Marketing is equally or more important than any other aspect of your business. You could have the finest salon or pet styling school (hopefully both!) and offer the highest quality in pet styling, treat your clients like gold and have the greatest instructional program but without a successful marketing campaign to draw the clients to your door all your talents and hard work will not lead to success.
Marketing is something many businesses owners put at the bottom of the list and approach it with a hit or miss attitude. There are several reasons for this, most business owners don’t fully understand marketing, what makes a successful marketing piece and how to create a successful marketing strategy, plus marketing is expensive-not true!
This article will address each of these subjects with examples and hopefully the goal is to make you aware of how marketing is important to your business and how to market successfully and within your budget.
First let’s talk about what marketing is; Marketing is simply a way to let your future prospective clients (that will turn into clients) let them know about you, your services and how you can help them solve a problem!
Branding is another term used in marketing. Branding is trying to get your companies name in front of as many people as possible in hope they will remember that name when they go to buy for example a sneaker. This strategy involves millions a year in advertising dollars, they are best left to the giant corporations and even then I’m not so sure they get the best bang for their buck spending 3 million for a 30 second commercial during the Super Bowl, anyway you get the picture. Brandings goal is to get everyone to remember that name. Marketing your business goal is to develop prospective clients, which will then turn into clients who will purchase your services and refer you to their friends and family an added bonus to a successful marketing campaign!
Let’s get down to the nuts and bolts of marketing because just like grooming it is an ongoing learning process. You must be willing to open your mind and look for new ways to market your services as long as you are selling them. In this article we will touch on the basics and will go further in depth in next month’s article.
What is Marketing? The goal is to provide the information to clients and or prospects that are willing to buy your services. They have a need and are looking for someone to fill or solve their particular problem.
What does Marketing do for you? It provides the prospects that turn into clients who will buy your services and recommend you to friends and family.
How important is Marketing? It will make or break your business, no matter how good, honest or special you are.
Does Marketing have to cost a fortune? NO!! The best marketing is creative marketing.
This covers what marketing is and why it is so important because of article restraint we will go into detail with examples about specific marketing avenues, what works and why in next months article.
What makes a successful Marketing Campaign?
1) Learn your Clientele and market to that target audience. (No, it’s not just anyone with a pet or anyone who just loves animals and wants to work around them). The best thing you can do is develop your demographics down to a tee, that will help focus your marketing and will lead to a better grade of prospects, prospects are those who inquire before they buy and then they become clients.
2) Follow Up! Follow Up! Follow Up! Keep files on your prospects-get contact information and send out interesting info by email or just a hello call until you get a no or they become a client. Once they become a client you still want to follow up with them with interesting subjects (more detail next months article).
3) Know your target market-don’t just list your services and make it all about you for example your business name “Come buy from me”! Think about what your client base needs and wants then offer it in your Ad/Website. Make it about your future client. Look at your newspapers and see what ads grab you I’ll bet you they are the ones that offering a solution, not just listing their business name, services and phone number. (More again on this in next months article I will give specific examples)
4) Get a Calendar and make a Marketing Campaign Layout with “this day I will do this, this day I will do this. This is extremely important it helps you to know your marketing budget, keeps you on track and make sure if your advertising overlaps you have to know the results you are getting from each advertising piece so you can judge the results! You don’t want to waste money on a marketing piece if it is not producing results! Next month we will get into more details as this is extremely important for a small business to achieve the highest maximum results for their dollar.
Marketing can be fairly inexpensive you just have to be creative. I have had forty years of learning experience and continue to learn. Some marketing avenues didn’t work and some worked great. I have found per return on investment marketing doesn’t have to cost much, especially if you are willing to invest a little time and some stamps!
Well I hate to leave it at this but next month I will give specific examples and suggestions and what worked for me and others over the years. In the meantime scan your newspapers. The internet and your yellow book pages and see what words grab you, what words draw you in and makes you interested. Jot them down and come back next month and we will take the Mystery out of Marketing!
Until then take care and enjoy!