Marketing - Are You Getting Attention in a Noisy Market?

Marketing can be a daunting task for small businesses. It is time consuming, costly, constantly changing, and when done improperly, can leave you with only wasted money on ineffective leads. Developing a marketing plan will save you money and time in the long term.

Here are some key factors to implement when trying to stand out in a noisy market:

1. Know your mission and specialized message:

  • First assess your brand and what you are offering. Before you can sell to someone else, you need to understand all the key components of what you are selling and the message you are trying to convey with your business. Hash out all parts possible of your product/business so you radiate confidence in a noisy market. Develop the ideal customer and craft a script for sales messaging. This will be used both digitally and offline to increase your presence in the market.
  • Once you understand fully what you are trying to sell, you need to understand your ideal customer. It will be a long winding and expensive road if you try to target all demographics. Traction will come much quicker by specializing in a certain consumer or market.
  • For example, think of all the companies selling insulated coffee mugs. It’s almost impossible to choose a brand. However, your mug is specialized in durability, is lightweight and can stay cold or hot for over 8 hours. Brainstorm which demographic would benefit most from these features. You could generalize it to everyone, but then where do you start with marketing. If you can narrow your consumer base and specialize to a specific market, your effort will see a greater impact. This mug would be ideal for hiking and outdoor enthusiasts. So why not target and build a marketing plan around this clientele first and then expand.

2. Understand how important client relationships are:

  • Word of mouth and repeated business is your best friend. The classic saying “One happy customer will tell one friend about your business, but one unhappy customer will tell ten friends” still holds true. If you have made a mistake with a client or potential client, do what you can to fix it. It may cost you some time in the short term to mend broken or damaged relationships, but in the long run it will save you from losing potential customers. Growing a small business is a long and steady process so limit unhappy customers by ensuring they leave satisfied and follow up when necessary. A marketing strategy and properly developed workflow can help you stay in contact with past clients and maintain relationships.

3. Don’t underestimate the power of a digital presence:

  • Don’t underestimate the power of social media and creating a digital presence. Your digital presence is your online reputation. This means that customers will learn to trust you and feel confident purchasing from you based on what you have done and said online.
  • For example: you meet a great potential client at a networking event. You give them a business card and ask them to call if they have any questions or would like to do business together. However, as this is a networking event, there are many other competitors in your field who also have presented this lead with business cards. If that lead is serious about your business, the first thing they may do is check online for your digital presence. They want to verify who you are and that you have done great work for other clients. If they can’t find any information about you, they will likely move on to the competitor. However, if they find that you have shared valuable knowledge online, have a great reputation, have shown transparency in your business through social media and your website, then that lead will be much more likely to call you over the other competitor.
  • Understanding digital presence means properly assessing and implementing strategies for long-term goals. Determine what your goals are for social media and digital marketing and stick to them for better results.
  • For example, it is unhelpful to sell, sell, sell on social media. It is likely you will simply be unfollowed or ignored. If your goal is to get new prospects and leads, it will be more beneficial to plan to funnel customers to your website through both social media and marketing strategies.

4. Try, learn and try again:

  • Sometimes certain marketing strategies don’t work the way we expect them to. Having a roadmap for marketing tactics will ensure we have fully executed one plan prior to proceeding with a different strategy. It is costly to jump around dipping our toes in the water of each marketing technique before implementing and diving in. Typically, once a marketing plan has been tried, you will notice certain tactics that work well, and others that don’t. Then use this information to mock-up a more defined strategy to make a bigger impact. Rinse and repeat.
  • Haddow Young Business Consulting specializes in organizing and helping implement proper Marketing Strategies for small businesses by assessing current business practices, identifying ideal clients, sales training, and identifying individualized online and offline marketing tactics. By using a specialized small business consultant, small businesses find more efficient and effective use of their time and money.