If you’ve followed along with my series detailing the 7 Steps to Small Business Marketing Success you’ve defined your ideal customer, have started on effective strategy, and have a content calendar. If not, read this before you proceed to the next step.
Today’s post is about engaging with your ideal customers in such a way that that they will come to like, know, and trust you.
I recently wrote a post about content marketing that brings in customers. In the post I described two people, each a marketing director for a professional services firm. And detailed why traditional practices like, print advertising and trade show exhibits don’t have the effect they used to.
If you run a small business it really is time to alter how you think about generating leads. And here’s the first lesson of changing that mindset: You need to make it much easier for customers to find you and stop spending so much time trying to find them.
Here is why it’s so critical to change the mindset of chasing down your ideal customer—most people have all the information, answers, and reviews they need at their fingertips. The product and/or service information they need is easily accessible via smart phone, tablet, or laptop.
You know that but are you taking advantage of it?
The days are long gone when you can expect a direct mail piece to function as a central component to your marketing efforts. You have to build a system focused on inbound marketing. The best way to convert to an “inbound” focus is through the lead generation big three: advertising, public relations, and referrals.
The 3 Cs of Lead Generation is a method John Jantsch over at Duct Tape Marketing talks about frequently—taking advantage of a lead generation trio focused on education-based approaches that mix in a bit of advertising, public relations, and referrals, all using approaches where you are educating the client, not selling to them.
Here are the Big 3–The Magic Lead Generation Trio that will help your business bring in more leads…
When you create effective advertising for your small business, clear, focused messaging geared to your customers is a must. It must be content that speaks to them and educates.
Think about online advertising, direct mail, or Facebook advertising built to promote the type of content on your site that teaches—videos, ebooks, blog posts, etc.
2. Public Relations
Public Relations doesn’t’ really cost that much and it really is a powerful tool most small businesses don’t even consider. Here’s how you make PR work for your small business: Work your tail off building relationships with key people in your industry. Commit to writing announcements about your business on a monthly basis. Then use the press contacts from the relationships you’ve built to spread the word.
Think in terms of building your influencer relations in campaign form.
Okay, you know who your ideal customer is. Do you think it might be a great idea to make it super easy for your best customers to help spread the word? To write a review about your business?
Focus on people that will refer you—usually happy customers—and work to make it easy for them to say great things about your business. Take care of your best referring clients and they will take care of you.
If you don’t have a reputation marketing system built to get online reviews, make that step one.
John Jantsch at Duct Tape Marketing talks about the 7 Steps to Small Business Marketing Success, including this lead generation trio all the time. And as a Certified Duct Tape Marketing Consultant I have direct access to proven tools, practices, and structured steps that lead to successful marketing results. So I’m fully on board with his message and can make it work for you.
This is just one step in a series
6 Steps Brand Audit Blurb for MM
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