Marketing Tips for Small and Medium Sized Businesses

If you want to achieve better sales for your business and grow your marketing base, you need to invest in a great marketing strategy. Marketing is one of the most important branches of your business after finance. You need finance to market and without marketing, you product will not sell and your business will not be able to sustain itself. Let’s get right into it

Understanding your customers

One of the most important aspects of marketing and community relations is the understanding of your customer.  You need to get to know your customers better before rolling out any marketing campaign. Accurate information about the customers will go a long way in helping you to sell. So much information is at your disposal about customers including demographics, purchase behaviors and requirements. Use this information to guide your business decisions and create a marketing plan.

Couple your knowledge about your customers with the business opportunities that arise due to changing global circumstances. Basically, know your customer and know the business market. New legislation may shift consumer behavior and new technologies lead to the invention of new products. You need to have a keen eye on the products market for new opportunities and threats as well.

Once you understand the market as well as your customers, you can improve your product or service design around the customer. The product you market should be tailored to the consumer from design, packaging to the way it is promoted. You need to design and present things the way the customer wants it.

Finally, customers appreciate smooth and efficient business. You product is just as important as how you conduct your business. You may have an amazing product but with poor business skills that will ruin your company. Quick delivery, courteous return process, great customer service and incentives are all part of your marketing and communicating effectively with the customer.

Content marketing

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You can use content to market your business both in digital and print advertising. One important thing to know about content marketing though is you need to produce great quality content. You probably visit content marketing websites every time you access the internet in forms of blogs, news sites, and entertainment sites and so on. These sites use useful information to market themselves and content marketing can be used to sell any type of business. It is especially useful for attractive new clients, inquiries and subscribers and eventually sales leads.

Build a website and stock it will free information that prospective customers will find extremely valuable. Remember to offer the opportunity to purchase goods and services alongside this information. The products and services should be closely linked to the content provided without making it too salesly.

There are three groups of people who will come across your content marketing. The first group of people is those who like free things, they are not prospective clients so you hardly lose anything. The second group of people is those who will try to do it themselves based on the information that you provide in your content. They will eventually hire you if they do not get the results they want because they value expertise. Finally, the third group is the individuals who trust the expert and will immediately purchase your products or services if they believe the information you provide is accurate to you.

With these three groups of people it is quite easy to tell that content is key, you should not accept any kind of content or automate the process, especially if you want to appeal to the last two groups of people. Remember that search engines are also filtering low-quality materials from their rankings.

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Email marketing

Small and medium sized businesses can benefit greatly from email marketing. It is powerful yet affordable for marketing because it gives predictable results. The great thing about email marketing compared to social media marketing is that you do not have to build your network, you already own it. Social media sites can only show you posts to a fraction of your prospective clients depending on how active you are on this networks. However, with email marketing, you know that your message will be received by the intended individual and chances are they will not miss it.

As a business, you should have an email database of your clients. You can build your subscribers list by asking existing clients to give their email addresses through your website, phone calls or even at the physical business location. It is crucial to know that you need permission from the client to email them or else they will regard your mail as spam. Don’t just add people to your mailing list without their consent. You can use emails to contact the client, send newsletters, announcements and special offers.  As long as you contact clients with useful information, your list will grow in size and you can appeal to more customers.

Start a website

The power of internet marketing should never be underestimated. It is so affordable and sometimes it costs close to nothing, yet you get to address the millions of internet users who are interested in products and services like yours. You website is capable of being a sales machine 24/7 while your business can only operate for a couple of hours a day.

If you want to get it right with internet marketing, do not accept anything less that professional. Most small businesses are often temped to hire Cousin Ricky getting his diploma in web design to create a cheap website. If you have ambition and dreams for your business, then you will be heartbroken to realize how much you are missing out on by hiring your cousin to handle a professional scale project. A professionally designed and marketed website is like having a huge store right in the middle of the busiest street in town. The number of people using the internet today to buy goods and services is growing exponentially. A good number of people will also look you up on the net before they decide whether they can do business with you. Imagine their disappointment when they find a run down and outdated website.

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Photo Credit: Flickr/Lloyd Chapman

This guest post is courtesy of Jack Dawson.

CEO Blog Nation

This is a post from a CEO Blog Nation writer. CEO Blog Nation is a community of blogs for entrepreneurs and business owners. Started in much the same way as most small businesses, CEO Blog Nation captures the essence of entrepreneurship by allowing entrepreneurs and business owners to have a voice. CEO Blog Nation provides news, information, events and even startup business tips for entrepreneurs, startups and business owners to succeed.

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