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The Top Small Business Marketing Posts of 2012

Another year is in the books—congratulations!

Our goal with the Constant Contact blog has always been to help you become a better marketer, so you can grow your business or organization. We’ve shared lots of inspirational stories, tips, advice, and how to’s in 2012 and you can expect more of the same in 2013.

Here’s a look back at the top posts from 2012. Catch up on any of those you may have missed. And let us know which were your favorites.

Posts are arranged by category below.

Enjoy!

Content Creation

6 Ways to Create Content Your Readers Will Share

The holy grail of content is not “likes” but shares. So how do you create content to encourage your readers to share? Read this post to find out.

5 Ways to Create More Engaging Email Content

Creating content that engages your readers is the key for moving them to action. Here’s a look at a system for organizing more engaging email content.

5 Fancy Content Ideas for Your Email’s Side Column

Coming up with the exact content for a side column can be tricky, because the information has to be scannable and laser-focused. Read these ideas to get a little fancy.

4 Places to Find Inspiration for Content (When You Don’t Know Where to Look)

Creating content can be hard. Sometimes when you’re staring at a blank screen is a little inspiration. Here are four places to go for inspiration when you’re feeling stuck.

5 Ways You Should be Using Your Smartphone to Create Fresh Content

Are you using your smartphone to its full potential to create marketing content? Read this post to find out.

6 Ingredients to Make Your Organization’s Blog Big, Bold, and Juicy

Blogs can have a huge impact on the way you reach supporters online. How do you make sure yours is engaging and compelling enough to keep people coming back? Find out in this post.

Email Marketing

7 Design Mistakes That Make Readers Trash Your Emails

People often make snap judgements based on the look of your emails. Pamela Wilson shares seven mistakes to avoid and keep your email out of the trash.

Why Email Marketing Is Like Making New Friends

How do you build relationships with email that help you grow? It happens when your emails feel personal, friendly, and unique. Find out why email marketing is a lot like making new friends.

15 Truths You Must Know to Create Almost Perfect Subject Lines

Want to boost your email open rates? One place to focus your attention is the email subject line. Here are 15 things you must know.

How to Make People Hate Your Email Newsletter

When it comes to email marketing it’s easy to start off on the wrong foot, especially when you’re making this one easy-to-fix mistake.

7 Things People Love More Than Being Sold To

Create email marketing your contacts will love. Here are seven things you can do other than sell, sell, sell.

11 Mistakes that Make Your Email Newsletter Absolutely Unreadable

A poor email can reflect badly on your organization, because it can make you look unprofessional. Here are some mistakes to avoid.

A Record Sale from Just One Email? It’s True!

Find out how a gallery and studio dedicated to all things art glass—from sculptures to jewelry, to perfume bottles and goblets–uses email marketing. Read how one email helped the gallery have its best day in 21 years.

Event Marketing

How to Plan Your First Nonprofit Fundraising Event, Part 1: Planning

Fundraising events are an important factor for the success of any nonprofit. What’s the first step to making sure your events are successful? Putting together a plan! Read this post to get started.

How to Plan Your First Nonprofit Fundraising Event, Part 2: Promotion

If you want people to know about your fundraising event, you’ll need to promote it. Here’s a look at how to make the most of your promotional activities.

Be Our Guest! 5 Tips for a Better Event Email Invitation

Your email invitation is one of the most important ways for you to promote your event. With your recipients’ inboxes likely filled with offers and invitations from other businesses and organizations, how can you make yours stand out from the crowd?

Are You Using Social Media to Promote Your Event? Most People Do!

Read this post and get our free ebook on “The State of Event Marketing.”

How to Plan Your First Successful Fundraising Event, Part 3: Getting Sponsors

A sponsor is anyone or any company that provides something free (money, services, or products) to help increase the value of your event. They are one of the foundational elements of your event because they add things that can draw people to your event. Read how you can get more sponsors to assist in your fundraising efforts.

Fresh Insights

Apple’s Passbook: What Small Businesses Need to Know

How can Passbook go to work for our small business customers—to help them leverage what could be a game-changing mobile technology? Our customers have tons of content worth sharing through Passbook. Our goal is to help them do just that.

You Are Not Richard Branson

Tamsin Fox-Davies believes the message that we should all be chasing super-star status is a whole heap of hooey, bunkum, and even tosh (feel free to add in your own expletives, but this article is rated PG). If you, personally, WANT to be the next Branson, that’s just fine and she will cheer you on as you follow that path, but it’s not for everyone.

8 Things Small Businesses Must Know About the Future of Mobile Marketing

With more than half of all Americans now using smartphones and nearly a quarter of all online activity now coming from mobile deviceswe have stumbled into a new age in technology and the future of mobile marketing has unexpectedly shown up at our doors. Is your business equipped to market to the new digital consumer?

15 Marketing Resources a Small Business Can Be Thankful For

Take a look at our list of places you can find great information to help you grow your small business.

8 Ways Customer Relationships Will Shape the Future of Marketing

Relationships matter. But how have technological advancements and changes in social connectivity impacted consumers’ shopping activities? That’s the question businesses need to answer before they move forward with their marketing efforts.

Local Deals and Loyalty

10 Ways to Organically Spread the Word About Your Local Deal

We launched our local deal campaign because we thought businesses should be able to have control over their own deals, keep more of the money they make, and retain the information from new customers that come into the store. We don’t supply you with the potential customer base, but we give you all the tools you need to promote your deal to current and new customers.

Third Time’s the Charm: Getting a Local Deal to Work for Your Business

Despite being passed over by two big-name deal providers, a pottery store finally found success.

Stop the Presses! A Local Deal that Builds Relationships AND Earns Revenue?

Find out how KT’s BBQ ran a local deal where almost 300 people redeemed the vouchers in total. More than a quarter of those were new customers. In total, the restaurant saw around $2,000 in gross revenue from the deal, and 100 new email subscribers.

The Online Deal of a Lifetime: $519 for $42,050

It isn’t uncommon for small businesses to look into online deal providers and discover that many require a 50% discount on goods and services – and then they take 50% of profit as a price for the service. Find out how one medical spa used a local deal to run deals without giving up its profits.

How Two Very Different Businesses Found Success with Daily Deals

Social Media Marketing

25 Things That Make You Look Dumb on Twitter

No one wants to look dumb, especially in public for all to see. So it’s no surprise this post on Twitter and the one of Facebook below were so popular. See if you’re making any these mistakes.

25 Things That Make You Look Dumb on Facebook

See the Twitter post description above.

Facebook’s Default Landing Page Is Going Away on Timeline. Now What?

Facebook is known for making changes that drive us all crazy trying to keep up. With the introduction of Timeline for Pages Facebook removed the default landing page for new visitors. We share why it’s really not as big a deal as you might think.

How to Get More Results from Your Facebook Page

You may have heard that “hope” isn’t much of a strategy. Read this post to see two things you need to focus on to get real results from your Facebook Page.

10 Things You Need to Do When Getting Started on Pinterest

Businesses and organizations got a lot of traction from Pinterest in 2012. Read this post to find out how to get started.

How to Use Instagram to Promote Your Business

The web has become more and more visual and Instagram makes it easy to create compelling images. Find out how you can use images to share the story of your business.

Surveys and Feedback

Ask An Expert: How to Create Content Your Customers Actually Want to Read

When customers want to read your newsletter, they will be more likely to open your emails, tell their friends about you, and most importantly—take the next step to help you grow your business. So what do you need to do to make this happen? Start with a survey.

Looking for Higher Email Open Rates? Try Using a Survey!

Sending out a survey is one of the best ways to avoid the dreaded super-long sign-up form and still get the information necessary to segment your mailing list for better open rates. After sending out your survey, you can then save contact respondents who selected the same answers into a new contact list for future mailings.

An Email Marketer’s Guide to Collecting Customer Feedback

Do you want to make better email marketing decisions? Do you want to give your readers more relevant content? Do you want to have a leg up on your competition? If you’ve answered “yes” to any of these questions then it’s time you learn a thing or two about collecting customer feedback.

6 Quick Tips to Improve Your Survey Response Rate

Here are 6 easy-to-implement tips to entice your customers and members to improve your survey response rate.

10 New Ways to Use a Survey to Engage Your Audience

Surveys are an easy way to make the communications you’re already doing—email newsletters, content on your Facebook page, etc—more engaging. Engaged and interested customers and members are more likely to stick around longer and spread the word about you.

We’ll see you for more in 2013!

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