Not limiting your marketing to advertisements
When people think of marketing their business the first thing that they think of are advertisements, while this is a great way to market your business you should not limit yourself to only using advertisements. To properly market your business and reach the largest group possible you need to take advantage of a variety of marketing techniques.
Here are some different marketing ideas that you can try.
Make your customers feel special. With our busy life style and wanting to get the lowest prices personalized customer service has gone the way of the high road. But the thing is customers still want to be recognized. By taking a little bit of time and possibly spending a few extra pennies you can make your customers feel special. This is a simple task to complete, for example you can send them a personal thank you note or enclose a small gist in with their purchase.
Create business cards that your customers will keep. Traditional business cards tend to get thrown out the minute people leave the store or clean out their wallets because they are tiny pieces of paper that are just taking up room. Rather than handing out business cards you can create notepads that have your business information on them, magnets, pens, and a variety of other items that can be used by the customer. The more useful the business cards are the longer the customers are likely to keep them, hence getting you many days of exposure.
Stop paying attention to your unprofitable customers. While this might seem like a strange idea you are really not losing any business. Your profits are generally made by a core group of customers and by pouring the majority of your time and energy into maintaining and nurturing those relationships you are far more likely to boost your profits.
Combine business with pleasure by planning an event for a charity that you like. By doing this you are going to meet lots of new people and can get a chance to promote your business which can bring you more customers. At the same time you are able to prove your leadership skills which can cause people to have more confidence in your company, which can lead to word of mouth referrals.
Send out newsletters through both email and regular mail. In these newsletters be sure to include stuff that your clients will be interested in. You should include your current promotions, tips on using your products or services, and be sure to personalize the newsletter by giving your customer something special, like a certain percent off their next purchase or a free gift with their next purchase.
Provide something to help the customer stay at your place of business longer. For example IKEA and other malls provide free child care or low cost child care so that parents can spend a longer amount of time finding what they want without having to worry about kids. If you have a business online you can offer customers certain incentives to return again such as free shipping for return customers, discounts, etc. What you are trying to do here is get your customers to come back and spend their money at your place of business.
Contact your local media about doing reviews of your business. Editorials and reviews carry far more weight in marketing then paid advertisements do. People who write these reviews are reporting what they have discovered about your business which can help draw in even more customers. For example a restaurant that gets a five star review will most likely get more customers from the newspaper than a similar restaurant that only got a two star review.
Just remember that the more variety you use the more profitable your business will be. Just do not go overboard when you are developing your marketing plan choose four or five marketing techniques and remember you can change your techniques if one is not working for you.