How to Choose a Perfect Business Name

A good business name is important. Follow these 7 ways to come up with a great name for your business from day one, no matter what your business does.

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What’s in a business name? A lot of people ask me about choosing business names. Here are three tips from Dale Beaumont:


1. Name by Desire, eg. ‘Lean Cuisine’, ‘Die Hard Batteries’

2. Name by problem, eg. ‘Never Late Electrical’

3. Alliteration, eg. Weight Watchers

4. Own a word, eg. ‘Apple’

5. Make up a word, eg. ‘Google’, ‘Qantas’

6. Word-mash, eg. ‘Skype’ (Sky + peer to peer)

7. Word-Twist, eg. ‘Netflix’, ‘Fiverr’


Have a look at Dale’s post and get creative with your business name.

Producing great content for your blog at scale (3/6)

After strategizing and planning your content, it’s time for phase 3 of the content marketing lifecycle. Learn how to produce great content for your blog. 

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In terms of lead generation the evidence is there: the more you blog, the more leads you get. 

How to do this at scale is the question: A good content curation tool (software) means a curated blog post takes 30-minutes on average. That’s a lot less than the 3-4 hours it takes on average to craft a fresh post.

One original blog post vs. six curated blog posts. You can guess which strategy will get more leads: The curated content strategy. Check out Content Director if it’s curation software you’re after. 

What is a Marketing Content Hub? Would it work for your brand?

This post examines the benefits of the marketing content hub—a branded resource center to help visitors find the information they seek.

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Content marketing hubs are like creating a magazine for your brand on your website. They focus on the interests of your prospective customers.

The great news is that they attract a lot of Google traffic, and individual stories are a perfect match for sharing social media.

Content marketing hubs need to be paired with some kind of lead capture: Ask website visitors to leave their email address to get free updates. That way you can grow your list of prospective customers and build your audience.

Don’t Make The One Mistake Most SaaS Companies Make

Imagine if you could get more enterprise SaaS customers for your software. In this post, we cover 7 tips to landing more coveted “whale” customers.

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Many SaaS businesses make one fundamental flaw: They assume if you build great software and customers will come flying through the door. However, it takes more than great software to get more business customers online.


Here are a few tips from our observations and experience:


Don’t let your website become a leaky bucket: Offer a free lead magnet on your website in exchange for a prospect’s email address is the most common way of doing this. For example, if your target is restaurants, you could offer a well-researched pdf doc of ‘7 ways to stop your restaurant going broke’.


Embrace email marketing: With your email list, you can start to build a relationship with prospects. Great email marketing allows you to nurture and educate your prospects, building trust as you go.


Segment your marketing. Business customers have very different needs to regular B2C customers. Make sure the needs of your business customers are catered to – it gives them confidence to do business with your SaaS. This is especially true if your business offers an Enterprise version of your SaaS – buying cycles for high-ticket items could take 18 months or more!

How Small Businesses Can Find Their Hottest Prospects With Mailchimp Email

Kids excited in front of computerHopefully you’ve read my previous post ‘Dickiebird Hot Tip: A Quick Email Follow Up Technique That Could Land Your Next Big Client’ – otherwise you might find this piece a little too practical.

Here are the practical steps about how to dig into your Mailchimp email list and find your hottest prospects.

Step One

Send your email via Mailchimp – make sure it’s a good one that’s useful and interesting and one that prospects will open. If you haven’t got time to put together a decent email, get in touch and we’ll put you in touch with people who do a great job.

Step Two

You’ll need to check Mailchimp every day after you sent the email to see who’s opening and clicking on your emails. Chances are, it will be a prospect you haven’t heard from for some time.

Action > Check Mailchimp every day



Step Three

By default, Mailchimp opens to your dashboard and looks like the image below.

Action > Click on the blue subscriber number



Step Four

The screen below will come up. By default it shows you the readers who opened your email the least amount of times.

Action > Click twice on the ‘Opens’ tab at the top of the list



Step Five

Now you have a list of prospective customers who have opened your email the most. You can see the person at the top has opened the email 42 times! The others have opened it at least 10 times.



Step Six

Create an individual follow-up email to your hot prospects in your regular email provider (not Mailchimp and not a group email). This may well open the door to new business. I wouldn’t suggest you start your follow-up with “I see that you opened our email 42 times, clicked three links and forwarded it to 2 people”.

In your follow-up, try something more subtle, such as an email to say “Hi Joan, it looks like you got our latest email about swimming pool fitness. As we haven’t been in touch for a while, have you got any questions about your pool or landscaping project”? We’re only an email away, so please call or email if we can help in any way”. Make sure you have your phone contact details at the bottom of your email.

Action > Send individual email to your people with the most opens



The Fortune Is In The Follow-Up

If your product or service is high value eg. over $2,000 per customer per year, that simple follow-up might net your business $5,000 plus.

In my experience, it’s something worth trying, and at worst, you’re providing customers with more personalised communication – it’s a simple courtesy that most businesses overlook.  

The manual email follow-up method might not be cost effective for everyone – for example, if your product or service is only worth $50 per year. In this case, if you have Marketing Automation in place, you can create a simple rule that follows up with an email like the one above.

You can read more about Marketing Automation in my previous post. Otherwise, get in touch with any questions about setting up professional Marketing Automation for your professional service or software business.

I’d love to know if you’ve tried follow-up email or automation. Let me know about your experiences, successful or otherwise.


A Quick Email Follow-Up Tactic That Could Land Your Next Big Client

Email marketing checklistMost businesses don’t do email marketing like the list above.

What’s wrong with this approach? There is zero follow-up (and we all know the sale is in the follow-up, right)?!

If you’re in the business of business development, you need to check Mailchimp (or your email provider) every day for the first 4-5 days after you send an email to your list. This will allow you to see who’s opening and clicking on your emails. Chances are, it will be a prospect you haven’t heard from for some time.

Want to know more about how to check your email opening in Mailchimp? See our detailed how-to post ‘How Small Businesses Can Find Their Hottest Prospects With Mailchimp Email’ (I’ll update this link within the week).

A follow-up email or phone call will likely open the door to new business. However, I wouldn’t suggest you start the follow-up with “I see that you opened our email 42 times, clicked three links and forwarded it to 2 people” – that’s a sure fire way to sound creepy.

In your follow-up, try something more helpful, such as an email that says:

“Hi Joan, it looks like you got our latest email about swimming pool fitness. As we haven’t been in touch for a while, have you got any questions about your pool or landscaping project”? We’re only an email away, so please call or email if we can help”.

Make sure your follow-up email contains your phone contact details at the bottom of your email, as phone calls generally convert sales better than email.

Dickiebird_Tip-A_Quick_Email_Follow-Up_Technique_That_Could_Land_Your_Next_Big_JobThis manual email follow-up method might not work for everyone – for example, if your product or service is only worth $50 / year. In this case, if you have Marketing Automation in place, you can create a simple rule that follows up as above. Read more about Marketing Automation in my previous post.

If your product or service is high value eg. Greater than $2,000 per customer per year, that simple follow-up might net your business $2,000 plus per year. Email follow-up is definitely something worth trying, and something most businesses overlook.

If you’ve already got email marketing in place with Mailchimp, read our other post on ‘How Small Businesses Can Find Their Hottest Prospects With Mailchimp Email’ (link will be updated).

If you’re looking to get professional email marketing or more advanced Marketing Automation in place, get in touch.

In the meantime, I’d love to hear about your experiences with email marketing and automation. Have you tried this method? I don’t know of anyone else, at least in New Zealand, that uses this powerful tactic…

Dickiebird’s 2016 Prediction: Don’t Miss Our Top 3 Tips On Marketing Automation

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Online marketing geeks like myself know that email marketing has a remarkable Return on Investment (ROI). Year on year, email consistently outperforms social media channels as a place to build relationships and ‘convert’ people on your email list into paying customers.

There is a long list of reasons why email is the reigning heavyweight champion of ROI. The current debate between email vs. social media is generally agreed – for now at least (clue: they each have their place in the online communication world).

So, what is Marketing Automation and why do we think you’re missing out if you’re not using it?

Wikipedia defines Marketing Automation (MA) as:

“Marketing automation refers to software platforms and technologies designed for marketing departments and organizations to more effectively market on multiple channels online (such as email, social media, websites, etc.) and automate repetitive tasks.

As expected, the definition is fairly wide and doesn’t really tell you why it’s so vital for your business.

Now that’s out of the way, let me share my top 3 reasons and features that make Marketing Automation the ‘New Black’:

  1. Email Lead Nurture: MA allows you to meet new prospects and actually give them some useful information, pretty much for free once you’ve set it up. Even if members of your email list don’t buy from you right now (or ever), at least you’re building a relationship with trust and authority in your area of expertise.
  2. Relevance: MA allows you to ‘tag’ and communicate with leads via email according to actions they’ve taken. For example, if a prospect has visited your life insurance page, you can send them a sequence of emails about ’10 things to consider before you take out a life insurance policy’.
  3. Lead scoring: In conjunction with tagging, lead scoring allows you to see how likely it is that a prospect might buy from you. For example, a customer has opened your emails 12 times, forwarded it to their wife, and has visited your life insurance page twice. They would be assigned a high score and it’s highly likely they’re interested in your product or service – you’d be wise to get in touch.

The above are just a handful of examples of the benefits of Marketing Automation via email. Other examples include online advertising in the form of re-marketing or annual reminders for dental clients or insurance renewal clients.

Just make sure you do your research when it comes to Marketing Automation – no-one likes being talked to by a robot. Serving the needs of our clients and customers is the main reason most businesses exist.

If we learn to address those needs, we can embrace Marketing Automation as a powerful ally. It takes a bit of work setting it up, but I promise, you will reap the rewards if it’s done well.

PS: There are some powerful new features in Facebook re-marketing that are beginning to rival email – it’s a complete game-changer, but I’ll leave this for another post…

How Google’s Latest Changes Affects Your Business and What you Need to do

Google Page One new view

Google Page One new view

Have you noticed Google’s latest change to local business search results?

It’s a big shift, and whether or not you noticed it, Google’s recent changes to page one search results have an impact on brick and mortar New Zealand businesses.

“Unless you’ve been living in a shoebox, you’ll know that the upper half of Page 1 of Google is where you want your business to appear in a Google search”.

Research consistently shows that 80% of people don’t bother with Page 2 results. That’s not so surprising, but what’s important is that most people don’t even bother scrolling any further down the top half of page 1.

The advertising gurus call this prime real estate ‘above the fold’, or being in the top half of the page and being above the fold means one thing: your business will get more inquiries.

For example, in the good old days (September 2014), if I was to search ‘Nelson Accountant’, these are the results I would get above the fold:

Google Search results for ‘Accountant’ in the ‘good old days’ (Sep 2014).

Google Search results for ‘Accountant’ in the ‘good old days’ (Sep 2014).


However, if I search for ‘Accountant Nelson’ now (October 2015), this is what I get:

Accountant Nelson new

Google Search results for Accountant currently (November 2015).

“Organic ( meaning ‘free’) results have disappeared from the top half of page one, and this has major implications for getting found at the top of page one of Google (above the fold)”.

What’s the difference and how does this affect your business?

You may notice the complete absence of organic listings above the fold. The old method of getting your business found organically -as in using traditional keywords and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) has nearly disappeared with Google’s recent change.

“The short answer is: If you’re in a highly competitive industry, you’ll need to pay for a prime position using Google Adwords.”

For other ways to get higher in search results, read on…
You can still see organic results if you scroll down the page, but research shows that most people don’t bother scrolling below the fold.

“There are things you can do to improve the chance for your business to be found on Page 1 of Google, without paying for advertising.”  

Google’s game changer means that people searching for your business not only see the Adword (paid) listings at the top of the page, but they also see the free Google business listings.

“Having an up-to-date and accurate business Google+ listing is more important than ever before.”

Below is how your basic Google+ listing should look:

A Google+ listing with notes in red: Note the review – reviews not only build trust, they may also help your business \ rank higher on Page One of Google Search.


How to get better results on Page One of Google Search

Looking beyond the obvious (the increasing need to seriously consider paid advertising for your product or service), your business needs a Google+ listing with up-to-date details. Not only that, you need your Google+ listing to show up on the map, and preferably at the top of page 1.

How do I claim my Google+ listing?


An example of the Dickiebird Google+ listing

An example of the Dickiebird Google+ listing


Step One

Try searching your business name with G+ at the end of it. For example: ‘Dickiebird G+’. If you haven’t claimed it, it will say ‘claim this business’. Go ahead and click that button.

Step Two

You’ll need to verify your address. This means updating your address in the listing, and Google will send you a verification code in the post (yes, Google do use snail mail).

Step Three

To rank higher in Google Search you’ll need to update your Google+ listing: Google’s ranking methods are a well-kept secret. There’s no definitive guide, but I’ll share what seems to help:

  1. The sooner you get your listing up, the more chance you have of ranking.  I’ve observed that age is an important determinant on how well your listing ranks.
  2. Get some images in your Google+ listing. Don’t go with the ugly default image Google have taken of the outside of your building. Put some effort into your page and you’ll be rewarded.
  3. Get reviews for your business. You can ask customers / clients to do this. Otherwise, consider an automated review tool like
  4. Link your Google+ listing to your business website.

For an extensive guide on how to set up a business Google+ page, have a look at this free guide (external link).

Google+ puts your business on the map

Google+ puts your business on the map


Let’s summarise what these latest changes to Google mean to local businesses:

  1. Consider Google Ads: Google advertising is becoming increasingly important if you’re in a competitive industry and want to be found for key products and services.
  2. Claim your Google+ listing: To show up on page one, you’ll need to claim your business Google+ listing.
  3. Get your Google+ listing address verified: Put some effort into images and linking to your website.
  4. Consider getting reviews for your business: Not only will reviews that help your listing get found, but they tell customers you care about their feedback.

Making some of these changes will mean your business gets found more easily in Google search. That, in turn, will mean that your business gets more leads / inquiries. There is of course more to learn about creating websites that actually get inquiries (high converting websites), but I will cover that in another post. In the meantime, please share this post with your friends and colleagues in business. It’s an important change and one that’s all too often missed or ignore at the peril of small businesses that need to know how to get found online.

I would love to know how you get onplease leave a comment in the section below.

Animal Farm Website Launches a Fresh, New Look

Hands on animal experience Animal Farm: Hands-on animal experiences in Nelson Bays, including rare breeds conservation, education & activities for children.

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We’re very proud to share the new Animal Farm website. Animal Farm is a reasonably new and special Nelson / Tasman hands-on animal experience that attracted over 37,000 visitors in it’s first year. Not bad for a start up!


What makes the place great is the ability for kids and adults to interact with the animals. Not only are the staff super friendly, but the animals are too.


Dickiebird and Avoca design worked with Animal Farm to produce a fresh new website that has a host of features due to their unique visitor requirements. To name some of the tech features: variable annual pass purchase, multiple languages, weather app, dynamic blog, etc. But, that’s enough about the tech, suffice to say, it gets the job done and looks great.


Recently, we were over the moon seeing Animal Farm as a finalist for at least three categories in the Nelson Chamber of Commerce Business Awards. With their dedication to service excellence, they certainly deserved it.


Animal Farm owners, Vicky and David Pattinson responsive to guest feedback and the place gets better and better all the time. Recently, over 150 new trees have been planted and plans for a new barn/cafe are underway. They are some of the hardest working people we know!


We were very happy with the outcome, and with David and Vicky’s dedication to a website that can grow and adapt as Animal Farm’s business grows.


Dickiebird continues to support Animal Farm with their online marketing. We applaud David and Vicky and their team for their dedication to an excellent, interactive attraction which is an asset to our region.

5 Apps to Boost Your Online Marketing Productivity

Marketing your business on social is not only an effort that requires time, but mobility as well. Mobile usage in general has risen year after year – heck, at the end of 2014 526 million of the 1.3…

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Here’s a short list of useful tools for your business. I case you haven’t seen these already.


My Top 5 Online Marketing Tools:


  1. Dropbox / Google Drive: A great way of storing your images or files online. You can access with your phone as well as iPad/tablet.
  2. Canva: The easiest free graphic design tool you thought you’d never need. Great for editing social media posts.
  3. Google Analytics: From big business, right down to small businesses, you need to know who’s visiting your website and what they’re interested in.
  4. not only helps me find content, but it helps me share content on the web as well.
  5. Google Calendar: Book appointments and send them to people via email. Hint: The app connects with Google Maps.


Each of these tools makes a difference in my working life. What tools work for you?

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