Where to promote your business
Know where to promote your business to maximize marketing and advertising budgetThe decision to promote your business, by any of the many options available, is crucial for those with aspirations of growth. For many companies today, promoting your business is a necessity to simply survive.
There are actually two avenues that need to be explored in answering the question of where to promote your business. To be successful using the traditional means of promotion; advertising using any number of different means (billboards, radio, flyers and direct marketing to name but a few), requires market research to optimize results.
The other place to promote your business is online using your web presence and social media outlets. For a lot of business owners, this is the avenue least traveled. Itís relatively new, and unlike the tried and true forms of promotion mentioned above, the unknown tends to breed caution. While thatís well and good, in todayís marketplace missing out on this medium is costing your business customers, period.
A good, comprehensive promotions campaign will involve both methods, and while there are obvious differences, they do share a couple things in common. Both need to be done strategically, and both should be measured. When it comes to promoting your business it boils down to one thing; Return on Investment (ROI).
Letís take a closer look at each, and some factors worth considering.
Where to promote your business first is perhaps the easiest question to answer; begin in-house with your office space. Wherever customers may be, ensure theyíre aware of special offers, upcoming sales and other information you deem critical.
This should be accomplished using posters and signs of course, but donít forget your customer interactions; these are great opportunities to share critical information. Letís use a bank teller as an example. Going into a bank to make a transaction and being asked about a car loan or other current promotion is commonplace, as it should be. Why not do the same at your business? It can be as simple as ďdid you hear about our upcoming sale?Ē
And letís not forget your existing customers. Getting customers talking about your products and services is the best means of promotion there is. Providing them with incentives to do so will certainly increase your chances of success. Even little things like magnets, coupons or small gifts for each referral is a sure-fire winner.
Using traditional advertising to promote your business is great. But to maximize its effectiveness, you need to know where to promote your business. It needs to be geographically-based, as a result of target market research. For example, if you own an upscale boutique selling high-end clothing, youíre wasting money conducting a direct mail campaign in a financially-depressed area.
Find out, through some analysis of your existing customers, if there are geographic commonalities. You may find a large percentage of your customers are from a certain neighborhood or part of town. Thatís where youíll get your best ROI.
Using your web presence to promote your business is likely something youíre already doing. But how effectively? If youíre not using incentives to get customers and prospective customers to opt-in (provide email addresses), you may be missing out. Collecting this data results it the least expensive means of promotion there is; email marketing.
Use the social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to set up a business profile, as an initial step. These sites, along with Google and Yahoo (they allow free, basic business directory listings), are where to promote your business. Posting informative articles, backlinking (articles with links back to key areas of your website) and finding friends and followers are just some ways you can use these tools to promote your business.
In fact, youíve probably seen more than one advertisement for a ďSocial Media ManagerĒ position in the employment ads. Keeping the information fresh can be a full-time job; one that may be worth hiring for.
As you can see, where to promote your business is not a question with one, correct answer. Well, thatís not quite true; there is one correct answer: all of the above.