Ask Entrepreneur - Marketing

Should I go door-to-door to other businesses to promote my business?

I have a new cleaning service. Do you think the owners of the businesses will get angry because I am soliciting?

How can I compare franchise advertising fees?

I'm looking to compare the franchise advertising fees required by several different restaurant chains.

How do I market to college students?

I started my own website that allows college students to buy, sell or trade items to other students either from their own school or schools across the U.S. The site has only been operational for about a month and I'm having trouble marketing to college students. How do I get students to come to the site and check out its potential. Right now I'm focusing on one or two schools and hope to reach other schools once it starts catching on.

How can I market our e-commerce site on a limited budget?

We have a growing e-commerce business that is not growing fast enough. We currently advertise with pay per click listings. Most of our customers find us through pay per click, some organic

Is now the time to add or cut advertising?

Some people are telling me to cut my advertising as a cost saving measure when times are tight. Others recommend spending more during the downturn. I know that in past recessions, customers' behavior changes (i.e. clipping more coupons). I also remember when large companies like Nike increased advertising resulting in record sales during a downturn. Is there any indication or sound advice on the idea that now is the time to increase our advertising efforts?

What kind of response rate should I expect for cable TV advertising?

I'm a mortgage broker and I'm starting to run television commercials. I'm trying to figure out how long I should wait to see a return on my investment for this type of advertising.

How can I expand my online art gallery into more areas?

I have an online art gallery for Texas artists and I want to extend it to other states after I get this one off the ground. Any marketing ideas? I think that people are loyal to there region and I hope to capitalize on that mindset by building a site for each state. Any tips?

How do you market to marketers?

If your target markets are marketing departments, directors of marketing and/or marketing managers, how do you persuade them to do business with you? They know all the tricks, right?

During this economy, where should I invest my money to attract new customers?

Two months ago I opened a coffee house in Southern California. We specialize in gourmet coffee and tea. Everyone that comes in seems to like the place and our drinks, but still we don't have the turn around that we would hope for.

How do I get more customers?

I have a eatery in the mall and it is very slow here. We have a corner spot right by the main entrance. I have daily specials signs and signs in the commons area. What else can I do?

How do you determine volume discounts?

What is the proper discount and at what volume do you determine each discount? I have been selling my product -- tea -- to mom-and-pop-type stores and they are buying 12 packages at a time. But now, I have been given the opportunity to offer a volume discount to a large chain store. How does one begin to offer this discount as to not offend my potential customer and also still make a profit?

What is the best way to begin email marketing?

I have a large database of email addresses for both active and prospective customers. I want to start an e-newsletter -- so is it best to send them all the first newsletter and have an unsubscribe option, or should I send them all an email asking for permission to send newsletters? Other ideas?

How do I determine how much to charge for advertising on my website?

I am the executive director/founder of an educational non-profit and was wondering what I should charge companies that want to advertise on my site?

How should I market my product to get it into stores and boutiques?

I make all kinds of necklaces and earrings with quality glass beads and baked clay. The jewelry is really unique and I want to know what to do to get my jewelry business noticed.

How can I market a social networking site with a limited budget?

Our social networking site will focus on event planning, organizing and reviews. We are planning to release our beta release in early 2009; there is currently a holding page for people to register interest. Our goal is to reach 10,000 members before the real site release. What are some of the most effective ways to reach this goal within our limited financial capabilities?


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