100,000 cupcakes can’t be wrong…or can they?

Web marketing strategies like Groupon or Living Social can be a boon if used properly. If used carelessly, they can be nearly fatal for a business. Take the case of Rachel Brown from the UK, who promoted a special on cupcakes at a 75% discount on Groupon. Read the excerpt from Telegraph.co.uk below:

Rachel Brown, who runs the Need a Cake bakery in Reading, Berkshire, launched an offer via the money-saving website in the spring in which she offered a 75 per cent discount on 12 cupcakes, which normally cost £26.

However Mrs Brown vastly under-estimated the popularity of the deal and was besieged by 8,500 people who signed up for the £6.50 bargain.

She ended up losing between £2.50 and £3 on each batch she sold. She also had to pay £12,500 for the extra costs of hiring staff and sending the products out, wiping out profits for the year for her business.

Mrs Brown, who had only expected a few hundred orders, said that the experience was “without doubt, the worst ever business decision I have made”.

“It’s been an absolutely nightmare,” she said.

To run an effective social media campaign, you need to set out clear objectives and determine what your cost per new customer will be. Spending money to gain new customers makes sense–to a point. If you do not plan well, you may find yourself up to your elbows in flour and buttercream frosting, selling your cupcakes at a huge loss.

If you need to use the web to promote your business, consult with the Line Marketing Group to devise a campaign that will increase your sales and your bottom line.

Harnessing the power of FourSquare

Have you used Foursquare to check-in at a business?

If not, you should take a look at how Foursquare can impact your business. Forbes recently carried an excellent piece on using Foursquare for business. In short, businesses should create customized campaigns, celebrate special events, and reward special customers.

Who can benefit from using Foursquare? Restaurants, all retail stores, automobile sales and service operations, taverns and pubs, pizza shops, bakeries, delicatessens, entertainment venues, museums, youth sports facilities, and many, many more!

Contact the Line Marketing Group for help on using Foursquare to boost your results in 2012.

Social media adds splash of new business for Liquor Plus

Rod Phillips, Director of Marketing for Liquor Plus of Victoria, BC has made the switch to do all of his marketing through social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter. Phillips shared some interesting statistics with Sproutsocial.com:

We saw 56,227 customers from Dec. 10-31 (the promotional period), of which 785 were new customers. Of the 785 new customers, we were able to determine that 465 came from our social media efforts.

We calculated that we spent $3.29 for each new customer obtained via social media whereas those obtained via traditional print cost an average of $16.03 to obtain. That’s almost 5 times as much to acquire new customers via print when compared with social media!

As 2011 starts we have decided to cut out flyers, radio, TV and print advertising and we’ve diverted most of our marketing budget to our social media marketing efforts.

In our specific case, we are confident in our decision to forego our investment in traditional print media (focusing on social media marketing instead) as a result of 18 months of authentic, consistent messaging on Twitter, Facebook, and the daily maintenance of our website.

When you look at the ROI of well-done, consistent social media marketing, there is no comparison with print. Furthermore, Phillips says that their study showed that price was the LAST concern of a consumer when choosing a liquor store.

Since switching to social media marketing, Liquor Plus has opened additional stores and seen customer counts increase by 25%.

If you need help with a professional social media strategy designed to increase your customer count, contact the Line Marketing Group. We will work with you to craft a strategy that will drive traffic through your doors.

Lessons learned from a NYC burger joint

From the Huffington Post:

The Burger Shoppe, an “old New York” style ode to all things Burger (and more), offers its loyal followers (500+ today) a free side of fries or onion rings when they show the cashier or bartender that they’ve checked in via Foursquare. Each additional check-in increases The Burger Shoppe’s word-of-mouth buzz, drawing new customers, and retaining current ones.

If you own a bar or a restaurant, do you have a presence on social media? OK, so you have page on Facebook, or maybe even a Twitter account. Are you using it effectively?

What are you doing to draw customers to like your Facebook page or follow you on Twitter? What about asking for positive reviews on Yelp! or TripAdvisor? Do you monitor these sites for feedback from consumers, and then follow up on complaints?

Like it or not, social media is here and it is the source of information for consumers looking to spend their dining dollars. While it is OK for you to avoid Facebook because you “don’t have the time” to reconnect with high school classmates or old flames, you cannot afford to avoid using Facebook or other social media tools to connect with your customers.

If you do not have a structured social media strategy, contact the Line Marketing Group. We can easily develop a simple strategy to promote your brand on social media–both inside and outside of your restaurant or bar–attracting new customers and keeping existing diners. And, we will help to monitor the results and feedback.

Using social media can be one of the best and most cost-effective methods to bring in hungry customers. Call us today to get more information on how to use social media to increase your customer base!

Welcome to the Line Marketing Group

Welcome!

The Line Marketing Group is dedicated to helping small to midsize businesses to grow their revenue by improving their marketing and client services.

We achieve results through better branding, active web marketing, social media use, search engine optimization and guerilla marketing.

If you are seeing sales flatten out or (even worse!) starting to decline, you need our services. We will discuss your company’s history, marketplace, competition, obstacles and current marketing strategy in order to come up with a winning plan which will turn around sales and increase your bottom line.

Contact us today to move your sales to the front of the line.