A business owner on a laptop using social media analytics to create a social media marketing plan

How a Social Media Plan Can Help You be More Productive with Your Marketing in 2022

If one of your intentions in your business is to become more productive with your marketing this year, creating a social media plan could be just the thing to get you there. Read more

Picture of a business owner with their laptop open on Facebook while using a social media scheduling app on their phone

The Social Media Apps and Tools I Intend to Keep Using in 2022

One of the problems with social media that many of my clients come to me for, is how long it can take to get your posts online! Whether it’s sourcing images, posting them or trying to get your head around how well they’re performing, social media marketing can easily take hours out of your working day.

But it doesn’t have to!

There are so many apps and tools out there to help you manage your social media. In truth, there are probably so many now that it’s become difficult to see the wood for the trees and establish which ones you should be using to save time and get better results.

So, here are my tried and tested favourite social media apps that I fully intend to keep using well into 2022 and beyond! Read more

Picture of a business owner writing a blog for affiliate marketing

Is Affiliate Marketing a Good Idea for Small Business Owners?

You’ve probably signed up for a new app or service for your business and been asked if you’d like to earn some additional income as an affiliate, but can you be on the other side of affiliate marketing and have your clients promote you and what you do?

When marketing your business in a crowded marketplace, any additional string to your bow can be worth it, so how can affiliate marketing fit into your marketing strategy?

Read more

Hand drawn marketing plan that includes search engine optimisation

7 Ways A Marketing Consultant Can Help You Generate Leads

Outsourcing to someone new in your business is always going to come with some feelings of uncertainty. In this blog, I want to reassure you about any concerns you may have with outsourcing to a marketing consultant, how a marketing consultant can help you to generate those all-important leads and why it’s worth navigating around any anxieties for the benefits it can bring to your business.

So, here are 7 ways a marketing consultant can help you generate leads for your business today.

1 – Marketing consultants have expert knowledge

Picture of Claire Saxton delivering Twitter trainingTo become a member or associated member of certain marketing professional bodies (like the Charted Institute of Marketing), you have to be able to prove that you have relevant qualifications and experience in marketing.

Many of us have degrees, some members have post-graduate qualifications and all of us have to complete CPD requirements by updating our skills regularly, taking refresher courses, keeping up to date with industry changes, etc.

All of this means that we have the expert knowledge it would literally take you years to gain for your business (because it has taken us many years to acquire it!) As a business owner with limited time to manage your business, it’s worth outsourcing to a marketing consultant and getting the help you need quickly and easily without wasting time and resources that could be better spent elsewhere.

2 – We’re always researching the latest marketing trends

Although the core principles of marketing remain the same (target audience, value propositions, identifying pain points, etc), there are trends that come and go. A good example of this was the Clubhouse trend in winter 2020.

Marketing consultants will read a lot of articles and journals to see what new marketing techniques and tactics are making an appearance and research how they can be used for their clients. So, when a trend does take off, they already understand how to make the most of it.

We can also understand which trends work for certain business types and can advise you that it’s not worth jumping on the bandwagon for everything. That way, you don’t end up spending resources on a new hyped-up trend that simply won’t work for your target audience.

3 – We can help you define your target audience.

One of the biggest issues I help my clients with as a marketing consultant is identifying their target audience. We all know that understanding who is buying our products or services is important in ensuring we market to them effectively, and most people are aware that an audience avatar is a key part of that process.

But knowing how to create a marketing avatar, what to include and what to exclude, how deep to go and the important information that will make it easier to market to them in the future can be tricky. Not to mention the time spent doing it which could be better spent elsewhere on your business.

A marketing consultant can take care of this for you, research your audience and help you to clearly and identify who you’re targeting to help you generate better leads for your business.

4 – Marketing consultants are goal oriented

Goals are important when it comes to marketing. Whether it’s new leads, new clients, new followers, etc. Whatever the goal is, there’s a plan to get there, evaluation points along the way and tweaks to be made to ensure the goal is met.

It can be difficult to get this process right if you don’t have years of marketing expertise behind you. If a plan isn’t working, would you know the point to stop it? Chances are, you’ve already tried a few marketing approaches and given up on them because you weren’t getting anyway but was that because the marketing technique was wrong for your audience, or because it needed tweaking to work just right?

We understand how to ensure your goals are met and are always striving to do so, and once they’ve been achieved set new goals to work toward.

5 – We know what marketing methods are best for business

Flowchart on a whiteboard of different marketing methods for small business ownersMarketing strategies are not the same for every business, even within the same industry! Just because a virtual assistant has had amazing success with Twitter marketing doesn’t mean that will work for you. You might have different USPs, target audiences, etc.

Different marketing techniques are better suited to some business owners than others, and the best way to understand which ones you should be using is by asking a marketing consultant. By understanding you, your business and your target audience we can help you to identify the marketing sweet spots to be focusing on.

We’ll also keep an eye on things and let you know if things change. We’ve all seen the shifts away from the older social media channels toward the new ones like Tik Tok and Clubhouse over the last year or so. This is a good example of how some of our audience will gravitate towards new or different channels and why you need to be keeping your marketing up to date to keep them engaged with your brand.

6 – We know what should be on your website and social media

It can be difficult to understand what information to share on your website and social media. Should you talk about you and what you have to offer? Should you talk about your audience and what they need? How in depth should you go into things?

We know what works on each page of your website and in social media posts. By putting the information out there that your target audience are expecting to see (rather than what you think they might want to see), we can help you generate new leads through your website and social media and win new customers to your business.

Essentially, we can put ourselves into the minds of your target audience and help you plan the content around what they need to know to buy from you.

7 – We understand marketing analytics

When was the last time you delved into your social media and google analytics?

We know that data isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, and it can be difficult to understand just what the numbers are telling you, but we love them! Data can tell us so much and enable us to tweak marketing campaigns, so they perform even better than before.

Your top performing post can guide us toward creating more posts like that to generate even more leads, your top performing blog can tell us what your audience are searching for online and how they arrived at that blog (was it social media or SEO?), and the conversion rate between website visitors and lead enquiries can help us understand which pages are working best from a sales perspective.

All of this information is important for a successful marketing campaign, and we can help you get the numbers and present it in a way you can understand to improve your lead generation and sales.

Marketing consultants understand how digital marketing methods and traditional marketing tactics come together to generate leads for your business, and how to get campaigns working just right for your particular goals.

I hope I’ve been able to provide some reassurance that we are the experts you need to help your business, and that we have the skills to ensure you won’t regret outsourcing to us. If you’re ready to take the plunge and generate more business leads in 2021, get in touch with me now.


Picture of blue facebook and messenger logo for the blog post "why is facebook blue? What colours mean in marketing"

Why is Facebook Blue? What Colours Mean in Marketing

Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn all use blue within their logo and branding – have you ever wondered why that is? It’s all to do with the psychology of colour.

Colours can create feelings and emotions in our minds when we see them. We might be consciously aware of it at the time, we all know that red represents danger for example and know to be alert when we see a red road sign. But colours can work on our subconscious minds too, creating feelings so subtle that we don’t even realise they’re there. Read more

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How to Create a Multi-Channel Marketing Strategy

There are so many forms of marketing it can be easy to feel lost when figuring out what to do where. Marketing is like a big jigsaw puzzle with each channel or form of marketing representing a different piece. You can leave some pieces out and still see what the picture is meant to look like but leave too many gaps and you lose the detail.

That doesn’t mean you have to do every form of marketing that’s out there to get a fully working strategy for your business, but it does mean you need to understand what the complete picture looks like for you, and how each piece of the puzzle contributes to that, i.e., each form of marketing.

In this blog, I want to discuss how to create a multi-channel marketing strategy and how to get the most out of your marketing for your business. Read more

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How to Make Sales on Instagram (without being too salesy)

In my previous blog about Instagram, I talked about the basics of setting up your profile, engaging with the right followers and building your brand through this visual social media platform.

In this blog, I want to talk about how to make sales on Instagram through social media marketing that puts your business in front of potential customers to influence their buying decisions. Turning followers into customers takes time, effort, and effective marketing strategies but it is possible. So, I’m going to give you a quick guide of the suggestions I make as a marketing consultant with my Instagram clients that may help you to boost your revenue and profits too. Read more

Picture of the LinkedIn logo above stick figure people using it for social marketing success

7 Supercharged Tricks for LinkedIn Marketing Success

LinkedIn is one of those social media channels that many people struggle to use effectively for their marketing. The corporate tone to LinkedIn can make it seem like the wrong platform for freelancers and small business owners with the focus on work history and employable skills, but in reality, it’s a fantastic place to network and make connections.

I created a blog on getting started with LinkedIn in my “Claire Saxton’s Social Media Basics” series of blogs, which you can check out here. 

This blog is for those of you who have been on LinkedIn for a while and maybe not quite got the results you’d hope for, or simply want to tweak your LinkedIn marketing for more opportunities! Read more

hands holding up a board with the words time to think about success on it

How to be a Successful Marketing Consultant

I’ve been in business for 6 years now and have won several awards, kept going despite the global pandemic and even seen growth during that time, and I have some ambitious plans for the future that I’m very excited about!

Looking back to when I started, I didn’t imagine my business would be like this and so I thought I’d write this blog as words of advice for who I was at the start of my business journey. I think it’s good to reflect on the past, things that have gone well and things that haven’t; and I hope that these words might help you if you’re at the start of your business journey too!

Never be afraid to ask for help

When you start a business there’s so much you don’t know, yet you feel like you should know it all. There’s the thought in the back of your mind that if you ask questions, you’re going to look like you don’t know what you’re doing and who’s going to work with you after that!

This is categorically untrue.

Every business owner I’ve met have felt the same way and regretted not asking for help sooner.

It’s impossible to know everything you need straight away so ask for help! You can do it online, at networking events, you can see if there’s a mentor available in your industry who will take you under their wing or you can find an online course. Whatever it is, there will be a way to get the help you need.

Constant learning and research is vital

Woman holding a no and a yes ball confused about soft opt-in for GDPR and marketingWhile asking for help is important, it is crucial that you keep on top of your own learning, research and personal development too.

Whether you work in the marketing industry or not, there will be continual changes and things you need to keep on top of. If you don’t continually upskill and keep on top of things, it’ll start to show in your work.

There might be CPD requirements for your profession and there may not be, regardless, you should make sure that you are taking new courses, reading the latest industry journals and networking within your industry as much as possible to keep abreast of new information and what’s in the pipeline.

Contracts are essential no matter how small the job might be

Contracts can seem scary, and sometimes unnecessary if you’re just doing a job for a friend (word of advice, don’t do that!) but they really are essential.

Contracts allow you and the other party to be clear on what’s going to happen, who’s responsible for what, what payment will look like and any legal implications for breaking said contract. It’s just a polite and formal way to get things square with each other before you get started.

Generally, people who avoid signing contracts either don’t understand them and you can break down what it means in more detail or are likely to be problem clients and best avoided anyway.

Admin tasks are important – get them done!

Yawn, yes, I know, admin is dull and boring, and you have a million and one other things you could be doing instead but get it done anyway.

But those invoices need sending, the membership to your professional needs to be renewed, the stack of supplier invoices need paying and you really should get your accounts sent across to your accountant too.

Each admin task is important in its own right, no matter how minor it might seem. So, dedicate a half day a week or so to clearing the backlog and then keep on top of it!

Outsource what you can, as soon as you can

Customers using a small business website that's been optimised for search enginesIf admin really isn’t your forte, a Virtual Assistant can help you keep on top of things.

It’s not just the paperwork that can be outsourced though and really, if a task isn’t directly earning you money consider giving it to someone else to do.

Yes, it costs money, but it’s often cost effective to outsource tasks to professionals who can zip through them in less time and do a better job than you can while you can earn money in the meantime.

Let’s take copywriting as an example. If you’re not a natural write it might take you all day to write a blog for your website. A copywriter could probably blitz through it in an hour or two and they know the tricks of the trade you don’t to get it optimised for SEO, etc. Two hours expense versus a day’s missed earning potential – it’s a no-brainer really!

Never underestimate the power of word of mouth

Sometimes it’s not the creative ads you’ve put out about your business that gets you the most revenue but word of mouth referrals (which is why marketing should be focused on your reputation and credibility alongside what you have to offer).

Whether it’s friends and family sharing what you do, happy clients sharing testimonials or winning Twitter awards and getting noticed online – it’s the buzz around you that can carry the most weight.

Winning the #SBS award from Theo Paphitis gave me so much confidence that improved my business in every area and opened up so many new opportunities to me. This is the kind of buzz I’m talking about here, and it’s something that money simply cannot buy.

Find the right balance

Most of us start our own businesses to have a better work/life balance but then we find there’s so much more work involved when you have to do everything yourself, there’s little time left for your family or yourself.

It’s important to establish “working hours” and stick to them!

Don’t be tempted to work outside of those hours, do everything you can to streamline your processes and ensure you can get your work done within those hours, and don’t feel guilty for taking an afternoon off to see your child’s school concert!

I hope you’ve found this blog helpful, maybe just as a reminder for the things you already knew but they’d somehow slipped along the wayside. No matter where you are in your business journey, don’t give up! Success and opportunity often come when you least expect them!

Which of these 9 Twitter Fails Are You Making?

Learning to use social media for business is a completely different kettle of fish than using it for personal reasons, particularly when it comes to Twitter. That’s why it’s all too easy to make mistakes without realising it and struggle to get momentum with your Twitter marketing strategy.

I often see Twitter mistakes as I use Twitter so much for myself and my clients, so I wanted to share with you my 9 top fails that I see, and what you can do to avoid them. Read more