Everyone’s a born marketer.
From impressing your crush to going for an interview,
all you are doing in reality is selling yourself.
Of course, some wise men would have advised you to
‘Not sell yourself short to anyone in life.’
Yet we do the same in case of our ideas.
In the world where nothing is given out for free,
‘Shouldn’t we get paid for our ideas?’
Today, I will teach you the trade secrets of marketing your ideas:
- for small companies
- for start ups via offline modes and
- for your darling customers
MARKETING IDEAS FOR SMALL BUSINESS
The good thing about small firms is that
‘Most of them are willing to experiment.’
That doesn’t mean that they can be easily convinced.
Basically, you need to:
STUDY THE MARKET
+ the demographics
+ tastes, habits and preferences
+ criticisms of existing products
+ industry’s past trends
+ industry’s future estimates
+ conducting online / offline surveys
Take some survey tips here.
+ official data from state sources
Based on the inferences drawn from above observations,
+ create content on Pain Areas
+ post content regularly emphasizing on them
+ use official stats to give credibility to your idea
+ play with content: go for blogs / vlogs / webinar
+ make good use of social media platforms [FB, Twitter, LinkedIn].
+ carve a niche out of market’s pain areas
Easy tips on creating content right here:
SERVE THY CUSTOMERS
Give more than you take.
+ Give away freebies like:
- Free Ebooks
- Free Audio Books
- Free Case Studies
- Free Monthly Newsletters etc.
+ Pay heed to their comments on your
- Content Posts
- YouTube Vlogs
- Social Media Images
- Reports etc.
+ Reply to them asap
+ Take criticism in your stride and learn from it
+ Reward your channel subscribers [e.g. Thank You video]
+ Improvise on after sales services [Retention is the key]
Essentially, try to build a fool proof plan to counter threats.
Read : strategic-marketing
WATCH YOUR BUDGET
+ Check whether you have fat pockets or less finance
+ Fat pockets: Go for big budget advertising tactics like
- Magazine Ads
- Prime Time TV Ads
- Front Page Newspaper Ads etc.
+ Less finance: Stick to online organic / Social Media marketing
+ If less faith on your idea, work on another one.
USE ONLINE MARKETING
A cost effective way of marketing your products / services.
You can go for:
+ PPC ( Pay Per Click) Campaigns
+ Social Media platforms like:
- Reddit [underrated]
- Slideshare [underrated]
+ cold calling [Old is Gold]
+ case studies and whitepapers [ instills credibility in your content]
+ Email marketing
PARTICIPATE IN FORUMS
‘Out of sight out of mind’
Participate in online forums / groups / communities by:
+ asking good questions
+ giving your opinion on strong issues
+ propagate your firm’s values and beliefs there
+ take a different stance from the conventional position
+ follow influential people [and in turn, gain followers]
MARKET YOUR WEBSITE
Promote your website everywhere.
Make a mention of it in:
+ your Social Media posts
+ business cards
+ social media accounts etc.
PREPARE AN ADAPTABLE POWERPOINT PRESENTATION
The customer need not be an individual.
Small businesses look out for:
+ industry networking
+ Examine your prospect features carefully
+ Study their background, current market position
+ Scan their website for:
- annual reports
- financial statements
- new ventures
- loss making areas
+ Read media reports relating to them
+ Make a note of their pain areas
+ Create presentation with the highest focus on these pain areas
+ Modify your idea in accordance with the pain areas
+ Position your USP [Unique Selling Point] based on these pain areas
+ Glorify your ideas
+ Talk about your successful projects
PROSPECT: A local restaurant
NATURE: Udipi (South Indian) Restaurant
- Specialized in Mangalorean food
- Only restaurant offering such dishes in the town
- Good quality food
- Hospitable waiters
- Neatly maintained kitchens
- Excellent ambience
- Good sanitation facilities
- Spacious eatery
- Excellent service for visiting customers
- Orders witnessing a dip due to poor delivery services
- Listed on Food Apps such as Zomato but no personal website
- Frequent power cuts
- No expansion plans
The above list is a sample note you shall make beforehand.
The red sentences are the Pain Areas.
Go to the restaurant management making a presentation revolving around these points.
If your idea is to introduce more variations in dishes,
you can merge the pain areas with the idea to satisfy your prospects.
This way, you win over the lead without much negotiations.
This was everything about small companies.
But what about start ups?
Well, they can take note of the online tactics previously mentioned.
But what are the offline marketing ideas for startups?
EFFECTIVE OFFLINE MARKETING IDEAS FOR START UPS
+ Old is indeed gold
+ 78% of decision makers took an appointment or attended an event by coming to know via email or cold call [Source]
+ Makes a personal connect with customers
+ Invest in a cold calling team
+ They should be specialists in convincing customers to buy
+ Reward them with commissions for winning leads
+ Such investments shall only bring more productivity and returns.
Around 65.2 million people in the U.S. aged 18 – 34 years listen to traditional broadcast radio every week. [Sources]
+ Cost effective mode of offline marketing
+ One way talk, yet an instant connect with audience
+ Stands out of the clutter [in times of complex advertising systems]
According to a survey, 56% customers find print media to be the most trustworthy. [Sources]
+ Newspaper ads: Try local newspapers for less costs
+ get in touch with famous personalities
+ sponsor political campaigns
+ Regularly attend conferences / seminars
+ Ask questions
+ Interact with professionals there
+ Help the group’s problems there
+ Share business cards
+ Low Cost way of marketing
+ Makes your firm’s presence known
+ Take tough questions
+ Welcome criticisms and use it for self development
+ Build good relationships with journalists there
+ In turn they might promote your products willingly.
The above methods are bound to bring you good leads
from small companies and startups.
Back to basics.
Our main agenda must be to attract the largest chunk of audience:
So how can we bring them into our fold?
Some realistic solutions below.
MARKETING IDEAS TO ATTRACT CUSTOMERS
- Thanks to your market survey, you know the takers for your idea.
- Accordingly, divide your audience into further segments.
- Observe the mini segments which have the maximum need for your product.
- Plus, decide on what segments of your work you would offer
- Are you sticking to one service or providing a range?
- Once you identify the chunk area, attack!
- Keep your entire focus on that specific class.
- Your ideas, products, firm values etc. must revolve around the needs of that niche class.+ POSITIONING
- Having the best idea in the market doesn’t work necessarily.
- Segmentation and targeting alone won’t do the trick.
- Brand positioning is a key factor in drawing customers to your shops.
- It is the image you create in the consumers minds
- When they think of your products.
A good brand positioning strategy will:
- Maximum brand value
- Magnify its differentiating nature from the rest
- Widen its sighting in audience view
SEGMENT: Oral care products
AUDIENCE: Poor class/ lower middle class / middle class / upper middle class / rich / super rich.
TARGET AUDIENCE: Upper class/ rich / super rich
POSITIONING: Recommended by dentists worldwide for dental problems
+ Invest in a well optimized website
+ Slow website loading kills your sales
+ Make sure your web design is pleasing to the eye
+ Lure visitors with offers and discounts
+ Trap leads with CTA (Calls To Actions) on your web pages
+ Create online contests to keep netizens interested
+ Team up with companies specialized in web optimization
+ Sponsor upcoming events and open an online webpage specifically for it
+ Build links with bloggers
+ Pave way for guest posting
+ Keep your social media active
+ Be quick to respond to criticisms and queries in comments section
Marketing an idea isn’t a child’s business.
It requires careful planning, market knowledge and a strong will to win against the odds.
Did you like the article?
Was it useful?
Comment below and express your views on this subject.