Low Cost Marketing Techniques for Business Growth
What should you do to grow your business?
Initially built a successful small business within your own abilities. You grew even more by adding a sales person or two. Now you are at a decision point: what to do to grow your business more? Want to grow? “next level”?
If you own a business that is the time to delve into marketing, you know you should, but you’re not sure how. This article is designed to help you embrace marketing to grow your business.
Marketing has many definitions. It is often thought in terms of paid advertising. For our purposes we will use the following formula to differentiate the marketing sales.
The sale is conducted in four steps: attention, interest, preference and choice. The latter two are responsible for sales. The first two – the attention and interest – is the responsibility of marketing. That’s it – no heavy marketing jargon, the role of marketing is to draw attention to their products and services and then meet the interest and feed sales.
Sales people have to make your marketing is like expecting hunters to give up hunting to farming. The proper place of marketing in growing a small business is the supply of opportunities for your sales staff to go ahead and make your product or service preference and then the election.
Your business will grow as your sales force has a constant flow of qualified suspects (leads). Marketing is the means to find the suspects. Why do many small businesses focus on the sales aspect of business growth?
I think she feels “easier” to go out and beat the bushes looking for another sale versus taking the time to build a marketing approach that works. If you are selling, then they are “doing” something. If you are marketing you can feel it just added costs.
Marketing is the servant of sales, is too often the reverse. Marketing is too often associated with “junk n rubbish” and trade shows, and often too isolated from the sales process. When I was in direct sales who always complained that the marketing people were too far from what the sales had to deal with.
What does being the “servant of sales? In particular, marketing only reason of existence is to provide sales leads and monitor the effectiveness of what they do in search of drivers.
Taken further, a marketing plan should target those who benefit most from their products and services and then implement methods to attract attention and interest.
Understand that a sales person yet to close the sale. But the success of that sales person can multiply if you do not have to divide their time finding their own sales opportunities. Again, this is the role of marketing. A sales person is measured and compensated for the revenue they generate. Marketing efforts should be measured (and compensated) quantity and quality of the cables that provide sales.
Another way to see is that marketing is fed to the top of the sales funnel. Do not waste time of your sales by generating their own leads, practice marketing methods that work and stop marketing to fill the top of the funnel.
Another business owner focus on the reason for sales is the time factor – effective marketing takes time and persistence. Many owners prefer to focus on the sale because of its direct impact on business today.
Okay, so you know you should do marketing, but a) do not know what to do, b) you do not know how, c) not sure what activities work best for your business c) not really want the expense of hiring a marketing person.
So let’s talk about marketing methods that are relatively inexpensive and can be outsourced – and how to decide what will work for your business. And notice as we go through them that none of them focus on paid advertising.
Many of us have “assisted” a seminar, a presentation organized accessed through a website and telephone. If carefully planned they can be an effective way to present your company to a wider audience.
Many companies offer online seminars and www.gotowebinar.com including www.webex.com. The “trick” with a webinar is to carefully craft the message and the desired response to the media. By this I mean that it is easy to care for a walk while sitting in his office watching a slideshow. Phone calls or instant messages can divert attention going public with ease.
Instead of trying to establish fully a product or service focus rather on the “high points.” Design of the session to ask viewers to request more information by offering a white paper or on a CD or a free offer of some sort.
Remember that participants are indeed “spectators” and work to keep their interest. Long, PowerPoint slides full of text, probably should be replaced with pictures or short videos.
Marketing of a webinar is also a challenge. You should find a mailing list of email addresses potential and, again, make it sound interesting and useful seminar.
E-mail blasts and newsletters
Related to the seminar is the explosion of email. An explosion of email is done by buying a list of potential customers and sending a “bulk” email. The easiest way to do this combines Microsoft Word, Excel and Outlook to send a text message only to the list. These lists can be purchased or found online. Due to security changes in Outlook, you can only send plain text messages this way.
If you want to send an email over the format to be used by a company that provides this service and has its own mail software that avoids the problem of text-only messages.
Again, since many of them can be “captured” by the spam filters, it is important to develop the message and subject line carefully. This type of message should be seeking a request for more information again, offering a free offer as a white paper or a CD.
In a similar vein, an email newsletter can be used successfully to maintain regular contact with customers and prospects. While you can do just that companies such as www.interspire.com provide easy to use templates and tools for creating beautiful HTML newsletters with photos and content of their choice.
The difference here is that interspire requires the list to be “opt in”. Opt In the midst of that individual must subscribe to your newsletter and also must have an easy way to unsubscribe.
A combination of an explosion of text-only e-mail advertising your newsletter can give rise to new prospects and customers.
Almost every business has a potential audience of the magazine or journal. If retail, professional or institutional, there are magazines, newspapers and websites aimed at potential customers. Write to them may establish your expertise and high reputation among potential customers and existing customer base.
Now before you dismiss it by hand (I’m not a writer, I have no time to write, I do not know how to get your publication) you can outsource this. We interview for the content, interview – when appropriate – to customers for additional information, and then design an item that makes your job more positive light.
There are also services like www.elance.com where you can find talented writers and designers who can help you create your message and publish it. If you have enough information you might even consider producing an “electronic book” in Adobe PDF format for sale or distributed freely to improve his reputation as an expert.
This is one that used to run like the plague. However, in certain situations it may be an effective way to get potential customers. Let me define “certain conditions” – if you cover a large geographic area with a small sales staff.
The trick here is to carefully craft your message so that causes a request for more information from you or your sales staff. DO NOT try to close deals, but just get “the attention and interest.”
It is very important that you have many conversations with your telemarketing company and has several training calls with the real person being called. You may irritate some potential customers, but you can get helpful hints for sales staff to follow up.
Exhibitions, seminars and speaking
Trade shows are what many people think when they think about marketing, but can also be a black hole of wasted time, money and effort.
However, a focus on certain shows can produce useful results for planning and forecasting. The approach is best to be there, because our competition is going to be there “just said that its sales staff sitting talking to each other.
A fair-oriented approach is to first make sure you can get a complete list of attendees prior to the show. A carefully and email campaign can make your prospects are aware that they have, and to provide invitations to special events or demonstrations of your product or service.
His focus on the new program should seek a follow-up, not just a taste-delivering “good to see.” Questions must also be developed separately actual driving of “undecided.”
After the fair all new assistants must be emailed by him or her to attend (if you talked with them or not) and returns to provide useful information for them as a CD reissue article or white paper .
A similar seminar Webinar discussed. The key here is whether the cost of rental of facilities and provision of food and beverages, worth the extra effort. To be useful, a seminar to highlight and offer their customers, not you. If you have happy customers and experts about the presentation of their products and services you will gain credibility.
Website and / or weblog (blog)
Everyone has a website (right?), But it really will help drive the business? I will not go into much detail here, other than to say that you may want to market strategy to give you a quick no cost, no obligation review of your site. We have made a new website design to help companies get more “eyes” and do they really do something with you.
A blog is basically an online journal, as an article in a magazine, a weblog established as an expert in your field. A service like www.elance.com can help with ghost writers if you and your staff can not provide enough content to keep a blog updated with new information.
Brochures, pamphlets and other written materials
While still important, your printed materials should reflect a global communication strategy that includes your website too. Printed materials are generally more effective in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) for both print and make available to your website as downloads.
Basically, there should be consistency between the web material and printed material. Again, www.Voupons.com.au can assist with the review of web and printed materials.
Note that we have specifically stayed away from paid advertising. In some cases publicity may make sense, but as trade shows can be expensive and out of focus “gunshots.” It is true that the marketing is more like a sniper instead of scattered.
Article by Joe Brown
+Voupons combines the most effective marketing methods, Daily deals, email, Google and SMS.