There are many benefits of owning a small business. You’re free to set your own hours, make your own rules and change your business model as you see fit. In return for this flexibility, small business owners often must make compromises. You probably lack the wealth of resources larger companies have, and your marketing efforts may suffer as a result. Take heart, though. Even if you can’t afford to hire a marketing guru or a telemarketing service, you can use tools at your disposal to develop a dynamic integrated marketing strategy.
Invest in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software
You could track customer data by hand in notebooks, but there’s no need to when you can purchase affordable CRM software and automate this important job. Using CRM software is like adding an administrative assistant to your staff —one you don’t have to pay. This tool keeps track of call logs and B2B lead generation results, manages spreadsheets and more. You’ll spend less time on administrative tasks and more time nurturing relationships and boosting sales.
Maximize the Power of Email
Email is either a blessing or a curse for small businesses. Sending out hundreds of individual messages to potential customers is time consuming and usually a waste of time. Developing a custom email campaign set up to send messages to your contact list on a regular basis takes little time but keeps your name in front of prospects.
Treat Your Future Customers as You’d Want to be Treated
You’re busy and so are your potential customers. How do you feel when you open your inbox and see a marketing email every day from the same company? What about all of that junk mail you get — how much of it do you actually read? What makes you open some marketing materials but not others? What makes you decide to act on a marketing e-mail or direct-mail piece? Use your answers as a starting point for your strategy. If possible, ask your customers which marketing approaches they relate to and which annoy them. Ask them why they decided to do business with you rather than your competitors.
Occasionally Back Off from the Sales Pitch
Buy me! Buy me! Buy me! When you receive constant emails like that, what do you do? You probably hit “delete.” When you receive emails with helpful how-to tips, interesting relevant articles or feel-good testimonials, you’re far more likely to open them, and they probably make you feel good about the company that sent them.
Continue to Court Your Customers
Once you get a new customer, that’s not the end of the story. You’ve got to work hard to nurture that relationship. Word-of-mouth referrals are far more valuable than any marketing e-mail or call from a telemarketing service. Those referrals come from your customers. Keep them happy and they will do the marketing for you.
If you’re ready to pursue integrated marketing solutions that will help your business grow, contact us at Grindstone. We specialize in marketing, lead gathering and B2B.