Marketing Strategies For Small Businesses
Be able to describe what you do in one clear sentence.
Donald Trump is correct, that elevator speech is really important. Ask a friend or colleague to give you an honest evaluation of your description. Does it give the listener a basic understanding of what you do? If not, make it a priority to work on it. Before someone can decide if they may need your product or service they must first understand what you’re saying.
Be unique in all that you do. Don’t just give it lip service. If you’ve decided to adopt a unique approach to make your business memorable (tagline, business signature, giveaway, mascot, illustration, photo, color scheme, etc) be sure to use it consistently in your marketing efforts. It should become part of your brand.
Use your mission statement as a filter for all that you do.
Once you’ve clearly decided what your marketing goals, strategies, targets and tactics ARE, it should be easy to identify those things that DON’T fit. For example, if you have identified the best marketing vehicles to reach your customer then it’s very easy to say “no” to those salespeople offering you marketing opportunities that don’t fit your plan.
Don’t jump the process
Discover your target market and your points of difference before you start marketing. Your printed collateral materials, Web site and advertising will be much more effective and less expensive to produce if you have your marketing strategy established first. Then you’re simply following your plan in all that you do. Avoid the “shotgun” approach or “reactive” marketing.
Give back to the community… strategically.
There are so many great causes and organizations out there and you can’t do everything. So, pick the ones that will best position you with your target market.
Network efficiently and effectively.
If you don’t feel that you are a competent networker, now is the time to learn how to be or hire someone that is. Enough said.
Remember that inconsistent advertising is wasted money.
A prospective customer must be exposed to the same message in the same way numerous times before they are ready to entertain a buying decision. Pick an advertising vehicle where you can afford to have an ongoing and consistent presence.
If you do trade shows, have a plan and work the plan.
Companies participate in trade shows for a variety of reasons. Unless you have a success plan, you won’t know if it worked.
Look for ways to establish yourself as an expert in your field.
Speaking engagements, publication articles and volunteer leadership roles can all help label you as an expert in your field.
Keep all marketing communications clear, brief and focused.