July 24, 2019 | By Mason Roberts
Small businesses can be just as hectic as a large corporation. No matter how small you think your business is, your workload can be huge. Actually, small businesses likely mean more duties for the business owner, as they take on most of the workload themselves. From the responsibility of the inventory shipments, handling employee issues, as well as customer complaints, hiring process, financial aspects; a lot of time they tend to forget about a very big thing; marketing.
If your business is small, and you want it to stay this way, that is okay. Not everyone wants to run a big establishment, franchised or not. You may want to keep your quaint business just that; quaint. Marketing, though, will only help you. This is what will bring in customers, both new and existing. You never know what could happen. What if all your existing customers just up and leave your business, never coming back. Then what? Because of the lack of marketing, your business will likely have little foot traffic, and your business could go under. When owning a business, it is important to let people know you are there, and why. Tell them what you are selling, and why customers should come in. Make it interesting. Intrigue your target market.
It is easier said than done. You may be reading this article thinking, “Okay, I get it, but how?” Well, that’s what I’m here for. Here are the most effective ways to market your small business, and gain press.
Know Your Market
You cannot begin to know how to market your business if you do not know who your market is. This is an important first step in this process. Different markets mean different strategies, so it is vital to know who exactly you are trying to reach. First off, identify the obvious traits. What is their age? Gender? Income? Taste? Okay, now, dig a little deeper. What are their hobbies? Where are they from? What do they believe in? All of these things, no matter how minuscule it may seem, matter. Reaching your customers on a different, more personal and understanding, the level will help them become comfortable with your business, and you, as well. It will make them feel valued as a customer, which is a great thing. You will begin to understand them more and be able to give them what they are searching for, in the way that they need it.
Now, more than ever, electronics are taking over the business world. If you want quick responses from existing customers and potential customers, you should be sure they receive information instantaneously. This means, nix the phone calls and post mail. Start to rely more on emails and text messages. Your customers will receive the information you want them to know, in order to bring them in your business, and all at their own convenience. Nowadays, everyone wants things to be simple and easy. Your customer will not want to receive information from you in a way that will disrupt their lives. Taking advantage of emailing or sending text messages will let them learn all about your business at the touch of their fingertips, using little to no effort. This will make your business seem more intriguing to them, as well as hassle-free.
You should be available to your customers at all times. Well, at least most of the time. You can say that you are there all you want, but if you do not follow through on your word, customers will not be coming back to your business. Nothing is worse than an owner who neglects those who make up their business. Your customers will become frustrated, spread bad news about your establishment, and never return. Again, your customers want to feel valued, so give that to them. Let them know that they are important to you, not just because of the money they bring in.
Use Social Media
As I said before, technology is taking over the world. It is time to get on board with it. If your target market is one who largely uses social media to contact each other, as well as find the latest trends and popular businesses, that is where you should be. Use social media to reel them in. For example, using Twitter can help them understand your business philosophy on a more lighthearted level. Tweeting clever thoughts will make customers fall in love with your business, and what you are selling. Instagram is another option. This is where you can go to post all the fun, bubbly pictures you may have that will be appealing to the eye. Or, maybe they will be edgy, bold photos. Regardless of the aesthetic of the shoot, as long as you direct it towards your market, you will come out a winner. Facebook is for where you would go for more serious posts. This is where you would reach your market on a different level, telling them about new deals, hours, etc.
Never Stop Networking
Networking is one of the most important keys to success. Let others know about you, and where you came from. This is not to say you have to go around talking about your business at every waking moment. When the opportunity presents itself, though, take it. If you own a gym and someone is talking about how they hate their gym, let them know what you offer. You do not have to make a big spectacle, but you should be able to bring it up naturally. If you own a salon, and someone is complaining about their hairstyle, offer to help them out. Do not lose opportunities because you are quick to shy away from them. If your business begins to falter, your reputation will say so. Do not underestimate the power of word of mouth. In order to bring customers in, network yourself well. Talk yourself up. Networking can be what changes the entire success rate of your business, so make sure it is one of your top priorities.