Let’s face it. There are an endless number of marketing strategies and tactics that a small business can employ. And when you factor in all the different combinations of these, the task at hand of choosing which ones to use can be both daunting and overwhelming. Do I join a networking group? Should we advertise in the local newspaper? Should we participate in a trade show? Do we need a website? All these choices can confuse you if you let them and simply put, a confused mind typically does nothing, it tends to lock up, and worse yet it typically doesn’t take the actions necessary to grow — actions such as marketing your small business.
So what I’ve done for you here is identify 2 types of marketing strategies that every small business must have to not only survive but thrive. So here goes:
1. A “Lead Generation” Type of Strategy
This type of marketing strategy at a minimum brings awareness to your target market of who you are, what you do, and why they should listen to you. It should help you generate interest amongst your target market in what you bring to the table — enough interest where they inquire about your products and services — they become a prospect for you.
Some examples of “Lead Generation” strategies and tactics are:
- Advertising in trade magazines
- Submitting articles to online article directories
- Joint venture arrangements with others who serve your target market
- Endorsements from others who have an influence over your target market
- Referrals from others who have an influence over your target market
- Ethical bribes — in other words offering something of value for free in exchange for contact information
- Public speaking to position yourself as an authority in your field
- Trade shows
- Networking events to meet and greet your target market
And we can go on an on and on here. However as you are probably starting to see your choices are endless so where do you start? Well how about choosing one or two that resonate immediately with you and work those for a while. If they seem to be working, continue, if not try a different one. In other words do more of what’s working and less of what’s not. The point is get into action!
2. A “Keep-In-Touch” Type of Strategy
Once you’ve acquired leads using any combination of “Lead Generation” strategies and tactics, it’s critical that you find ways to stay in front of them — stay in front of them long and effectively enough to persuade them to respond positively to your call to action — eventually becoming paying clients.
Some examples of “Keep-In-Touch” strategies and tactics are:
- Sending out a weekly newsletter
- Participating in online forums and social networks
- Making phone calls to share something your prospects may deem valuable
- Attending regular networking events to reconnect with prospects
- Emailing prospects an article that they may find useful
- Send holiday and birthday greeting cards
- Refer business to your prospects
- Invite prospects to events
- Be a connector by introducing one prospect to another that you feel they should know
And once again, we can go on an on and on here.
So in closing, keep it simple. Choose one or two from each type of marketing strategy and work them diligently. Yes you will definitely find that some are better than others for you however, I firmly believe that any one of them, if diligently applied, will bear fruit — you just need to take massive action.