Marketing Tips for Start-Ups
It’s hard to watch new business owners have a dream, invest their money, put in hundreds of hours of their time and then not do anything to market their business. And then they wonder why the business fails. Businesses often fail because owners failed to let the right people know how they could do business with them. We can not just open our doors – we need to TELL people we are in business and ASK for their business. Most of the time just building it does not lead them to come. We need to market our business consistently and aggressively.
1. Tell people what you do. I’m amazed at the number of new business owners who keep their business a secret.
2. Ask people to help you market/grow your business. Your family, friends and colleagues are often willing and able to help you get the word out.
3. Make marketing a ‘HAVE TO’. If you force yourself to market and do it regularly, it becomes a habit. Developing the habit of marketing will help get the business off the ground and keep it out of the red.
4. Spend money wisely. Marketing is not free. Spend more but make sure to spend it strategically focused on your target market.
5. Realize your customer is NOT everyone. Narrow your target market. You can not market to everyone – not everyone needs what you have to offer. Success depends on being able to get in front of the right group of people – people who can and will buy what you have to offer.
6. Use social media ONLY if you have a strategy. Just getting a Facebook page and a Twitter account will NOT grow your business. The key to using social media successfully is to get in front of your ideal client and then build a following as quickly as possible. Social media requires a thoughtful approach. And you may have to spend money to get the results you want.
7. Use the press. Get to know the local press, send press releases and pay attention to things that might make your company newsworthy.
8. Create strategic partnerships. Choose partners who are connected to the market you need to be in front of. Find ways to co-market and create win-win situations. Share ideas and market one another when possible.
9. NETWORK. NETWORK.NETWORK. Get out and meet people face-to-face if possible. Social media should not replace meeting your potential clients face-to-face.
10. Have fun. Marketing can be fun. Try new things. Take risks.
11. Ask for help. We are often too close to our businesses to see what is right in front of us. Get help with marketing. Ask for feedback from those who know your industry, from your clients and from those who know marketing.
Share your best start-up marketing tip.