Some great practical sales and marketing nuggets that you can apply immediately in your business.
In the competitive landscape of today’s business world, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) often face a unique set of challenges when it comes to marketing. Budget constraints, limited resources, and the constant need to stay ahead of the curve can make it seem like an uphill battle. However, amidst the vast sea of marketing strategies, there are invaluable gems that, when harnessed effectively, can drive tremendous success for SMEs. In this article, we will explore some of these marketing nuggets that have the potential to make a significant impact on SME businesses, helping them shine brightly in their respective industries.
The Power of Storytelling: Storytelling has been an integral part of human communication for centuries, and in the world of marketing, its significance remains unchallenged. For SMEs, having a compelling brand story is more than just a buzzword; it’s a powerful tool to forge an emotional connection with customers. By weaving together the origins, values, and aspirations of the business into a captivating narrative, SMEs can leave a lasting impression on their audience and create brand loyalty that goes beyond mere product offerings.
Leveraging the Social Media Landscape: In today’s digital age, social media has become an indispensable channel for reaching and engaging with target audiences. SMEs can harness the immense potential of social media platforms to build brand awareness, foster a community of loyal customers, and drive sales. By adopting a strategic approach and tailoring content to resonate with their audience, SMEs can amplify their reach, even on a shoestring budget, and stay ahead of their competitors in the ever-evolving social media landscape.
Influencer Marketing: While influencer marketing has gained immense popularity among larger brands, it’s also a viable strategy for SMEs looking to make an impact on a smaller scale. Partnering with influencers whose values align with those of the business can provide an authentic way to connect with potential customers and gain their trust. By tapping into the influencer’s established audience, SMEs can effectively reach a niche market and cultivate a loyal customer base.
The Art of Customer Personalisation: One-size-fits-all marketing approaches are becoming less effective in a world where customers crave personalised experiences. SMEs can leverage customer data and analytics to gain insights into their target audience’s preferences and behaviours. Armed with this knowledge, they can craft tailored marketing campaigns that make customers feel seen and understood, leading to stronger relationships and higher customer retention rates.
Seizing the Power of User-Generated Content: User-generated content (UGC) has become a driving force behind the success of many brands, providing authentic and relatable content that resonates with audiences. SMEs can encourage their customers to create and share content related to their products or services, thereby boosting brand visibility and credibility. Embracing UGC not only serves as free promotion but also reinforces the sense of community around the brand.
Nurturing Customer Reviews and Testimonials: Positive customer reviews and testimonials can be a game-changer for SMEs. Potential customers often seek social proof before making a purchasing decision. Encouraging satisfied customers to leave reviews and testimonials can help build trust and credibility, making it more likely for new customers to choose the SME’s offerings over those of competitors.
Marketing for SMEs doesn’t have to be an overwhelming endeavour. By unearthing and applying these marketing nuggets, small and medium-sized businesses can create a strong brand identity, reach a wider audience, and cultivate lasting customer relationships. Embracing the power of storytelling, leveraging social media, harnessing the influence of others, personalizing customer experiences, and tapping into the potential of user-generated content and customer testimonials can position SMEs on the path to success in today’s dynamic business landscape.
#1 The need to be different
Business core fundamentals like quality, customer service, speed of response, friendly helpful people and error-free delivery nowadays constitute what every customer expects. All of them are a GIVEN. If you and your entire company are not masters of business core fundamentals, additional marketing information is worthless.
- Be better than your competitors. In everything BUT price (being the cheapest for most businesses is not a long term strategy)
- Be different from your competitors. In a way you can quantifiably prove. Just saying that your products are better wont cut it with modern buyers
- Get closer to your customer than your competitors. Relationships rule.
#2 Integrate your website to all your marketing tactics
Many companies still fail to seize all of the available opportunities to drive potential and existing customers to their website. This makes no sense as your website is one of the pieces of marketing collateral you have complete control over.
Standard marketing tools for driving visitors to your website include social media, email signatures, letterhead, business cards, e-newsletters, articles, special offers, invoices, promo materials, point of sale and signage.
Aside from word of mouth, your website is the number one due diligence tool that people use to determine if a company or product is for real. Make sure your website is making the impression you need it to make.
#3 Experiment to find your marketing formula
Every company in every industry, has inherent, unique aspects that either enable or disable them from being great. This may include their culture, leader, timing, certain individuals, intellectual property and location.
Discovering the right marketing mix (your formula) in today’s day and age is no longer about just finding it, but equally about testing & experimenting with it. Such testing helps you find what works and what doesn’t.
The key to marketing experimentation is ensuring that you have consistent processes in place. What marketing can you perform repeatedly and with ease in a way that is measurable? Often this is a function of time, money and resources. With most businesses there will be a mix of multiple approaches.
The key to finding the successful formula is to test & experiment. Start with what makes the most sense for your market, tweak your formula until it works and then keep testing until you get it to work better. Never stop. Note this approach particularly applies to your website which is essentially never finished.
#4 Marketing prioritisation
Market to your clients first, your top prospects second and the rest of the world last.
We find this is the most underrated and under-utilised approach in business today. Most businesses think that the secret to finding new business is to focus marketing and advertising budgets on people they don’t know.
For existing businesses we prefer to market to the businesses we know first, then move on to those who are strangers.
You can benefit greatly from doing the following:
- Building two databases: one for your current clients and one for your prospects
- Communicating to your clients (and top prospects) on a regular basis
- Communicating with all other known prospects
- Defining and targeting your ideal clients
- Segmenting your databases (ideal clients, clients, top prospects, other prospects as a starting point) and varying messages to each
- Test, retest and split test all marketing to measure changes / improvements
Marketing Nuggets – Helping You Find Yours
Ideal for: Small business owners and managers in small to medium organisations with a sales and marketing responsibility. These presentations are suitable for all product or service based organisations, including the not-for-profit sector.
Benefits from attending:
- Change the way you think about marketing your business.
- Discover new ways to think about your customers and products/services.
- Stimulate your marketing activity.
Event format: Each session takes the form of a one-hour intensive and practical presentation providing you with ideas and key activities you can complete back at work.
The seven Marketing Nugget sessions include:
1. Understanding your customers – why customers might want to buy from you
- Why customers aren’t all equal.
- Why customers buy.
- How customers buy.
- What customers do once they have bought.
2. Product development – making sure you have the products your customers want.
- What makes up a product?
- How to develop existing products.
- Why the customer should be part of the process.
- Why new products fail and how to avoid the traps.
3. Competitor research – making sure you differentiate yourself from the rest
- Who are your competitors?
- Why would your customers buy from them?
- Accurately researching your competitors.
- The importance of correct pricing.
4. Communicating with customers and prospects – getting your message across
- Getting the message right.
- Making sure the message gets to them.
- Get more bangs for your bucks.
- Developing a one-page promotional plan.
5. Digital marketing – making the web work for you
- Four key website rules.
- Creating powerful email.
- Using social media as a business tool.
- Mobile marketing.
6. The service element – delighting your customers
- Identify what’s of importance to your customers.
- Have you got systems in place to deliver?
- Have you got the right people?
- Managing customer expectations.
7. Getting your strategy straight – knowing where you are going
- Vision – know where you are going.
- Choosing your customers.
- Give your customers what they want.
- Developing a one-page business plan.