Don't put all your marketing eggs into a single basket: smaller spends on simple and cost-effective tactics can be as effective and bring longer-term benefits to your business.
Have you found that most people don’t easily part with their money? Having to overcome this obstacle in order to make your business profitable is one of the reasons why running your own business is hard work.
If people are to do business with you they are required to give money and commit time, effort and consideration. They must also switch brands or purchase something for the first time.
Therefore, it requires a deliberate and well thought-out strategy to let people know that your business exists and has something worth spending money for. Very rarely will someone decide to do business with you based on one form of communication or marketing. Think about it: when was the last time you changed accountants simply because of an advertisement you saw? It takes multiple points of contact to lead them to that point.
This is good news for small business. Rather than needing to make one big marketing investment such as an outdoor billboard campaign, it is much more effective to consider all of the facets that play a part in the journey someone takes to do business with you.
This can include your:
- staff uniforms
- business cards
- answering machine message
- customer service
- email signature
- your packaged offerings
- company vehicle
- product names
- social media use
- communication style
- reception area
- sales process, and
All of these have the ability to impact decision making when it comes to people:
- forming an opinion of you and your business,
- considering to do business with you,
- putting a value to your business (this is important when it comes to discussing how much your offering is worth), or
- feeling confident about referring you to others.
In other words, they all are part of marketing your business. Marketing is getting the attention of your ideal customer and making sure they know that you can solve a problem they have. It is also encouraging them to think and feel about your business in a certain way.
You should also know that silence communicates, and sometimes louder than deliberate marketing tactics. What do you think is the perception of a business that does not:
- have a website
- respond to complaints
- participate in media coverage
- come to the table on the issues that matter to their ideal customers
- communicate with its customers (besides taking orders, delivering a business offering and then sending an invoice).
A business that is silent in any of those ways makes it difficult for people to be aware of their business and what it does. Worse still, it can cause people to think and feel about their business in a negative way and act as a stumbling block to new business.
So take a step back from working in your business for a moment, and consider all of your current marketing tactics, including the less obvious ones. By looking at the sometimes overlooked aspects of your business marketing and making sure they are consistent and communicating the right message, you can make a big difference to how people perceive your business.
This is something you can work on now.
I’d like to hear your opinion. Have you found that these sometimes-overlooked aspects of marketing have made a difference to your business?