Keeping the lights on

How to keep the spotlight on your business by being consistent in your marketing.

How do you reach your customers? Phone? Email? Social Media? Depending on the type of business you have, you might do any one or all of these. But even though I myself have used various marketing tools, I recently learned a valuable lesson. Consistency.

You see, I little while ago, you’ll know that I rebranded my business. So I created a new blog, and also a new marketing plan, which was kind of based on my old marketing plan. But as I plodded along, not really getting very far, I hadn’t considered that my plan had a couple of very obvious flaws.

Firstly, the people I was marketing to were far too diverse in what they did. I was reaching out to this company and that company, with the same message. The problem was that the companies in question were far too different from each other to want or need the same thing. Therefore, my message was falling on deaf ears.

My second problem was that I was only reaching out to these companies once with a very generalised message, and then not following up quickly enough, if at all in some cases. So they had a very quick glimpse of my shop window, and then moved on and forgot about it.

Does any of that sound familiar?

So how did I address the issues?

Firstly, I thought about who I was marketing to. I knew my system was far too sporadic but I was afraid if I narrowed down my options, I wouldn’t reach enough people. It wasn’t until I started speaking to other copywriters that I had my lightbulb moment. It makes no difference how many people you contact if they’re not the right people. So I chose quality over quantity, I thought about who actually would need my services, and I decided to concentrate my marketing on those companies. I created a database to keep me on track.

Secondly, I realised that I was sending out a very vague, and perhaps a little desperate, message, and then feeling deflated when I didn’t get any feedback. So I was giving up far too soon. I thought about creating relationships rather than just marketing, and I wrote a simple introduction email, and waited a few weeks before following up to check the recipients had got my message. I got a few responses. I waited a few more weeks, and then sent another email, reminding my list what I did for a living, and that I was available for hire. This was my turning point. I started getting replies. And I’m pretty sure that it was because people started to recognise my name.

So if you are looking to increase your business, I would recommend thinking about these points:

  1. Have an idea of who you are marketing to, and create a database to work with.
  2. Don’t try to reach everybody. Pick an industry or type of person who will most benefit from what you offer.
  3. Plan your approach. Talk to people, not at them. Tell them how you can help without preaching or begging.
  4. Be consistent. Don’t bug people, but reach out to them more than once, perhaps monthly or every couple of months. They will start to remember you if you take an interest. 

I hope that gives you some ideas – it’s an approach that’s starting to work for me, and it’s certainly not perfected yet!

Have you anything to add? What works for you?

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