Business Tips – How to Market Yourself and What You Do.
Do you remember when you first started in business? You were excited and passionate about your business and you JUST KNEW that you were going to make so much money as customers came banging your door down. Why?
Well because you’re so bloody good at what you do that they have no option but to come to you. I mean if they go to someone else they’d have to be a loser right?
Then business starts, maybe with a bang but often with a slow winding whimper. Customers are coming in but they’re not banging down your door like you expected. Why not? What’s wrong with these people? Seriously. Don’t they get how good you are?
I’ll let you in on a little secret ……………………….. no-one cares.
No-one cares how good you are, how passionate you are or that you believe you’re the best at what you do. What people care about most is how you connect with them. They care about who you are and what you stand for. People do business with people they like, people they connect with.
If you’re a lawyer, there are plenty of other lawyers out there. If you’re an accountant, yep plenty of there too. Doctor, plumber, personal training, cafe – yep, yep, yep, and yep, plenty of them too.
So why are people doing business with you? Why should they be doing business with you?
I recently wrote an article – The Problem is Never the Problem – which highlighted the fact that the problem is never lack of customers. It’s much more than that. The number one problem for most small businesses or organisations is marketing. People don’t really know who you are and what you stand for, so they don’t connect with you which means they don’t really care if they deal with you directly or not.
Your job is to let people know who you are, what you believe in, what you stand for, your values. Give them a chance to align with you. Here are some tips that you will definitely find useful:
Tell a Story.
You need to have a social media strategy whether you like it or not. You need to be where your target audiences eyes are and in 2015 that’s on social media. If there’s no social media strategy in place in your business, no matter what your business is, then you’re fast becoming irrelevant to the wider population. Old style media is losing ground constantly and you need to get your head into the game of 2015 so you can build a profile and connect with your audience.
This is more than just posting on facebook trying to sell stuff. No-one likes door to door salesmen and if your social media profile is just used for posting stuff for sale then you’re a modern day door to door salesman. With a swipe of their thumb your message is dismissed from your target audiences sight and they’ve moved on.
You need to work out how to engage and entertain your audience. Build their trust, get on the same level and provide amazing amounts of value for FREE. Your best stuff too, not crappy advice that’s FREE because it has no value. Provide value constantly and every now and then reference your product or offer something up for sale.
But if you sell, sell, sell or just talk about yourself, people will swipe and you’re gone. Get with the times and get a social media strategy. Today.
2. Give a Shit about People.
No-one cares how good you are, or how good you think you are. People want to feel like you give a shit about them, not just about there $$$. People care about what value you offer them and who you are as a business/person. They want to do business with people that align to them. You are who google says you are, not who you think you are, because it’s easy for people to google you these days and find out what you’re about.
If they find nothing out there, then they have trouble connecting. Put up stories about good things you’ve done. Put up great feedback you’ve received (with permission from whoever gave it of course). Show people that you genuinely care about them and they will feel more compelled to work with you.
3. Have a Social Conscience.
Get behind a cause, a charity, do something that gives back to your local community, and most importantly do it with no expectation of return.
This is quite clearly linked to point 2. It serves the purpose of showing that you care, showing that you give a shit, plus you get to give to your community in a meaningful and positive way. You just might change a life or two along the way. That’s pretty cool.
4. Be a People First Business
I have always been a firm believer that the customer is NOT always right. In fact, a vast majority of the time they’re simply not. BUT, the customer should always come first. So they’re not always right but they do always come first.
This means that when there’s a problem in your business with a client, the most senior person available should handle that problem – yes you. No matter how ‘busy’ you are, if you don’t put your clients first you won’t be busy for long, because customers are what make you busy. That’s kind of the goal right?
If there’s a problem the last thing you need to do is appoint blame, and the first thing you should do is empower your team through your support, then contact the client to ensure they have a pleasant experience with handling the issue. Look for the best resolution and act on it immediately. This is not something that a manager or owner should delegate unless your business has a specific person in a Client Relationship role. The longer you take to handle the situation, the more annoyed the client/customer becomes because the perception is that you don’t give a shit (refer point 2).
I trust that you find some value in this and implement a review of your current strategies to engage your potential customers in a meaningful, value adding way.
Enjoy life, keep the passion in your business (remember why you started) and if I can help in any way please don’t hesitate to let me know.
E – firstname.lastname@example.org
M – 0438 364106