Marketing is an essential part of any business (and some say marketing should be the main focus of the business owner) but there are many different pieces to it to consider as well. Play to your strengths or to the ones that will produce you the most results.
One way to look at marketing is as a pie of different slices of activities. It’s impossible to do every part of the pie at once, but if you take on tasks for one or two pieces at a time and slowly build up to the others, you will build yourself a successful marketing system.
The different elements of the marketing pie include:
Irresistible Free Offers
These offers are both compelling and relevant to your target market; their purpose is to help you build your list so that you can further market to them slowly over time.
Not everyone who visits your site or talks to you is ready to purchase immediately, but by slowly drip feeding information to them you can build your relationship with them, create a reputation as an expert or up sell them on other offer. Free offers can also be used as Call to Actions or Opt-In Forms. A Call to Action offers defined instruction of how the visitor should interact with your website. Common phrases are: “Click Here”, “Download Now”, Register Today”. Each phrase should create a sense of urgency and specific action that the user should take. Every page on your website should have a Call to Action.
Irresistible free offers are a way to build your expert reputation, offer value and collect contact details to build a list for future marketing and sales efforts. The ultimate goal is to build your List.
Items that can be used as a free offer are
- Free Report
- White paper
- Case Study
Networking is about making connections and building relationships.
You should never go to a networking event with the intention of selling your services, instead, focus on learning how you can help others. One popular phrase is “How can I help you move your business forward.” Networking is just the beginning of building a relationship and should be seen as a long-term activity. People do business with people they know, like and trust.
After a networking event, you should follow up with a call or email to connect and schedule an individual coffee meeting (or one-on-one)
Some styles of networking recommend meeting as many people as possible in a room in order to connect those who are looking for each other and be seen in a favorable light. Rather than spending the networking meeting socializing, they recommend that you save the getting to know someone for later and just meet as many people as possible. You then follow up with a one-on-one to learn more about that person in order to connect them with others who need their services or with those they are looking for.
Some examples of networking groups
- Networking Groups: BNI, B2B Groups
- Business Associations
- Chamber of Commerce
- Industry Associations
Unpaid Sales Force
Every business should have an unpaid sales force in place (no, not slave labor). Unpaid sales people are power partners, clients, networking partners and others in your social circle that send referrals and new clients your way.
Power partners are people who work with your target market but offer different services. You become the perfect partner to refer business to each other and to bring the other business in on your projects. It is a symbiotic relationship.
Clients who are very happy to work with you and love your services can be leveraged as well. Happy clients are willing to give rave (glowing) reviews of your services. Make sure to collect these testimonials and utilize them in your marketing material, on your website and on different online review sites – Yelp, Google+ Local, etc.
A person of influence or center of influence is someone who has a large network of potential clients that you want to reach. He or she may be an expert in your field, someone who is well respected in your local community, or just have a large list of ideal client. You can work with them in an affiliate relationship where the center of influence promotes your products or services to their list, or on a more personal basis by teaming up with them. A person of influence will help spread your reach to his or her own circles as well.
Social Media / Stay-In-Touch Marketing
Stay in touch marketing comes into effect once you have already connected with a potential client. As I mentioned with the irresistible offer, you want to continue to build your reputation with your leads by offering valuable advice, tips and updates and encourage them to take action by offering special deals. Social media is also a type of Stay-In-Touch marketing because you are sending out constant streams of updates and interacting with your audience through different formats.
Examples of Stay-In-Touch Marketing
- Social Media
This is part one of a two part blog on The Marketing Pie. Watch next week for part 2, covering:
- Online Marketing
- Teleclasses & Workshop
Not sure what marketing is? Learn more about The Difference Between Sales and Marketing.
What is your favorite part of the marketing pie? Do you think this is a good analogy?