M is For Marketing

By _SoFie on 2013-03-27 18:26:33

If you’re just starting up in business, marketing is probably the most crucial element for you. Get this wrong and you don’t have a business. Get it right and you could take off like a rocket!

So what do you need to know? At this stage, there is no point in me telling you fancy and clever ways to do marketing (you’ll have your own ideas and know what’s best for you) – we’ll concentrate on the basics.

First, do your homework. Who are your target customers? Are they male or female? What age are they? If you’re appealing to companies – what size of company? Who do you need to talk to in there? The more stereotypical you can be about your customers, the easier you will find marketing.

Put your customers into boxes. If you have more than one box of customers, that’s fine as long as you recognise that you will need to market and promote to them differently.

You also need to get everything in place so that when you start marketing, you have things already available. This includes things like sorting out your prices, creating a website (if you feel you need one), having some literature in place, getting some business cards and so on.

The third stage is to think about where your customers might go to find your products and services. The easiest way for you to find new customers is to go where they go.

The most common ways for new start-ups to get business are:

1. Advertising
2. Mail shots or leaflet drops
3. Cold Calling
4. Networking

Feel free to give these methods a go, but don’t be afraid to experiment with your marketing and try new and innovative new methods too. I have a list of 50 free ways to promote your business and if you want a copy, please email me (details in the resource box).

When you first start marketing your business, you don’t know which methods are going to work for you and which ones won’t, so it’s important to try lots of different things and keep your costs as low as possible. It’s a lot easier to keep motivated if you’ve only spent £5 as opposed to one lady who spent over £10,000 on advertising with no results!

The most important thing is to actually do some marketing. The more you do, the more it’s likely to work for you. But if you don’t do any or just rely on others referring work over to you, there’s a good chance you’ll be struggling to get customers.

So go for it! Have a plan and put it into practice. Marketing is one of those things that you learn while you’re doing it and you’ll quickly grasp what’s going to work for you and what’s not. Don’t be afraid to experiment and don’t give up if your marketing isn’t working. Just because one marketing idea doesn’t work, another one might if you give it a chance.

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