It’s arguably the biggest concern of any small business – in fact, of any business. Owners of small, dynamic businesses ask this question every day and particularly those who are considering entering into the world of self-employment.
There are literally thousands of books on the subject, such is the need to answer the question. So many that you might wonder whether the authors actually derive their income from writing about it.
So, what makes me the expert? I’m not. But, I have spent the past 17 years learning the hard way – trial and error.
Sure, I’ve read some books but I’ve learnt that marketing is one of the more difficult parts of the business. 25 years’ military service are not conducive to a new career requiring marketing experience!
You probably think “I’ve got a website, business cards and flyers. Now what?” Indeed. Now what?
Well, neither a website nor a box of flyers will work if you don’t ‘push’ the information towards your prospective clients. Waiting for them to ‘pull’ the information - find your site, your cards, your flyers – is a miss/hit approach, especially if your marketing tools are waiting where most will not find them.
Unfortunately, many marketing ‘push’ routes are over-used. Emails can get lost within the deluge of spam. Cold calling? It’s so much easier now to screen calls or send them to voicemail. Google advertising? Facebook advertising? Even these can be blocked using appropriate apps.
So, what does work?
Different approaches work for different people. Personally, I’m still looking for the magic bullet on this but one thing I do know, it doesn’t seem to matter what marketing aids come along, People Still Buy From People.
While this is a much-used cliché, knock it at your peril.
Look how we’re swayed by Trip Advisor and other customer reviews. Yes, we all tend to filter out the extreme reviews and look for trends and if we see a good trend that fits our needs, we’re likely to buy. If we know the reviewer then we’ll be much more likely to take notice of the comment.
So, here are four marketing tips:
1. A great testimonial is incredibly valuable – provided you use it!
2. A satisfied client will tell others, especially if you ask them to. Give them a couple of cards to pass on to others. You might want to give them an incentive, but at least remember to say THANK YOU. A Thank You goes a long way and it’s free.
3. Give website visitors something useful and free. You’ve worked hard to get them to your website. E.g. www.getcoachingleads.com
4. Talk to others! Don’t ‘hide’ behind technology. Remember – People Still Buy From People.
For further details about training with Noble Manhattan Coaching visit their website