You have finally done it. You’ve finally taken the big brave step of handing in your resignation to follow your dreams, and start your journey as an entrepreneur. After months of product research, business planning, laughter and tears: congratulations are in order. You know that there is a need for your product or service, but how do you get the customers to see the benefits too?
The first step is to go back to your business plan. How much have you allocated for your marketing budget? For a new business, it is recommended that you have a budget set for between 12% and 20% of your projected annual revenue – it seems a high percentage but as your business establishes after the first year, you will need substantially less (think between 6% and 12%). Hopefully this question has not made you bite your lip. If it has, you need to consider you options for short term business loans. Whilst you may feel uncomfortable taking out a loan, it is in these early days that you will need a cash injection to get your business off the ground, but by investing in a marketing strategy your return on investment is sky high.
Your brand needs to promote your business, connect you with your customers and differentiate you from the market competition. You want your brand to represent your business values and create trust, you want it to characterize your core beliefs. This is more than an image or a banner – this is going to be longtime partner of yours so you need to get it right. Once you have a logo and brand to be proud of, be sure to use it whenever you can: e-mails, any documents that you send out in the post, packaging and stationery.
Your website is the gateway to your success. It needs to be brand heavy and be instantly recognizable as the digital face of the company. You need to have a website that goes beyond being user friendly, you want it to inspire visitors to become customers. Have a blog section on your site to attract more visitors; by having audience relevant and informative content that matches what people are searching for, they have distinguished themselves as being interested in your product. Make sure that your content is optimized for search engines to help people find you as easily as possible. Remember that social media is your friend, and you need to use it to generate interest in your site.
Mobile business promotion isn’t just for tradesmen. Think about the number of people that see your vehicle during the day. Vehicle wrap advertising means that you can have removable stickers on your car that display your logo and contact details. How do you think you recognize Ford, BMW and Audi? It’s because you subliminally see their logos day in day out – take advantage of this for your company.
You are in a great position to turn your business into a success. Think clearly and concisely who your customers are going to be, and what they need from you. Provide them with solutions. By understanding who your target customers are, you can develop a marketing strategy to promote your business to them.