If your business is floundering and you’re having a hard time selling your services, ask yourself this question, “How do you expect your target market to find you?” When revenue and business fall, it’s important to increase your marketing activity and to have a definite plan about how you expect your target market to find you and to become acquainted with your business. If your business is struggling, don’t waste your time on depression. Instead, spend it on marketing your business and doing everything possible to stay in front of your market. If you are not actively marketing, how could your market find you? Let’s look at some ideas about this question that you could use in your marketing activities.
1. Become an expert on where your target market shows up, and show up there also.
This requires thinking beyond the typical Chamber of Commerce networking events or service group meetings. In order to determine where to access your target market, you must know them well enough to understand their habits, including attendance. Explore your target market in great depth so that you understand what “makes them tick”. This should include their social needs and organizational affiliations. Where do they go? What do they do? How can you associate with them?
2. What can you do daily (or close to daily) to get the name of your business in front of your target market?
Of course, advertising is one way, but what else could you do? If you’re a writer, how could you use writing to let your market get to know you? If you are a public speaker, what kind of speaking plan could you put together so that your market could learn your ideas and becomes exposed to your business? If “schmoozing” is your forte’, how could you become a part of the “regulars” where your target market shows up?
3. What kind of industry groups and events are attended by your target market?
Explore the ways that you can access your market by doing research on industrial groups and events. These tend to be more “hard core” groups, heavily or solely attended by your target market. You’ll find high concentrations of target market prospects. What’s important in joining these activities is not to be there to sell, but rather to learn about and to form relationships with the members. You must have a sincere interest in what’s going on in the industry, and not insert your business into the midst of the activities. It will work better to let your new friends “discover” what you do as they get to know you better.
4. Figure out where your target market goes to find the solution to their problem – that you can provide.
Do they go to the Internet first thing to find a solution? Are they likely to go to the Yellow Pages? Do they expect to find your advertising in a local paper? If you don’t know the answer to these questions, it may be time to do a little informal polling among your existing and former clients. Unless you know where they will be looking for services like yours, you cannot make the right marketing decisions.
5. When they do find you, will they find professionally polished marketing writing and website writing?
Don’t lose out on new business, because your marketing writing and website writing doesn’t do a great job of selling your services. After all your work to get prospects to find you, you’ve got an excited prospect. You don’t want them to read your marketing writing and website writing and lose that excitement. In fact, they will end up disappointed – and maybe even angry – that you’ve wasted their time and gotten them excited. They will feel that you misled them or let them down. They’ll fell that when they got to the “prize” (a solution to their problems), it was no prize after all. Make sure that your marketing writing and website writing closes the deal for you rather than repulses your target market.
If your business is struggling, don’t sit in the house depressed and doing nothing. Get into high gear with your marketing. Figure out where your target market is and where they expect to find you. Do what it takes to get in front of them where they will know your business when they are ready to buy.
Suzi Elton provides business writing that attracts targeted prospects to your service business and converts them into clients for you. She is a Robert Middleton Certified Action Plan Marketing Coach, as well as a professional writer. Her website offers a free series of 8 assessments you can use to analyze your own site.