Increase Your Business Profit
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Increase Your Business Profit

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The importance of strategically marketing your business cannot be overstated. Find out how you can create value for your clients, improve your brand, retain existing customers, attract new customers ...

The importance of strategically marketing your business cannot be overstated. Find out how you can create value for your clients, improve your brand, retain existing customers, attract new customers and ultimately increase the profitability of your business. Check out http://www.business-plan.co.za

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Increase Your Business Profit Increase Your Business Profit Document Transcript

  • Small Business Marketing PlanSmall BusinessMarketing Plan -Increase YourBusiness ProfitWithout BreakingYour MarketingBudget 1
  • Small Business Marketing PlanThe importance of strategically marketing your business cannotbe overstated. Find out how you can create value for yourclients, improve your brand, retain existing customers, attractnew customers and ultimately increase the profitability of yourbusiness. Click hereMost small business owners fail when it comes totheir small business marketing plans. Theyve gotexcellent technical skills in their line of work, butthat just doesnt translate to having effectivemarketing skills.As a result, profitability of many small businesseshas been declining over the years. Ever increasingcompetition is making it more challenging in manyways. For those businesses that arent losing money,most are not producing the profit they could be ifthey knew how to market themselves properly. 2
  • Small Business Marketing PlanThese business owners usually just copy what theysee other businesses doing, or they follow theadvice of some media sales person. The problem isthey copy the wrong types of businesses, and themedia sales people typically only know as muchabout effective marketing as the business ownerdoes.Without the right kind of marketing system in place,the success of any business is by pure chance. Tohelp remedy this situation, below are seven things asmall business can do to increase profits whilespending less on marketing.1. Use the power of free stuffEveryone likes getting free stuff and you can usethat to your advantage. If your business lends itself 3
  • Small Business Marketing Planto giving away free samples of your product, dothat. It helps get people hooked on it. Businessprofits have boomed on this marketing model.As Chris Anderson author of the book titled, "Free:The Future of a Radical Price" says, "You can makemake money giving things away."  In his bookhe talks about how businesses are giving awayproducts and services they used to charge for, andin return, a percentage of their customers arebuying something else. As a result, they are makingmore money than ever.When you give something away, you often activatea universal law called the "Law of Reciprocity." Itsays that when people get something free, they feelobligated to do something for you. Obviously it 4
  • Small Business Marketing Plandoesnt work every time, but it does work enough ofthe time.But there is another way to give away free stuff thatcan greatly benefit your business. When you do itright you get something very valuable in return:customer contact info...which leads us to the nexttip. 5
  • Small Business Marketing Plan2. Start capturing customer contact info and use itOne of the biggest mistakes small business ownersmake is not tapping their current customer base.They let customers visit their business (online oroffline) all day long without ever trying to capturetheir contact info so they can continue to marketproducts or services to them.You likely know how expensive it can be to get anew customer. But you can market to your currentcustomers for little or no cost. Capturing and usingcustomer contact info can mean the differencebetween a profitable business and one that barelygets by. 6
  • Small Business Marketing PlanYour business has more customer value in it than acustomer can possibly digest in a short visit so if youarent continually marketing to your customers, youare throwing money away!You can make customer contact capture easiersimply by using the power of free from tip numberone. Simply start a monthly drawing to give awaysomething free and print some registration slipsvisitors can fill out. Also have people register onlineon your website.Tell customers they only have to register once for alldrawings and you will contact them monthly viaemail to let them know who won. Of course you willalways include an offer for a product or service! 7
  • Small Business Marketing PlanWhat do you give away? Anything with a perceivedvalue makes a great free item. Free items do nothave to be expensive. Buy something on sale atWalMart or at eBay and offer it. You can also offerfree informational reports that help people solvetheir problems. People are always looking for waysto solve problems they are having.Of course, once you capture this information youhave to do something with it. If youre too busy totake on any more work, then the next tip will helpyou out.3. Use automated tools to keep in touch withcustomersOnce you have a customer list, I recommend yousend a minimum of 25 "messages" a year to it. A 8
  • Small Business Marketing Planmessage could be an email, direct mail piece, fax, orphone call.If you dont use an automated tool to do the workfor you, youll likely be too busy to get the job done.When you automate, your messages go outregardless of how busy you get (the more messagesthat go out, the busier youll get).One tool you can use is an email autoresponder,which is a web-based system that sends out emailswhen someone signs up. It sends out emails atintervals you set up. You can also set it up to sendan email on a specific day, such as a holiday.The great thing about an autoresponder tool is thatyou enter your messages in the autoresponder onetime, then it automatically sends emails to your list. 9
  • Small Business Marketing PlanYou can also broadcast messages any time youwant.Using this tool, keeping in touch with yourcustomers is easy and it will help keep thecompetition from creeping in and stealing yourcustomers because theyve forgotten about you andthe services you provide.4. Stop marketing like youre a big business.Marketing a small business like its a big business issomething almost every small business owner does.They just copy the marketing they see being done atlarge companies with big brands. This kind ofmarketing is called "brand identity," "brandbuilding," or "image" marketing. 10
  • Small Business Marketing PlanThis is a HUGE waste of advertising money for asmall business. You simply dont have the resourcesyou need to support a successful brandingcampaign.Brand advertising typically has no "call to action,"(they dont ask you to do anything). They just giveyou features of the product or service, or theyentertain you without asking you to do anything.Brand advertising is usually benefit free. The viewerhas to determine if there is a benefit to them. Itmay contain a list of features and the user will haveto assign their own benefit to each feature. It isusually focused on the product or provider of theproduct instead if the customer. 11
  • Small Business Marketing PlanA successful marketing campaign for a smallbusiness is created around direct responsemarketing techniques.5. Use old fashioned direct response techniques innew waysThe kind of marketing plan that works for a smallbusiness is direct response marketing. It doesntrequire a huge marketing budget to use effectively.It can be used for all types of products and services.And the good news is that you dont even have tohire an advertising agency to do it since it doesntrequire creativity. All you have to do is learn thebasic structure of direct response marketing and youcan easily increase the sales your business makes. 12
  • Small Business Marketing PlanDirect response sales copy always asks the reader orviewer to take some sort of action i.e. "Call in thenext 5 minutes, and well include a free set of Ginzusteak knives!".It may ask for the sale directly if a full "salespresentation" was done (one-step advertising), or itmay ask them to request more information (two-step advertising). It will at a minimum, ask thereader to take some form of "traceable" action soyou know if it is working or not.There should always be a headline for writtenadvertisements! Never put your company logo at thetop of a direct response advertisement. Thats brandadvertising. 13
  • Small Business Marketing PlanWhenever you create an advertisement in any formalways look at them from the customer point ofview. Look it and ask "Who gives a crap?" abouteverything in it. Do you think the customer caresabout your logo. No! They care about what you cando for them. Put in benefits and not features. Letthe customer know whats in it for them. Asuccessful direct response ad for a small businessincludes several things: 14
  • Small Business Marketing PlanAn offer to buy somethingSufficient information for the consumer to make adecision to act now (or directions on how to getmore info)An explicit "call to action" sooner rather than laterA clear way to respond such as a telephone numberor web page A means of tracking the response.Direct response advertising is not just used for mailcampaigns. You use it in all forms of media: print,web, mail, and broadcast. Take a look at all theadvertising you are currently doing no matter whereit is and start making the change now. 15
  • Small Business Marketing Plan6. Use the Internet to advertise for freeEven though websites as we know them haveexisted since around the early 90s, only 49%* ofsmall businesses currently have a website *9/08,Barlow Research. Its surprising how manybusinesses do not understand how powerful thismarketing tool is. If you dont have a website, getone because there is no better source of freeadvertising!The Internet has hundreds of "Web 2.0" websiteswhere you post "content" for free. The content canbe text, videos, or audios you create and it can lead 16
  • Small Business Marketing Planpeople to your business. Plus, it helps establish youas an expert in your field.EzineArticles.com is one such place you can postcontent. There was no charge to post this article. AllI had to do is write it, post it, and then you found it.You can put links in the "author resource" section, todrive traffic to a page on your website. The articlesyou post in EzineArticles can rank extremely well inGoogle search results with a little help from you.You also want to get your business listed in placeslike Google Local if you do local business. Onceagain this is absolutely free. 17
  • Small Business Marketing PlanOnce you learn how to do use the Internet forpromotion youll have a head start on the future ofadvertising and you get customers for free!7. Outsource routine marketing tasks so you canwork on the growing your businessOne of the biggest problems small business ownershave is that they get so consumed by working INtheir business, they dont have time to work ONtheir business. So no growth can occur.When it comes to marketing yourself on theInternet, there are ways to use "virtual assistants"to do most of the work for you. A virtual assistant is 18
  • Small Business Marketing Plansomeone you hire on a full or part-time basis whodoes the work for you.But a virtual assistant is not a direct employee soyou dont provide benefits or have the normalhassles of an employee. They are usually locatedsomewhere in the world that has low-cost wages sothey are very affordable. Thats the beauty of theInternet and the communication it provides.Virtual assistants arent just confined to smallbusiness marketing plan tasks though. They can doalmost anything for you: reservations, scheduleappointments, answer phones, customer service,send flowers, buy a present for your spouse, findsomeone to fix your car, website development, 19
  • Small Business Marketing Planaccounting, software development, writing,graphics, or anything you need.There are lots of resources on the Internet that canhelp you find a virtual assistant.Create Your Small Business Marketing Plan Now!Use these seven marketing tips to start building yoursmall business marketing plan right now. If youprocrastinate, your busy life will get in the way ofbusiness growth. Even if you only take a little of theadvice youve been given, youll find it can have abig impact on the profitability of your business. 20
  • Small Business Marketing PlanThe importance of strategically marketing your business cannotbe overstated. Find out how you can create value for yourclients, improve your brand, retain existing customers, attractnew customers and ultimately increase the profitability of yourbusiness. Click here 21
  • Small Business Marketing PlanTim Bruxvoort is an ecommerce entrepreneur who operates a full-time ecommerce businesscalled http://www.IntercomsOnline.com. He also is a partner in a small business marketing plansconsulting business that helps small business owners improve their marketing.For more information go to http://www.fastbusinessprofits.com.Article Source:http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Tim_Bruxvoort 22