Did you know that the primary factor to having a strong brand to be easily recognized by your prospects, leads and clients – is to keep everything consistent? Often times consistency gets misunderstood by as “boring” and “need to change things up”.
Starting a business on your own is overwhelming with all the different hats you have to wear. Attorneys, accountants, contracts, leases, hiring, equipment, supplies, product and service development, clients, and so much more. It’s an incredibly stressful and expensive process which makes spending more money on something like a “brochure” seem unimportant.
One of the top misconceptions startups have is “if I build it, they will come”.
It’s a hard realization that it’s going to take a lot more than just having a great product or service to make a successful business. The business development tasks are just one path an entrepreneur needs to take to develop a sustainable business. The other is the ‘branding and marketing’.
Maybe you have a Facebook page started, ordered business cards from an online printer, and threw together a website – maybe they look polished, maybe they make you feel like you have ‘something’ to show for all your hard work of getting the business started – but will it make a solid impression to get people excited to buy from you? Will they know that all those elements you invested in are all the same business?
Below are 7 big questions to ask during the startup phase to help align your marketing with your business goals.
- What’s your story? Who are you? What are you offering? Why do people need it? When you outline the details of how your business serves your consumers it makes developing marketing tools, messages, and calls-to-action very laser-focused and extremely effective.
- How will you set apart from the competition? What will make people choose your company over the competition? Consumers need help understanding what makes you different from the competition. Keep an eye on what your competitors are doing but stay focused on your own consumer needs, deliver them solutions, and exceed their expectations.
- What should your new customers expect when they come to you? And more importantly, how can you build a team to exceed those expectations for a memorable experience? A big part of marketing is educating consumers on not only what you offer, but what it will be like to purchase from you. When you can describe the experience they will have with your company that’s setting the stage for your brand and prepares your team to exceed those expectations so that their experience is memorable. When it’s memorable than they are 4x more likely to return to your company, leave recommendations, and give you referrals.
- What’s your plan to get them into your door? Impulse marketing is the best way to waste your marketing budget and quickly get frustrated with “marketing doesn’t work”. Putting a 6-month or better yet a 12-month plan in place will empower you to make solid decisions on how and where to spend your precious marketing budget. In combination with knowing your clients, you will be able to strategize systematically-themed promotions that speak directly to your business trends, consumer needs, and so much more.
- What’s your plan to keep them coming back? Exceeding expectations is a sure way to have repeat consumers, but people are 50% more likely to give referrals when they are incentivized. Having a referral program in place will ensure you’re taking care of each of your clients and showing the appreciation you have for not only their purchase but for their referrals.
- What’s your plan to continually keep getting new clients? Having a plan in place is a the perfect foundation to your marketing tactics, but be flexible at the same time. This marketing foundation will enable to you to spend your time and energy on maximizing the services you offer which will allow you to zero in on how the consumer is reacting to your business. You’ll be able to tune in and listen deeply for their needs and pains that you will be able to capitalize on. Being able to shift with the tides along your marketing plan will ensure you’re taking care of your clients and prospects.
- Do you have the time and expertise to create and manage a strategic marketing plan? Let’s be honest, do you really have time to keep your website updated, keep consistent social media posting, build strong effective print ads, develop strategic sales tools, etc. Having a strategic marketing partner who has your consumers interest as their primary focus will ensure that your brand is working, your marketing dollars are bringing you a return on your investment, and growing your business. (This isn’t a joint role with your admin.)
If you are ready to grow your business, it’s time to bring in a marketing and branding partner to help you position your business in the most maximized way to retain and attract your clients.
Doing strategic marketing and building a strong brand will bring in more business so get prepared in keeping the consistency, exceeding the expectations, and the volume of work a strategic marketing program will bring to your business.