The foundational basics to marketing your business?
I get this questions probably 9-10 times a day and every time it puts a smile on my face. My clients biggest challenge today is trying to market their business efficiently. There is also those clients who think that if they market their business once everything is set. Truth be told you are consistently marketing yourself daily. Its hard to identify the best way to market any business. Almost every business and areas of business require different forms of marketing. The trick is finding the right one for you that works within your budget.
Generally when a client comes to me and asks me about how to market my first question is what kind of marketing have you done so far? My second question is what were the results. Now lets face it you can gauge your marketing results based on expectations. Your marketing delivers you revenue. If you aren’t getting the revenue then the reality is your marketing isn’t effective or you aren’t doing it correctly.
There are generally two forms of marketing
* Online Marketing
* Offline Marketing
Over the years a few new marketing techniques have now developed.
* Gorilla Marketing
* Technology Marketing
* Viral Marketing
* Referral Marketing
* Affiliate Marketing
* Joint Venture Marketing
* Business Development Marketing
* Exposure Marketing
* Direct Mail Marketing
* Internet Marketing
* Social Networking Marketing
* Email Marketing
The list is endless but lets start off with the marketing basics or in this case MARKETING 101…
You are what you present! This was once given to me by a former marketing guru and over time I tend to agree with this statement. A lot of self proclaimed gurus will tell you to sell the hype, sell the dream but when in truth you need to first present and sell your self. Every interaction you have with a prospect is in deed a marketing opportunity.
So in my terms marketing comes down to exposure. Exposure comes down to how you present yourself to your prospect. When I walk into a store and want to buy a product, 99% of the time it will really go to someone that presents themselves in a professional manner and knows the product in an out. Before you start working on your marketing outlets you need to work on you. How do you look, how do you speak, how do you carry yourself. Confidence is the first step to selling you. If you are unsure, unprofessional, pushy, intimidating, your chances of convincing your prospect is very low.
The second part to marketing yourself is identifying your outlets. Here are things I recommend when starting a business and things you need to carry with you at all times.
a- Business Cards. I carry about 30 business cards a day. I tend to give out about 30 cards a day. You tend to meet prospects everywhere and anywhere. Traveling, going to the bank, lunches, interviews, meetings, social interactions, dinner, you are consistently on the front line. Depending on your business my biggest suggestion is to have two types of business cards. One is the generic information. The numbers reach your receptionist, assistant and the email goes to the generic in-box. For the more important clients, that deliver impacts, for the people that you directly need to be in contact with I would suggest giving them your direct information. This also helps you with time management. You can order business cards online, print them out yourself or you can get them done at your local professional. A professional business card is only half the battle, the other part is what goes on the card. Remember you are what you present. I tend to have my company mission statement, slogan or core values on my card. I also have my title, contact information and for the savvy internet marketers my technical means of contact. Your logo or brand is also essential. Always get a second opinion to avoid having tacky business cards.
b- Brochures. If you are in a rush you don’t have time to explain to prospects what you specialize in. I usually tend to offer a brochure too with my business card. When you go to a bank, visiting a country, getting medical information whats the first thing you grab? A brochure…. Your prospects ask the same question… What do you do? And why should I come to you?
c- Power-points. My recent client had a book-keeping business. She recently informed me she was spending way too much time calling prospects trying to close deals over the phone. She found this time consuming and she would resort to emails and found that she was spending too much time sending email templates. We worked on a power point presentation where she had the option to be on the phone with them while they were perusing through the presentation. Her phone calls dropped by 60% and her revenue increased by 45%. She was closing more deals and now she is even considering hiring more book- keepers… Recent technologies even allow you to send your client to an application where they can see your computer screen during a viral presentation session. Go To Meeting is a great application hosted online that allows you to use their services for an affordable rate if you need to have a ton of online meetings. My client is now even doing her video of herself and a quick demo and sending her top prospects DVD’S of her business, her brand, her services, her rates and then getting on the phone to answer any unanswered questions.
The easier you expose yourself to your prospect the more comfortable they feel. This in turn increases your prospect converting into a revenue generating sale. And remember marketing is all about exposure!!!!
NEXT TIME – I will elaborate more on the other channels of marketing!