Copyright (c) 2008 Paul Flood Marketing, LLC
These Powerful Small Business Marketing Tips Are Guaranteed to Dramatically Increase Your Sales!
If you are like many entrepreneurs, you are looking for small business marketing tips that not only work, but work consistently. If you're ready to take the your small business to the next level, you need to look at marketing differently.
This may seem obvious but, over 97% of the time, your small business marketing should have one of two goals: 1. Result in a sale. 2. Result in a lead or prospect.
The other 3% of the cases include your community service marketing like memberships in Rotary, Kiwanis and organizations to which you belong.
Marketing Shouldn't be a Mystery!
Small business owners often see marketing as a mystery and don't know what works for their business. Not knowing what to do leads to either copying competitor's poor marketing or their falling prey to media and agency reps who often know less about marketing than them! The reps are taught to tell you, the small business owner, the goal of your marketing is to build your brand.
The ground is littered with failed small businesses who fell for this brand-building fallacy. Don't misunderstand me here. I strongly believe in advertising as a pillar of your marketing system but you must view all your marketing as an investment, not as a trial to see what works if people know your name.
Another Small Business Marketing Tip:
Look at advertising as you would a sales ep. Would you hire a sales rep to build your brand and "get your name out there?" If they never close and sale and you're losing money, do you keep them on board? Of course not! You don't keep them around longer or pay them more money. You make a change.
Do you see the analogy? Your sales people and advertising are both marketing investments. Why continue advertising that doesn't generate profits?
Remember that everything in your business is part of your marketing. You either move clients and prospects towards or away from a buying decision. When you look at everything you do as part of your marketing investment, you begin to consider how to leverage it in every possible way to increase profits.
7 Powerful Small Business Marketing Strategies That Will Grow YOUR Business!
1. Develop a powerful (USP) that gives prospects a compelling reason to buy from you now. Your USP must scream a powerful reason to do business with you. It motivates your clients to send friends in droves to buy your product or service! This small business marketing tip has built small companies into empires! Remember the little pizza company that guaranteed fresh hot pizza in 30 minutes or less - Or it's free?
Make an outrageous and exciting claim that shows that you are better than anybody else and the best thing for a prospect can do is buy from you now!
2. Learn selling and customer service skills. Advertising legend Clyde Bedell taught us "That all good selling is service." Service and sales go tightly together. When you cross-sell, you provide a tremendous service. You save clients the time and aggravation of having to search elsewhere to complete the purchase.
Marketing legend Dan Kennedy sums up this concept beautifully by saying "People are walking around holding an umbilical cord and saying, "Tell me what to do." Your clients and prospects need and value your recommendations and will follow them so make a habit of providing them!
3. Capture client and prospect information and create a database. Take a moment to ask yourself the last time a retailer or restaurant asked you name or asked you to return. In general, it is NEVER! Your business will be one of less than 5% of companies that make any effort to build a powerful bond with your clients.
4. Use your database to keep in touch. Send thank you notes. (Super car salesman Joe Girardi is in the Guinness book of records for selling more cars than anybody. His secret? he kept in touch with tens of thousands of clients using thank you notes and greeting cards.Give them a reason to return by sending special discount coupons, invitations to "Platinum Client Days"." Always thank them for their past business and give them a special offer as a reason to return and always have a deadline for your offer. 5. Start a newsletter, which is THE most powerful small business marketing tip to build a fence around your clients. The added advantage is that you are marketing to those most likely to buy - Current and past clients!
6. Create a referral and reward program. Unfortunately, most people are afraid to ask for referrals even thought clients are happy to give them. The easiest strategy is to simply ask for them and reward people who send you new clients. It can be as simple as giving coded coupons to a client in your store. For each one that is redeemed, the referring client gets a gift. Many professionals are a lot more strategic and have arrange special meetings with their clients for the sole purpose of getting high quality referrals. If you are living up to your USP, clients will gladly refer others! You must realize that if you are providing quality products and services, it is your right to ask for referrals.
7. The final small business marketing tip is so powerful that you must insure you have the capacity to handle the additional business! Joint Ventures and Strategic Alliances leverage the goodwill and relationships other businesses have built with their clients.
Identify non-competing businesses that serve a client base similar to yours. Approach the owner and propose a joint venture or strategic alliance in which you are going to endorse their business to your list and vise-versa. As mentioned earlier, consumers are constantly asking "Who should I buy this product or service from?'
This powerful small business marketing tool leverages the trust you and your alliance partner(s) have built with their clients and, when properly structured between two good companies with quality products and services, is as close to a guaranteed success as you will ever get.