Greg Magnus

AIM Custom Media Websites Blogs Glen Allen, VA 23059

Month: July 2009 (page 1 of 2)

AIM Custom Media: How to Add Your Event to LinkedIn

More than likely, you noticed we frequently use LinkedIn Events to share our activities with business colleagues and clients as well as our social networking friends. Seminars, webinars and related events are important activities we engage in to enhance our education, share our knowledge and forge new relationships.

How do you add your business seminar or social event to LinkedIn? Well, I can’t explain it any better than the folks at LinkedIn that created the app. Watch this video for step-by-step instructions:

Click here to view the embedded video.

Let us know if you have any questions or if you would like us to do it for you.

SOCIAL MEDIA NETWORKING MINI-WORKSHOP

AIM Custom Media is presenting a mini-workshop for small business owners and entrepreneurs titled, How to Leverage Social Media Technology to Build Your Business. To receive the announcement details, subscribe here to digital AIM and you’ll receive the info when it is published. Call me at 804-723-9160 if you have any immediate questions concerning website marketing, website design or social media.

June Another Weak Month for Retail Sales

The nation’s stores reported dismal monthly sales for June and a recovery in retailing is unlikely in the near future. Yesterday (Thursday, July 9), the industry posted a 4.9 percent sales decline for June, in contrast to a 1.9 percent increase a year ago when tax rebate checks were burning holes in everyone’s pockets. The current drop in retail sales is the longest negative streak on record according to Thomson Reuters, as reported by the NY Times (Weak Month for Retail Sales – NYTimes.com).

  • Dillard’s declined 14 percent
  • Nordstrom declined 10 percent
  • Saks fared better but still down 4.4 percent
  • Macy’s down 8.9 percent and J. C. Penney drops 8.2 percent.

The good news, consumers’ savings rates continue to increase and deep discounting is rampant; it is a great time to pick up new clothes for sure. What does this mean for your business? It highlights the importance of your business planning process as well as the adjustments required to address evolving economic conditions. Also, the need to leverage technology to market your business has never been more important. Look for synergism with partners and business associates. Continue reading

Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren 722 GT in SPEED World Challenge GT

Our friends at TRG Motorsports sent us the press release below. Along with Circle B Motorscars of Texas, they will debut the SLR McLaren 722 GT in Joliet, Illinois on July 26: Petaluma, Calif., (June 30, 2009) – TRG Motorsports together with Circle B Motorcars of Texas will debut the No 71 Circle B Motorcars Mercedes-Benz […]

This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

2010 Mercedes-Benz AMG E63 Overview and Photos

AMG Market/PR News/Mercedes-AMG Press Release/Affalterbach – AMG, the high-performance brand within Mercedes-Benz Cars, is presenting the new E63 AMG. This dynamic sports sedan with day-to-day suitability is the top-of-the-line E-Class model, offering an impressive combination of outstanding performance, exhilarating driving dynamics and a technology transfer from the SL63 AMG high-performance Roadster. The new E63 AMG distinguishes […]

This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin

Race car driver, Susie Stoddart and fashion ambassador, Julia Stegner with the SLR Roadster at the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin venue The fifth edition of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin began with the fusion of fashion and automobile. Susie Stoddart, one of the world’s top race car drivers drove with Mercedes-Benz fashion brand ambassador Julia Stegner in […]

This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

Mercedes-Benz AMG S 63 and S 65 – Improving

Updated technology as well as active and passive safety is creating more appeal for the Mercedes-Benz S 63 AMG and S 65 AMG. Both top-of-the-line S-Class models from Mercedes-AMG embody state-of-the-art technology. The S 63 AMG, with its 386 kW/525 hp AMG 6.3-liter V8 engine accelerates to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds. The S 65 […]

This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

Mercedes AMG Wins Engine of the Year Award

The "International Engine of the Year Awards 2009" finds engines from Mercedes-Benz and AMG were the best in three categories. The AMG 6.3-liter V8 engine received two awards: "Best Performance Engine" and "Above 4 liter" categories. This engine is naturally aspirated and it develops up to 386 kW/525 hp’; it took first place by a […]

This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

AMG Market: Drive the 2011 SLS AMG Before Launch Date – AMG Driving Academy

MBUSA has officially announced the AMG Driving Academy details for three upcoming venues this fall. And, you can be one of the lucky few to drive the all-new 2011 SLS AMG, which is being offered at the Stage I Programs at Laguna Seca Raceway only. The 2011 SLS AMG is one of the most […]

This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

Electric Benz – Daimler Takes 10 Percent Stake in Tesla Motors

Daimler’s interest in battery systems, electric drive systems and related vehicle projects leads to the automaker acquiring nearly 10 percent of one of the leading electric vehicle companies, Tesla Motors Inc. This investment deepens the relationship between the inventor of the automobile and the newest member of the global auto industry. Tesla is the only […]

This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

The Most Expensive Car in the World Sold at Auction

AMG Market/PR News/MARANELLO, Italy – May 17, 2009  (Source RM Auctions): RM Auctions, in association with Sothebys, made history at the Ferrari factory in Maranello today as a 1957 Ferrari 250 TR, chassis no. 0714TR sold for $9,020,000 at the third annual Ferrari Leggenda e Passione event  to set a new world record for the […]
This is an article summary by AMG Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts – read the rest of the story at the AMG Market.

Funding: Good News For Entrepreneurs in Virginia

Lack of capital can stymie an otherwise viable growing small business with excellent growth potential. Hence, the creation of SBA loans to assist small business owners and entrepreneurs with solid business acumen. And, certain banks welcome you at the door.

New York-based M&T Bank has purchased eight Richmond, VA, branches of Provident bank, which reportedly is one of the SBA friendly lenders. Richmond BizSense reports:

Eight local bank branches previously operated by Maryland-based Provident Bank are under new ownership.

Those banks are now run by New York-based M&T Bank and have been open under the new name for about two weeks. M&T, which also acquired three former Provident branches in Fredericksburg, has a reputation for being a big lender for SBA loans, which could be a welcome sight for local entrepreneurs.

The purchase was valued at 1 million, according to the Albany Business Review. M&T had .9 billion in assets as of March 31; Provident had .5 billion in assets at that time. << Full Richmondbizsense.com story here >>

So, what do you need to do to get an SBA loan to grow your business? Start with a complete and compelling business plan that includes solid financial and marketing plans. A bank’s first impression of your company is your business plan. Get it right the first time, get capital and grow your business.


Marketing: Brand Awareness and Brand Engagement

Do you know the difference between brand awareness and brand engagement? Are you a small business owner that thinks branding is a marketing activity for only the large companies such as Mercedes-Benz or Sony? Branding is important for all companies, regardless of size and budget.

Consider these questions and answers provided to SCORE by Gemini Babla, Director of Creative Services who oversees branding initiatives for Sony Electronics Inc. in the USA:

Why Branding Is Important in a Tight Economy

Q: Is it important to continue brand building in a difficult economic climate? Why?

Babla: It pays off. Studies have shown that stocks of companies with both high brand awareness and high employee “brand engagement” return over 300% more than the S&P 500 and nearly twice as much as companies that just have high brand awareness.

Branding is often confused with advertising and marketing. That’s unfortunate, because understanding your brand is vital to the bottom line. Studies show that companies that market their product or services without first establishing their brand identity are not likely to achieve return on investment. If you’re spending money to advertise without being connected to a brand position, you may as well flush the money down the drain.

Q: What can a small business learn from Sony?

Babla: Large budgets aren’t the key to strong marketing. Instead, focus on your audience and provide quality, quality, quality in everything you do.

Q: What advice would you give a small business owner right now?

Babla: Do what you say you’re going to do. This may sound like common sense, but one of the primary drivers of brand loyalty is a consistent experience. If you say you are going to have the photographs ready on a set day, be sure they are ready. Positive experiences lead to good feelings, which lead to customers telling their friends. Don’t forget that bad experiences spread much faster and are harder to overcome…if you get a chance at all.

Also, your employees are the biggest stewards of your brand says Babla,

“Branding is as much about your people as anything else. The best interactions come from one-on-one conversations between executives, employees, suppliers and customers,” Babla says. “Employees who are engaged with your brand management philosophy will become brand ambassadors for your company.”

Low Cost Branding Tactics
By Greg Magnus, AIM Custom Media:

  1. Email signature line: Basic tactic but how many emails are in your inbox right now without a signature line that includes a website link and/or tag line? I find it hard to believe many business colleagues have an AOL ad on the bottom of their signature line instead of a link to their own company website (again, common sense).
  2. Social Networking Profiles: Again, adding a link to your own website takes a few minutes on LinkedIn, Facebook, twitter, etc. Also, review your bio as well as your employees’ bios on the social networking sites; do they include a consistent message? Your company’s tag line and keywords important to your target audience/industry?
  3. Connect with your employees and customers online: Search social network sites and connect with your employees and customers. Do they understand your brand? Are they participating in conversations about your industry and your company? Join the conversation and be consistent with your brand message. Again, include a signature line and a link to relevant information that helps those in your industry find advice of value.
  4. Blogs and Forums: Did you ever notice there are certain people on blogs and forums that you recognize? Why not be one of them? Consistently provide helpful information and answer questions of others; hundreds if not thousands of people might find your advice helpful and subsequently share it with others.

Additional Resources:

SCORE/SONY Branding Tips

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