There is only so much time in the day for anyone but it is especially true for business owners. You started your enterprise because you saw a need or because you have a talent that people around you didn't have. You sensed an opportunity to be more, to have more and to go farther than most. You're onto something.
You've got the gist of this. Make products - or - create a service people want and it will sell. Right?
How do you reach the right people? Not the people who want to nickle-and-dime you. The people who are willing to pay to have you satisfy their need, fix their problem, give them answers. The folks who will tell other people how well you treated them and sing your praises every chance they get. How do you connect with your fans?
Take Care of the Basics
For almost 20 years I've consulted with non profits, worked for Fortune 100 companies and started my own businesses and I can tell you one thing - you've got to be better than average at marketing for anything to take off and flourish. The companies you see on the side of buses, billboards and on television are there because they know that they have to reach people to sell stuff. Marketing used to be formulaic. Not anymore. You don't have to have X million dollars and a stellar sales team. You need grit, hustle, an ear for what your market wants and you must have these 4 basics:
A Digital Home. Whether it's a website, a Facebook Page, an Etsy account, or a blog; you need an online presence. More than 70% of consumers research a company before they buy. They are looking for information because the internet has trained them to. You have to have a home online that speaks to who you are, what you do and if you're building a brand then be sure to share your "why." Stay away from building cheesy, salesy sites. Be authentic.
A Brand Message. There are plenty of buzzwords in the marketing industry and one of the most popular is the Know-Like-Trust factor. Your target market will open up their purses and wallets once they know, like and can trust you. Your brand messaging can help facilitate that bond. What are you doing and why? I'm crazy about helping women get free. Free from mental baggage and free from our pasts that holds us back because I see our power. I help women tap into their power. I started this work over 10 years ago serving as a women's ministry president at my church and most recently, I built the largest community of women with natural hair in my state. (I believe natural hair is a statement of freedom and a gateway to self love). Even in this agency, I target women entrepreneurs, solopreneurs and women chasing their dream. Brand messages spill into your products and services and they establish you differently from others.
A Marketing Plan. What are your revenue and sales goals? How much are you projecting your company to make this year? That's nice. Now, what's your plan to get there? Have you created some haphazard, fly by the seat of your pants approach? If so, expect haphazard money. A marketing plan should at the very least tell you how you will specifically help your target market find out about your products and services. It should involve your product and service offerings and your pricing strategies. And these days, you need a WOW factor to stand out from the crowd. Your plan can be based on your skill set or how you differentiate.
Skill Set. The t-shirt brand, Tees in the Trap, has a trendsetter at the helm. She picks up on what's hot and creates products that ride the wave of popular culture. She is earning over six figures a year from selling t-shirts that say things like "Girl, Bye." I'm a former sales trainer and adjunct business professor, so the plan for my marketing agency is to host workshops and online webinars about marketing to attain leads for my business.
Differentiation. You may be skilled in a unique area or offer a specialized set of products. If so, your plan to market has to be built around that. Curlbox and Curlkit are subscription based companies offering the same natural hair products you can find at Walmart and Sally's. They created marketing plans around convincing women to choose curated products delivered to their door.
A Marketing Strategy. What tools will you use, when will you use them and where will you market? Answer those questions and you've got a marketing strategy. There are free options like referrals and social media. There are also paid options like traditional advertising or social media. Did you catch that? It gets complicated. Your strategy is only effective if you build it using customer research. You must know everything about your target market.
Doing marketing right means you have the right presence and the right plan to help your customers reach their goals - which ensures that your business will reach yours. It can be as simple as you wish it to be but effectiveness rests on your total sales and revenue from your efforts. The POWER collective is here to set your plan in place and to monitor it as much as you'd like.Schedule a free Connect Session now to get answers. I have helped businesses like yours and I can get you results.
Darice Rene is the Creative Director and Owner of The Power Collective, a boutique marketing agency. She is a Master at building communities around a business and creating multiple revenue streams. When she’s not marveling at natural hair you’ll find her on Twitter @daricerene. Website: www.thepowercollective.net