Ask any new business owner and they will tell you of the importance of getting the name of the business out there. If you build it, they will not necessarily come because, unless customers know of the existence of your business and/or products, how are they meant to find you?
As an entrepreneur, marketing may not necessarily be your bag – we get it – which is why many new businesses fail and close their doors within the first year of operation. Taking the leap of faith and starting a new business is scary, especially if you are not a seasoned entrepreneur (with experience of starting various new ventures), so you want to do everything in your power to make sure that it works.
When you draw up a business plan, marketing costs will have been factored into your overheads. Without any form of marketing, your business venture will be a short-lived one, so you should not consider trying to go about your business without marketing. Even the best ideas and products will be doomed to fail without a marketing plan in place.
Seeking Professional Help
Professional marketing is expensive because it’s an art. To the untrained eye, it may just look like someone is posting the odd status update on their social media profile – but it is much, much more than that. Behind every post is a strategy dictating what its purpose is, why it is being posted when it is posted and who it is posted for. Many new business owners simply post at random and then wonder why their strategy never takes off.
That is just one form of marketing and a very small aspect of it. It is no secret that digital marketing is where many businesses are reaping great rewards, but to be able to succeed you should have someone with digital marketing skills that you can rely on. If this is you, then great, but if not then you should seriously consider seeking out someone who does.
Even if you do have a marketing background, the chances are that you are going to be consumed worrying about other areas of the business that you will struggle to find the time. This means that either hiring someone who can focus on your marketing or calling on the assistance of a consultant will prove to be beneficial.
Before your business has taken off, you probably aren’t going to have a massive budget to play with unless you are fortunate to already have money in the bank. This means starting off small and looking to take advantage of free and cheap marketing channels. A social media presence is free and promoted posts do not have to cost the earth, either, making this a fantastic place to start.
Alternatively, you can – and should – also make use of more old-school marketing such as word of mouth. Tell everyone you know and ask that they two people they know. Soon enough, a lot of people will be made aware of your business. Make sure to offer a good service and, through that, recommendations and referrals will keep rolling in – there is no stronger form of marketing than a positive review or a referral from someone trusted.
Make use of any and all contacts you have. Ask for favors and hustle for your business, because that’s what all other successful business owners have had to do. That means asking to put adverts in shop windows, giving out business cards and putting out offers wherever possible just to increase your exposure and number of customers.
While you should absolutely focus on running your business, ensuring that operation runs as smoothly as possible, always make sure to keep an eye on your marketing. If you have no customers, you have no business.