Your Campaign Checklist
When you open your doors to the public for the first time as a small business owner, you have to add the marketing cap to your entrepreneurial duties. If you are in business, you have to figure out ways to stay in business. The day to start marketing your business has come, but if you've never done any marketing before, you may not know if you are ready. Here's a checklist to make sure you are ready to launch your business and your marketing campaign.
- You've done your research. You've analyzed the market for response to your product or service. You know who your target market is and what features and benefits of your product will appeal to them.
- Your marketing message describes how your product or service will benefit your potential customers.
- You have your pricing schedule set in place. You know when and who you'll give discounts to. You know where your competitors are priced and what you need to do to stay competitive.
- You have a sales forecast in place which includes sales goals and profit projections.
- You know what type of media you will be using in your marketing campaign, what of that media is free, and what you'll be paying for.
- You have sales promoters on board and ready to bust into the market for you. Radio, television, and newspapers can all promote your product and give you exposure in the market place.
- You've planned a publicity campaign. You've invited the local news media to cover your grand opening. You've volunteered in events that matter to your customer base, for example The Race of the Cure.
- Your marketing materials are ready and cover all of the products and services you offer. They help your potential customers see why you stand out above the crowd, or in other words, what makes you different.
- If you have orders or purchases the first day, is your product or service ready with all the bugs and kinks worked out (or at least to the point where you feel comfortable offering it)?
- If you are offering a product, does it have a warranty? If it does, the warranty information needs to be ready.
- Your customer support staff is in place, trained, and ready to support any potential customers. This is especially important if you want to focus on customer retention later on, which is a much less expensive marketing technique than customer acquisition.
- Your product liability and business insurance is in place.
- Your product is packaged to appeal to your target market.
- You have a patent on your product (if it is a product you can patent).
- Your distribution or delivery services are ready for customer sales.
- Your employees know what they are doing and what part they have in the marketing and sales process.
- You've branded your business. You have a logo, tagline, business card, and have sat down and seen your entire business process through your customers' eyes. This is especially important to your overall marketing process. A marketing campaign can utterly fail wasting your time and money if you business isn't branded. Branding is what sets you apart from your competition. It is coming up with what is unique about you and making it apparent in every aspect of your business. If your business doesn't brand itself, you will not be noticed.