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Friday, 21 December 2018

The Easy Guide to Managed Hosting in Malaysia


Managed Hosting is complicated, but there is an easy way to understand it. The term is ambiguous and because of this, it is common for every service provider to deliver different solutions.

Managed hosting is in essence an extension to dedicated hosting, where hardware is owned by the service provider and is leased to a single client. This client manages the day-to-day management and maintenance of its servers.

Dedicated hosting is different, by its day-to-day management and maintenance of its servers, as it is handled by the service provider compared to the clients themselves.

Due to the ambiguous defnition, many different business offer different ‘levels’ of management to its clients.

Below is a list of what normally managed hosting should include:


Server Monitoring – 

The process of scanning servers in search of any irregularities or potential failures.

Security – 

This includes virus scanning, spam filtering, firewall configuration and operating system updates in addition to standard physical data centre security measures.

Full Back-up and Storage – 

Imagine deleting a file by accident and having no way to recover it. Now think of it on a  company wide scale. Losing data can be costly in every sense of the word; it can cause a loss of money, time and customer trust.

Managed Hosting Providers are far more likely to have both the physical and technical capabilities in place to carry out the back-up/storage process correctly.

Server Configuration and Maintenance – 

Managed hosting providers can offer specialist staff with the expertise to ensure that the hosting solution is initially configured to meet the customer’s requirements effectively and subsequently, to perform the necessary server maintenance to keep the platform running smoothly

Support – 

An attractive benefit of managed hosting is that – if there ever is an issue – there is always qualified support on hand. In ideal cases, companies make human telephone support available 24/7/365, however in some, support is offered via email.

There are also business benefits to managed hosting, which usually include, but once again are not limited to, the following:


Flexibility - 

Managed Hosting is a flexible solution – not a one size fits all service – and providers can work with customers to achieve a solution tailored to suit the budget and individual requirements of their business.

Reduced cost of operation – 

The hardware and expertise required to manage hosting in-house can be very costly; with many businesses, the cost outweighs the benefits.

More effective use of resource – 

If your company employs IT staff then you know better than anyone that skilled IT employees can be costly. With this in mind, it makes sense to make sure that you put this resource to the best possible use.

Learn more about Everworks dedicated hosting here.

Wednesday, 19 December 2018

How To Improve Your Cold Sales Email Dramatically


When sending a sales email, always put yourself in the context of meeting someone you’ve never met before for the first time.

Sending a sales email, is just like trying to force someone to marry you on the very first hello.

When you send a sales email, you could have the most compelling subject line. The most enticing content. The most exciting CTA.

But if I don’t know you and who you represent: Why should I trust you?


If you want to get a better response rate for your sales emails you need to answer that question. And one of the best ways to do that is with social proof.

What is social proof and why does it matter for sales emails?


Social proof is proving your credibility by pointing to other people or organizations you’ve worked with that already have credibility with your prospect.

In our experience, it’s the quickest way to go from a random name in someone’s inbox, to a person they don’t mind to work with.

If you’ve spent hours writing the best subject line, clearly articulated your proposition, and given an exciting call to action, all this will be in vain if you don’t make me feel comfortable with you. And without social proof, all of your efforts will be but for a lost cause.

Below are the 3 levels of social proof you need to show to gain someone’s trust over email:


This is a simple concept. But it can be complex to get correct.

You can’t just write to tell someone to trust you. You need to show it to me. More than that, you need to show me social proof on multiple levels:


  1. Company credibility: Who have you worked with that I know and trust?
  2. Product credibility: What verifiable results have you created for people with your product?
  3. Personal credibility: Who are you and why should I trust you?


What types of social proof can (and should) you use?


There are tons of ways to show social proof and which one you choose will depend on what you have available.

However, before choosing any type of social proof to include in your sales emails, you need to ask two questions:

First, does this social proof resonate with this specific prospect? 


Next, will the prospect perceive this social proof as credible? 

With that in mind, here are the best ways you can show social proof in your sales emails.

Your customers


Happy customers are the best source of social proof. Instead of you telling a prospect all of the value they’re going to get, they get to hear it from someone they know who has already gone through the process.

You have a few options when choosing the right customers to use for social proof:



  1. Famous and popular brands
  2. Companies in the prospect’s market
  3. Local companies they might be familiar with
  4. You can use customer social proof by talking about them in the third person. 


Common connections


If you don’t have any customers or any you feel confident highlighting, you can create social proof by showing a common connection you have with the prospect.


However, you have to be careful here. A common connection isn’t just one of 5000 people on your LinkedIn or Twitter. It has to be a real connection you both know and trust.

Revenue and profits


Money talks. And highlighting verifiable monetary success is a great way to prove your legitimacy.

Have you done some impressive numbers in the past year?  Or pass a major milestone?

Any social proof connected to money has to be easily verified by another source or else it’s useless.

Press


Press doesn’t carry the same social status as it once did, but it’s still a great way to show you’re worth talking about. You can assume your prospect will click any press links you include.

Associations or former employers


In certain situations, the places you’ve worked in the past or where you went to school can be used as social proof.

Accomplishments


Again, in certain circumstances, relevant accomplishments or personal awards can help build your personal or product credibility.

Whatever social proof you use, assume your prospect will try to verify it. No matter what social proof you give, it has to be honest and verifiable. 


Beyond that, your personal online presence needs to have credibility as well. Most people will check your LinkedIn or social media profile to see who you are. And if those pages are shady or unprofessional it can make any social credibility you’ve developed to die with them.

Where to place social proof in your sales emails


The next question after what kind of social proof to use is how do you use it? The short answer is: It depends.

If people are abandoning your emails early on: Add social proof to the beginning to grab their interest and engage their imagination.

If people are reading your emails but not responding: Add social proof right before or after your call to action so people feel confident about responding.

There’s one more place you should use social proof that is so underutilized. Your signature is a social proof machine.

What do you do when you don’t have any social proof?


Social proof is a powerful sales tool. But if you don’t have any yet, there’s still a few options you can use.

First, you need to recognize that personal social proof is important to everything you’ll ever do as a sales rep and an individual. Your brand and reputation will follow you everywhere you go. And while it takes time to build, it brings massive returns in the long-run if you keep up with it.

Next, honesty and openness can be just as strong as social proof. 


Instead, if you don’t have any good social proof to show, just be transparent about your situation

This kind of vulnerability can be incredibly powerful and make someone want to trust you, even if you don’t have the proof to back it up yet.

Always remember, if I don’t trust you, I won’t talk to you


You wouldn’t let a complete stranger into your house, so why should a prospect reply to your sales email if they don’t know you and trust what you’re saying?

With social proof, you give your prospects a reason to believe.  Use it. And build that trust. Because without it, I don’t have a reason to talk to you.

Learn more about how Everworks's professional business email hosting will help you to deliver consistent email responses every time here.

Sunday, 2 December 2018

The Straightforward Guide On What Colocation Is and Its Benefits

Malaysia now has over 31 million people. 67.7% of them are Internet users.

In this post, I'm going to cover everything you need to know about Colocation and how to use Colocation to benefit your business.

Colocation is essentially space in a data centre that you rent for your servers to benefit from data centre infrastructure.

By the end, you'll know more about Colocation than most business owners, about taking your online service from great to spectacular.

Let's get started.

What is Colocation?


The first thing you need to figure out about Colocation is a clear simple meaning or definition of Colocation.

Colocation is data centre space which is available for rent.

If the goal for you is to have your servers deliver world class results. Your servers should be placed in an environment (within a data centre) that has facilities to deliver world class results.

For example, you need information fast for a client who wants to work with you. And your servers should perform at an equal pace or quicker than you so that you are able to provide world class service to your clients.

Key takeaway: It's important for your business to deliver fast.



There are a few reasons for this.

First, if you can save some time through speed, you'll be able to do and deliver more for your business.

The biggest benefit of speed is if you are speaking with a potential client who is interested to buy, you'll be able to sell more effectively. When your sales pitch is delivered without interruption, it gives incentive to buyers when they are making a decision to buy.

For instance, imagine if you were interested to buy a new service or product and was doing research.

Wouldn't you miss out on those who are slow to respond, because someone else was first to sell to you?

"That's because speed is very important in selling, and is one of the key components to better sales conversions."

The second reason is that it makes your business easier to work with.

One of the main reasons why clients don't buy from you is because there isn't a sense of urgency.

If you are able to act and communicate quickly on information your buyer is interested to learn, it is more likely that you are able to convert a sale.

How does Colocation benefit your business?


So far we've covered what is Colocation.

However, what's arguably more important, is figuring out how Colocation can benefit your business.

After all you only need to get a small slice of a data centre's power to see exponential results for your services.



First, using Colocation is an inexpensive way for you to benefit from high connection speeds (bandwidth).

Second you would significantly reduce any delay in service delivery because of higher reliability.  For example, power supply has been carefully implemented into the infrastructure to make sure your servers are always turned on.

Third, there is a lower risk of someone unnecessarily physically accessing your servers. Your servers are secured with available options such as CCTV monitoring and lockable cabinets.

Conclusion


If you've allocated funds to buy servers, install them in a data centre to maximise its potential. It should help your business to deliver the world class results your clients demand for.

However, your servers can't just maintain themselves. For example, you might need more computing power (better RAM) to service a growing customer list.

You need to make sure your servers continue to have the best hardware and software you need it to have to service your growing business.

After all, the goal that you should be focused on is to provide world class services to your clients.

From reading this post, you now know everything you need to know about Colocation. So get out there and find a reliable one!

Do you already have a Colocation? What have you found to be the best strategies to install and maintain your Colocation?

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

5 Don’ts of Email Signature Marketing


As discussed previously, there are great tips to using your email signature.

But here is 5 tips of what not to do for your email signatures.


1. Do not Go Overboard


You need not go overboard by including every single detail and contact information. Only add contact information that is necessary and regularly used.

2. Avoid Multiple Fonts


Although you can experiment with colors and fonts, it is difficult for the reader to follow.

3. Avoid Using Images for Signature


Using an image as your signature is a big NO.

With many devices and email clients having default settings that block images, an email signature that is in an image format will not be visible to all.

Also, not hosting images in your signature on a web server can turn against you.

4. Avoid Personal Quotes


Personal quotes in a business email signature can be a turn-off. Avoid them unless you are a writer or you have a mighty good reason to do so.

5. Disclaimers


Do not include long disclaimers in your signature.

Just add a few lines and then, if the need be, include a link to a detailed version.

Learn more about Everworks business class hosting here.

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

5 Best Practices of Email Signature Marketing


The email signature. You’d be surprised how many people actually read this. It is in general just information tagged at the end of your email, but do not look down on this as it is valuable space to let your recepient know a little bit more about you and what is going on.

An average employee sends out about 30 emails a day, and it could be to either customers, prospects, partners, investors, and more.


If there are 50 employees who send out such emails for 250 business days, there will be 475,000 annual sends.


Just imagine the brand visibility all those professional email signature can help you get, besides driving traffic to your website, and creating awareness about your company’s initiatives.

Here are 5 Best Practices you can follow for your email signature marketing efforts:


1. Lay out a good email signature design


A maximum of 7 lines – that’s the ideal size of a professional email signature.

This should contain your key contact details, social media icons and advertising message. However, it is important to consider the design of your signature.

Your key contact details should always be in the color of the email body text for consistency. Links can be in different colors.

Maintain a fixed font type and size throughout the mail. You can experiment with the font but it’s better to stick to the websafe fonts, so as to ensure its legibility across devices and email clients.

2. Link Email Recipients to Your Website and Blog


Every email sent from your Company should have an email signature accompanied by a link to your website. Surprisingly enough, very few companies stick to this basic rule.

By providing a link to your website, you are giving them an option to re-engage and stay connected with you.

3. Connect with them through social media


Include links to social media pages on which you post regular updates – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. in your email signature.

4. Inform them of Upcoming Events


Is there a conference at which you are invited as a speaker? Are you coming up with a trade show? You can change your professional email signature to reflect the happenings in your company.

Create a simple banner, with a link to a landing page describing the details of the event, and place it below your main email signature.

5. This is a MUST


Different countries have different laws. So depending on where you run your business, it is mandatory to add a few details about your Company in your email signature.

Therefore, it is best to consult your legal representative to find out more.

Learn how you can send professional business emails here.

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

How To Enhance Customer Loyalty via Email Marketing for your Small Business in Malaysia


It is common for most businesses in Malaysia to consistently follow the saying that every “Customer is King”.

So why don’t do it for your Email Marketing too?


You can do this through the act of boosting customer loyalty programs through email marketing.

Psychologically, most people just want to be remembered and feel important. 


Once this happens, there is bound to be loyalty.

Also, multiple studies have shown that loyalty mailings generate higher transactional rates and revenue per email.

Below are 4 examples of customer loyalty programs you can use for your small business email marketing campaigns in Malaysia:


1. Early & Exclusive Deals


Providing your customer with early and exclusive deals like discount vouchers, early holiday bonuses, one time offers, etc. (just for them) is a great way to break the ice.

Showing them that they come in your VIP list will make them feel wanted. This will make them look forward to your emails and offers, keeping them loyal

2. Appreciation Emails


We love to be appreciated.

Thanking your customer for being a part of your brand journey is again a great way to grab attention. So, appreciate your customer and make them feel you are thinking for them.

3. Reward Redemption


Shooting emails that offer rewards and exclusive offers for old customers, initiating them to visit your brand again, can help increase communication. It opens a platform for the customer to engage in and come back.

4. Reward Expiration Reminders


Shooting emails with reminders for last day of deals, or ‘use before’ a particular date vouchers, or discount coupons codes for only a day can help create urgency and increase traffic.

Learn more about how you can host your email on an enterprise platform that scales along with your business here.

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

The Easiest Way to Increase Engagement: 3 Stages to Send Thank You Emails


For most small business owners it is easy to get caught up in the jargons of your business and forget the importance of making connections with your customers.

There is a saying that customers buy with their heart and not with their brains.


As most email marketers would say that the success of any email marketing campaigns is dependent on the ability for you to deeply forge a relationship with your subscriber.

And the primary requirement for this is to engage your prospects at every touch point of your email marketing campaign.

The best way of engaging your prospects and customers is to send triggered emails that show how much you care for them.

A key differentiation for your small business in Malaysia, no matter how saturated the market is by standing out from the rest through the showing of some emphaty.


And when it comes to different types of triggered emails and their effectiveness in driving engagement, “Thank You” emails take the top slot hands down!

When Should you send one?


Thank you emails open up multiple avenues to engage with your prospects and customers. You can send them at various stages.

Here are 3 stages at which you should send a thank you email in order to get the maximum benefit:


1. After Subscription


The one stage at which you should not miss sending a thank you email is when someone subscribes to your emails.

Use your thank you email in such a manner that your new subscriber feels happy about joining your list. Start by thanking them for their interest in your products/services and ask them to get in touch with you if they have any queries regarding your business. Keep the email causal and make them feel that you are genuinely excited by their subscription.

The best way to avoid being to pushy is to include a brief intro about your business, products, and services and also mention what makes you stand apart from your peers.

2. After Purchase


After making a purchase from your site, your customers will definitely wait for a receipt against the purchase made, and they will surely open it to check as soon as they receive it. This gives you a great opportunity which you must leverage by combining the order receipt with a thank you note.

Doing this will make them feel that you value them highly, thus building loyalty towards your brand.

You can also add tips and FAQ section in the email to make it more engaging, just like what Classic Specs, an online eye-wear provider, has done in their thank you email:

3. Few Days after Order Delivery


Send a thank you email to your customer about a week after they receive the delivery of their order. In this email, thank the customer again for making the purchase and ask them whether they are happy with their new products.

Besides this, add customer support information as a means of info for them to contact you.

The thank you email that you send at this stage of the customer lifecycle should be used to cross sell and upsell.

Find out more about how your small business can send professional business emails with Everworks email hosting here.

Wednesday, 17 October 2018

5 Rules to Make a Smashing Small Business Press Release


Content is hard to conceive and it is very common to have writer’s block. With all the new in the world, such as social, listacles, and more.

Sometimes going old school can be a good thing. However, the when it comes to your small business public relations strategy, and the traditional press release is advantageous for your business and brand.

Back in the day, news was only delivered through the early morning newspaper. Fast forward today, the vast majority of people obtain their news either through a Twitter headline, what’s trending on Instagram, or what is being shared on Facebook.

What Is a Press Release / News Release?


A Press Release helps to build meaningful news that can help your small business stand out in Malaysia and build confidence of your customers over time.

A press release is an official announcement (written or recorded) that an organization issues to the news media and beyond.

Whether it’s called a "press release," a "press statement," a "news release," or a "media release," we're always talking about the same basic thing.

While the heading should contain action verbs, the first paragraph should answer the "who," "what," "why," and "where." The press release should also contain understandable language and a quote.

Most press releases are short at just a page long -- two pages, at its maximum. 


The goal is for your small business to ultimately, provide enough information that news outlets or any reader have sufficient material to gather information about your activities for publishing.

It may be tempting to craft a press release tht twists the facts, but remember this is a piece of information that is published to the public domain live for others to see. As it would be positive for your small business, but on the flipside it could also be detrimental.

So instead of taking the press release as a way to earn short-term news coverage, think of it as a long term marketing strategy for your Malaysian small business.


Rule 1: Make your headline irresistible.


Just like writing any article the title, sets up your press release for success. It can’t be stressed that starting with a great headline, is extremely important.

Although this seems like a daunting task, but consider the diction carefully, and you would be creating a highly captivating headline.

Use action verbs, clear, understandable language, and keep your headline simple and short -- fortune (and search engines) reward the brief, so keep your title to one line to clearly focus people's attention on your topline message.

Most importantly, make it interesting: Keep in mind that reporters get dozens, if not hundreds, of releases each day, so invest the time to write a compelling headline. It's worth the time and effort on your part.

Rule 2: Convey the value.


For anyone reading to be inclined to share your announcement, you have to tell them upfront why they should care.

The first paragraph of your release should cover the who, what, why, where, and how of your new launch, update, or development. People don't have time to sift through details and fluffy background information.

There shouldn't be any new, crucial information covered after this section that the reader could potentially miss.

Rule 3: Offer a tempting quote.


It's time to bring your details to life with a quote that reporters can use for context around your announcement and help paint a picture of how your news effect.

Ideally, quotes will be from key stakeholders in your company including your executive team, project leads, or those directly impacted by your announcement.

Quoting key figures and authorities underlines the importance of your development. The chosen quote should shape your narrative and emphasize the core of the announcement.

Rule 4: Provide valuable background information


In this last paragraph, keep in mind that the reader already has all of the important information.

It can be tempting to provide superfluous facts and tidbits about your company or the development of your announcement.

Offer details here that strengthen your narrative, like creative or noteworthy ways your company developed the project or announcement at hand.

Rule 5: Summarize the "who" and the "what" in a boilerplate.


Make your press release incredibly easy to reference.

Describe what your company does in clear, plain English, include a link to your company's homepage early on, and make your boilerplate succinct and straightforward.

To keep yourself honest, ask a friend or colleague to read the press release without context and ask if they can easily and readily explain why the announcement matters.

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

5 Ways to Boost Your Christmas Email Campaigns


Hey there small businesses! Make sure you plan a for this, because planning a great Christmas email campaign is crucial to your shop’s holiday success.

There’s the hype and although social media marketing might seem like the trendy thing to do at the moment (and it is worth investing in if you do it right), email marketing campaigns are inexpensive and can actually be very effective

In this post we’ll look at some strategies on the how-tos for running a successful Christmas email campaign.


1. Timing


Timing is important, as with most things. Timing is always a tricky thing in life, isn’t it?

Email marketing is no exception too, especially when it comes to Christmas sales.

With businesses trying to stay one step ahead of the competition during the holiday season, it seems that Black Friday will be a thing of the past soon (or at least not as relevant as in previous years).

This is where you have to be careful. If you’re a B2B business, it might very well make sense to begin your marketing campaigns in early October, as your consumers will need to prepare their own campaigns for the end users. However, if you’re a B2C company and you start sending your Christmas emails out too early, you run the risk of Christmas banner blindness. Your messages might get ignored or, even worse, you might irritate your customers.

Here’s a schedule that we recommend to prepare. It’s a sequence of emails that you should send and your workflow should look like this:

Warm up: inform your audience of the upcoming sale and what they can expect
Reminder: let them know that the sale is beginning very soon
Wake up: remind them that the sale has begun
Follow up: let them know any relevant information for a post-Christmas sale, etc.q
Of course, this isn’t set in stone and it all depends on your offers and your strategy. For example, you might have a “last-minute” sales email in this workflow to advertise your printable gift cards.
All in all, remember, it’s never too early to start planning your Christmas campaigns, but it can be too early to start sending them out.

2. Bring to the front important information.


A lot of companies are going to be holding Christmas sales, so you’re going to do your best to differentiate your offer. The last thing you want is for your customers to miss the benefits of buying from you. If you have a gift guide section on your website, make sure they know. I

3. Design


With all the deals you’ll be offering, you might forget that it is Christmas – and what’s Christmas without decorations? Your emails should reflect this as well. You have a lot different routes to choose from here:  the clean, white Christmas look or the colorful lights.

For B2B companies, perhaps you’ll want to go with a clean, white Christmas look, or include a Christmas greeting in the footer of your email.

A bonus tip for B2B companies, could be to include a Christmas signature.

4. Texts


Again, don’t forget that it’s Christmas time! Sure, it can be a bit stressful at times at home and at work (that might be the understatement of the year), but it’s supposed to be fun, too! “Fun” is the feeling that the email should give your readers.

Make sure you reach deep down inside and get that inner “soul” to make your best Christmas puns. Don’t be afraid to dabble in some cheesy word-play either.

5. Have the correct landing page


It’s hard enough getting people to open your email. The next goal is for them to click on button. In this day and age, two-clicks really is asking a lot from people.

However, if you’ve managed to grab their attention with your email, that means you’re doing something right! The last thing you want to do is guide them to a page that doesn’t show them the information they want to see.

If these potential customers have given you their attention, make sure you hold their attention by guiding them to a landing page that matches your email in style and content. 


The journey this customer takes after that first click should be completely smooth and cause no confusion. For example, if you’ve caught their attention by showcasing your gift guide, then the landing page should take them directly there, not to the homepage.

Don’t waste this opportunity!


Discover how you can send emails that get through with Everworks’s business email hosting here.

Thursday, 20 September 2018

6 Fantastic VR Marketing Examples for Your Business


The importance of virtual reality (VR) shouldn't be taken lightly, as the Internet was once a debate. This is the future and we should learn from past experiences with the Internet.

 Here you will find 9 Fantastic Ideas on how to apply VR to your business. It is estimated that by 2020, the economic impact of virtual and augmented reality is predicted to reach $29.5 billion.

By the end of 2017, the number of shipped units of VR software and hardware from Sony, Oculus, HTC, and others totaled $2.4 million, up from $1.7 million in 2016.

By 2020, the number of VR headsets sold is predicted to reach 82 million -- a 1,507% increase from 2017 predicted totals.

 It's evident that VR is being adopted in the marketplace at a rapid pace, and adding this capability to your existing portfolio of marketing channels is something you must consider to stay current in the ever changing ever growing competitive space for business.

 What Is VR VR, is short for virtual reality, is a form of interactive software that immerses users in a three-dimensional environment to simulate a real experience (This is achieved with the help of some hardware). Ideally, VR allows people to simulate the experience in 360 degrees.

 Numerous industries are now finding uses for VR. Some examples include the transport people to places they might otherwise have to travel to, or simply imagine.

While movie companies, for example, are giving audiences the opportunity to experience the movie as if they're the actual character in the scene, and conventional businesses are now using VR to demonstrate and promote their products to potential customers to give them a more immersive experience and a more vivid illustration on what they intend to communicate.

 Before we dive into some of the businesses that have found success injecting their marketing with a dose of VR, it's worth noting that virtual reality has a few key differences from another term you might've heard before: augmented reality.

Both are working in the virtual space, however, there are differences:




 Let's dive into the 9 fantastic ideas on how to apply VR to your business below:

 1. Key Technology: VERYX Food Sortixd d. 0g


 

 As a designer and manufacturer of food processing systems, Key Technology created a VR demo system that would allow any attendee to experience a more detailed, hands-on look at how the company's VERYX digital food sorting platform works and how it will help them.

 2. Defy Ventures and Within: Step To The Line


 

 Another great VR initiative we recommend is Step To The Line: A short film (that was immersively viewed on a VR headset) documenting the lives of inmates at California maximum-security prisons. Created by Within, a VR storytelling production company, in partnership with Defy Ventures, an entrepreneurship and development program for men, women, and youth who are currently or were formerly incarcerated.

The objective of this viewing experience is to help viewers to uniquely see what life is like within the walls of these correctional facilities, from the yard, to the cells, to the conversations that take place there.

3. Limbic Life: Project VITALICS


 

There is knowledge that For far too many people, injuries, age, and disease can diminish mobility and equilibrium to the point where walking is extremely painful to nearly impossible.

 Pairing this special chair with a Gear VR headset allows users to more intuitively move their bodies (thanks to the chair's combined neuroscience-based and ergonomic design) while virtually experiencing day-to-day experiences with a rehabilitative use of their hands and legs.

 Dr. Patrik Künzler mentioned, "Patients enjoy being in the chair and the freedom of movement it allows. They enjoy VR a lot, especially the flying games," he told Samsung Business Insights. And not only can the VR technology help them physically heal, but it also contributes to emotional rehabilitation. "When they get up from the chair," Künzler said, "they’re in a good mood and feel happy.”

4. Lowe's: Holoroom How To


 

 IT is more often than not for any first-time buyer. Even if you know of the unfathomable power of paperwork and finances to undermine the fun of designing or decorating a new home. That is, until you walk into one of 19 Lowe's stores that features the Holoroom How To VR experience.

 Some homeowners are lucky enough to pay a professional to renovate their home when it needs to be. For others -- Lowe's core buyer -- the next stop is the world of do-it-yourself (DIY) home improvement, which comes with its own hefty dose of stress.

 That's why Lowe's decided to step in and help out homeowners -- or recreational DIY enthusiasts -- with a virtual skills-training clinic that uses HTC Vive headsets that guides participants through a visual, educational experience on the how-to of home improvement.

5. Boursin: The Sensorium


 

We discovered that the cheese brand Boursin once created a VR experience to take users on a multi-sensory journey through a refrigerator to shed light on its products' flavor profiles, food pairings, and recipe ideas.

 The goal: to raise awareness among U.K. consumers of Boursin's distinct taste and product selection. While the VR installment was part of a live experiential marketing campaign, the rest of us can get a taste -- pun intended -- of the virtual experience via this YouTube video.

 6. Adidas: Delicatessen


 

 In 2017, Adidas partnered with Somewhere Else, an emerging tech marketing agency, to follow the mountain-climbing journey of two extreme athletes sponsored by TERREX (a division of Adidas). And what good is mountain climbing to an audience if you can't give them a 360-degree view of the journey?

Viewers were able to follow the climbers, literally rock for rock and climb along with them. You heard that right -- Using a VR headset and holding two sensory remote controls in each hand, viewers could actually scale the mountain of Delicatessen right alongside Rueck and Miller.

This VR campaign, according to Somewhere Else, served to "find an unforgettable way to market TERREX, [Adidas's] line of outdoor apparel & accessories." What the company also did, however, was introduce viewers to an activity they might have never tried otherwise. Instill an interest in the experience first, and the product is suddenly more appealing to the user.

Thursday, 13 September 2018

Email Marketing in Malaysia Isn’t Dead: 5 Tips for Small Businesses


It is widely known that email marketing is one of the best channels for engaging subscribers and nurturing leads.

Below are 5 Tips on How you can use email to your advantage


1.  Make use of interactive content


As Social metrics have noted that interactive content is the best way of garnering a subscriber’s attention. It doesn’t only make the emails more accurate and simpler but also brings out its fun elements and informative side. For example, you can include embeded links which show GIFs.

2.  Subscribe to an email savvy brand


Good emails pave avenues for a successful email marketing campaign.

However, finding emails that stand out on a regular basis is a tough task. So, to get hold of some creative email ideas, subscribe to a brand that’s email savvy.

How I organise this in my inbox is to create a custom email filter which sorts these emails into folders for easy reference in future.

3.  Watch on your competitors’ email campaigns


Apart from subscribing to an email savvy brand, keeping an eye on your competitor’s email campaign is also a great idea to get a competitive edge over them. See what strategies they are implementing to capture the subscriber’s attention.

Pay attention to how they write their content, design their email templates, and layout their email campaign and how they include their Call-to-Action.

4.  Make use of professional images


Nothing grabs a subscriber’s attention more than a high-end, professional image.

It doesn’t only help in breaking long walls of text but, also gives you the option to include something attention-grabbing.

A great resource is Pexels.com

5.  Go the automation way


Another sure-fire way of keeping your email marketing top-notch is by opting for automation.

From welcome emails to drip and triggered campaigns, email automation helps you do it all instantly. This is the reason

Although this reduces your workload, you shouldn’t skimp at the opportunity to personalise whenever possible. While it sends welcome emails automatically to help establish a connection with your new subscriber, it uses drip campaigns to send unique content at regular interval and keep the customers involved.

Learn more about how you can host and access professional business email from Everworks here.

Monday, 3 September 2018

10 Common Email Mistakes to Avoid


People are social by nature and we set ourselves apart from other animals through the way we communicate and present ourselves.
Similarly your business is unique to other competitors in the way it builds and portrays itself (the brand) to its customers and prospects.

And out of the many channels of communications available, email is the only one where the conversation can be personalised depending on which point of entry the customer chooses to interact with your brand.

Here are some common mistakes that most email marketers make:


1. No welcome email


Almost every subscriber expects some sort of a welcome email when they subscribe to any email list. It is confirmation that they have performed an action and it is reciprocated in a manner in which they expect.

It’s as good as meeting a someone and not greeting that person and not even making yourself known. The first impression is extremely important, but not making the effort to present yourself with the opportunity to make that first impression is equally damaging.

A welcome email, is triggered immediately after a prospect has agreed to exchange time to receive your emails.

2. Not asking for permission.


Don’t assume that your prospects want to receive everything at any time. Put yourself in your prospect’s shoes. What would you do if you received email from a brand that you do not recognise? Would you continue to subscribe or even purchase? I don’t think you would.

3. Don’t hardsell. It’s as good as saying, “Thanks for joining, the solution costs you RM x.”


A visitor subscribes to your email newsletter hoping that your brand can help solve their problems.

Somtimes email marketers forget this and tend to sell their products under the pretext that it is providing a solution.

4. Not fixing on a sending schedule


Don’t forget the importance of time. Consider when you are sending your readers emails. The likelihood of them not reading your email is high if the majority of your customers are based in Malaysia, but your email is being sent after 12 midnight.

5. No personalisation


This is a very common mistake. Imagine sending out an email to a guy about the latest dress discount your store is having right now.

It doesn’t make sense, and it doesn’t add any value to the subscriber.

Always make sure you segment your list before sending out your email, even though it is done through an email service provider.

6. Multiple emails sent together


There are many email marketers that set overlapping automated email lists. While they may contain different messages the subscriber in short gets spammed.

7. Stopping subscribers from leaving


You can’t win over everyone. And sometimes somethings aren’t meant to be. If a subscriber wishes to unsubscribe a marketer should readily offer this.

Not giving subscribers this option might prompt them to report your email as spam to stop receiving emails and this will lower your sender reputation (means the likelihood of your future emails being in spam is higher)

8. Improper punctuations & grammar


Regardless of any business, there is no excuse for poor grammar. Especially punctuations.

The grammar used is a reflection of your image and professionalism.

9. Improper email tone


A spell-checked email copy is useless if it conveys the wrong tone. The prime areas where marketers tend to miss their footing in setting email tone is improper salutation, wrong choice of words or even how they sign off.

10. “Ciao, Mr. Shawn”


Addressing your subscriber with wrong personalization is one of the common mistakes that email marketers tend to commit. The root cause of the error exists in wrong list entry, wrong personalization tag or even the lack of a tag.

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Your email is a reflection of you. Don’t make these mistakes as it will only does the brand’s personality get dented, but you also weaken the relation between you and your subscriber.

Did we forget any other mistakes? Share your views in the comment section below.

Learn how you can integrate email marketing into your business here.

Wednesday, 15 August 2018

How SMEs can leverage Email Marketing


The Internet presents opportunity for any sized business. The Internet also connects everyone so long as they have a connection to the digital domain.

People use the internet to communicate, shop, date and transact, while marketers target their prospective audiences over the internet, making it the foundation of a peaceful online shopping ecosystem.

It’s common for most business owners (especially those in Malaysia) to be an  owner of a brick-and-mortar shop. Having an online presence reduces the restrictions on your target audience. For example, you are not tied down to an audience that is conveniently located around you only.

It is proven that the best way to communicate with your customers is through email.

Learn how email marketing can help your small business.


1. It helps to Build credibility


Building relationships is the foundation of any business. You can do more with email marketing, as you are able to build trust and recognition among your subscribers by sending helpful and educational information.

2. Increase and Build visibility beyond your location


Irrespective of their geographic location, you will be able to send emails to your target audience with just an email ID and this will help improve the visibility of your business.

3. Cheaper alternative to most physical forms of advertising


Assuming you are sending an email to an email list of 1000 subscribers, you may be spending < RM10. Research shows that you can earn up to RM34 for every RM1 you spend on your email campaign, you will find out that emails are the most profitable marketing channel.

4. Increase awareness about your business. Increase traffic visits (online and offline). 


A successful email is the one that manages to make the subscriber click and get redirected to a relevant landing page (for omnichannel businesses) or your storefront.

5. Market with a personal touch 


Connect personally with your customers, by segmenting the information that they want to receive. By tracking the customer journey, you can personalize the email copy to building a meaningful relationship.

6. Turn one-time sale into a repeat order / Help patrons stay connected with new updates


Anyone who purchases from you may lose contact as they step out. By having them in your mailing list, you can keep in touch with them. This will enable them to shop from you time and time again.

What your business needs to implement email marketing?


An Email Service Platform (ESP)

Email inbox services such Gmail, Hotmail or Outlook cannot be used to send bulk emails owing to restrictions placed to avoid spamming. You need to invest in a professional email service provider to send emails in bulk.

Some provide services for zero to nominal fees for emailing less than 2,000 subscribers, while others charge you based on the mailing list strength. If you are starting out, you can choose MailerLite, MadMimi ReachMail or MailChimp. We conducted a review for MailChimp. You can read about it here.

Templates are readily available, but it is good to have a customer outsourced professional to help you with this. However, sometimes you need to design a custom email template for providing a good user experience.

Tips to start your Email Marketing

Build your mailing list both offline and online


To start out, you can talk to your existing customers to share their email addresses to get information about your business. Some of the ways to create excitement are:


  1. Coupons and Sales Promotions
  2. Loyalty or Rewards Programs
  3. Company News and Updates
  4. Contests and Sweepstakes
  5. Free Content like E-Books
  6. Products or Service Information
  7. Exclusive Peeks at New Products


What emails would you send?


Newsletters

For prospects / customers to exchange their email and time to read your emails, be prepared to send them valuable information. Do not sell to them as they would associate this with spam, and you would lose email authority.

In addition to newsletter you should also send:


  1. Transactional emails like order receipts, upsell & cross-sell emails, re-order reminder emails that are associated with building relation post-purchase.
  2. Promotional emails to inform your customers about special or limited stock events and promotions
  3. Holiday and seasonal emails for the brands who conduct special campaigns during holidays.
  4. Customer loyalty emails for existing patrons to show how valuable they are to your brand.
  5. Separate your mailing list as per preference and hit Send
  6. No two customers will have same interests. You need to learn / understand their preferences and what products they are interested and segment the email list accordingly. This ensures that the customer receives the information that interests them.


Learn more about Everworks email here. You’d be surprised what email can do for your business.

Thursday, 2 August 2018

How to Choose an Email Service Provider


Email marketing is the bread and butter for most marketers as it draws the most ROI compared to other marketing channels.

Every brand is now implementing inbound methodology, marketers are choosing email marketing as the best way to build trust and increase sales.

The idea is to capture a prospect’s brief approach to you with a problem and subscribes to your emails with a hope to be educated and finding a solution to his problems.

During this critical moment, your catch to these prospects is that they will lose out on a valuable aspect of information that wouldn’t be otherwise available unless they subscribe to your email.

There is a large chance that this isn’t even presented to your prospects when they need it most. And this fault is likely to be due to your email service provider (ESP), as your message would have ended in spam.

If you wondering what an ESP is or if you are facing troubles with your current one, this article is for you.


The role of the ESP


To send emails to a customer you need an ESP. They help you to deliver your email to your customers in bulk. Yes there is the ever present popular options such as Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail and more, but these are only good for sending individual cold emails to individuals.

ESPs have other features built into them, which make them the first choice for any email marketer such as:


  1. Database and App API integration
  2. Email list segmentation and management tools
  3. Automated email sending


How to choose an ESP


Setting up an ESP from scratch requires time and money, so the best option is to choose one that already has a set amount of features and service offerings that fit your needs:

1. Costing: 

In the realm of ESPs, there is one for every type of budget. There are free-to-use ESPs like Mailchimp who offer user-friendly email editor, premium looking email template library, email automation workflows and email campaign analytics for almost nothing provided that you send out less than 2,000 emails monthly. While it seems like a sweet deal, the email template is not yours and the footer will carry Mailchimp banner. Plus, you can send only 10 campaigns every month. This is an excellent option for someone who has just started out or on a tight budget.

2. Deliverability Standards: 

Any emails you send are scanned by an Internet Service Provider at the user-end before being delivered. If the IP that you send your emails is blacklisted, the ISP filter will not allow your emails to pass through. Since you shall be using an ESP to send your emails, you need to ensure that they provide you with good deliverability. Enquire about the different kinds of reputation support such as white listing.

3. API integration support: 

Sending emails is a process that is constantly improved upon based on previous campaign performances (this is dependant on whether you really need this or not)

4. Scalability: 

Since you have a mailing list of < 2,000 subscribers, you decide to choose the free model of the ESP. Will your ESP have the capability to send emails when your mailing list explodes to >20,000 subscribers? Does it support adding more users in your plan?

5. Customer Support: 

Imagine you scheduled an email to be sent early morning but owing to ESP server downtime, the campaign could not be delivered. Does your email service provider cater to customer support at odd hours?

6. Ease-to-use: 

Are the specified features easy to use? Is the FAQ section easily accessible? How quickly does customer support respond? Do you require any technical knowledge to operate the platform?

Tips to keep in mind:


1. Metrics you measure: 

Email campaign metrics such as open rates, click rates, unsubscribes are provided by all ESPs, but you need to identify other metrics that you wish to measure such as heatmap, optimum open rate, last email opened etc.

2. Plans for improving interactivity: 

You need to check whether you plan to send emails with innovations to boost user engagement. This is important since most ESPs don’t support CSS interactivity.

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Although choosing or switching ESPs is like making a life-long commitment. You may choose to change. BUT beware as it would mean a waste of resources.

You can learn more about our email services here.

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

How You Should Introduce Yourself Over Email and Be Ridiculously Successful

We write emails everyday, and it's easy for everyone to write anything they intend to say to anyone

But writing an email to a stranger to get a response. That's not so easy. 

As most doing sales in Malaysia would point out. The typical professional email gets drowned out on a daily basis and having them open up the email would be a miracle.

Here's a framework we developed for Sales professionals here in Malaysia to introduce yourself in an email:


  1. Write a motivating subject line.
  2. Customize your greeting to the industry and situation.
  3. Make your first line about the person you are writing.
  4. Make sure to explain why you're reaching out.
  5. Your email should have a purpose and provide a value.
  6. Always include a call to action so the person knows what to do next.
  7. Say thank you. Courtesy goes a long way.
  8. Send follow ups.

This is a good place to start: By Way of Introduction


When introducing a new topic, person, or idea, you would say, "By way of introduction ...".

You can do this by including examples or a short interesting story to give your new subject context.

For example: Our next guest will be Bryan, by way of introduction, I'd like to share a few of Bryan's accomplishments with you.

Send great email reliably with 99.99% uptime. Discover emails tailor made for Malaysian business professionals just like you.

The steps for Malaysians to introduce yourself over email and be ridiculously successful


Step 1: Choose a strong subject line


This is the 1st thing any recipient sees when they receive your email. The importance of the subject line should not be overlooked.

The key is to pique their curiosity. Unless it is an email from someone they expect or recognize, there's little guarantee they'll read yours.

Here's a list of subject line examples you can use:


  1. Question about [goal]?
  2. [Mutual connection] recommended I get in touch
  3. Hoping to help
  4. Idea for [topic the prospect cares about]


Step 2: Pick a salutation


This is the first word of your email body. The greeting you choose makes a difference and depending on industry the conservative nature requires an expectation to the tone.

If it is a traditionally conservative industry, like in finance or government, the traditional "Dear" salutation is generally accepted.

However, if you're in a more relaxed industry such as, tech, media, travel, or fashion, use "Hi", "Hello", or even "Hey".

This might not mean much, but it shows you've done your research.

After a salutation, you'd normally follow with the person's 1st name. These days, this is the norm across most industries.

Please do not include their last name (surname) it will make you sound robotic and including a Mrs./Mr./Ms. gives the impression that you are too young.

Step 3: Compose a strong opening sentence


This is the hook. The opening line is the most important part of an introductory email.

Why it's important? If your opening line succeeds you give your recipient reason to keep on reading.

Avoid, "My name is [name] and I'm reaching out because ...". Your recipient receives numerous introductory emails over time.

It is very likely when receiving emails with this opening line, your recipient would read your email with haste. Why? Because there's no reason for them to continue reading.

Consider these instead:


  1. I noticed you manage the procurement teams at [company].
  2. Have you ever thought about taking your current advertising efforts online?
  3. Just heard your segment on radio about [topic], and I've never learned so much over radio before!


Step 4: Explain your reason for contacting him/her


Here's where you continue to pique their interest and to connect the dots.

The key here is to make your explanation as relevant as possible. You want them to feel that they are not just a person on a list that you're just emailing.

If your 1st line is: Have you ever thought about taking your current advertising efforts online?

Your 2nd line could be: I would with companies like [company A] and [company B] to help them manage their advertisements online.

Step 5: Add value


The basic principle is to give before receiving. Before you ask for anything, you want to make sure you 1st provide the recipient with value.

Adding value does not necessarily require Ringgits and Cents. A thoughtful, authentic compliment is also a way of providing value.

Here are some ideas:


  1. Recommend an article they might find helpful
  2. Suggest a useful app or tool they can use
  3. Offer to make an introduction to someone who they'd benefit from knowing


Step 6: Make a request


Here's the crux of it. Your call-to-action (CTA).

The goal is to remove as much friction from your task as possible. For example if you would like them to meet with you, provide a link to your meetings tool so they can instantly see when you're both available and book a time.

Here's some ideas on how to write for your CTA:


  1. If you're thinking about how [proposed idea] could apply to [topic interested in], I have some ideas I'd love to share. Here's the link to my calendar: [link].
  2. Would you be willing to comment on the [blog post] I wrote? It would be great to have your unique perspective (and hopefully get some discussion going). Here's the link: [link].
  3. Are you open to answering a few questions about [topic]? Happy to chat over phone or email, whichever's most convenient.

Step 7: Say "Thanks" and sign off


The best emails are short, sweet, and concise. Additional information and unnecessary details reduce the the probability of your recipient reading your email.

Just say, "thanks", "thank you".

Step 8: Follow up


There's a chance that when you send this incredible introduction email, that they don't respond.

Here are a few things you could try:


  1. Send them actionable advice.
  2. Send a how-to guide and offer to follow up in person.
  3. Invite them to an upcoming event.
  4. Bring up a pain point your buyers have faced previously and present the solution that you've provided.


Emails are digitally transmitted messages, and it's widely used in Malaysia today. We've included some ideas above on how to improve your sales efforts through email.

If this guide has helped you please share with us your experiences below - this hopefully will help others in their quest as well.

Thursday, 12 July 2018

Convert 10x More Sales Conversations in 15 Seconds

We're going to let you in on a secret. This secret is going to help you convert your conversations into sales.

All it takes is a 15 seconds adjustment.

What's the secret? Make an Upfront Contract.

An Upfront Contract means that an agreement is made ahead of time, about what will take place during any meeting or discussion.

Don't overlook the importance of an upfront contract. It helps to clarify the roles of each person during any meeting or discussion and helps to form an informal agreement between both parties.

There's a catch. Always remember, that only one person can lead this discussion. It's always either the seller or buyer, never both at the same time.

To be successful in any of your negotiations you should strive to lead from the front, and the Upfront Contract allows you to do just that.

I've tested this during my sales conversations in different scenarios and with different personalities in Malaysia. It's helped me to move ahead in negotiations and increased my probability to close.

*Additional reading: If you're interested to learn more on how to negotiate successfully here are 5 tactics to help you.

Find below 5 uses for the the Upfront Contract to help you close more sales conversations:


1. Set a time limit.


Most times, you're meeting any "prospect" for the first time. It's common for sales professionals to overlook "prospects" to be just a means to an objective.

Don't forget, "prospects" are people too. Your goal is to make them feel comfortable with you. One failsafe method is to show appreciation for their time.

A little courtesy, goes a long way.

It's important to thank the person for their time and honestly inform them how long you expect this conversation is going to take.

Be truthful with how long you expect the conversation to take. Establish the right expectation and trust early on.

You don't want to be the forceful telesales representative which nobody wants to associate with.

Here's a script to get you started:

You - Hello [name], thanks for [taking this call today]. I would like to [purpose of conversation] and this would take around 20 minutes of your time. Is this a convenient time for you now? 

Prospect - {yes / no}

You - #if no: oh I'm sorry, I'll call you back later this afternoon. Thank you.

2. Provide an agenda


You want to be clear. This helps you to clarify the roles of each person in the conversation, and establishes the right expectation.

Some may argue against this. However, in my experience, providing an agenda early on allows your prospect to determine if they are able to help you.

It's common to approach the wrong department and it saves you time through a recommendation to find the right person early on.

Here's an example of a clear agenda / purpose:

You - Hello [name]. I would like to discuss about ways our products can help you to increase the value of each distribution point you make. Are you the right person I should speak with to discuss this further?

3. Describe the potential outcomes


Here's where the Upfront Contract technique is applied.

Give 2 options to your prospect. Make them decide to either continue the conversation or to decide against it.

It's important to give your prospect an option to throw in the towel at any time. Offer to end the conversation if your prospect does not like the offer.

Make sure you tell them it is perfectly okay to tell you {no} and you'll accept it without pursuing any further.

The objective of this is to gain your prospect's trust. Do this by putting them in control.

Here's an example:

You - If at the end of this conversation, you feel that this may not be something you are interested in, feel free to let me know, and I'll stop immediately.

Below I've prepared an example sales conversation template for you:


You - Thanks for [taking this call today]. I would like to discuss about [clear agenda / purpose]. Are you the right person I should speak with to discuss this further?

Prospect - {yes / no}

You - #if yes: This would take around 20 minutes of your time, is it convenient now for us to talk?

Prospect - {yes / no}

You - #if yes: If at the end of this conversation, you feel that this may not be something you are interested in, feel free to let me know, and I'll stop immediately.

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Interested in what we do?


We help sales professionals and sales focused organizations to maintain reliable email communications with their customers.

We ensure this by ensuring your email is equipped with anti-spam and is 99.99% up and secure.

Learn more.

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

5 Creative Content Ideas To Help Your Website Stand Out

Gone were the days where a picture and a description is all that's needed to sell.

This is no different for any business in Malaysia. Don't just write a statement and expect sales.

To sell, a lifestyle is required more than ever. Which means more demand for high quality content.

Over 2 million posts go onto the Internet everyday (Smart Insights). You'll need to find strategies to help you to stand out from the crowd.

Develop targeted content for your audience, it's found out to be the best way to reach your audience. Get great insights on how your Malaysian business can advertise on the Internet for free.

Here are 5 creative content ideas to help your website stand out:


1. Expert advice


For some businesses a blog isn't enough. Their audience demands specific advice to aid them in their purchase decisions.

REI has done this by integrating advice into their shopping experience. Their objective: Help users to learn while shopping to find the best product fit relative to their needs.






2. User-made Instagram Posts

Social Media is real and is now a part of our everyday lives. The buying influence Social Media has on customers is also very real.

Take your content to new heights, by having your customers engage with your business on a personal level. The business benefit of doing this is, it establishes social proof to your products.




3. User-made Video

This is unique. Video draws the largest engagement on the Internet. Consider republishing video content submitted by your fans to your official YouTube channel to encourage engagement.

4. Music Influencers

Bands are still a cool thing. Music is a universal language. Consider pairing your brand with local artists providing added exposure to their fans, and establishes credibility that your customers can't ignore.


5. Buying Guides (Product Tutorials)

Is your product complicated? Provide easy and clear tutorials. Most brands fail to communicate this initiative clearly to their customers. Avoid this by carefully placing call-to-actions in strategic places on your web page.

Improve your conversion rates on your buying guide pages by placing well-planned call-to-actions.





Learn more about how we help you to launch your website onto the Internet. To ensure your content is delivered always, we don't limit the amount of data transfers.

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

5 Tactics to Help You Negotiate Successfully in Malaysia

Hours of hard-work and persistent follow-up have lead you to this day.

It's the final meeting, and you're about to close your biggest deal.

You've conducted the product demo, answered any question that has come your way, and continued to make convincing points which put you in a promising position.

You're doing well. At least that's what you think.

Business negotiations are fragile. It's easier said than done. There's a lot going on and stakes are high. This is especially true, when put in the context of Malaysia.

Malaysia is a melting pot of different cultures and ethnicities. Malaysians are brought up with different beliefs and standards that it is hard to put a nail on any single method that would work for everyone.

Here are some tips from us to increase your odds of success during any negotiation in Malaysia because of our understanding and experience of the cultural diversity in this country.

Here are 6 tactics to help you to negotiate successfully in Malaysia:


1. Make it into a conversation

Turn the tables: It should be about interests and objectives.

Making it into a conversation is active listening. A conversation about interests and objectives helps you to not just understand requirements, but also identify areas of value to your customer.

You learn which features matter most and which don't. This effectively positions your proposition to the decision maker and enables you to put your best foot forward.

Some questions you can ask are:

  1. Can you share with me what is important to you in any solution we provide for you? For example "frequent progress updates is important to ensure project timelines".
  2. Which is most important to you?


It's important to prompt for a specific response, because this will help you form a more accurate proposal.

For example: When receiving a general response, "timeliness is important to us" try to gain more information such as "Timeliness is an issue for us as we need to ensure Marketing is given enough time to prepare and our customers expectations are managed. We don't want to get into a farce where we have made an announcement to our customers, only for us not to deliver."

2. Don't be the 1st to propose

When negotiating, you rarely want to go first. You don't want to give more information without getting much back in return.

You can avoid this by asking if there is a budget that they have in mind or what were their previous experiences with solutions similar to the one you are offering.

Validating first before proposing allows you to work around situations:

  1. Tactic when the cost you're proposing is more than their expectations: Demonstration of value which other similar companies have received through your claims.
  2. Tactic to counter Objections: Find the reason why. The additional information will help you to counter with solutions which match their interests.
  3. Tactic when a Quotation is requested: If you've covered adequate ground (understood ROIs, buying cycles, budget constraints, logistical requirements, etc.), all you have to do is ask for the business.


3. Have your customer propose

*Only try this after you have clearly presented the value of your solution. If you skip presenting the value of your solution, any proposition you have will always be too expensive.

Sometimes people resist your advances.

If you are faced with this situation, don't be afraid to ask the customer for their opinion. You could ask, " What would a proposal they would sign off on look like? ".

If what they offer is beyond you on cost, let the customer know right away and immediately make a counter offer. This puts you in a better position and allows you to manage your customers expectations.

4. Find the middle ground

*Do this only if your margin allows for it

When negotiations seem to hit a speed bump, consider splitting the difference.

This cuts through the noise in any price negotiations, and it helps you jump to the middle between you and your customer's valuation.

Be careful when employing this, because this would only make sense if both parties are losing ground equally.

5. Build an agreement early

There's plenty to discuss, and you've already identified the points that matter most to your customer. It should be relatively easy for you to build an agreement on smaller issues that have less friction.

This might seem counterintuitive, but building an agreement early on helps you to set the tone as you build towards more sensitive topics.

Build rapport with your customer and paint that you are someone that is willing to work with them and can establish the link-and-trade early on into the conversation. This will help you to build momentum as you move later into the negotiation stage.

Keep track of your negotiation topics and establish reliable communications. 


Do it with professional email.

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Thursday, 28 June 2018

8 Ideas for Malaysian Small Business to Advertise Online for Free

Advertising is important, and you know this too.

Business is tough, as costs continue to rise and it's a strain for your small business. There's just no budget left for advertising.

The most common reason?

There's too much fluidity. There isn't a concrete budget that can guarantee a specific result.

Today's post is for anyone who is struggling with prioritizing for advertising. Our objective is to share ideas that would help you to advertise your business without having to break your bank to do it.

Here are 14 ideas you can advertise online for free:


1. Use "Google My Business"

This is a free service from Google, allowing your business to list on Google Maps.

For example, if you are in the business of selling second-hand cars in Mahkota Cheras, people searching for "second-hand cars in Cheras" is more likely to discover your business if your business is listed on Google Maps.

2. Take advantage of Yext's free scanning service


Yext is a an online service which helps you to scan the Internet to find every place your business is listed on.

The service for Yext is not cheap, but take advantage of their free scanning service. Use Yext to ensure that all links and information about your business online is up-to-date.

One way for your business to advertise online is to gain credibility through search. SEO is free, but it does require active maintenance. One of the many criteria Google has for your site to rank higher in its search index is to "ensure that all links go to live web pages".

(*Learn how you can improve your Malaysia SEO instantly)

3. Write guest posts for other blogs

When advertising your business it is important to establish rapport within your industry.

Contributing expert content on another blog, will help you to demonstrate your expertise in a topic and gives you exposure to an already engaged audience. This helps you to validate that you are a thought leader within your community.

4. Answer questions people have on the Internet

Malaysia's most popular online forum is Lowyat.net.

Your activities on the Internet is guided with the objective of helping people discover how your business is able to help them solve a problem they face with.

Attending to a specific question from one person also exposes your answer to other people who face the same problems. This opens an opportunity for you to converse with real people and to provide real solutions which people can trust and rely on.

5. Publish content through Social Media

The social platform where all Malaysians are on is Facebook and Instagram (based on this Soya Cincau Article).

It is free to create a Facebook Page. A Facebook Page is a platform for you to share announcements, promotions, new updates to people who follow your brand.

6. Do interviews on Podcasts

Some of the ideas already covered included search, blogs, Internet forums, and social media.

Realistically, not all audiences reside in these channels. Some are more inclined to consume new content by listening to podcasts.

Podcasts are the modern equivalent of the radio - the difference, people can freely listen as long as they have an Internet connection. (To start: Here's a list of 10 podcasts you can tune in to)

7. Use your Email Signature

This is an often overlooked space.

You send email everyday. Take advantage of this valuable screen real-estate, make use of the promotional potential within your email signature.

Your email is a great place to start. It's free, and most importantly you are in full control. Hubspot has a great article on 10 great ways on how you can use your email signature to support your marketing campaigns.

8. Send Email Newsletters

Email isn't dead. Email is the 3rd most influential source for information for B2B audiences (Wordstream Article).

With the right time investment, email newsletters can be a useful way to keep your prospects informed and a great way to remind your audience of your expertise.

That's it for this week! It's great that you're making an effort to find quality articles, but make sure you take action to implement these free ideas now.

Interested to take the next step? Get custom email (yourname@company.com)


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