Thanks to digital media, today’s business owners have several options for talking about their products and services. But marketing expert Dan Beldowicz finds that people often forget the other benefit offered by the media: the opportunity to listen to what your customers have to say.

Beldowicz, director of digital marketing at Creative Marketing Alliance (CMA) on Clarksville Road, will lead a panel discussion at the Princeton Chamber’s Central NJ Technology Summit on Friday, March 16, from 7:30 to 10:30 a.m. at the Conference Center at Mercer County Community College, West Windsor. Cost: $50, $40 for members. Register at www.princetonchamber.org or 609-924-1776.

The summit’s topic is “Digital Presence: Connecting with Your Customers in the Digital Era.” Keynote speaker Carlos Dominguez, president of the social media management company Sprinklr and former executive with Cisco Systems, will share his insights in an address titled, “‘Why Care?’ Is The New Marketing.” Dominguez will discuss the impact social media has on the way brands communicate with customers and best practices to manage social disruption.

CMA’s panel discussion will focus on ways businesses can leverage digital marketing strategies to deliver bottom-line sales and revenue results. The panel will include success stories from two of the company’s clients, Abel HR, a human resources consultancy in Cranbury; and New Jersey State Nurses Association, which represents more than 110,000 registered and advanced practice nurses.

Beldowicz’s expertise includes certification as a professional coach from the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC). He has studied the works of entrepreneurs and motivational speakers Jim Rohn, Brian Tracy, Jack Canfield, Napolean Hill, and marketing expert Jay Abraham.

Beldowicz says his recipe for success includes purpose, passion, and profit. Purpose: Do everything with intent. Passion: Love what you do. Profit: Reap the benefits that result from having purpose and passion.

A marketing campaign is a logical process, he says. His advice to new clients: Decide who your audience is, your niche. Review your current assets like your website, any social media sites you run or participate in, and consider what you can do to make them more effective. Focus on your return, which involves four Is: Investment: energy and money; Impact: your reach and appeal; Innovation: changes you need to make; and Involvement: how you will be investing your time.

Be clear about what you want to achieve with your online communication, he says. Your objectives could be education: creating awareness of what your product or service has to offer; information, getting contacts and feedback; or transformation, getting a sale or an exchange of information.

When business owners say they are not getting results, it is generally because they are not connecting with their customers. This is where you can use social media as a tool to interact with them, he says.

Beldowicz uses his training in personal development to understand his customers and their goals and his technical background to create marketing strategies using the tools of digital media. “It’s a matter of connecting the dots,” he says.

Marketing solutions could include website development, search engine optimization, and pay-per-click campaigns, content management, email marketing and e-communications, videos, multimedia, app development, and digital ads.

Beldowicz has been interested in technology since he was a child growing up in Niagara Falls, New York. He was impressed by the enormity of the falls and also by the first hydro-electric power plant on the Canadian side built by Nicola Tesla and George Westinghouse.

Beldowicz studied at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, earning a bachelor’s degree in management, concentrating in engineering. His interest in business can be traced in part to his father, an executive in the big box retail business and his mother, a psychiatric nurse.

Before joining CMA in October 2017, Beldowicz worked for iPEC in Shrewsbury, where he led digital operations for 17 locations. Early in his career, he was the vice president of new business development and a marketing consultant for Single Throw Internet Marketing in Wall, New Jersey.

While having expertise in social media and working with the latest technologies, Beldowicz’s approach to business has roots in the past. While working at Single Throw Marketing, he published an article on betternetworker.com encouraging readers to heed the advice of a “guru” born in 1888. Here’s an excerpt from the article:

“He wrote a little book out there that I am re-naming, ‘The Lost Book on Social Media.’ This book covers everything you need to know about making better connections on Facebook, gaining more followers on Twitter, and how to win with YouTube. The crazy part about this book is that it was written over 70 years ago, well before social networking, the internet, and even before the first real television broadcast of the 1936 Olympic Games of Berlin. The book I’m referring to is Dale Carnegie’s classic, ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People.’

“This classic, read by millions of people, is the official guide to social media … Some of the highlights that you can use in social media immediately are principles like, ‘Give Honest and Sincere Appreciation,’ ‘Become Genuinely Interested in Other People,’ and my favorite, ‘Smile.’ These are just three of the principles outlined in the book but are truly at the heart of social media, it is about building relationships, not about blasting out your advertisement.”

Both Beldowicz and summit keynote speaker Dominguez agree, the best way to find and keep customers is to know what they truly want.

“Success in your business comes down to how well you connect with your target audience,” Beldowicz says.

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