No matter what industry a business is in, no matter what product or service a business sells, no matter what size a business is, These 14 strategies are main contributor to the continual growth and success of a business.
Actually this is the reason why I call them ‘The 14 ideas of effective marketing’ because they open up your business to that all important pathway to constant success.
If you or I were to go down to the gym to either look at loosing a few pounds, or to build muscle mass to tone ourselves up, I doubt that we would get on the tread mill or the rowing machine just once and then say ‘that’s enough no need to do anymore of that’ nor would we lift up a dumbbell and do one bicep curl, never to repeat it.
We understand that doing the exercise only once is not going to have any effect or change to our health and fitness at all.
However despite this obvious realization there have been numerous occasions when business owners have commented to me that the last marketing campaign they ran, didn’t work.
I can guarantee that when I am told that, the answer to my follow up question, “how many times did you do the campaign?” is inevitable, once!
Even if your campaign is not brilliant, you will get a far greater response, along with a more profitable outcome if you commit to it than if you had a brilliant campaign and did it just once.
I am not just talking about money here. To have an effective marketing strategy you need to ensure you also invest the time and energy it rightly deserves to ensure you achieve the levels of success you want.
This links into key number one. If you are committed to running a campaign, you will have to be prepared to ensure you invest the time to do it.
The campaign will not be effective, the keys will not open you up to the pathway of business growth if you only do your marketing now and again or when you can fit it in. which brings us nicely on to the third key.
It has been said that it takes between seven and nine times for a marketing message to be seen before a person reacts to it. In fact trust is a major reason why people decide to part with their money and buy a product or service.
People are not going to believe in you as a manufacturer of a product or provider of a service, or even trust that you can deliver quality or even still Part 1 be around 6 years or even 6 months from now if your message is only around once or twice.
The more your message is seen or heard the more you will build trust and faith in your ability to be a quality company to do business with.
Also a mistake that is commonly made by companies is to change the message. If you live in the UK, do you believe Fairy washing up liquid effectively cleans your dishes? I am sure you do. Did you know that this message had not been changed for over 50 years?
The message had stayed the same, with the child waiting for the container to be empty so they can use it for some game or toy they are making. ‘hands that do dishes…’ It is only till recently that Proctor & Gamble the makers of Fairy liquid changed it by bringing in Ainsley Harriot.
And that is mainly due to the fact that we have changed the way we predominantly wash up, no longer standing at the sink but rather choosing to load our dishwashers.
Nescafe Gold Blend got the nation hooked with its consistent advertising campaign in the 1980’s with the attractive couple who lived next door to each other borrowing coffee and sharing a cup or two around awkward, funny and romantic situations. Be consistent. Once you know what works, leave it alone.
In a survey done in the USA to determine why people buy, one reason was because they felt confident in the business they were buying from. I touched on this point in the 2nd key.
It doesn’t matter where you live, the US, the UK, Europe, Australia, the result will be the same. In fact when I am asked to critique a business, be it their marketing, sales skills, presentations or customer service, the first thing I look at is are they promoting confidence to their customers?
If a potential customer is not confident in you as a provider, in your product or service, then no matter how much money you send on your marketing, how slick your sales team are, what state of the art equipment you use to present your business to the world, you will find that without confidence in you, customers are not going to buy.
Too often I see businesses quit and give up marketing campaigns because they are not seeing the results they want, immediately. You have to ensure that you have patience when it comes to marketing otherwise it will be extremely difficult to carry out the first four keys to effective marketing.
Marketing is not just advertising in a newspaper or on the TV. It is not just direct mailing or posters in the local high street. Marketing is everything we do and it is important to also understand and accept the fact that individual marketing tools rarely work on their own.
However, you will soon discover that combining different marketing tools does work, very effectively. The wider your assortment the greater your success.
How easy is it to do business with you? The reason I ask this is because in today’s society time is precious and people are now reluctant to waste it. So you need to ensure that you are running your business for your customers’ convenience rather than yours.
I regularly see frustrated people coming out of banks between 12 and 2pm each week day. The reason why they are frustrated is because they want to get their banking done during the only spare time they have during a busy day – lunch time.
The problem is this is the optimum time for everyone else, but what makes this experience frustrating is that most banks also allow their cashiers to go to lunch during this time too, so the number of desks open is actually reduced thereby increasing the waiting time to be served. Not very convenient is it – maybe this is one of the reason why banks are so disliked?
When are real profits made? Is it when a sale is made? If you think that the answer is yes, then please don’t. One sale will only produce a small profit, maybe only actually covering costs especially if you are working to a tight margin.
The actual time you make real, productive and rewarding profits is when you have ensuing activity and you get your customer to buy again, or provide you with referral business.
It is actually after the point of the first sale that the real marketing begins. Subsequent sales and business from customers produces the real bench mark for business growth and success, that of real profit.
There will be times in your business when you take it and what it offers, for granted. It’s natural to do so because you are working in it everyday, around the same products or services. However customers are not as absorbed in your business as you are and we all know people like surprises.
Make sure your marketing keeps your customers surprised and as a result, excited.
If I asked you to tell me how successful your last marketing campaign was would you be able to tell me? If you measure the results you get from your marketing you can effectively double your profits. You do this through making the necessary adjustments needed to your copy or stopping a campaign that is not working.
Some of the different ways to market your business that you will learn in another podcast will get you these results. Dependent on your product or service, they may actually fail. You are not going to know which one is working and where if you are not measuring them.
I had a client you for 3 consecutive years ran the same £600 a year advertising campaign in a business directory and never received any inquiries. If he had measured the result after just the first year he could have saved himself £1200.
This actually works two ways because involvement refers to your relationship between you and your customers. The first way is the relationship you have with your customers; do you follow up on leads? Do you speak to them in the correct manner? Do you provide quality service?
And as a result the second part comes into effect, your customers’ relationship with you. Do they continue to do business with you? Do they refer others to your business?
Business is all about having a relationship with your customers. The better the relationship you have with them the higher the chance that they will stay loyal to you and continue to frequent your business. So get involved.
Most business owners are used to competing with companies who provide similar services or products to them. This is an antiquated view as co-operating with businesses that offer similar commodities to you will increase your presence in the market place, along with your profits, when done right at a reduced outlay both in time and money.
Additionally there will be businesses local to you that provide products or services that compliment yours. Co-operating with these businesses in your marketing opens doors to a new customer base you never taped into before and thereby enabling you to increase your profits.
In today’s society it is no good being reluctant to use the many assortments and styles of equipment available to market and promote your business, such as computers, emails, specific software packages, the internet, mobile phones, fax machines, palm top pc’s and the like.
All these and more will help you keep promoting your business and striving forward to increase your profits.
You could waste your time and money sending out marketing materials to everyone and anyone; putting it simply, people who don’t really want it. Or the most effective way as the marketing guru Seth Godin describes it is through permission marketing.
Get the permission of your potential clients to send marketing materials out to them. Get them to opt in to receiving material from you, rather than opt out or throw it away. By doing so you are really targeting your efforts on those who want to hear from you, and more importantly more likely to buy from you.
So we have covered 14 strategies for highly effective small business marketing. I urge you to critique the marketing campaigns run by your business. Look and see how many of these 14 ideas you are not doing then begin to add them in to the way you run your small business marketing.
You will be glad you did.
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