SME owners puzzled over the power of marketing – Part 2

To harness the power of marketing, remember that staying flexible and adaptive is key for a business to thrive in today’s ever changing, fast-moving market.

Following on from last week’s story, in which we revealed many small-business owners are puzzled about how to make the most of the power of marketing, here are some easy-to-follow, cost-effective tips to help you nail your next marketing campaign.

1. Choose your perception

Firstly, you must choose how you want to be perceived. Yep, it really is a choice! If you don’t determine how your product, service or business is going to be perceived, someone else will and steal your thunder.

When describing your business use adjectives such as young, old, fresh, modern, adventurous, safe, cheeky, energetic, vibrant, fast. The less conventional, the better, so stay away from the common words everyone chooses such as professional, quality, experienced.

Make sure you share the above with your team so they are all on board and pulling in the same direction. Your team is your biggest brand ambassadors.

2. Differentiate and blow your customers’ minds

Now that you’ve chosen how you want to be perceived, let’s build on it! We live in a very busy world where we get bombarded by thousands of marketing pieces every day (unless we live on a beautiful remote island somewhere).

So how are you ever going to stand out? How is anyone going to notice you?

You need to differentiate! Unfortunately, a lot of businesses copy each other plainly because they think “the other” guy has got it all figured out, but most likely he or she hasn’t! Copying is never the answer and it’s kind of uncool, too.

So rather than blending in, let’s carve out your own uniqueness by asking yourself “What’s the frustration in my industry?” Think about what people are frustrated about when working with someone in your industry.

The second question to ask yourself and others is “What would make working with your industry irresistible?” You’ll be surprised by how many great ideas you will get from your clients and friends! How about we set a challenge? Ask 10 people in the next 10 days and then implement the top three best ideas.

2. Amplify your awesomeness

Okay, it’s time to ramp it up a notch, get really creative and go completely nuts!

To get started, make a list of every touch point your business has with your prospects and customers. This could include phone calls, emails, social media, your shop or offices, your website, invoices.

Then, think about how you can amplify your business’ personality and differentiation at each of these touch points.

Let me give you another example. If you’ve chosen quirky as one of your characteristics, how can you add more quirk to your different touch points. You could include a funny quote in your email signature, change your phone greeting to something more quirky, adjust your website copy, send a quirky direct mail to your prospects, give your clients something to smirk about.

4. Be consistent

Consistency is key in taking controlling how others perceive you! If there is no consistency, your clients will be confused and confusion doesn’t sell.

The purpose of consistency is to create familiarity, which leads to trust, which leads to more sales.

Lastly, take the importance of fluidity. We can’t always influence the circumstances but we can always influence our perception. To harness the power of marketing, remember that staying flexible and adaptive is key for a business to thrive in today’s ever-changing, fast-moving market!

Christo Hall, Co-Founder, Basic Bananas

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