I'm often asked, "Rubina, what is the one thing I can do to get clients." Or "What is the one thing I can do to get people to donate to our organization." My answer is always, "There's no ONE thing." Many people don't want to hear this, but it's true.
We are all regularly and constantly consuming massive amounts of information from a variety of sources. Rarely do we run out and buy something or get compelled to give right when we consume that information. It's when we are ready to buy something or ready to give to a cause or organization. One or two brands or messages will actually stand out.
We can recall these specific brands or images more easily. Why? Because we saw the brand and/or message enough times through various channels and they stuck with us. This is called accomplishing top of mind status. If you did just one thing it would be very hard to achieve this status. Therefore, a variety of methods are recommended, even if you are a small business or organization...
TIP 4: Multiple marketing channels.
Here is a list I like to recommend to folks if they want to get the word out about their business or organization. You start where you are and you build. Build by either adding more channels or turning up the frequency of delivery on an existing channel. Start by sending one press release every quarter, but then you up the frequency of delivery by sending out one press release every month.
1. Network - There are many networking opportunities out there. The problem is trying to choose which ones to go to! Chose the ones where the people who are most suited to buy your product or likely to give to your organization. Be your best at these networking events. Also, you don't always have to attend the same networking events in town. Create your own. Gather groups of people together who share the same interests. Start a book club for instance! Get creative and get the word out.
2. Referrals - Don't assume that because you did a great job for your client they will automatically tell people about your excellent services. You have to ask them for referrals. You also have to follow up. Give people the tools and reminders they need to help you network.
3. Social Media - The people who have friended you (this is now a word, at least in my book, thanks to Facebook!) are your biggest fans. They've come to you with permission. Give them information about what you are doing. Don't make it a sales pitch. Genuinely share what is happening with you and with your business or organization. Engage others by commenting on their posts, etc.
4. Enviable Business Cards - Craft something fantastic to leave with the people you meet. Every time you encounter someone, exchange business cards. Your card does not have to be a standard. It can be the size of a postcard or even stitched onto cloth. But always leave your mark. On the flip side, do not leave without their information! Be proactive...be the first to reach out.
5. Press Releases - You are an expert! Let the media spread the word. Send out bi-weekly or even weekly press releases full of information. Build media relationships...lots of them! Press releases don't have to be strictly business. They can be about a great new book you read, related to your field of expertise, containing your quick synopsis. You could write an expertise blurb related to your field. There are many ways to go with a press release that doesn't have to be sales pitchy. The knowledge you are sharing sells itself.
6. Collaboration - Find other businesses, organizations, and individuals you might be able to collaborate with to stretch those marketing dollars. They don't have to be businesses and organizations that do similar work. Pick entities that compliment you and your business. For instance, I was at a used book store today next to an herb store. As I was checking out, the store manager said that if I supported the herb store then they would give me 20% off my purchase. The same practice was upheld at the herb store. Yay for collaboration!
Focus on these few things. Start documenting what works and what doesn't. And be ready to make changes accordingly, if necessary.
To your Illumination,