Dear Small Business Owner:
There are companies thriving in this economy, including many small businesses. In a highly competitive market, effective marketing can make a huge difference in the bottom line and contribute to a strong bottom line. There are advantages to being small; by creating a marketing plan and increasing participation in the local community, you can create unique strategies that will help your business stand out from the crowd. At 834, we challenge you to incorporate the following simple tips into your marketing strategy. Follow this for one month and evaluate effectiveness.
- The hand written note– writing a congratulatory or thank you note shows you have taken time to give kudos to someone else without asking for anything in return. It helps your company stay connected with customers as well as the surrounding community. After all, when was the last time you received a hand written note, let alone a letter or email that was not generic, from a large company or corporation? Makes the one you receive that much more memorable, doesn’t it?
- Just write it – Start a blog on your company’s website. Talk about what is new with business and intertwine stories from your personal life. Your customers want to feel connected to you, and by sharing some of yourself with them you are increasing loyalty. Engage your customer base by asking questions on how they view your business, start a dialogue. This is a great way to measure customer service and to find out how your business is viewed in the marketplace. .
- Engage in social media– Whether it be Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or LinkedIn, engaging in social media will create awareness of your company, serve as a PR tool, enhance customer service and if retail based…help you sell. Through social media you can capture new customers with coupons, events, and promotions. Note: Develop a strategy so you aren’t willy nilly with your communication.
- Support local – Reach out to your community with promotions, events and advertising. Get involved with a local charity, whether it be on the board or committee level. Champion a charity, choose a cause that is near and dear to you and tie it to your business.
Above all, give back…mentor a young professional, volunteer and always make time for other small business owners. We are a rare entrepreneurial breed and we need to stick together.