Month: April 2022

How I do Marketing for my Business

It’s a bit like an organic, moving, growing thing that takes on a life of its own and is different for every one of us and our businesses.  No two businesses are the same and that goes for marketing too.  What I do for one client, will be completely different to another.  It is based on their aims as a business and what they are striving for.

However, there are some foundational things you can put in place that will start you off on the right foot

1 – Aims

One of the best things you can do is really think about what you want to achieve in business.  What are your goals, where do you see the business in the next five years?

When we have a clear vision for our business, it then allows us to think more strategically about what we need to do with our marketing.  I see so many businesses who have lost sight of that vision and end up going round in circles trying lots of marketing tactics, but not seeing results.  Why, because they’re not even sure why they are doing it!

Once you have clear aims you can align the tactics you are going to use to achieve those aims and voila your marketing becomes more refined, and you can see better results.

2 – Key Messages

It’s also a good exercise to identify your key messages. What are the most important things about your business that you need your potential customer to know? What makes your service or product different to everyone else, what makes it stand out, what are the Unique Selling Points (USP)?  You need to be really clear on not only what you are doing marketing for, but what you are going to say.

Think about your customers pain points, or problems. These are the things that are going to resonate with them. Make a list of those too, then in all your marketing these are the things you want to be shouting about all the time – whether that is on social media, in blog posts, in press articles, on posters, or what other people are saying about you too!

3 – Write a plan

Marketing is great when it is well thought out and planned.  Now I’m not saying some spontaneous marketing doesn’t work – take social media for example and we know I love stories on Instagram.  However, thinking back to our aims if we’re not strategic in how we’re going to achieve those aims we’re just going to be stabbing in the dark.

So, write down your aims and how you think you can achieve them.  What marketing tactics are the key things that are going to help?  Now plot out when you’re going to do them.

For example, if you plan to improve your email list, engage with your audience better to generate more sales, then plan out how you’re going to generate leads, how often you’re going to write the newsletter, when you’re going to write it, when you’re going to send it out, does it coincide with occasions (like valentines day) or a sale your running.

So, create a plan of everything you’re going to do and when.  Then next time someone emails you asking if you want to advertise in the local magazine you can be really strategic with your answer – does it achieve your aims or not.

Now there are other things to consider, such as target customer, budget, competitors, price for example which all link in with marketing, but if you have a clear vision, know what you want to achieve, understand what your USPs are and how you are going to implement everything you’ll have built up some strong foundations to take your marketing forward.

Why is Marketing Important for Business?

How you market your business often determines who successful you will be.  Marketing is a tool used to create and maintain demand, reputation, brand awareness, increase sales and so much more

So, why is marketing so important for your business?

1 – Marketing helps build and maintain a company’s reputation

By undertaking marketing consistently, in all the right channels to the right audience helps grow people’s awareness of your business.  Not only does it get your brand name out into the public domain, but if you keep shouting about what you do consistently over time more and more people will hear about what you do and how great you are.  You build reputation though word of mouth, great reviews, more enquiries, people talking about you online and offline.  Without marketing, you stop being heard in all the right places.

2 – Marketing is an effective way of engaging with customers

If we keep what we’re doing to ourselves, work in a silo and don’t shout about what we do, then we’re not effectively engaging with potential customers or clients.  By sharing press releases, news, information, content on social media we are constantly opening the conversation with potential customers.  We can talk directly to them, engage with them, have conversations, make them feel special and part of our business journey. Our potential customers then grow to know, like and trust us, which is so important in business.

They get to learn about what you do, why your products or services are special, how you can help them, why you’re the expert.

If people hear about you, connect with you they are more likely to buy from you in the future.

3 – Marketing helps boost sales

Effective marketing can help boost your sales through promoting your products or services.  Marketing and sales work had in hand, but marketing is a bit softer than direct sales, which is quite direct.  Think of marketing more like sharing information across as many places as possible to the right audience.  Showing off your products or services.  Promoting what you have to offer and why you stand out from competitors.

By effectively marketing products or services, you are looking to trigger a purchase decision in your target customer.  If you do this strategically and effectively this will have a positive impact on your sales, which then has a knock on effect to your turnover and profit!

Those are three of my top tips for why doing marketing for your business is so important.  The list could go on and on, but these are three important things to keep in mind if you want to encourage a colleague to improve or develop your marketing, you’ve not been doing marketing for a while or even worse none at all!

Back to Basics with Business Marketing

Don’t worry, so many people are guilty of this, so I wanted to walk you through some marketing basics to really get the foundations of your business right.  If you’re already up and running, these things are good to go over if there is something that’s not working for you right now.

There is a practice in marketing called “the 4P’s”.  Product Price, Place and Promotion.  These 4 key areas are often referred to as the marketing mix and are the key elements involved in marketing goods or services.  If you don’t get one of these things quite right, it can have a knock on effect to your whole business.

By looking at the 4 P’s you can plan a new business venture, develop new products, evaluate your existing offer or try to increase sales.

 

Product – what you sell. Either physical products or services.   Within in this section you need to understand what you are selling, what makes it unique, different to other products/services.  How does it stand out?  It is also really important to get feedback about your product or service.  Before you start producing it, do people want it, is there a need for it.  You may think it’s a great idea, but in reality, if your product isn’t selling you may have to ask yourself the hard question, whether other people think it’s great.

Do your research first.  Ask people. Get feedback.  This way you can ensure you have a great product that people have a need for.

 

Price –This may appear to be the simple part – how much you charge for those products.  But this is often really hard to get right.  It can affect the number of sales you have, but also your profit.

An interesting question to ask yourself here as well is how do you want to be perceived?

By not charging enough for your product you may appear cheap or giving poor value.  There is a lot of psychology with pricing as well. Check out https://www.profitwell.com/recur/all/tag/pricing where you can find loads of articles about pricing.

  • Think about how much money you want or need to make (to make some profit)
  • What do your competitors charge?
  • How sensitive are your customers to price?

 

Place – Or in other words, location.  Where do you sell or promote your product or service?  Think of where your customers are?  How can you reach them, how can you get in front of them?  Where do they hang out, where do they buy products or services like yours?

This applies online too.  For example, I spend most of my time promoting my business in Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn as that’s where my ideal client hangs out.  I’m not going to start jumping around dancing on TikTok because the business owners I want to target don’t hang out there.

So think about

  • Where is your customer online and offline?
  • Where can you sell your product or service that will get in front of your target customer?
  • Where do your competitors sell their products or services?

 

Promotion – Finally, the most interesting part is the promotion – the bit I love doing the most!  How do your customers find out about you, what marketing strategies do you use and are they effective?

Once you are clear on your product and why it is unique, how much you are going to charge for it and where you are going to sell it, you can start thinking about how you can promote it to your audience.

Here are some things to think about

  • Website
  • Google search/business listings
  • Social media – which are the right channels for you?
  • Content marketing – blogs, articles, podcasts, your content on social media
  • Public Relations – getting stories in the local paper
  • Digital and offline advertising
  • Video
  • Word of mouth recommendations/testimonials/reviews
  • SEO

So, you may never have thought of this element of marketing before, but it’s a really great way to evaluate your business and the marketing you do before you jump in, or if you feel that something isn’t working quite right.  By doing this foundation work and making sure it’s right it’ll be so much easier when you come do think about how you market your business or understand why certain elements aren’t working for you.

So, go back to basics, think about your 4Ps, make sure you have those right.  Think about how you differentiate your business from your competitors and develop your marketing plans based on this.

Bendles Solicitors

Bendles Marketing Manager was due to go on maternity leave and the team at Bendles Solicitors needed someone who could step in and take the reins while they were away.