A Marketing Strategy Defines the Tactics
Most small businesses are heavily engaged in incorporating tactics in their marketing. After all, every marketing article out there is on the 36 different ways you can use Facebook better, right? However, when your marketing is horrible to begin with, anything better will do.
The problem with this approach is that you then spend a lot of time searching for tactics that produce minimal results just to keep your business going. This uses up a lot of time and resource, not to mention the amount of stress involved in constantly looking for a solution.
When you approach your marketing with a systems view you will find that strategies dictate the necessary tactics. If you know who your ideal client is, what differentiates your business, and how to convey this message then the actions you should take to reach your target market will become clear.
Identify Your Ideal Client
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could stop losing money on marketing to people who will never buy, can’t buy, or that you’d rather not work with in the first place? Well, you have a grand opportunity and the power to do so.
By identifying your ideal client you can focus on generating quality clients that are more profitable to your business, more satisfied with your offering, and …. more likely to refer new business to you, for the win!
If you consider it this way, does it make sense to do anything else? Not really.
Start by identifying your most profitable clients, then segment this list by those most likely to refer. From this segment you can tell a lot about your ideal client. This should give you good indications of demographics and psychographics (the way they think and behave) of your best prospects – those similar to your ideal client.
The concept is simple, however, most business owners neglect this very important step in developing their marketing plans. I believe that it’s due to the idea that if they focus on a narrow set of prospects they will somehow miss out on other opportunities.
The idea of missing out on a sale can make just about anyone apprehensive. But, don’t forget that by identifying and focusing on your ideal client will not only yield more profits and happier customers, it will also rid you of problem customers that eat up a lot of your time, constantly complain, and will never refer your business, or worse, that may actually complain about you.
Differentiate Your Business
Once you have identified your ideal client you need to be able to stand apart from your competitors who also have their eyes set on your ideal client. Who wouldn’t want your most profitable clients who are likely to refer, right?
Let me say this right off the bat, nobody cares that you offer the best quality or highest service – this does not differentiate your business. This is a prerequisite for doing business. If you aren’t delivering the best to begin with, you better just close down shop now.
I expect great service anywhere I go, and if I don’t get it I can easily find another place that offers great service. So, for me, and I’m sure for you too, you aren’t looking around for a business that claims to be the best.
I’m looking for a repair shop that tows offers a free rental car and guarantees my repairs are done on time. I’m looking for a financial advisor that has my car detailed during our meeting. I’m looking for a local coffee shop where they care to know my name, what I like to drink, and only uses local organic products. These are businesses that differentiate from just offering the best service/product.
A good way to discover, if you don’t know already, what differentiates your business is to survey a handful of your ideal clients. This is a great opportunity to learn what they think makes you stand out and a way to learn how you can better serve them.
Define Your Marketing Strategy
By identifying your ideal client and what differentiates your business you can focus on marketing efforts that will yield the greatest results. You are now free to start enjoying your business again!
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