A new ‘game’ which has become popular among groups of friends in restaurants is where all diners round the table have to put their phone in the middle of the table, and the first person to ‘crack’ and check their phone has to pick up the bill. This is just one indication of how much social media and the connected world is now seeping into everything that we do. Instagram is full of pictures of people’s food, Facebook full of check-ins and Twitter is full of people talking about what they’re doing.
In times gone by, it was completely unacceptable for attendees to use their phones in social situations, restaurants and conferences. Today is a different story, many organisations encourage you to Tweet, text, and post updates during presentations. Some will even provide a specific hashtag for you to use when doing so. The question is, how do you find the balance between expecting people to follow the traditional etiquette of turning off their mobiles during a presentation, and taking advantage of modern day marketing by actually encouraging them to Tweet about the presentation as it happens or afterwards? Continue Reading
February has been a busy month for Groupon. Please read on to find out what we’ve been up to and which publications have been putting us in the spotlight!
David Rivett, Restaurant Manager at Hale Kitchen and Bar, talks to Smarta Business School about how having a solid online strategy coupled with featuring on the Groupon platform increased his first-time customers by 30% in the last year alone.
Future of the high street campaign
Off the back end of the Kantar Retail shoppers report, Richard Jones, VP of National Accounts at Groupon advises SMEs to plan innovative strategies that combine new and old methods to boost local commerce.
If you’re about to start using Facebook as part of your marketing strategy, then the Graph Search feature is something worth looking into. It’s a subtle – but useful – tool for businesses, which can prove effective for marketing purposes.
So, what exactly is Graph Search? Put simply, it’s a way for users to search Facebook using key words, and the results that are based on content people share on pages, apps, in groups and photos. People can connect with others in their area with similar interests – or just search for what’s currently trending.
For instance, searching for ‘People from London who like cake’ brings up a list of people who live in London and who have liked the ‘Cake’ Facebook page. Top of the list are people you are friends with, followed by those they are friends with, and then the rest of the Facebook network.
Here are five simple changes you can make to your page which will make a world of difference to connecting with potential customers:
Use keywords to optimise your page
Adding your top keywords to the ‘About’ page, as well as to all photos and videos enables you to be more easily discoverable on Graph Search. Continue Reading
Putting a survey together isn’t as easy as simply coming up with the questions. There are several things you have to consider in order for it to be successful and more importantly, useful. Here are some of the things we at Groupon try to keep in mind when conducting a survey:
Do: keep it short and sweet.
There is the potential of participants abandoning a long survey half way through, especially if questions contain jargon, slang or complicated scenarios. Also, try and include a tracking bar so participants can see how far along they are at all times. Survey Monkey recommends a maximum length of 50 questions, however this will completely depend on the nature of your survey and complexity of your questions.
Don’t: give away your secrets
If you are conducting a survey on a product /service / activity that has not yet been unveiled, don’t give away too much information. This sways people’s objective opinion.
Do: ask broader questions first
Try and keep the questions flowing organically. Ask the most broad ones first such as “how often do you have a beauty treatment?” so it can lead logically and more specifically on to “if the price was right, how many massages would you consider having in the next xx months?” Continue Reading
You may remember a few weeks ago, we were very excited to announce the arrival of Groupon’s Ongoing Feature. We are now pleased to be able to share our first merchant success story! Read on to discover why one of our valued partners decided to use our Ongoing Feature to give her business a boost, and what the benefits have been.
In 2012, ambitious business owner Prriya Calay made the decision to build on her HYPOXI business. Relocating from within gyms to a large clinic at the heart of the capital’s financial district, Treatments at Bank now offers busy city clients an extensive range of the hottest beauty treatments; from HYPOXI to IPL.
Moving from the short term, fixed feature option into Groupon’s new ‘Ongoing Feature’ option was an easy choice for Prriya, who strives to give her customers the best availability possible. Flexibility is of the utmost importance to her, and she explains: “Because of the nature of our treatments, some are only available on certain days and at certain times. Using Groupon’s Ongoing Feature will give us more customers by allowing further availability, as well as giving us more flexibility for appointment times. I think Ongoing Feature will bring more consistency and a steady flow of customers” Continue Reading
Occasionally, blogging might seem more of a chore than a passion when ideas for new posts fail to form. One way to work around this is to have a few some fail safe topics in your back pocket for when you struggle for fresh inspiration. Here are some of ours at Groupon:
Your customers may not follow news about your industry. The blog is a great place to relay any stories that might affect you—and them, as well as keeping them up to date with everything relevant to their industry.
Industry Best Practice
Share your knowledge and expertise! Tip your readers off to the most effective and efficient processes and methods that are common in your industry, explaining how and why you use them and how they have worked for you.
Showing is better than telling, and you can do this by writing short stories that clearly explain an initial problem your customer had, how you solved it, and what the outcome was. Be sure to include direct quotes from the customer and testimonials where possible. Continue Reading
It’s hardly a secret that happy employees are good for business. Here at Groupon, we’re always having fun with social ideas like departmental bake-offs, table tennis tournaments, fancy dress competitions, and beer Fridays, and it really shows in the productivity and morale of the staff.
Bearing this in mind, it is important to have a few tricks up your sleeve as a business owner for keeping your employees happy and motivated. Here are a few things to think about:
Communication is key
Scheduling time to speak one-to-one with each employee will make them feel appreciated and that they can talk about any issues they might be having with their work. Recognising and praising hard work also goes a long way for morale and motivation.
Trust your employees to make the right decision and give them the resources to do so, and they will step up to the challenge and take their responsibilities seriously. Put together a set of guidelines for ways in which employees can make their own decisions – such as offering discounts to make a sale, or giving free appetisers to regular customers. Make the guidelines something employees can consult, but allow them to use their own judgement for how best to proceed. Continue Reading
A short drive from the bustling capital of Dublin, the four-star Johnston House Hotel & Spa sit within an eighteenth-century Georgian mansion on 120 acres of lush green, in Enfield, Co Meath.
The Elemis spa employs 43 of the most qualified therapists in Ireland and aside from traditional massage rooms, features a Finnish sauna and Roman-style caldarium. Treatments include aromatherapy, acupuncture and reiki, designed to relax muscles, alleviate stress and promote general wellbeing.
With such highly trained personnel, Una O’Grady, Spa Manager at Johnstown House Hotel, was keen to showcase this expertise, and the varied range of therapies available, to the wider public.
But due to the spa’s somewhat isolated countryside location, the team were concerned that few customers would make the journey to avail of their services. Going forward, key strategy involved greater brand recognition. Continue Reading
To many business owners, social media is seen as a drain on both time and resources. Most advice and guidelines focus on the same reasons why businesses need social media, for customer engagement and to grow their business. In fact, the benefits of social-media are so much more, and cannot be overstated; many customers take notice of a business which actively promotes itself and reveals who they are behind the scenes. By doing this, companies portray the more human face behind the brand and create an online community for fans and potential future customers.
In some respects, social media can be seen as a kind of virtual wallpaper. If you walk into a business that has been recommend to you, but find its walls covered in peeling wallpaper, you’ll more than likely leave with a negative impressive. The same can be applied online, and the same solid presence is essential for making a good impression to give followers a good reason to spread your online word to others.
Social media needn’t be as time-consuming as many people make it out to be. At the very least, companies should have a Facebook page which features an attractive image of the business, as well as current information about opening times, prices and services. The advantages of this haven’t gone unnoticed – technology specialists VentureBeat revealed last year that Facebook has recently announced that over 15 million businesses have a page set up in order to promote their brand, and reach out to customers. Continue Reading
Here at Groupon, one of the things we’ve learned about hiring is that trust is key when it comes to making decisions. This trust can be your own gut instinct or in the manager you charge with hiring. Here are four hiring tips for small businesses to live by.
1. Make sure there is a solid job description to give them. Be candid with potential candidates about what you know and what you don’t know, that way you’ll eliminate any confusion and make it clear exactly what is required of them.
2. Be up front about your recruitment process. As soon as you know when, let candidates know where they stand with the possibility. Even if they are not hired, they will appreciate the feedback and respect you for taking time to contact them.
3. There is every your candidates may turn out to be potential customers too, so it’s your chance to wow them by treating them just as well as you would customers. Continue Reading