Top 10 Marketing Tips for the New Entrepreneur
I recently had the opportunity to be interviewed for an Entrepreneurship class. I guess my 21 years in business gave the professor the feeling I was an expert OR at least able to offer some ideas to those just getting ready to hang out their shingle.
I was asked to provide a handout to the students and came up with what I consider to be good tips for the new entrepreneur. Honestly some of these tips are things I wish I had known 22 years ago; but as you know, it’s all a part of the journey. So wherever you are in your business journey, I hope you can get something out of the following:
1. Create Your Business Brand. Although your company logo is an important part of your business brand, there is so much more involved. Your brand identity is the experience one has when encountering your product or service. Are you selling burgers or steak? Both are great, however the marketing approach will be quite different for each. Determine the business personality you want to project and carry it throughout your marketing materials.
2. Be Consistent. As you create your company brand, be consistent with your logo display,
the colors and fonts you use, etc. That consistent look on your marketing collateral, your website, social media, and emails makes you memorable and recognizable.
3. Be a Problem Solver. If your product or service solves a problem, there are businesses our there that need YOU!
4. Create Your Personal Brand. Be yourself and project your personality into your products and services. You have competition, however your personal branding is what makes you and your business unique. People work with people they enjoy. Allow your clients to get to know you.
5. Create a Marketing Plan and Stick to it! It takes a number of “touches” to get a customer’s attention. Your goal is to stay foremost in your potential clients’ minds. Determine how often you will send out eNews, how often you will post a blog, etc. , put it on your calendar and make it happen.
6. Connect on LinkedIn. Get involved in discussions or better yet, begin a discussion. When someone comments on your topic, follow up! Continue building relationships.
7. Schedule Weekly Marketing Time. Whether it is a particular day each week or a certain number of hours each day, dedicate time specifically to promoting your business. This may be networking, a one-to-one meeting, a phone call, developing an eNewsletter, or writing a blog post. Focused, consistent marketing efforts generate a steady stream of opportunity.
8. All Promotion Should Point to your Website. Whether it is a social media discussion, a blog post, or direct mail marketing collateral, be sure it links back to your website. The more traffic you generate to your site, the more search engines pay attention.
9. Don’t Hide Behind your Email Waiting for the Phone to Ring…It probably wont! You MUST be proactive. Pick up the phone and make the connection with your potential clients. They may have every intention of working with you; but as you know, life happens and you may end up on the bottom of the stack. Briefly connect and remind them that you are happy to help with a problem they are trying to solve.
10. Don’t Sell, EDUCATE! Most people don’t like the hard sell. When you’re blogging, communicating on social media and in person, provide valuable information rather than pressure!
What tips can you add to this list?