The states that have approved medical use of marijuana have vastly varying definitions of qualifying illnesses, chronic conditions, paperwork policies from physicians, registration, certification, possession, cultivation, and dispensary regulations. Some states restrict medical marijuana use to terminally ill patients only.  
What about under 21-year-old workers? Again, this is a call for the states. However, current and pending legislation points to a distinct pattern of excluding minors from consideration under relaxed marijuana laws.  
What about use outside of work? The issue of marijuana use outside of work went all the way to California’s Supreme Court in 2008 in what remains a controversial decision in Ross v. Ragingwire Telecommunications, Inc. The case debated whether an employee can be fired for testing positive for off-the-job, doctor-approved, medical marijuana use. Yet in Massachusetts in 2017, an employee using marijuana to treat Crohn’s disease had her case upheld when the state’s highest court ruled that companies cannot fire employees who have a prescription for medical marijuana simply because they use the drug. “The use and possession of medically prescribed marijuana by a qualifying patient is as lawful as the use and possession of any other prescribed medication,” Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants wrote in the decision in Barbuto v. Advantage Sales & Marketing LLC.  
State supreme courts have conflicting interpretations The rulings of state supreme courts highlight the tricky area where state marijuana laws, including cases where the employee had revealed the circumstances of prescribed medical use, conflict with federal law. Making things trickier, the Massachusetts suit was brought against a California-based sales and marketing firm. It’s a good time to brush off workplace policies and take a closer look. Legal marijuana in an increasing number of states is affecting the workplace for small business owners as well as large industries navigating the gaps between relaxed state cannabis rulings, federal laws, and employee laws and rights.    
This article was written by Laurie Jo Miller Farr for CBS Small Business Pulse
 

How Legal Marijuana Can Affect Your Small Business

 
Marijuana laws are changing state by state and blurring the lines in the workplace. Small business owners can add legal medical marijuana use, and in some cases, recreational marijuana use to a long list of items to navigate in order to stay current with legislation. It’s important to take the time to look at business place policies to ensure compliance, as well as to preserve the workplace culture you’ve established.
   
Is marijuana no longer illegal? This is confusing at best. Small business owners are correct to question if marijuana is no longer illegal for purposes of clarity and re-examining their HR policies. Considering that the federal Drug Enforcement Agency still prohibits marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act, passage of state provisions does raise issues for employers regarding enforcement of their own drug-free and smoke-free workplace policies.  
Where are marijuana laws being relaxed? A state-by-state rundown indicates a shift in public opinion. Currently, in 29 states and the District of Columbia, medical marijuana use in some form is legal. The eight states that have legalized recreational marijuana use are Alaska, California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Maine, Oregon, Nevada, and Washington. Ones to watch for in 2018 include Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, and West Virginia.  
Can employers still conduct drug testing? Employers can most likely conduct drug testing, but it is not the same everywhere for the moment. Legal experts say the waters are murky at best, at least for another couple of years. The key takeaway here is to refer small business owners to local legislation in the relevant state. For example, in California when Proposition 64 decriminalized marijuana use, it left employers free to enforce a drug-free workplace.  
How is medical use determined? The states that have approved medical use of marijuana have vastly varying definitions of qualifying illnesses, chronic conditions, paperwork policies from physicians, registration, certification, possession, cultivation, and dispensary regulations. Some states restrict medical marijuana use to terminally ill patients only.  
What about under 21-year-old workers? Again, this is a call for the states. However, current and pending legislation points to a distinct pattern of excluding minors from consideration under relaxed marijuana laws.  
What about use outside of work? The issue of marijuana use outside of work went all the way to California’s Supreme Court in 2008 in what remains a controversial decision in Ross v. Ragingwire Telecommunications, Inc. The case debated whether an employee can be fired for testing positive for off-the-job, doctor-approved, medical marijuana use. Yet in Massachusetts in 2017, an employee using marijuana to treat Crohn’s disease had her case upheld when the state’s highest court ruled that companies cannot fire employees who have a prescription for medical marijuana simply because they use the drug. “The use and possession of medically prescribed marijuana by a qualifying patient is as lawful as the use and possession of any other prescribed medication,” Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants wrote in the decision in Barbuto v. Advantage Sales & Marketing LLC.  
State supreme courts have conflicting interpretations The rulings of state supreme courts highlight the tricky area where state marijuana laws, including cases where the employee had revealed the circumstances of prescribed medical use, conflict with federal law. Making things trickier, the Massachusetts suit was brought against a California-based sales and marketing firm. It’s a good time to brush off workplace policies and take a closer look. Legal marijuana in an increasing number of states is affecting the workplace for small business owners as well as large industries navigating the gaps between relaxed state cannabis rulings, federal laws, and employee laws and rights.    
This article was written by Laurie Jo Miller Farr for CBS Small Business Pulse
 

Connect To Your Customers By Being More Than Just A Company Sales Representative

 
Consumer buying habits have changed. Customer no longer find you in the yellow pages of a fat phone book. They have the technology in their pockets to find and research you and your competitors online. They are numbed to hard-sell techniques and annoyed by obtrusive advertising. Your marketing department knows this. To generate solid leads, they work a strategic plan of brand development and content marketing. When a prospect reaches the bottom of the marketing funnel, responding to a CTA, placing a call to your company or filling out a contact form, that lead is passed off to sales. What do your salespeople do with those leads? While making a sale is still the goal, the role of the sales rep has changed from that of a company-centric promoter to a consumer-friendly advisor. Keep these concepts in mind when closing in on a deal.
   
Focus on the buyer’s needs and not yourself You may be the best in your industry. You may have established a stellar reputation over decades of doing business, but consumers don’t care about your company, and many are skeptical about claims in an environment where anyone can create a website full of fact-free boasts. You are not selling a product; you are selling solutions. When you follow through on leads, whether through email, snail-mail or phone, your main message is, “We know your problems. We have solutions for you.” Your marketing department knows your target’s pain points. Be prepared with solutions before you pick up the phone.  
Become the go-to advisor Your goal is to build a relationship with your prospects. To do this, you need to understand their goals and the obstacles they face attempting to reach those goals. You are then in a position to offer advice.  
Three-step formula to success
  • Listen to your prospects concerns. They may be typical for the industry, but each business or individual has a unique set of circumstances that you must consider. Ask questions to encourage your prospects to elaborate with their own experiences.
     

  • Diagnose their problems. What is causing these issues?
     

  • Be an educator. This is where the sales rep-advisor brings his or her industry experience into play and can suggest how your company can help solve problems.
     
 
Go above and beyond Social media and online review sites have changed the marketing landscape. A December 2016 survey by Fan & Fuel Digital Marketing found that 97 percent of consumers factor online reviews into their purchasing decisions. It’s not enough to close a sale, you need your customers to spread the word. Merely meeting the terms of a deal isn’t enough. You must exceed expectations if you want to turn customers into advocates. Focus on improving consumers’ experiences with your company. Follow up on sales by seeking consumer feedback and quickly resolving any problems. Throwing in a referral incentive may help build a loyal following.  
To successfully navigate the new marketplace, you need a sales force that understands your company vision and the culture of your customers’ personas. Sales reps need to have listening skills and know how to build trust in an age of skepticism. Focus training on these points, and you’ll be crushing those sales goals.
     
This article was written by Gillian Burdett for CBS Small Business Pulse
 

Connect To Your Customers By Being More Than Just A Company Sales Representative

 
Consumer buying habits have changed. Customer no longer find you in the yellow pages of a fat phone book. They have the technology in their pockets to find and research you and your competitors online. They are numbed to hard-sell techniques and annoyed by obtrusive advertising. Your marketing department knows this. To generate solid leads, they work a strategic plan of brand development and content marketing. When a prospect reaches the bottom of the marketing funnel, responding to a CTA, placing a call to your company or filling out a contact form, that lead is passed off to sales. What do your salespeople do with those leads? While making a sale is still the goal, the role of the sales rep has changed from that of a company-centric promoter to a consumer-friendly advisor. Keep these concepts in mind when closing in on a deal.
   
Focus on the buyer’s needs and not yourself You may be the best in your industry. You may have established a stellar reputation over decades of doing business, but consumers don’t care about your company, and many are skeptical about claims in an environment where anyone can create a website full of fact-free boasts. You are not selling a product; you are selling solutions. When you follow through on leads, whether through email, snail-mail or phone, your main message is, “We know your problems. We have solutions for you.” Your marketing department knows your target’s pain points. Be prepared with solutions before you pick up the phone.  
Become the go-to advisor Your goal is to build a relationship with your prospects. To do this, you need to understand their goals and the obstacles they face attempting to reach those goals. You are then in a position to offer advice.  
Three-step formula to success
  • Listen to your prospects concerns. They may be typical for the industry, but each business or individual has a unique set of circumstances that you must consider. Ask questions to encourage your prospects to elaborate with their own experiences.
     

  • Diagnose their problems. What is causing these issues?
     

  • Be an educator. This is where the sales rep-advisor brings his or her industry experience into play and can suggest how your company can help solve problems.
     
 
Go above and beyond Social media and online review sites have changed the marketing landscape. A December 2016 survey by Fan & Fuel Digital Marketing found that 97 percent of consumers factor online reviews into their purchasing decisions. It’s not enough to close a sale, you need your customers to spread the word. Merely meeting the terms of a deal isn’t enough. You must exceed expectations if you want to turn customers into advocates. Focus on improving consumers’ experiences with your company. Follow up on sales by seeking consumer feedback and quickly resolving any problems. Throwing in a referral incentive may help build a loyal following.  
To successfully navigate the new marketplace, you need a sales force that understands your company vision and the culture of your customers’ personas. Sales reps need to have listening skills and know how to build trust in an age of skepticism. Focus training on these points, and you’ll be crushing those sales goals.
     
This article was written by Gillian Burdett for CBS Small Business Pulse
 

Best Basic Practices For Marketing Your Small Business On Facebook

 
Is your small business one of the 40 million actively using a Facebook page for marketing purposes? With currently more than 2 billion monthly active users, the social media platform has morphed into a massive advertising media channel. Facebook’s ability to highly target audiences, as well as to build a custom audience, are tools built into every business page. The site guides you through a process Facebook refers to as — get started, engage, maintain and measure. “The majority are non-tech businesses — the plumbers, the bakers, the local florists who are using technology to reach customers and sell their products and services,” said Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg in 2017. A Facebook page for business is free to create. However, gone are the days when those small businesses could reach all their business page Facebook friends with zero spend. This 6 step process will help your company actively attract and build engagement with customers.
   
1. Create a Facebook business page Visit Facebook on mobile or desktop to create a page for your small business, choosing from a category type that describes it best. Facebook will walk you through the steps as you invite others to like your page and begin building a Facebook community. Show off your brand personality, create a cover image, post a video and share links. Choose someone to manage your business page and provide managerial access.  
2. Create and promote posts Keep customers interested, engaged, and stay top-of-mind through activity on your Facebook page. You can grow reach using Facebook tools such as boosted posts, target audiences, custom audiences, and look-alike audiences. For example, you can choose to put budget behind showing a post in the news feed of people who like your page and their friends, or to reach similar users by demographic indicators. There’s a button for the option of promoting a post on every post you create. You can stop, pause, set a maximum budget, add to budget, and finally check on the results in order to determine engagement, click throughs, and return on investment.  
3. Generate more attention Extensive amounts of studies and research all over the internet points to the importance of compelling content, images, video, and mobile. Try Facebook Live to engage audiences in an update or event at the moment it’s happening. You can also schedule your posts to publish at a time that suits your audience.  
4. Get inspiration If you’re stuck or wondering what works best on Facebook, check out the gallery of business ads they love. You can see how they worked and why they were so successful. Then, by visiting Facebook’s success stories, you’ll find a gallery containing more than 200 examples of dynamic small business ads. Search further to focus on examples by business size, type, service, product, or location.  
5. Choose an objective for every ad When you’re ready to boost a post or promote an ad, decide on the objective first. Facebook offers several objectives which include getting website traffic, calling your store, getting more likes, taking a poll, entering a contest, buying something and an RSVP to an event. You can also choose another call to action.  
6. Turn on messaging A good tool for customer service and interface, Facebook Messenger is integrated with business pages. You can use it to communicate privately with customers who contact you or like your page.  
Ready for the next steps? Facebook has a free online education program aimed at small businesses that offers more than 80 e-courses in 15-minute chunks of time. Facebook Blueprint is a deeper dive into how to use Facebook marketing tools to build effective campaigns and lead to a Facebook expert certification.
 
   
This article was written by Laurie Jo Miller Farr for CBS Small Business Pulse