There are a number of ways to promote your product or service, but which ones are effective? Here’s some insight into the top 6 tools for promoting your business:
1. Press: Broadcast, online and print media can offer your business great publicity opportunities at very little, if any, cost to you. Make the effort to liaise with journalists and submit press releases, opinion pieces and columns for their publications. Also put yourself forward as an expert industry source when commentary is needed for articles and broadcast
ACTION: Identify regional, national and trade media that your audience is likely to read, watch or listen to and introduce your business to them.
2. Newsletters: E-newsletters provide a great platform of two-way communication with your subscribers on a regular basis. Use your newsletters as an opportunity to promote your views and general information on your sector and engage your clients in a way that builds trust in your brand.
ACTION: Create an account with someone like Mailchimp, AWeber, Constant Contact or something similar to send newsletters and manage distribution lists. Remember not to send them through your own personal/work email in bulk as yo may get your account classed as spam.
3. Case studies and testimonials: Demonstrating your expertise is a great way to promote your business without a hard sell. Hearing positive things about you from a client promotes your product or service better than any advertisement will and is more credible.
ACTION: Speak to your existing client base to create a bank of case studies and testimonials that can be used on your website and promotional material.
4. Events: Networking builds business opportunities for those wanting to raise the profile of a business. This is a good way to expand your professional network and give people an insight into your product or service.
ACTION: Check local event calendars and sign up to attend at least one event a week to raise your profile. Also check if there are there any opportunities for you to take on the role of guest speaker or offer your premises for external events to take place. If there are, seize them! Don’t forget to check out the atomic freebie on Networking Domination.
5. Blogging: Did you know small businesses that blog see 126% more growth in terms of leads than those that don’t? There are huge benefits to blogging (including the fact it’s free!) so embracing this as a PR tool is a must for any business.
ACTION: Set up a blog for your business and create a content schedule to ensure that at least one.
6. Social media marketing: If you want to create two-way conversations with your customers, drive traffic to your website, build a persona for your business and create brand awareness online then social media is for you. There are endless promotional possibilities for businesses that invest time and effort into using the likes of Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Google+, but there is no need to be active on all of them, so don’t create profiles everywhere. Make sure you choose your outlets wisely and have a targeted approach to attract the attention of you target audience.
ACTION: Do some research into competitor and customer social media activity. Where do they have a presence? Make sure you have a presence on the same outlets so you can compete in the market and interact with your target audience.
By Kathryn Dishman, Managing Director, KD Communications.
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