PADI Pro Member Benefit #3: Business Training

In order to operate a thriving business within the scuba industry, diving professionals need to be more than just experts in the water – they’ll need to have specialist business knowledge, too.

As a renewed PADI Professional you have access to a wide selection of tools and training opportunities to help equip you with the knowledge and skills you need to manage and grow your diving business efficiently and successfully.

These tools include courses such as the PADI Business Academy, print and online publications and live or pre-recorded webinars, and cover a variety of topics including:

  • Selling and conducting PADI courses and training
  • Marketing, eMarketing, advertising and social media tips
  • Boosting sales opportunities for courses, merchandise and equipment
  • Customer and stock inventory management with EVE
  • Developing and expanding your business into the wider market

To find out what support is available, contact a consultant in your local PADI Office or speak to your local PADI Regional Manager.

Remember: renew your 2016 PADI Professional Membership before 31st December 2015 and you’ll be able take advantage of our special renewal offers. Find out more here.

Ready to renew? Click here to renew your membership online, or contact Customer Services by email ([email protected]) or telephone (+44 (0)117 3007234)

A PADI ReActivate Blog Article to help inspire inactive divers

If you’re looking to inspire inactive divers, and help them rediscover the underwater world through your dive operation, then PADI ReActivate is the perfect tool to help you achieve this goal.

We recently published an article on our consumer blog, PADI.com, specifically written to inform divers about PADI ReActivate and to encourage them to jump back into the water again with this modern digital tool.

reactivateblogClick here to view the blog article and feel free to share and repurpose it for your own blogs, social media sites and newsletters to help encourage inactive divers to join your next course or trip.

Training Insights… PADI Rescue Diver Part 1: Who are our potential PADI Rescue Divers?

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Any PADI Open Water Diver aged 12 years or older can start their PADI Rescue Diver course by completing the Knowledge Development and Rescue Exercises in confined water! Encourage them to consider PADI Rescue Diver training as an integrated part of their development.

PADI Adventure Divers who have completed the Underwater Navigation dive can complete the full PADI Rescue Diver course.

Top Tip: Targeted Packages to Drive Sales

To help boost your sales in continuing education courses, why not create an email campaign that targets your existing PADI Open Water Diver customers. Offer them a package to include PADI Adventure Diver/Advanced Open Water Diver and PADI Rescue Diver.

Better still, if your divers are local or are staying in your area for a few weeks, offer them a PADI Master Scuba Diver package that includes:

  • PADI Advanced Open Water Diver
  • PADI Rescue Diver
  • 5 x PADI Specialty courses
  • Getting 50 logged dives as experience

This the ideal way to combine training and diving into the ultimate experience that delivers a win-win for both your business and your customers.

Promoting the course package:

By using EVE, you can use your customer database to deliver relevant, targeted email campaigns automatically and with ease. For more tips, check out this video or contact your PADI Regional Manager.

Alternatively, invite existing PADI Open Water divers to attend an informal evening where you can organise fun talks, workshops and information about courses to inspire them to sign up (as well as gain additional equipment sales on the night).

To help promote the courses, you can download a free digital marketing toolbox which includes posters, leaflets, flyers and email graphics. You can use these materials to advertise the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course, the PADI Rescue Diver course and the PADI Master Scuba Diver course plus many more. Click here to download the toolbox in ZIP format. You can also access it from within the PADI Pros’ Site by visiting Toolbox > Marketing > Marketing Campaign > and in the section ‘Campaign Tools PADI Europe, Middle East and Africa’.

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For more information about the free digital marketing toolbox please contact [email protected].

For more information on the training requirements for PADI courses, please contact [email protected].

PADI Equipment Specialist Touch – A Blog Article for Your Customers

We recently published a blog article on our consumer blog (www.padi.com/blog) which informed student divers about the benefits of the PADI Equipment Specialist Touch – click here to read the article.

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The article contains information and images which you are able to use to create content for your own blog articles and newsletters to encourage your own student divers and customers to take the course with you.

We have included product features, benefits of why they might take the course, testimonials and images which you can adapt and use to promote your own PADI Equipment Specialist courses.

If you would like to purchase your own copy and/or you need to buy a copy for students who have signed up for an upcoming PADI Equipment Specialist course you are running, please contact your PADI Europe, Middle East and Africa Sales Consultant by email ([email protected]) or by telephone (+44 117 300 7234).

Linking your Twitter to Facebook

Hopefully my previous article about why you should be using Twitter as a business toolencouraged you to get signed up to Twitter and started using it.

In this article we take a quick look at how you can make life easier for yourself.  Reluctant Twitter using dive centres often worry about having to generate content for their Facebook page and for Twitter.  Posting to both takes up more time then posting to one.  I hope that in the few simple steps I outline below that I can show you that linking your Facebook page to your Twitter account is a simple process that means you only have to post once.

Thats right, once you have your two accounts linked, every time you post to your Facebook page it automatically gets Tweeted.  One update, one lot of work and its posted on two networks.   Simple and time saving.  Heres how:

1. Open your browser of choice, log into Facebook and in another tab log into Twitter.

2. While logged in to Facebook go to this URL  https://www.facebook.com/twitter/ 

3. You will now have a screen which shows your personal Facebook profile first and then a list of your pages under the heading “Link your pages to twitter”Link facebook to twitter

Click on the grey Link to Twitter button on the right of the screen.

4. Next you will have the Twitter Authorisation screen:Authorise-twitter

Here you need to check that you are connecting to the right Twitter account.  This is displayed in the top right of the screen.   Once you are happy to authorise, then click the blue button.   If you didn’t logon to Twitter in step 1 then now you will be asked to logon to your twitter account as part of the authorisation screen.

5. Congratulations your Facebook Page is now linked to you Twitter account.  One final step is to select which types of Facebook update you wish to post.  I tend to select all except notes.

Linked to twitter

You can return back to Facebook.com/twitter at anytime to change these settings or unlink the accounts.

Finally you post on twitter will look a bit like this with a short link to your Facebook page and the first part of the text from the post.

Facebook post on twitter

We hope you found this a simple and useful tool to help you with your social media.

Using Twitter for Business

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A lot of Dive centre owners ask me, if they should be on twitter.  I always say yes your centre should be.  I also have a lot telling me that they don’t like/get/understand/have time for Twitter.   Again my answer is simple its a business tool and you should be using it if you want to grow your business.  You probably don’t like doing your stock take but you still need to do it.

Now if you’ve read this far then I’m guessing you are interested in growing your business. Well then lets talk Twitter.

Twitter was founded in 2006 as a type of text message service and soon developed from there, essence Twitter is made up of 140-character messages called Tweets.  Nowadays you can do a lot more then just simple text.

Twitter has 554,750,000 active users and around 135,000 new sign ups per day.  There has even been talk recently of Generation Z (your future customers and new divers) moving away from Facebook and onto Twitter.

So what are the benefits for Businesses?

Well as you can already see Twitter has a large Audience right there for you, so why not use it.  You’ll probably find a number of your existing customers are already on Twitter.

Here are my top 5 reasons why you a Dive Centre should be on Twitter.

1. Links and SEO – Search Engine Optimisation of your website and blog.  Get your links out there in the simplest terms, the more links back to your site the better for the page rank.  Okay it can be a lot more complicated then that.  But put it simply get you latest blog or offer out there.  Google loves fresh content and social sites like twitter provide this.

2. Customer Service – Its a great way to deal with quick customer enquiries or complaints. At PADI I find many tweets I deal with can be about lost cards, Pros site logon forgotten or where to send application fees.  Instead of customers and staff spending time on Phone or Email a quick tweet can solve issues with a lot less hassle. Good customer service will also be seen, which I think is value in itself for setting your business apart from others.

3. Networking – Yes thats right, its a social network after all.  You’d be surprised how this can be beneficial.  I have been able to find pictures and stories for my PADI blogs and Facebook page by exchanging a couple of tweets.  Its saved me time and PADI money.

4. Engage potential Customers and Check out the Competition – Todays customer is a different animal, I sure you all know that especially the younger generations.  I hate talking on the phone for instance.  With generation Z most of their communication even with close friends that may even be sitting not far form them is via short message.  Twitter gives potential customers a chance to scope you out without having to come in store or phone.  You’d be amazed at how many Non-divers are put off by those two.  Checking up on your competition is pretty straight forward and should also be done on the other social media platforms.  Its always good to know what the centre down the road is doing!

5. Increase Sales –  Thats right, if you can bring all these points together then you can increase your sales, I don’t think that needs much explaining.

Twitter for your business can be as successful as you want to make it, from the simple just having a presence and posting your links to really engaging in the conversation and targeting new opportunities.

Don’t forget once you have a twitter presence you nee to promote it also, so let your Facebook fans know, add it to your newsletter and put it on your website.

For the complete Twitter novice check out http://www.wikihow.com/Use-Twitter

You can sign up for Twitter here https://twitter.com/signup

For existing users if you have a question why not tweet me @trevorPADI

Stay tuned for some more articles on using Twitter for business coming soon, including linking your Facebook account and Twitter Cards.

Using Facebook insights to maximise your Facebook exposure

Recently Facebook has had a number of make overs, but for those using Facebook as a business tool one sticks out.

Facebook Insights

Have you ever used the insights tab on your Facebook business page? If the answer is no then now is the time to start taking it serious as a powerful tool to help maximise your business profile on Facebook.

If you have not already enabled the new Facebook Page insights then you can do so by going to your Business Page and under the insights tab selecting “learn more”

New Facebook insights

You will then be asked to click on a large green button that asks if you want to try new insights now.

Once in the new Facebook Page insights, take a moment to go through the tour that helps explain Insights.

Maximum exposure

Why a Facebook Business Page?  Simple to increase our business and create a relationship with our customers past, present and future.   Every time you post as your Business Page you are trying to get that particular post to as many fans as possible. The more people who see it the more exposure you get, right?

Right.  Do you just post an update when you have time?  Have you ever considered when your users are online?  Every time you post to your page you want as many people as possible to see the post. This is where the new insights becomes a powerful tool you can use to maximise your post exposure.

Once you have new Insights on your account click on Posts, then on “When Your Fans Are Online”

Facebook insights when fans are online

This then gives you an overview of when your Pages fans are online.  You will be able to see a break down for each day of the week  and also over a 24hr period.  As you can see in the image below I have highlight the optimal day and hour for a page I am admin on.  In this case Wednesdays at 17:00  would unsure a post would get maximum exposure to fans.

Facebook Insights finding out when your fans are online

From experience it seems late afternoon till late evening are the prime times across a number of countries, 17:00 – 21:00 seem to be prime Facebook times.   But check yours and see when is the best time and use this to your advantage!

Don’t worry if its late at night or out of business hours, you can use the schedule post function in Facebook quickly and easily.  Just click on the clock symbol on the bottom left of the status update box and add the time you require.

Facebook schedule post

 

Written by Trevor Sanford eMarketing and Social Media Executive for PADI. A Digital Marketer with a technical background, Trevor has extensive experience across all channels and currently works on all PADI’s Social Media projects.

Using PADI’s Youtube to help market your business

YouTube is ranked 2nd for all searches on the internet, and its not even a search engine in the traditional sense.  So we know that video is big.  In fact who has’t watched a video on YouTube be it the Evolution of dance, or what happens when you combine a popular drink with a brand of soft mints or even a keyboard playing cat (yes thats right 31,199,425 views!)

Did you know PADI has 2 Youtube channels?

PADI Pro TV  is a great resource for PADI members to check out How to videos or to find videos promoting PADI products in various languages, check it out.

We also have PADI consumer YouTube channel where you can find a selection of videos  either from our Video of the Week playlist, videos promoting PADI Courses,  the Pro Lifestyle or amazing scuba snack videos.

We’ve just published our brand new Go Dive video, to help inspire people to go Dive the PADI way.  Check it out:

All PADI’s videos can be used by you to promote your business.   Do you have a YouTube Channel? If so you can create playlist of our videos, this means you get new content for your channel without having to spend hours filming and editing extra material.  Save time but get new content.

No YouTube channel?  Then why not embeb our videos in your Website or send a link via your eNewsletter.   Use out new Go Dive video to engage new and existing customers to dive with you!

Remember to check back often to see what new videos we have that you can use to promote your Business.