Too often, those who work with concepts as ATL, BTL, mobile-first, agile marketing, B2C or B2B are missing an essential thing, KISS – as in keep it stupid simple. Talking in simple words in order to be understood by your non-specialist audience is mandatory. And do not to assume basic marketing is elementary to everyone.
When it comes to business development and marketing communication, it’s wise to listen to expert advices and be open to learn more.
Marketing is not an exact science, so that means best practices and expertise comes with time, trials and errors. It is important that the small business entrepreneurs realise that they do not know everything despite they might feel that way due to the fact they are used to do almost every single function in their small operation. This is a tricky lesson for most of them and that is why we would like to list some basic or common sense advises related to marketing:
1. Keep your customers satisfied and very satisfied
If you succeed to make them very satisfied with your product / services you will definitely be recommended. You are in the business for many years and will not be able to do this unless you make sure your service or product is offering customer satisfaction. Make sure you get feedback from them, as well. Don’t assume your client is satisfied.
2. Differentiation is not a given
Try to differentiate yourself from competition first of all through a competitive advantage as it is the foundation for good branding – a consistent brand image speaks of credibility and professionalism. No company is too small for a brand, for e.g., but differentiation is not just branding. Choosing to develop new markets or products is also differentiation.
3. Use a database or excel
Try to get past the ‘notebook stage’ and write down your customer contact details on a computer. I know, this sounds vintage, but you’ll be surprised how many small business entrepreneurs are still doing it. The easiest program, available on any computer, is Excel and you do not need to study it’s pretty intuitive. Do not forget about personal data protection or GDPR compliancy. Always obtain customer consent for the processing of personal data.
It is at least 3 times cheaper to have your clients than to attract new ones.
So keep in touch with them and inform them regularly about your company’s offers and products / services. They are free and very intuitive online tools for this. The best known service is mailchimp.com
4.Advertising is important but make sure you are using the right channel
Know who your customers are and where they are more likely to be. This will help identify which communication channel is the most effective. Effectivity comes first and then efficiency.
One of the best management consultants I knew often used to say that ‘nothing is more wrong that to do something very good and efficient but useless.’
This is a very common mistake for entrepreneurs and the reason they do not invest in market but trow their money away. Learn the market and your customers well, and in this way you will know what marketing and communication solutions are best suited for your business.
5. Invest in specialists
Advertising does not mean a radio ad or a poster made by your cousin’s friend who can do photoshop. Marketing is investment and you may call it that way only if the communication is measurable, well targeted and brings results. A marketing specialist has the tools and skills to make effective investments for your business. Make sure you make good use of specialist advise and do not do the mistake of thinking you know better. The efficiency of a campaign is obtained only by specialists, amateurism is expensive.
If you want to read more about this read the amazon book The Gambleneurs and the triple R method.