Can I have a business energy contract if I work from home?
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We may resent some perceived US traits and influences but there is much for UK SMEs to learn from their stateside counterparts.
Americans are five times more likely to be self-confident than Brits, according to research by psychology and data specialists, VisualDNA.
This confidence is one area where Brits can learn from Americans about embracing online marketing, says Michelle Cachucho of Best Minds Marketing.
“Google did a study on how people make their purchasing decisions. It’s called Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT). “It found that the internet has changed how we decide what to buy. Consumers do their research online now. The US have got that. In the UK, small businesses know they need to be online but finding out the ‘right’ way to do it can leave them overwhelmed”.
“I specialise in email marketing,” says Cachucho. “It’s the cheapest form of marketing online and provides the most return on investment. It’s not about spamming customers with sales emails; instead it’s about starting and continuing a conversation.”
Emailing customers about a refer-a-friend scheme, for instance, is just one example of email marketing that can add value. Cachucho adds that email marketing can “lead to additional revenue small business didn’t think was possible”.
Alasdair Inglis, MD of small business marketing agency Grow, agrees. “A small increase in referral and repeat custom can make a huge impact on profit.
“For example, if you’re a hairdresser, partner with the gym down the road to offer a discount to each other’s clients. Each business could leverage the value of its email list really easily by emailing its clients to promote such a deal.”
Brits can also learn from Americans when it comes to social media marketing, says Inglis. “Small businesses can punch above their weight with paid advertising on Facebook. It has all this data on its users – who they are, where they live, who’s getting married, ages of children and more. So for just £200–300 small businesses can place an ad targeting their ideal customer and get results.”
Inglis says he sees many business owners spending too much time on business admin and not enough time on marketing. “If you want your business to grow you should be doing the work that’s high-value so delegate or outsource your admin.”
Business owners can be scared of using marketing, Inglis says, and may not know where to start. Remember, you don’t have to do it all yourself, he advises; there are many marketing freelancers who specialise in helping small businesses. Sign up to LinkedIn and search ‘Marketing Freelance’. Check out what companies they’ve worked with before, if they’ve been reviewed and click on their website to see if they’ve got the knowledge to make your presence online really sing.
But even if you do employ marketing help, make sure you take an interest. Inglis says: “Successful business owners are those willing to learn and develop an understanding of marketing.
“Take online courses and speak to experts to build up your knowledge base. And remember it takes time for great marketing to work.”
"Very easy. Bea Luseni very efficient & knowledgeable."This review was posted by Alan Duffy on the 31st of March 2017
Super helpful and easy to work with
"Recommend this company in a heartbeat - Nicole Borneuf was super easy to talk to, was not pushy in the slightest, very helpful and replied with all my questions very professionally and did all she could to help. I had to deal with a few companies to sort my business energy out, all but Nicole were too pushy for my liking and I refused to follow through with them. Thank Nicole - you are a credit to your company, thank you for making the stressful energy change so easy."This review was posted by Mia Drew on the 29th of March 2017
An Extremely Competent Company
"Switch my business has not only helped my SME secure a good energy deal for the second year running but Jessica swiftly found a alternative supplier for me when I was let down on the day of switching by the new contractual provider I had chosen some 4 months previously. Being suddenly out of contract and without provider is everyone's energy nightmare. Greatest thanks."This review was posted by S McMillan on the 29th of March 2017
Helpful, friendly and we saved lots of money!
"Jessica Purnell was helpful and friendly, she made the whole process easy and simple AND we saved lots of money thanks Jess"This review was posted by Melanie Baker on the 23rd of March 2017
Quick & Easy
"Kabibi was very helpful and the whole process was very efficient. The one small reservation I had was that I was phoned up by Kabibi almost immediately having received my online quote - which wasn't enough time for me to finish reading the quotes! Fortunately she was able to assist me in a greater savings on both Gas & Electricity, and so as long as the switchover is seamless I will remain very happy with the service."This review was posted by Amanda Brown on the 21st of March 2017