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Mi-MEDIA Design Agency

The Design & Branding Agency for Small Businesses

Get It Done!

Marketing tips for beginners part 1 of 9.

Turn your chores into challenges.

How many of you start ups, sole traders or small business owners still get nervous every time you open your door to trade, that feeling of wondering have you done enough, have you done all you can to make your business succeed? With clammy hands and a heavy beating heart you try to remember your pitch, your process, your prices, descriptions, stock; whilst maintaining posture, smiles and a confident approach. On top of this you still you have to find the resources and money to market your business.

"Imagine reaching out to your target customers
by spending nothing more than time,
now open your eyes and make that a reality.

You must take it at face value that you don’t know where your business is going to end up, you can plan, prepare and strategise, put it on paper, back it up on hard drives, but these documents can be pointless as most businesses go on to do something completely different to what they set out to do. Our best advice is, you focus and you stay focused on the end game. Focus on the people you want visiting your business day in day out, imagine who they are, where they live, what they wear, like, how they talk, smell, laugh and smile and you’re half way there. The other half is how can your business add value to or enhance the better part of these people’s lives?

1: Define who your target audience are
Before you outline how you plan to connect, engage and communicate with your audience, think... who are your audience and what are you willing to give them that shows their worth to you before they even start to consider browsing your goods or services?

A simple start to finding your ideal customer/client is by putting them into 3 groups specific to your business environment and industry:


Group A - People who use your product or services regularly.
Group B - People who occasionally use your products or services.
Group C - People who are willing to try your product or services.

2: It’s all about the research
Do your research into these groups, nothing too stringent or in depth just enough for you to gain an understanding of the type of people you want to reach out to. Once you have an understanding of who your clients and customers are, their habits and lifestyle you’ll then have a better understanding of the best medium to engage them with (social media, digital ads, flyers, emails etc.) and more importantly, how it works from the end user perspective.

 

Escape your enclosure and explore.

3: Is your branding representative of you?
Does your businesses branding, message, look, tone and feel compliment it and your characteristics? People buy from people and whether they've met you yet or not they will build an expectation of you based on your branding and marketing. If your brand says one thing and you say another it can get confusing.

Do the following branded material you have really represent you and your business?  Tick the ones you believe do:

  •           Logo
  •           Business cards
  •           Headed letters
  •           Complimentary slips
  •           Flyers/ leaflets
  •           Social media adverts


4. Are you a same-old or a trendy?
The modern world loves to support others and is happy to support businesses that do the same, one way you can demonstrate this is by keeping up with what’s trending in your business environment, ask yourself a few questions about you, your business, and your knowledge of your business environment, what can you research and develop to edge ahead of your competition. Pointer # 1 of 1: do not mistake your business enclosure for your business environment, you think about that for a while. Tick the boxes of the trends you think your business  supports then start creating engaging ways you can use them to your advantage:

  •         Locally sourced products
  •         Family run business
  •         Self-sustainable business model
  •         Supplier of work training or work experience placements
  •         Hyper-local business interaction
  •         Children’s health and wellbeing
  •         Employability and business growth
  •         Supporter of charitable causes
  •         Supporter of ethical trade  


You may have suppliers who tick some of these boxes and as part of the supply/service chain may also be able to promote these facts to your advantage.

5. Informing others with key information
Now you are starting to gather some form of information about your business you may find this is like filling a dam with water, if there aren't planned releases through an appropriate and manageable operating system the results can be catastrophic. To ensure you deliver your findings effectively you will need to monitor the way it’s used and the effect it is having on its target audience; so try to assess your businesses productivity.

Tick the boxes you have a confident understanding of, and can present an overview of your findings:

  •           Week/month/annual sales figures or forecasts
  •           Competitors behaviour
  •           Seasonal business fluctuations
  •           Popular products/services
  •           Inbound marketing conversions
  •           Areas of potential growth
  •           Meeting deadlines and financial targets
  •           Setting up commission based rewards for third party assistance
  •           Delivering effective marketing  initiatives
 

Make sure your time works for you.

6. Time waits for no one, so use it wisely
What time of the day are customers most receptive to your advertising? What medium, message or content will you use to engage them and what can your business offer that’s different for that moment? Tick the boxes relating to the times you think your customers are most likely to connect with you (make notes about why you think they are connecting with you at these times):

  •           Breakfast time
  •           Brunch time
  •           Lunch time
  •           Tea time
  •           After work socialising hours
  •           Early evening
  •           Mid-evening
  •           Late night
  •           Early hours of the morning
 

"Use the tips in this document as part of an achievable
action plan and you may see some fantastic
results sooner than you could ever have imagined."

 

7. Creating new business opportunities
What activities or events can your business add value to? How can your business enhance the end user
experience in a way that they are likely to become loyal to you and recommend you to others? Can your business supply services or products in the areas listed below? Think carefully about who your business serves and what your business offers, it’s now time to make a note of the possible services next to the relevant fields, these can then be developed into additional income streams over time:

  •           Personal experiences
  •           Birthdays         
  •           Weddings         
  •           Funerals         
  •           School activities         
  •           Fetes, Fun-days and Festivals         
  •           Corporate functions         
  •           Exhibitions         
  •           Sporting events
 

Connect, Engage then Expand.

8. Routes to market
What marketing mediums are you using to promote your business? You may be missing out on opportunities by not using as many of the following channels as possible. Tick the boxes you currently use:

  •           Text messaging
  •           User generated content
  •           Email messaging
  •           Social media interaction
  •           Competitions
  •           Subscriptions
  •           What’s app
  •           Direct marketing
  •           Partnerships and affiliations


8b.  Time spent on marketing
How much time do you spend a week on these activities (jot it down):

Hours spent     Activity
    ______            Text messaging
    ______            User generated content
    ______            Email messaging
    ______            Social media interaction
    ______            Competitions
    ______            Subscriptions
    ______            What’s app
    ______            Direct marketing
    ______            Partnerships and affiliations


9. Special offers and promos
Name the three most successful promotional offers you have launched over the past three months
        1.
        2.
        3.

9.b Of the three, order them 1a being the most successful, stating why you think that particular offer/campaign was successful?

        1a.
        2a.
        3a.

You've now taken 9 simple steps to understanding the basics of marketing, ranging from researching your ideal customer to finding the info needed to develop new routes to market. Use this guide correctly and you can make a noticeable difference to your business, its revenue and your lifestyle.

Receive more FREE TIPS to help you level the business playing field by subscribing to our newsletter below or call FREE on 0800 772 3369 if you’d like us to create a personal programme for you based on the outcome of your checklist. We’d be more than happy to help.

Thank you for your time, now go and GET IT DONE!