Have you ever really looked at a spider-web? It has all these attachment points along it’s outer rim, and then it has silk like threads going across the center. What if you looked at your marketing strategy as creating a spider-web whose goal is to get a prospect’s mindshare for so long that he realizes that what you have is what he needs and converts to a customer?
Step one: Identify your ideal customer. Demographics, psychographics, needs, compelling language that comes from the customer, locations/magazines/websites where they are attracted to go, preferred communication modes, buying habits, how referrals work in their world. This will help you conserve your time and money. Why do work that attracts less-than-ideal clients? Might as well go for the best ROI.
Step two: Build a marketing spider-web that keeps prospects engaged. Make every item lead to another item. On the outer rim of the spider-web are entry points for a prospect: your website and blog, face-to-face networking, a white paper, social media, teleclasses, webinars, speaking engagements, PR, etc. Each prospect goes from one touchpoint to the next and is invited to the third to stay engaged. For instance, entering the spider-web through face-to-face networking, then being nurtured through email marketing, then going to your website for a free white paper, then learning there is a teleclass to attend, then getting social media reinforcing messages to attend the teleclass, then hearing testimonials in the teleclass that lead to a one-on-one sales conversation. Don’t worry that your marketing spider-web isn’t robust and multi-faceted in the beginning. Pay attention to your ideal client and add new entry points that they will use and add them over time. It’s better to have each one reflect your branding and quality. That’s not to say it has to be perfect. It has to be easy to use and recognizable as yours.
Step three: Build a user community among your clients. A quarterly happy hour, a LinkedIn or Facebook or Google group forum, a charity run where all your clients are asked to participate with your staff, an invitation to join your Kiva group and support entrepreneurs internationally. This helps to maintain client loyalty, deepen relationships, generate referrals and attract new prospects.
Jeri Quinn is a small business grower working primarily with business owners who have 10-50 employees. With 35 years experience growing, running and selling small businesses, she knows business owners need help with the frustrations of cash flow, employee management and work/life balance. Her background includes work as an educator and a therapist so she gets how leaders get in their own way and have gaps in their knowledge.
Are you a business owner with 10-50 employees? Let her interview you and you can be included in her next white paper. There’s marketing and benchmarking advantages in it for you, too.
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