Marketing tips for any small business
Many small businesses face the daunting challenge of trying to market their business, despite limited time, and even more limited marketing dollars. With all of the demands of running a small business, many owners overlook the need to market effectively. This can be a quiet death sentence, for any business. Keep in mind that if your customers don't know where to find you, how can they purchase from you? Savvy small business owners understand that there are ways to effectively market their business, while still staying within their marketing budget. Here are some marketing tips for any small business-
- Remember that no single marketing effort works all the time for every business, so it becomes crucial to rotate several marketing tactics and vary your approach-It is important to keep in mind that your customers will tune out after awhile if your marketing is not fresh and interesting. However, it is important not to be arbitrary about your selection of a variety of marketing ploys. You will need to plan carefully, get feedback from customers, and adapt your efforts accordingly.
- Try out collaborative marketing-You can use buddy marketing to promote your business, and stretch your marketing dollars even further. For example, if you send out brochures, you could include a leaflet and/or business card of another business, which had agreed to do the same for you. This gives you the chance to reach a whole new pool of potential customers. In addition, you could team up with another business to pay for radio, television or print ads.
- Make it easy-One of the best places to start marketing is by printing your best small ad on a postcard, and then mail it to prospects in your targeted market. This works because people read postcards when the message is brief. A small ad on a postcard can drive a high volume of traffic to your web site, or store, and generate a flood of sales leads for a very small cost.
- Stick it on-You can use stickers, stamps, and handwritten notes, on all of your direct mail efforts, and day-to-day business mail. Remember, when you put a sticker or handwritten message on the outside of an envelope, it has the impact of a miniature billboard. People will read it first; however, keep in mind that the message should be short and concise, so it can be read in less than 10 seconds. You can also enclose your brochure, ad, flyer etc. in all your outgoing mail. It doesn't cost any additional postage and you'll be surprised at who could be interested in what you're offering.
- Send a second offer to your customers immediately after they have purchased from you-Keep in mind that repeat business, is crucial to long-term success. Send a handwritten note to your customer thanking them for their business, and informing them that upon their return with "this note" they may take advantage of a private offer, such as 25% off their next purchase. In order to create urgency, be sure to remember to include an expiration date.
- Newsletters-You may be surprised to learn that it costs six times more to make a sale to a new customer than to an existing one. This is where newsletters can be a highly effective marketing tool. You can use newsletters to focus your marketing on past customers, and keep costs down by sacrificing frequency and high production values. If printed newsletters are too expensive, you should consider an e-mail newsletter sent to people who subscribe at your Web site.
- Consider bartering-This can be an excellent tool to promote your business, and get others to use your product and services. You can trade your product or services, for advertising space or for another company's product or service. This is especially helpful when two companies have limited marketing budgets.