How to market a new business?
The person who said “If you build it, they will come” wasn’t giving you all the facts. Because if no one knows you’ve built “it” you’ll be in for a very long wait. To prosper in the modern business arena, market you must. And, market like there is no tomorrow, especially a new business.
On the flip side, marketing done the wrong way can be a waste of your valuable time and money. And it is vital to remember that most advertising and marketing firms have a standard set of services they offer, to you and your competitors.
If your business and its eight chief rivals are all using the same marketing strategy, how can anyone of you expect to rise above the rest? And it’s always wise to be aware of this before you hand over even $1 to any marketing company that claims they can advertise your business.
Any money that you give to a marketing firm should return that amount with some additional profits, if it doesn’t, it’s a poor investment and should be abandoned immediately.
And speaking from experience, not many marketing companies guarantee or produce these results, so it’s well worth your time to find one that does.
The following tips will help you market your new business to get you the results you want.
1. Your business card.
While business cards might seem slightly outdated, an impressive one will still achieve the same result that it always has, and that result is highlighting to any potential clients how professional and exclusive your company is.
But this doesn’t mean that any business card will do. Do you want to create the right impression? Focus on a great design. Yes, that means you should hire a great designer, but it’s worth it. Once you have a business card designed you can use the same design for a while, so you are looking at a long-term investment.
If you are very good at design, you could also try it yourself, but I don’t recommend it. Your job is to build your business and not to become a jack of all trades. Experiment with business cards that stand out. The best ones are those that are shaped a bit differently. Try a larger than normal size business card. It will stick out from the rest. It might be a good conversation starter. You must do whatever it takes to get the conversation started about your business. If your business card looks like all the others, your business is like all the others.
Avoid the following mistakes if you want a great business card:
- Make it clear what you do. If someone would read your card without you being there to explain what you do, would your card tell the story?
- Make sure your card style aligns with your target audience.
- Avoid gimmicks.
- Do not create a business card that is the same shape and size of every other business card out there. Your goal is to stand out, start with your business card.
- Include all of your contact information. At least have your email, phone, and social media accounts on there.
- Don’t use a font size that would make the text hard to read.
- Use an easy to read font.
2. Your company name.
Who cares about your company more than you? Exactly, if there is any one task that you want to take seriously is naming your business. The name of your business will have a long-term impact on your business. And, yes the name of your business can make or break your business. Consider it a mission-critical part of your marketing strategy.
Think of names like Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Google, Ben & Jerry’s, IBM and BMW. They are all short, catchy and by providing an excellent service, they evoke in us positive feelings of fulfillment and reliability. And you can think of something just as good, that’ll evoke the same feelings in your clients.
Great company names have the following characteristics:
- Keep it short.
- Make it memorable.
- Use easy to spell words.
- The best names are unique.
- They are legally protectable, think trademark.
- They roll off the tongue, think Coca-Cola or PayPal.
- They are evergreen. They remain cool for decades.
3. Letterhead & printed envelopes.
This is especially important in B2B and luxury businesses. Having personalized and printed envelops are a nice touch for any new business, and here’s a handy tip . . . Invest in a printed letterhead. Most companies no longer invest in things like that, so it is an easy way to differentiate your business from the rest. To send an email is easy, but to send a great looking letter printed on your letterhead communicates the right message about your business.
4. Your company’s website.
Don’t waste your time with a do-it-yourself website. People can tell when a website is built by an amateur. It creates the wrong impression about your business.
A professional, clean looking website that focuses more on your customers’ needs (instead of your own) does take longer to set up than a few basic pages, but, it will be more than worth your while in the long run.
And a quick scan through some of your pages is all it takes for most people to decide whether to do business with you or not, you have the power to ensure what they see is concise, professional and higher quality content rather than run of the mill sleep inducing rubbish . . . What would you rather read?
5. A professional email address.
Whenever possible your company’s email address must be firstname.lastname@example.org, opposingly, using unprofessional sounding Hotmail or Gmail account names will show your business in completely the wrong light. Those types of emails are great for personal use, but avoid them for businesses use.
Apart from these five helpful marketing tactics for new businesses, it’s also important to remember not to spend anything on your marketing until you identify the exact section of the market you are aiming for, and, which is the best strategy to follow.
Also, reading and considering these questions will keep your mind and company headed straight towards success.
- Why will potential clients choose to do business with me over my competitors? What makes your business a better alternative than your competitors? What can you do better, faster, or cheaper than your competition?
- Is there a pool of customers who value my unique selling point, and will spending marketing money on them produce a profitable return? How many potential customers are there? How much will it cost to get a new customer?
- What style of marketing message is best suited to my potential customers? Do you have a B2B or B2C focus?
Answering these questions as clearly as possible will help you to implement a marketing plan which brings profitable results to your thriving company.
photo credit: Curtis Cleaners and Laundry January 25, 20113