It seems to me common sense but unless you live and breathe marketing all day, everyday, maybe some basic marketing tools just aren’t on your radar. So this article delivers some practical marketing ideas you can implement today.
Here’s my list of top 5 must haves in your marketing tool kit.
1. A description of your ideal customer
Why? Because then you don’t waste time and money focusing on customers that aren’t going to buy from you and don’t really want your service or product. Profile your ideal customer in detail. Understand their needs and wants. Write down their problems, issues and challenges. Write down what solution they are seeking to this problem. This will help with the next tool.
2. Create a one page sheet on your product or service
Give prospects a taste of what to expect. It doesn’t have to say everything you provide, but it must give them enough information to want to learn more. What do they get when they work with you? What are the results? If you meet someone and they want to know more about your product or service, what do you give them?
3. Be the expert
Create some educational information that will be useful. Not only does this improve your credibility but provides the prospect with a chance to taste your service. It could be an article, some tips, a template or some advice. Be a resource and educate your potential buyers.
4. Provide the proof
It is not enough to say what you do: you need to prove it. Have some testimonials, success stories and customer quotes to back up your promise to potential clients that put them at ease.
5. Create a relationship
You need to capture potential customer names so you can start to build a relationship. You need to create a sign-up form on your website (maybe to your top tips of the month). You need to collect business cards at a networking event. You need to refer people to be referred. Start networking and building relationships. Networking is all about looking to see how you can help first. Ask questions and build real relationships, be it online or face to face.
These tools might seem very simple but I bet you can improve your marketing tool kit today. As a small business consultant I work with many small businesses that for so long have either had a random approach to their marketing effort, where they don’t know what actually worked, or they have gone for the silver bullet and put all their resources into Internet advertising. Neither approach works.
The funny thing is, a simple, organised approach to marketing is the best and most effective and it doesn’t have to cost the earth or be too time consuming. Sometimes the best marketing comes from the simple insights of just asking for feedback. Tweaking your service or deliverables could make the world of difference to your customers.
One insight I’ve gained by asking for feedback was that I was providing a soundboard to managers – and that this was really valuable. So, apart from my marketing services, I have packaged some coaching services to meet this need.
So my bonus tip is to ask questions. Ring your customers and ask is there anything you could be doing better. You never know ’til you ask and it might just lead to some more business.