Five business marketing strategy tips you need to know
When you are creating a business marketing strategy, it’s important to incorporate a wide range of techniques.
While you may be tempted to stick to familiar territory, such as email marketing or direct mail marketing, alone they’re unlikely to bring in the number of leads that you need.
By building a thorough business marketing strategy that incorporates all elements, you’ll reach a wider audience, and give them a greater opportunity to get to know, like and trust your business and what you do.
So what do you need to do to ensure your business marketing strategy ticks all the right boxes? Here are five tips to get you started.
1) Understand your target audience
When you market yourself as a business, whether you are marketing a product or service, it’s important to understand your target audience.
You may have a rough idea of who is likely to be interested in what you are offering, but ‘rough’ isn’t enough – you need to know. And to really understand your ideal customer, you need to research who they are.
Why is this so important? Because your business market strategy should be tailored to your specific target audience. It’s not good enough to simply come up with a generic marketing strategy and hope for the best, as this is unlikely to garner the engagement that you need.
When you create a business marketing strategy, you need to do so with your specific target market in mind. What works for one target market may not work for another, so you need to purposely choose marketing techniques that are likely to have an impact.
Think about who they are, what they do and what they are looking for. It’s also helpful to understand their interests, likes, dislikes and preferences.
2) Create targeted content
There’s no denying that content is king when it comes to marketing a business, but that doesn’t mean creating any old content and hoping for the best.
When you are using content as part of a business marketing strategy, it needs to be targeted to your ideal customers – and be informative, relevant and valuable to them. You won’t build a loyal audience by posting content that your target audience is not interested in, or won’t benefit them in any way.
With targeted, high quality content, you can build a reputation as a trusted source of vital information, and keep readers returning to your website and social channels, and opening your emails.
3) Don’t forget about reviews
Many businesses make the mistake of not giving enough time to online reviews – or ignoring them completely.
Today customers can review your business and share their experiences on a number of online platforms. And potential customers will be using these to decide whether to buy from you or not.
So encourage happy customers to share their opinions of your business online, and regularly check review sites for any negative reviews.
As unpleasant as it is to read a bad review of your business, it can be an opportunity to show your business up in a positive light. Some review sites offer the opportunity for businesses to respond to reviews. So you can thank customers for their feedback, apologise if they didn’t receive the service or standards they were expecting, and either explain what went wrong, and correct any misunderstandings or false claims.
You can also invite customers to contact you personally so you can find out more about what went wrong, compensate them in some way, and ensure it doesn’t happen again. A company who responds appropriately to negative reviews can help to repair any damage to their reputation – and even hep customers to see you in a positive light.
4) Always use business cards
There are numerous online resources encouraging you to find out more here about business marketing, but very few these days mention business cards.
Business cards are as important today as they were in the years before websites and social media. They’re an easy way to exchange vital information when you meet someone, and they reduce the likelihood of mistakes being made.
For example, let’s say you meet someone at a networking event, or just out by chance. They’re either a potentially useful contact themselves, or may know someone who could be helpful to you, so you want to make sure they have your details.
Without business cards to hand, you’re left either scrawling your details down on a piece of paper or napkin, or reading your email address, name and mobile number, or website, out to them, hoping they spell them correctly and get the right number.
How much easier would it be simply to hand them a card?
A well-designed business card is also an excellent opportunity to showcase your brand, and make an important positive first impression.
5) Invest in a good website
20 years ago if you wanted people to notice your business and buy from you, you’d usually have a shop or prominent office with signage. Today, for many businesses, their website is their shopfront.
Even if you don’t directly sell through your website, most customers would expect you to have some kind of web presence. If they want to learn more about you, what you do, why you do it, how you do it, and how they can buy from you they’ll visit your website.
And when they do, what will they find? Just as you wouldn’t have a scruffy shop, with dirty windows, messy floors and half empty shelves, your website needs to be up-to-date, a reflection of your brand, well-designed and easy to use.
Your navigation needs to be clear and simple, and when someone lands on your homepage, they need to instantly realise they’re in the right place. Your website also needs to look as good, and function as well, whether someone is viewing it on a mobile, tablet or desktop.
It doesn’t have to cost the earth to get a good website today. While the best option is always to get a developer to build it for you, you can put together a simple but functional and on-brand DIY website yourself for free, using sites like Wix.
Photo by Corinne Kutz