Over the past 10 weeks, I’ve posted short business booster blogs on marketing strategies that can help you market your small business on a shoestring budget.
Here are all 10, together and in summary:
1. Craft an elevator pitch
You should be marketing all the time — wherever you are. Therefore, you need a compelling elevator pitch so that when someone asks: “And what do you do?”, you have your TV ad -like pitch on who we are and what we do memorised and ready to use.
Research shows the average attention span of an adult is about six to eight seconds. That’s all the time you have to grab someone’s attention.
2. Support your community
Marketing – and especially, sponsorship – needn’t be big and expensive. Think locally. What’s going on in your community?
For example, why not sponsor the shirts of a local junior football team. One of my clients recently bought outdoor gear for a local youth club walking across an eastern Europe mountain range. (And got lots of local publicity – i.e. free advertising – for their efforts). Get to know your ideal customer and think about how and where they spend their time… then put your message THERE.
Put together a group of synergistic, non-competitive businesses in your area and agree to cross-promote via coupons, fliers, reciprocal website links, bundled promotions or social media platforms.
There are few better ways to build a business than to get out there, shake some hands, and get to know people.
Networking requires a time commitment and it doesn’t provide instant gratification, but a strong network is one of the greatest assets any business person can have.
5. Give a speech
Many organizations are looking for qualified, subject-matter experts who can present to their groups.
Take a deep breath and volunteer. You don’t have to be a pro as long as the information you share is helpful to the audience. Plus, it positions you as a credible authority in your field.
6. Create a buzz
There are media opportunities every day in local and trade press – so contact the publications and ask for their upcoming editorial plans. Introduce yourself to local editors and journalists as a reliable source for information in your particular field. If you need help putting together a news story, contact me
7. Ask for referrals
Ask your (satisfied) customers to refer you to others. People will often say they are willing to provide a referral if asked, but few take the initiative to do it on their own.
8. Build relationships
It is a lot less expensive to keep a customer than it is to get a new one. That’s why establishing strong relationships with your customer base is crucial. One of the ways you can do that is by keeping in touch with people through email marketing.
9. Offer money-off coupons
Coupons are a good way for many businesses to attract new customers. Coupons can also generate return visits. Research shows that people will go out of their way to use a coupon, proving that this method is successful in expanding your customer base.
10. Give it away
These ten, inexpensive marketing strategies will help you engage customers, build relationships, and ultimately keep your brand top-of-mind. It’s not always about the money you have to spend on marketing, it’s about the time and effort you put into it and above all, the relevance it has for your customers.
Next time: At war with the neighbourhood cats.