* Marketing Strategies 101

September 18, 2007

Many times I get people in my office that say “I want more traffic to my website”. My first response is “OK. Why? Do you sell products on your site? Do you make money from the number of visits? Are you selling ad space?”. After the few seconds of confusion, they come back with: “I want people to come to my store and buy my products”. Now we’re getting somewhere!

Often times people put together their marketing or advertising strategies based on what friends in completely unrelated fields have done. Or they think they need a logo and brochure because that’s what “everybody” does. I’m here to tell you if their was a magic wand we could all wave at our businesses, all marketing and advertising agencies would be out of business.

The first thing you need to know is who you’re talking to. Maybe not the client who has spent the most money, but rather the client that “gets” your service. The one that signs the check with no problem because they see the value in your service. This would be your first “vertical” - your average client. You need to know something about these people. Are they mostly male or female? What is the general age group? What do they do for fun? Where do they get their news?

The old saying “birds of a feather flock together” is an old saying because it’s true. Go to the clients you have now and ask them to fill out an anonymous questionnaire with some of the questions listed above. Include questions more suited for your particular industry. Perhaps give them a reward for filling it out - maybe movie tickets. Pick a generous cross section - don’t just do 2 or 3.

Once you have your questionnaires filled out, go through and look for similarities. Do a good number belong to country clubs? Do a good number frequent a certain shopping district? Do a certain number read the same magazine or go to the same website for their news? Now you have specific places to advertise. Now you have other businesses that you can look into a partnership with - say, offering a country club 10% discount to their members for your service.

Don’t guess. Use this as a road map to your marketing until such a time as you can pay either a consultant to guide you or a professional agency to handle it from start to finish. Many people have the misconception that marketing and advertising is a necessary evil - that there is some mystic element to it. Not so. With today’s technology and a little creative effort on your part, you can raise the visibility of your business with the people most likely to use you.

Now get out there and look good.

Chris Motley
Motley Creations

©2007 Motley Creations

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