In business you have to know your business inside and out, and know your competitors. Research your market thoroughly and make sure you're checking out the opposition, in order to keep one step ahead. It is your customers that keep you in business, so do not give your competitors any chances to poach them. If you research well, and know any offers they are making, you may be able to poach some of their ideas and even offer something more desirable! Success or failure can often depend on how you market your business, so keep on top of it at all times. Te following are 6 Marketing Strategies for Small Business...
1. ReviewsMany customers will take a look at company reviews before deciding whether they want to go ahead and purchase your product and/or service. Reviews are a great trust factor for many people and they will feel safer purchasing a product and/or service from you if they know other people have previously. One thing you should remember is that reviews are not always going to be positive, all companies will most likely receive some negative feedback at some point, even Mazuma Mobile do not have 10 out of 10 for their service, but the way you deal with negative feedback can save you, for example follow up with the customer and find out what can be done better for next time. There are plenty of review sites around for your business to sign up to, for example Trustpilot and Feefo, and a number of businesses, such as Mazuma Mobile, have already begun making the most of these handy review sites.
2. InfographicsMore businesses are turning to infographics to literally show exactly what their business is about. Infographics are graphic visual representations of data, information or knowledge and are available for people to read quickly and clearly. The supermarket chain, ASDA, use infographics in their advertising campaigns, for their clothing range, holiday insurance and mobile phone apps to name a few. You can employ a freelance IT consultant or a graphic designer, to keep costs lower, as you do not need to employ one full time. They will make sure you have up to date technology to market your business at the highest level.
3. Special OffersProspective customers will always be attracted by any special offers you have for your products. In supermarkets, you are always attracted by the BOGOF offers (Buy One, Get One Free) or buy 3 for the price of 2, so it will work with your business too. Drive Dynamics, a UK national driving school, have an offer for their pupils; they provide access to a Free Theory Test and Hazard Perception Test. This is an important part of learning to drive, and driving instructors can see how well they are doing, and assist where necessary. Driving Lessons can then be planned around pupil’s individual needs, which ensures they learn aspects they need to know. What promotions can you create to get more customers interested in your products or services?
4. Charity SponsorshipMany successful companies are using their brand names to assist charities in fundraising and to increase awareness of the charity. It is something that you should not agree to lightly, as you must be 100% committed to supporting the charity, once you become involved. It will be a great advertisement for your business within your community, and the chance to support a good cause. You can decide on the best marketing strategy for you both, and use different advertising techniques to make the public aware. A great example of a good sponsorship deal is between P & G Pampers and the charity Unicef. A percentage of the sale of disposable nappy packs help buy vaccines for poorer countries, and boosts sales of the product along with recognition for the charities work.
5. Social Media CampaignsWith a large number of people using the internet and social networking sites, it makes sense to want to make the most of them. Just on Facebook, there are just over 1 billion monthly active users, not to mention over 200 million Twitter users! Many companies have already taken to Facebook, Twitter and even Pinterest to begin promoting their products and services. One great example is the National Trust Charity. They have recently started a social media campaign to increase membership, as this will help to boost their funds and guarantee their long term progress. Make sure that you have a reliable internet provider that gives you the package you need to increase with your business, to enable you to grow.
6. Offline/Online AdvertisingAdvertising your business is how you make your product or services known to new and existing customers. Make sure you stay within your means, keeping it relative to your earning power. There are many free or minimal cost advertising methods such as mail drops with flyers created yourself, shop adverts, local newspapers, business cards and local business directories. Online you can use email mail shot campaigns, social media marketing and even pay per click (PPC). You can increase the costs you spend on advertising as your earning power increases. There are plenty of ways to advertise your business offline and online, so you won't be stuck for choice; one example of a great online advertising method is allowing customers to experience a free trial of your product or service before they decide whether they want to pay for the full version. An example of a company that has done this is AVG, an Anti-Virus Protection Software company.
There are many marketing strategies out there for your business to try; the strategies listed above are all fairly simple and easily done, so begin with a few of these and see how it goes and what it can really do for your business.