When you’re just starting out in business, it’s difficult to find much time and energy for marketing, and it can be hard to know where to begin. The single most important thing to do at this point is to formulate a plan. Rushing into marketing without a strategy will waste both time and money. You need to establish the basics about your business, your customers and your capacity, and build a strategy to suit.
Develop your brand
Before you start to market your company, you’ll need to know what you’re marketing. Does that sound confusing? What is your company as you want the public to see it? If it’s nothing but a name and a new take on a familiar product or service, you won’t get very far. Brand building is about creating an image for your business – everything from associated colors and logo to short, punchy taglines that sum up who you are and what you do. Once this work is done, you’ll be able to take a consistent approach to marketing that will generate a much stronger response.
Understand your target customers
After you’ve established what you’re marketing, you need to think about who you’re marketing it to. Unless you understand your target customers, you won’t be able to sell them anything. Don’t try to reach out to too many different groups at once. Make use of data that’s already available online and do further research of your own as needed. Encourage people who make purchases from you to leave feedback (giving them a chance to win something if they do so is a good way to do this) and use that to inform your marketing going forward.
Bring in outside help
Far too many new business owners exhaust themselves by trying to handle all their marketing themselves. Marketing is dangerous like that – there are always new things you can do and new people you can reach, and if you’re not careful, it will consume you. Turning to a guest blogging service is a good way to start finding help. It’s a simple way to access the services of experts who can produce high-quality content that references or promotes your brand and distribute it on relevant sites all around the internet, instantly raising your profile and increasing your credibility.
Keep it focused
Don’t try to engage in too many different marketing strategies at once. You can’t realistically maintain a presence on every social media platform, and you’ll never be able to design a website that appeals to everybody. Focus on what appeals to your target customers – you can always add more as your business grows – and on what you have the capacity to do well, either through outsourcing to individuals and agencies that have impressed you or by working in-house. In marketing, it’s always better to do a small number of things really well than to take on too much and make a mess of it.
Although there are never any guarantees in marketing, a well-planned approach with a strategy built around your advantages, needs and opportunities will give you a much better chance of success. Remember that there is always more to learn, and keep on making fine adjustments as you go.