Marketing Communications for the Small Business
a plethora of choice and limited resources can lead to frustration for small business owners.
In fact getting marketing methods wrong is a significant contributory factor as to why start ups can fail in their first twelve months. Unrealistic expectations of what can be achieved with a small budget or hiding behind business cards and fliers is the number one culprit.
Not many of us are natural at sales or networking so to start to do this instantly takes most people out of their comfort zones. I have said this before, we do business with people not logos and fliers. So at the head of any marketing strategy has to be something that involves face to face interaction with your target market.
Sitting behind this should be an effective website or blog, business cards, branding and effective use of social media, bare minimum Twitter, then Linked In or Facebook or both if you have the time.
There are many different channels you can use to get your message out there. The more you use, the more people you will reach and build your brand. It takes time to learn about all the many methods and what they can achieve. Start small and build organically. Get well known in your area for what you do. Realise that at best the first 6 months of your new business will be taken up with promotion and prospecting and fewer sales, if you are getting it right the ratio should gradually shift. Existing businesses that are doing well can also benefit from taking a step back and seeing if they could do some things differently.
This may sound like a shameless plug, but it is not. I have met with many businesses and all have said the same thing, having someone there who knows about marketing and talking to them about their own business and offering a fresh perspective and new ideas makes a world of difference. It can prevent wasting money on the wrong type of promotion, it can mean more streamlined methods of dealing with exisitng customers, or bringing in new technology to break down barriers for clients.
It is impossible to give a one size fits all answer to businesses so blogging means that I can only give generic tips and help. Nevertheless as long as your expectations are realistic that is half the battle.
I would love you to talk to me on Facebook about any problems you may be having or if you need any help. The link is on the right hand side of the Blog. Follow me on Twitter for ongoing tips and info.