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First Best Impressions

August 2nd, 2018 by Ima Admin

On a sad note, funeral services were held earlier this week for a friend who was a psychic contortionist, but it was OK because she had said she saw her own end.

Wow! I’ll bet that left an impression!

‘Impression’ is a funny word.. we can DO an impression, we can MAKE an impression, we can GET an impression, we can be LEFT with an impression, and we can COUNT impressions.

When you arrive at any business or networking event, you make some judgements about who you THINK everyone is and IF you want to have a conversation with them.

It’s OK, we all do it. They’re doing the same thing.

Its called a FIRST IMPRESSION and like it or not impressions affect whether or not your prospect will call and/or buy from you.

Impressions are shaped by appearance, attitude, manners, etiquette, etc.

Some of those people that tell us things we should do, say that before a meeting, we should take a selfie and ask ourselves, “Is this the person I’d love to meet?”

However, often before you get to meet someone, your website has already been giving off FIRST impressions to everyone and anyone that happens by.

Take a selfie of your site. Is it making the BEST impression it can? Is it attractive or dowdy, How is its attitude – is it welcoming? How are its manners – is it easy to navigate? Is it helpful to visitors looking for information or to buy something?

Who do you know that doesn’t just want to COUNT impressions, but make their impressions COUNT, have them call the Imagination Factory.


Historical or Hysterical

July 22nd, 2018 by Ima Admin

Is your web site Historical or Hysterical?

There are a number of things that go into designing a successful website or any marketing piece, whether it’s a restaurant menu, a billboard, an advertisement, a sales flyer, or a tradeshow banner.

Its easy to point to appropriate use of colors, the fonts used, putting things (such as the logo or navigation) where people will see and use it, or using a CALL TO ACTION (CTA) to generate interest.

But all that is really informed by YOUR customers. What works best for one company and its customers might not be best for you and yours.

That’s why, as part of the needs assessment, we ask questions, such as…

  • From where did your last 100 customers come?
  • What are the buying motives of your top 10 customers?
  • Are there service issues that have or excel at?
  • What’s your value message?

These might be difficult questions because you might not really have thought about your business in those terms.

Your history of doing business is important, but knowing and understanding your customers helps us design a website that will help you attract new customers and maintain customer loyalty.


Close More Business

July 11th, 2018 by Ima Admin

Some time ago I met a sales coach at a networking event and during our conversation, I asked what constituted the bulk of the requests they receive. She indicated that they get more requests for workshops on how to close more business than any other topic.

It seems that many of us are relentlessly search for that one killer closing line or magical technique that will compel a prospect to hire us and/or buy from us on the spot.

She had some real Bad News!

The ability to ‘seal the deal’, close the business and move a client forward has absolutely nothing to do with a closing technique. it has everything to do with how you how you open, engage, and position yourself throughout the entire meeting.

She suggested that the opening, the first few moments of your meeting provides a perfect place to set the tone, make a connection and build rapport. An effective opening paves the way for trust and credibility.

So, if the opening is that critical, what might happen if YOU are not able to be present at that first meeting?

Today, more often than not, your FIRST meeting with the prospect is through your website. Is it serving as an ally or foe to the sale?

Does the website WOW? Does it separate you from the ‘others’? Is it outstanding, positive, focused, polished, convincing enough to propel the visitor toward taking action?

Want to close more business? It starts with a great opening website from the Imagination Factory


Online Sales Tax

June 25th, 2018 by Ima Admin

On June 21st, 2018, the Supreme Court of the US (SCOTUS) overruled 1992’s Quill Corp v. North Dakota case in South Dakota v. Wayfair in a 5 to 4 vote.

Back in 1992, Quill stated that US states could only change sales taxes on companies with a physical presence in the state. Effectively, Quill determined how state taxes worked with e-commerce from the web’s first days. Started in 1956, Quill, a direct and mail order office supply retailer, has grown to be one of the largest business-to-business office supply retailers in the U.S. at over $1 billion in annual sales with 70% of that coming from internet sales. Quill was acquired by Staples, Inc. in 1998.

The 1992 Court did not have before it the present realities of the interstate marketplace or how the Internet’s prevalence and power would change the dynamics of the national economy. Here’s some of the 2018 reasoning…
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What Makes a Great Site?

June 22nd, 2018 by Ima Admin

In 2016 mobile internet use had surpassed desktop use. Sometime in 2019, people that forecast this stuff expect that time spent on mobile will exceed time spent on TV (which is today just under 4hrs/day).

With that in mind, several designers/marketers were asked to comment on a question in Alignable, “What makes a great website for today’s time (ie what are the top 5 things for a great design)?”

It’s a good question, and there were a number of varied answers, with many suggesting mobile-responsiveness and fast loading as two of the five criteria. The most liked answer was ‘animated dancing penguins’.

However, the question is too ambiguous to answer. Here’s why…
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Designer SPAMspotting – A Rant

June 19th, 2018 by Ima Admin

I’m sure you, like many of your clients, get one of these spam/scam emails periodically. A few are legit, but most are not. Some of them, like this one (after the break) are subtle and claim to have looked or analyzed your site. Others proclaim blatantly that there is something egregiously wrong with your site and ‘they’ have a fix. Almost ALL of them are unsolicited and annoying, as in this case, where I’ve received no less than 5 duplicates of this particular email in less than 20 days AND apparently I must take time out of my day and away from my clients to actively respond to stop them.

So, let’s look at Peter and his email(s) to us…
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Going Mobile

April 19th, 2018 by Ima Admin

Driving down the road, I passed a sign that asked simply, ” Who was the first person with a tablet to download data from the cloud?” The sign was in front of a church and the answer was, of course, Moses.

Fast forwarding about 3500 years, its no real surprise that Google gathers a lot of data… A LOT. Google has been gathering data about how quickly user behavior is shifting on mobile. Not only are more users on mobile devices when using Google search, but how they browse mobile results is changing too.
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Data Breach, the GDPR and You

April 4th, 2018 by Ima Admin

DATA BREACH!!

These are two words we’re hearing more and more that are as scary as hearing “GUN!” or “FIRE!”

Perhaps not as an immediate threat as the latter two, but something that could affect our lives long, long after the actual breach.

No April Fool’s joke, on April 1st, news releases announced that hackers allegedly staged an attack on Saks 5th Ave. and Lord & Taylor to steal information from more than 5 million debit & credit cards.

The following day, potentially worse AND closer to home, according to researchers, the Panera Bread’s website was found to be leaking data potentially exposing millions of customer records – something Panera allegedely knew about in August 2017.
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Is Your Website Making Cold Calls?

March 21st, 2018 by Ima Admin

While most of us hate making COLD CALLS ourselves, we allow our websites to do it with abandon.

We know that if our prospecting strategy is to simply log in to the customer relationship (CRM) database and start randomly ‘smiling and dialing’, our sales will be low and frustrations will be high.

Many of the best companies will provide their sales team the proper tools they need and their successful top sales pros will have multiple “opening value statements” crafted, practiced and memorized for different types of sales calls to different types of customers and the varied potential objections they might have.
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How Different Are You?

March 14th, 2018 by Ima Admin

So… How DIFFERENT are you? Not how ODD or STRANGE are you, but how DO YOU DIFFER from your competitors?

Note, that I’m also NOT asking how you COMPARE to your competition. When you COMPARE its often going to be a price comparison. Price comparisons don’t build long-term relationships with customers. When you DIFFERENTIATE its usually about the value you provide.
Read the rest of this entry »


Sounds like my kind of thing. We should talk.

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