With over 75 different ways to generate leads, is it any wonder that many small businesses get overwhelmed with all the possibilities? Yet choosing the right or best marketing strategies to promote your business is a key to getting more customers – and doing it profitably.
What marketing strategies have worked for me in the past? While not a guarantee, past performance can be a good indicator of future success. Remember to consider both the number of leads and the quality of leads these efforts produced. Some strategies may produce poor leads or price shoppers, but not sales. Others produce fewer leads, but more quality sales.
7 Questions To Choose The Best Marketing Strategies
What products or services do I want to promote? As a small business, your marketing needs to produce sales, not just awareness. So it’s important to select the right products or services to promote, then select strategies that work for that product or service. Avoid trying to sell everything to everyone with your marketing since that is a recipe for failure – and costly.
How do my target customers like to give and receive information? Do they prefer communication in-person, by phone, email, snail mail, online, or social media? For most small businesses, this depends on what information you are providing and typically includes multiple methods.
How many contacts do I actually need to build relationships and create sales for my business? Typically, businesses require seven or more contacts or business encounters in order to create awareness, build a relationship and create a sale. For higher priced services, where prospects may perceive more risk, the number of contacts may be greater. So build a variety of possible touch-points and deliver the same message consistently.
How can I get existing customers to keep buying, buy more or buy more frequently? Many small businesses focus their marketing on generating new customers and ignore their existing customer base. Current or past customers offer a goldmine of opportunity, but only if you market to them. Did I also mention that it is a lot cheaper to market to existing customers who already know and like you?
How much time and money can I invest consistently? Marketing strategies have both a time and money component. Some, like networking and social media, are free or low-cost but consume a lot of time. Others, like direct mail or advertising, require a higher money investment but little time. The key is to balance out your time and money investments so you can do marketing consistently throughout the year.
What do I like and what am I good at? Let’s face it, nothing happens until you take action and implement the strategy. So it makes sense that you consider this point when putting together your plans. Avoid building a plan with a lot of strategies you dislike or struggle with. You simply won’t do them. Either delegate or outsource the implementation to someone who does it well, or get some help and learn how to do it effectively. It is amazing how we like to do what we are good at, we’re in our comfort zone. Recognize this and integrate uncomfortable strategies a little at a time, and make the commitment to do them.
How do I systematize my marketing so it gets done easily, effectively and profitably? Once you have decided on what you want to do, create the campaign, implement it, monitor it, modify it and document it! Look for ways to make it easy, repeatable and more effective the next time. When your marketing takes less time and effort and still delivers the return on investment you want, you will find it’s not so overwhelming. You may actually grow to like it!
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