DEVELOPING MARKETING STRATEGIES FOR YOURSELF AND YOUR BUSINESS
Let’s begin with the obvious; almost everybody I know that runs a business has a business card of some sort. Most people include basic details on their business card such as business name, email and website, etc. However, many people don’t utilise the back of the business card, mentioning the benefits of what they offer, a strong call to action (for example, ‘Download a FREE Report at…’) or even a special offer if someone produces the card or mentions a code on the business card.
Here’s a tip: when producing a new business card leave out your contact/cell number so that when you meet people you can write it on the card. This not only looks more personal (people get really excited when I write my contact number on my card for them) but also when they take all the business cards they have gathered from networking home, yours will stand out!
Also, we now have ‘QR Codes’—basically symbols that can be read by any smartphone—which direct people online to your website, social media page or special offer by people using a QR Code Reader on their smartphone.
Word of Mouth
In the not-too-distant past having one customer recommend you to another was seen either as a pleasant surprise or a random bonus but times have changed. We now see highly specialized agencies forming around the concept of word-of-mouth or WOM. What’s more, for a guerrilla it represents one of the lowest cost promotional options of all.
According to research, 75 percent of us trust personal recommendations more than we trust advertising. Consequently, any product or service news that arrives by word-of-mouth via an acquaintance or a peer is more likely to be treated favourably and acted upon.
Smart marketers have realised that instead of paying to advertise, with a prompt and using the right strategy, others could do the promoting for them.
Word-of-mouth consists of two different strategies:
1. Referral based. This aims to encourage known customers, colleagues or suppliers to give favourable recommendations about your products or services to their own contacts, thereby generating more opportunities.
2 Influencer based. This is my favourite strategy and sets out to identify selected individuals and prime them to influence potential buyer groups on your behalf but this strategy requires more specialist support.
5 Steps To A Perfect Referral Strategy:
1. Set a target—how many referrals do you want per week or per month?
2. Identify satisfied customers who are likely to refer you.
3. Ask actively and specifically for the referral or referrals.
4. Confirm the approach—will they contact them or hand them over to you?
5. Measure the outcome against your targets.
5 Steps To A Perfect Influencer Strategy
1. Identify the influencers—those with the potential to influence buyers.
2. Set targets for the number of buyers you want and the number of influencers needed.
3. Market to the influencers—give them a reason to be interested in you and your message. (I cover how to connect with influencers in a later chapter.)
4. Market through the influencers—give them tools to carry out your message.
5. Measure the outcome against targets.
Telephone marketing or telemarketing simply means utilising the phone to call or consult your hottest prospects. Smart marketers use telemarketing to make their ads and other marketing efforts work harder. They know that 7 percent of people hang up on all telemarketers, that 42 percent hang up on some telemarketers, and that 51 percent listen to all telemarketers.
So, here is what you do. You run an ad. You ask readers to call you and then you sell them right there on the telephone. If you’re doing that kind of telemarketing now, and you’re not using a script, you’re not taking telemarketing as seriously as you ought to.
Telemarketing surpassed direct mail a long time ago, and since that time, five crucial points have been discovered and followed by smart marketers.
These are the five simple things you should do to match them:
1. Find out who are your top three telemarketers.
2. Make an audio recording of those top three people.
3. Create a script, using the words, phrases and voice inflections of the top three. In that script, underline the phrases stressed by these top producers.
4. Distribute copies of the three recordings plus three scripts to go with them. Give a set to each of your other telemarketers.
5. Ask those other telemarketers to memorize the script and get it down so pat that it sounds as though it’s delivered straight from the heart.
I know that it’s tough to operate from a script if you’re a free spirit. But I also know that free spirits fail dismally at telemarketing. I’ve witnessed several tests of scripts versus outlines and the scripts win every time. The winning combination for smart marketers is a potent ad, followed by a potent script so they win sales, relationships, customers’ hearts, and profits.
I bet when you think of classified ads you think in terms of finding a job, looking for a car, selling a sofa, buying a boat or locating a house or apartment. Well think again. Classified advertising can also be used to support and grow a business. I absolutely love classified ads and this is how I built and grew my first 8-figure business.
A classified ad is really just a brief description of something someone is offering in the hope that somebody else is going to be interested in it. Let’s get more specific. A classified ad is really a brief description of a product or service that you are offering. Seems simple enough.
The problem lies in the word “brief”. Unless you have a $1,000,000 advertising budget, most of your classified ads are going to be less than 50 words, (sometimes less than 25).
You can find places that will let you place 100 word classified ads but they are either going to be too expensive or you wouldn’t want your ad there in the first place. There isn’t anything wrong with cheap classified ads but most of them aren’t going to have any pull and you are going to have to place a lot of them to make any money.
You want to shoot for a five-fold return on all your classified advertising. If you spend $50 on an ad, it should bring in $250 worth of front-end business. If you spend $1,000 in 16 big newspapers, you should aim to get $5,000 in book orders or sales of services or products.
Creating a Great Classified Ad
To beat the competition, smart marketers need to think differently. Let’s list some of the things that you should and shouldn’t do with your ads.
What you do want to do
1. Get people interested with a mini headline.
2. Get people to read the ad.
3. Get them to take some sort of action.
What you don’t want to do:
• Do not try and sell the entire product in your ad (if possible).
• List your price (unless you are selling a commodity or it is a selling point).
The Three Parts to a Successful Classified Ad
Let’s go over all three to see how you can create the hottest ads around.
1. The headline (capture their interest).
2. The body (get them to read).
3. The action (what you want them to do).
Public Relations and Press Releases
‘Public relations’ means exactly what it says. It’s also accurate to say that it means publicity—free stories and news about you and/or your company in newspapers, magazines, newsletters, on radio and TV, and in any other media. It means any relationship you have with anybody. In fact, the purest form of public relations is human relations.
Here’s what is good about publicity—it’s free. It is very believable. It gives you and your company a lot of credibility and stature. It helps establish the identity of your business and gives you authority. It is read by a large number of people. It is remembered.
Many entrepreneurs feel that there is no such thing as bad publicity; that as long as you get your name out there before the public, that’s fine. But most smart marketers know that bad publicity leads to negative word-of-mouth marketing, known to spread faster than wildfire. Bad publicity is bad. Good publicity is great.
Public relations can be targeted at a specific audience. This is done firstly by identifying the target group, then identifying the media most likely to reach that group and, finally, by ensuring that the news released is relevant to both.
If news is to be sent to a variety of media contacts it is wise to adapt the first paragraph to appeal to the special interests of each contact, if possible. Reporters, news editors and editors are the gatekeepers of a publication. If they don’t like it, they won’t print it.
Make your first paragraph strong—cover the ‘who, what, when, where, why and how’ details keeping it short and sharp; if the news is exciting let your enthusiasm come through. Include your contact details and be available for questions.
The more publicity contacts you have, the more free publicity you’ll generate; it’s that simple. I can’t overstate the importance of cultivating your relationships, especially in the media space—the real secret of successful publicity campaigns.
Media relationships should be mutually beneficial. You want the media to publicize your product and service, and the media want you to provide publishable stories.
Always keep in mind these four rules:
1. You are a resource for the media.
2. It’s never personal.
3. The media can change the rules, but you can’t.
4. All that the media think about is what you can do for them and their audience.
Once you’ve established a media contact, stay in touch with that person, email being the preferred method of contact these days. Play by the media rules. They have the upper hand. They have the power. It’s very important that you stay on their radar screen. Remember this and you’ll become a public relations superstar!.
Websites and List Building
If you’ve decided to market online, the first rule of which you should be aware is the rule of ‘thirds’. You should determine the budget you’ll have for online marketing, then invest one-third in developing your site, one-third in promoting your site and one-third in maintaining your site. Most ill-advised online marketers invest three-thirds in developing their site, then wonder why they aren’t earning landmark profits.
I could write a whole book on Internet marketing but, in a nutshell, here is the three-step process on Internet marketing.
1. Begin with a wonderful product or service.
2. Create a motivational website.
3. Promote or send emails (to your list) with hyperlinks to your website.
This brings me on to the topic of list building which is a process of defining your market, setting your objectives and then figuring how to establish warm and trusting relationships with the people on your list.
Firstly, make sure you get permission from people to be on your mailing list. The term for this process is called ‘opt in’. Let your prospects decide whether they want to be on your list. If they opt out, that’s cool because you won’t have to waste time, money or hopes on them. If they opt in, they want to hear from you and they’ll anticipate each contact from you. People who opt in will never consider your email to be spam.
Secondly, you can get some of those names by offering a free newsletter, free report or free e-book on your site. The idea is to offer valuable free information—especially unique data that is not available elsewhere—and keep a list of people who sign up or order your freebie.
Contests, sweepstakes, free e-zines and joint ventures are more obvious ways to add names to your list. You’ll attract many more with your blog and your participation in forums and groups, especially on social media sites. You’ll begin with a few names at first. Keep it up and you’ll get 5,000, 10,000, 50,000. People aren’t changing that fast. They still love valuable free information.
Let’s just look at some latest statistics: There are over 1 billion users on Facebook, 750 tweets a second are delivered through Twitter, LinkedIn has over 200 million members and 1 million groups and the Google +1 button is used over 5 billion times a day. So this must tell you that you need to not only be up-to-speed on how to use these platforms but also be using them on a regular basis.
Social media has made it easy for anyone without a marketing budget to get results similar to those of corporate companies spending millions. One of the best ways to use this platform is to follow the 3 rules of successful social media marketing.
1.Create a response.
2.Engage with others
3.Share with others.
All that remains now is to pick one or more of these Guerrilla Marketing strategies and start applying them to your training or consulting business!
Let us know how you get on!