Today there are a lot of ways of telling people what you do; the secret to success is to tell them over and over again. Francis Battaglia (owner of 1100 KFNX radio) was our guest speaker this past Wednesday morning and he shared on one way of telling your story. In his presentation he shared the importance of social media and covered Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and Google Plus. With tens of thousands of contacts in social media he still takes time to share his story on a daily basis.
Active marketing is one of the most important aspects for growing a profitable company yet it is the one that is most neglected. I ask small business owners how they market their businesses and the common answers I get include referrals, advertising, networking and word of mouth. My next question is to ask if they have enough business which is usually answered with an emphatic “no!”
If they know what to do, why do we still have a failure rate of over 50 percent in small businesses and why is the biggest need for existing businesses getting new customer?
There are several must-haves in order to implement a successful marketing program: first, it must be in writing with a systematic plan for implementation. Next it must be a diverse system which will reach your target market in a variety of different ways. There must be a consistency in the marketing effort, it can never end nor cease to be improved. Consistency is the critical word; many small businesses put on an intensive marketing campaign which may result in an influx of new business, then the marketing e effort stops . Business slows down and the survival cycle starts over again.
There are general categories in the marketing arena:
- Personal contact: this includes existing clients, potential clients as well as future potential clients. Methods for this marketing effort can include cold calls, calling on existing clients, lunch/coffee meetings, personal letters, etc.
- Referral/networking: attend meetings, seminars, volunteer services, business support groups, forming strategic alliances, etc. this is more than just attending an hour meeting and handing out 100 business cards.
- Public speaking: within your area of expertise you can create a 20 minute presentation with which you can share your story. Speaking to civic organizations, serving on panels giving classes, etc.
- Writing: the internet has made communications a viable marketing tool for everyone. Start with a blog and continue with social media. Get articles published in local periodicals or trade publications.
- Promotional events: participate in trade shows or offer free workshops; join with other businesses to put on an event.
These are but a few suggestions; within each of these five general categories select two that you will implement. The key is to build a marketing plan around those 10 strategies along with accountability controls.
The very best advice I can share is to hire a business coach to help you in this process. All these ideas may sound good but unless you have the consistency with ongoing implementation you will not succeed. There are many ways we can work with you in the development and implementation of a successful marketing plan; they include meeting in person, through e-mails, skype, etc. The important thing is for you to call 602-989-1592 and speak to Nick.
You can’t just sit there and wait for people to give you that golden dream; you’ve got to get out there and make it happen for yourself. Diana Ross
Nick J. Petra CFP www.strategicduck.com Your success if my goal……