Hello and welcome to my business basics series of posts about starting a business and my A – Z of what I consider to be the basics that you need to be working on. This is the thirteenth post in the series so obviously – M
You can catch up with the ones you missed by using the search bar in this blog.
M is for Marketing
Marketing is one of the most important things you need to do as a business and yet it is the one that most new business owners avoid.
There are many reasons for this avoidance:
- Don’t want to appear to pushy
- Not sure where to market
- Not sure how to market
- Don’t have any experience in marketing
- Afraid of making a fool of myself
Trust me when I say, we have all been there. Well at least most of us have. For those with a marketing background it obviously comes more naturally but for the rest of us, wellllll…..
Okay, so first off let me make it clear that marketing doesn’t have to be scary and you don’t need a degree or diploma in marketing to be able to successfully market your own business. After all, who knows it better than you right?
So let’s have a look at some quick ways you can market your business today and for free:
- Facebook post – Take a picture of your desk right now – exactly as it is. Now post that to your business Facebook page with a short caption, something like, “today is a planning day for me” or “just look at the mess that I work in”. If you don’t know whether you need a Facebook business page have a read of this. Your followers like to see that there is a human being behind the business so posting real life stuff usually generates more likes, shares and comments. For content creation ideas with free tools to help you have a read of this post.
- Instagram picture – Create an attractive image that showcases either a product or service that you sell. You can create amazing images on Canva.com for free and I have created a short tutorial to show you how to use it here.
- LinkedIn – Find an industry related article and post a comment with a link to the article. See, it doesn’t even have to be your own content. You just need to get your logo or profile picture seen as many times as possible. You can have a look at some of my examples here. As you will see, some are links to my own events and blog posts and others are links to other industry blog posts.
- Your Blog – All WordPress themes and most other themes these days come with a built in blog. Create a blog post about your products or services and publish it. Blogging is one of the MOST effective ways of getting found by search engines and your blog posts can appear on page one of Google quite easily if you follow a few simple rules. Organic traffic is still the best as it doesn’t rely on any third party and therefore their algorithms. If you can get found on Google by someone who is searching for what you are selling you will find it much easier to make a sale. I have created a post called “How to Write A Great Blog Post” that will show you all you need to do to get found by the search engines or you can take my full 7-day email course “Blogging Basics For Beginners” for free.
- Pinterest – Don’t make the mistake of dismissing Pinterest as just somewhere for people to share recipes and images of bridal gowns. Oh no. Pinterest is a marketing strategy all in its own right. In fact, I have written a whole post on why I think that Pinterest is the best social media platform to market your business on right now. You can read it here. Did that get you excited? I know right? What about those amazing figures – and in such a short time. If you would like to learn more about Pinterest and how to use it, why not come along to one of my free workshops, you can book right here.
Although online marketing has become very fashionable, don’t forget about marketing your business in the real world too. Some ways to do this could be:
- Networking events. Although these are not good for making sales, they are very good for building relationships and finding people to collaborate with. Find some local ones and attend. Introduce yourself and your business and who knows what might happen.
- Workshops. As a service provider I find that workshops work really well for me as a marketing option. I advertise my workshops (both free and paid) on a platform such as Eventbrite and people who are interested in finding someone to help them grow their business come across me, come to a workshop and get to see first hand whether I can help them and whether I am a good fit for them.
- Leaflets. Although usually the return on leaflets is less than 1%, if you can get your leaflets to a target audience they can convert really well for you. They are also a great way to get your business known in a local area. Don’t expect to get sales off the back of them, but see them rather as a way of introducing your business to the local community.
- Press release. This can be a way of introducing a new business into a local community. Call your local paper and ask if they would be interested in running a feature. Sometimes they will actually do this for free to fill up otherwise empty space in their paper. You can then use the press release as a piece of marketing content on your social media and website.
I know that all this is exciting, but before you rush off and get your first campaign built, you need to take a breath and come up with a marketing plan.
First you need to decide what exactly you are marketing. Which product or service are you marketing. You will find this far more effective than just marketing your business as a whole as you can be really specific about who you target and what language you use. You can also really hone in on what problem your product or service is solving so that you can make it more attractive to prospective customers.
Just pick one product or service at a time and market it well. This will give far better results than trying to market half a dozen things at the same time as you will not have the energy for it or be able to remember what your marketing message is for each item. Remember, keep it simple.
Next you need to decide where you are going to market it. Are you an online person or do you prefer to get out there and meet people? You can, of course, do both but you will need to plan for each method properly.
If you need some ideas or inspiration for your online marketing and live in the UK, I have a 5-day course that helps you create and implement a complete online marketing strategy that is both hugely effective and totally free to use. Find out more about it here – it’s totally awesome and it’s not just me saying that 🙂
Marketing is a way of growing your business by letting people know what you do and how you can help them. By breaking your business growth down into 3 simple steps this will help with your marketing as you will know exactly what you are trying to achieve at any particular time.
I would suggest that you start with using your marketing to generate leads. Leads = customers so this is a very useful strategy. We all know that converting leads into sales can be difficult, so the more leads we have, the more sales we can potentially make right?
Okay, so if you are ready to ramp up your business and want to learn how to start generating more leads for your business every day, I have just the thing for you. It is a free guide that teaches you the first step in my 3 step system to a six-figure business.
It takes you through the whole process step-by-step so that you can start working on it and seeing results right away. To get your free copy just complete the form below.
So there you have it. Marketing doesn’t have to be difficult or scary, it just needs to be planned properly and have a strategy attached to it if it’s going to be successful for you.
I hope you enjoyed this post and found it useful? If so, I would love it if you could share it so that others can make use of it too. I have included some social icons so please just click and share away.
I will be back next week with the next in my series of A – Z of Business Basics so make sure you look out for me. Why not subscribe to my blog and that way I can drop you a quick email when I publish something so that you don’t miss another great hint, tip, tool or idea.