Marketing? Marketing!? Who has time for marketing? We have salespeople to generate our revenue. Our operations or client services team is delivering on what we’ve sold. Our accounting department makes sure we are paying our bills and getting paid on time. HR is hiring, training, firing, etc.
 
 
When it comes to marketing, the processes and activities we should undertake as businesses aren’t as clear. Once upon a time, there were three channels, a handful of trade journals, the newspaper, a phone, and as many doors as you could knock on in a day.
 
Today, the world of marketing is very different. New digital platforms and techniques are rapidly evolving, allowing companies to target their audiences and serve up custom content. Lead scoring lets you take prospects down different journeys depending upon their interests and needs.
 
Meanwhile, many organizations still haven’t figured out what to do with Facebook. Whether you’re an established business or a start-up, here are seven things you should be doing to market your business. These aren’t the only things you can do, but they are some of the most important, especially if you are on a tight budget.


1. Have a clear, concise message about what you do
If you can’t quickly explain what you do in a way that makes sense to others, it’s going to be tough for you to do the other nine things on this list.
 
Make sure your elevator pitch begins by identifying the problem most of your customers deal with. Then speak to what you do to solve that problem and finally, point out the positive resolution they experience.
 
Then memorize it. Put it on your business cards, website, and other sales literature. Make the rest of your company learn it so they can use it on the phone or at networking events.
 
A great elevator pitch should lead people to ask more questions, not put them to sleep.
2. Make sure your website reflects not only what you do but why it matters to your customer
Modern websites are packed with a lot of words and little to say. It’s no surprise that people leave immediately without signing up for newsletters or learning more.
 
The problem lies with the content in most cases, jumping straight into a description of features instead of benefits and failing to connect with their customer’s journey. Or the copy is so vague that the company could be selling anything. In either case, the result is the same; lost opportunities.
 
As you sit down and look at your website, ask yourself, “Would someone coming to this for the first time have any clue what this is about?” Even better, ask someone you know to look over your website and give you their thoughts. If they can’t get it, there’s a good chance your visitors can’t either.
3. Create free, useful content to give away for email addresses
People love free things. They especially love free things that change their lives. In your line of business, you have tons of tips, checklists, ideas, etc. you should be sharing with prospects and clients. Doing so lets them know you understand the things that are keeping them from being as successful as they could be (empathy) and you can help them overcome those obstacles (authority)!
 Also, you’re tapping into a behavioral influence called reciprocity. Essentially, that means if you give someone something for free, they are likely to want to give something back to you. Often, that comes in the form of a yes the next time you want to discuss business.
4. Stay in touch using email and social media
How do you like getting cold calls out of the blue from a person you haven’t spoken to in months? Even worse, they ask if you want to do business with them.
 
We do the same thing when we don’t stay in contact with people and then hit them with a sales call or email. Regular communication with your prospects via email and social media helps you stay in front of people so when they need what you sell, they remember your company first. And since it takes about six messages before someone starts listening to what you have to say, it’s better to do that over six weeks as opposed to six months.
 
Even better, modern applications allow you to automate many of these tasks. Set up emails for the next few weeks, so you don’t have to come back to it every week. Schedule social media posts for several months, leaving you time to engage with people who like and comment.
5. Use video in your marketing
Have you heard this before? While the written word is still critical, more people watch videos than read blogs. You don’t have to make it complicated either. There is a place and time for high-quality video recordings, but often a simple mobile phone video will suffice. Or use the camera on your laptop.
Have something to say? Pull out your phone, go live on Facebook or Instagram and talk to your audience. We connect emotionally with people, so when you say things on video, they have a stronger impact than just words on a screen.
 
This content becomes evergreen so you can use it in campaigns, and on your website for even greater reach.
6. Write. Write. Write.
Even though video is king of content right now, written content is critical to your organic search strategy. SEO is a complicated process, but if you want to show up on Google, you’d better be writing good content.
  • What should you write? Start with the questions your customers have.
  • What is bothering them most?
  • What are they searching for online?
  • What is keeping them from being happy or getting what they want?

Then write articles that answer those questions. You get authority for talking about a subject they’re interested in, and the more they engage with your content, the better it is for your search ranking.

7. Schedule speaking engagements
Another great way to get the word out is by speaking. If you are a subject matter expert, find a group of people who want to know more and give a talk.
 
Local chapters of Rotary, Kiwanis, Chamber of Commerce, Merchants Associations, etc. are all looking for quality presentations. If you speak at one, there’s a good chance they can introduce you to another group looking for the same content.
 
Best of all, you don’t have to give a sales pitch. Just talk about what you know and frame it in terms of improving the lives of your audience. Chances are there will be someone there who is your ideal customer. Add value to their lives, and they’ll be more receptive to your sales efforts.
 
Even some of these tasks seem too much for some business leaders. If you’re looking to outsource your marketing to an experienced team dedicated to your success, schedule a free consultation today.

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