The one lesson every successful business learned fast is that marketing is essential. Although many things determine business success, marketing has to rank at the top. It doesn’t matter how well your service meets your customer’s needs or what a perfect solution your product provides–if people don’t know about it, they won’t hire you or buy your products.
Marketing itself is an umbrella term. It covers a gamut of things from advertising to promotions, from public relations to sales. Regardless of how you categorize it, marketing can be defined as the process by which a business introduces its products and services to potential customers.
Some strategies that work well, three from the old-world school of marketing and two from online marketing, are exhibiting, networking, public speaking, blogging, and social media marketing.
Setting Up A Booth at Trade Shows, Country Fairs, and State Fairs
Every year, there are thousands of opportunities across the country for a business to meet buyers face-to-face. Trade shows, country fairs, and state fairs allow a company to set up a booth that attracts curious visitors.
Success at these events is based on preparation. Set up a 10×20 canopy if space allows. Send your best salespeople to represent your company. Offer plenty of samples. Give away promotional items. Collect contact information to add to your newsletter or ezine mailing list.
Your success will be augmented if you do some promotional work before and after your exhibition. Before an event, you can send out press releases about what trade shows you will have a booth. After an event, you can send every email contact a free PDF report that provides valuable information.
Networking at Service Clubs
It’s almost axiomatic to say that business networking is the fast-track to success. Yet despite this long-established piece of wisdom, it’s often ignored. Part of the problem is that networking is often confused with selling. Business networking goes awry when you try to use a venue to pitch your products or talk up your brand. Instead, a more productive use of these get-togethers is to create professional connections, build trust, share business knowledge, and establish mutual referrals.
One of the best ways to connect with movers and shakers in your local business community is to join a service club like Rotary, Kiwanis, or Optimists, to name a few. By getting involved in these groups, you’ll develop meaningful relationships and your business will grow at an exponential rate, too.
Speaking at Business Conferences
Many business conferences have been deprecated as “pitch fests.” This is a shame because conferences are the ultimate way to build your brand and network with others in your industry. By offering invaluable business advice based on your experience rather than pitching your products, you’ll quickly establish your reputation. Speaking at conferences allow you to be seen by many influencers in your marketing space.
Sharing Insights Through Blogging
Imagine how much more influence you would have if you could print your own newspaper and share your opinions on various interesting aspects of your niche. Blogging is like having your own on-demand publishing medium.
There are two ways you can set up your blog. You can build it into your website to add more content and improve your site’s search engine optimization (SEO). You can also use it as a standalone platform. Both strategies work well and choosing the best one will depend on your business model and your capacity to manage your digital assets.
Building Relationship with Social Media Marketing
Social Media marketing is one of the best ways to attract attention to your business, develop trust, build your brand, generate leads, and drive traffic to your website. The best way to manage your social media marketing is to focus on a few top social media platforms rather than join too many. You don’t want to spread yourself too thin and dilute your time and energy.
In conclusion, the success of your business depends on the quality and quantity of your marketing. By tapping into the power of both analog and digital marketing, you’ll be able to reach a wider audience. Some powerful analog methods to apply are exhibiting at trade shows, country fairs, and state fairs; joining service clubs; and speaking at conferences. While there are many excellent digital marketing methods available, two that you should definitely include are blogging and social media marketing.