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How to gain recognition for your small business

Many small business owners make the mistake of thinking that they if they have a great product or service, they can simply open their doors, or set up their website, and the customers will come to them. Instead of the bonanza of sales that they are expecting, these same business owners often find themselves quickly having to shut their doors or take down their websites. The bottom line is that there is a great deal of competition in every marketplace, and if your customers don't know where to find you, and what you have to offer, then it is unlikely that they will be buying from you. Savvy small business owners understand that marketing is the lifeblood of their business. You must be able to make your small business stand out from the competition. Here is what you need to know about how to gain recognition for your small business-

  • Give great customer service-Business owners of every size of business, should never overlook the easiest (and cheapest) way to market their business. You should never underestimate the value of word of mouth advertising. Studies have shown that a large percentage of customers will return to business to buy again, when the service has been great, despite the fact that the business may not have the lowest price.When you are servicing your customers, you should offer them the highest degree of customer service. They will then in turn not only return to you, to buy again, but tell their friends and family about the great service they received, from your small business.
  • Get an online presence-If your small business does not have an online presence, then you should get one today. If you small business is already online, then you should be working to spread your online presence. The first place to start is by setting up a website. Evenif you don't intend to offer online sales, studies show that more and more consumers are turning to the internet, to gain information before making a buying decision. This means that if your small business is not online, then chances are that your potential customers will not be considering buying from you. If you already have a website then you should consider getting involved in other areas of social media. This will help you to learn what your customers are looking for and talking about, and help your small business to gain even better name recognition. Best of all, getting an online presence is one of the most cost effective ways to gain recognition, for your small business.
  • Attend trade shows and other industry events-Many small businesses have gotten the recognition they need to grow into a larger business, because of the recognition they received, from these types of events. Keep in mind that trade shows and industry events, are not just attended by potential customers, but also other key contacts, who can be influential in helping you to grow your small business. You should always try to be a part of any these events, even if it is only in a small way. While this type of marketing does require some cash outlay, it can yield a very high potential return.
  • Consider the power of the press-Public relations is a great way to get your name out among your potential customers. You can issue press releases (just make sure that they are of value to your potential customers) or host special events that will help to draw your customers in. Offering to sell tickets to an event that your target market will would to attend, or even hosting a food drive or fun walk, for charity, are also great ways to get the name of your small business out there and attract the customers that you need.
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