I have said it before, and it bears repeating that there are two things thatwill make and break your business. The first thing is cash flow, when you have expenses that are above and beyond your expenses. The second thing that will close your business is a lack of or refusal to market. Networking, establishing yourself as an expert in the field, using social media, blog posts, magazine articles, pr work, anything that makes you findable, all constitute marketing. In business, it is necessary to replace the natural attrition; for me, I have to market, advertise, and be findable. If you have a good answer to something that is important to people, or something that will make a difference and you aren’t willing to share it, you’re being selfish and withholding. Whatever it is that keeps you from marketing, fear of being ‘salesy’, arrogant, boring, or whatever, challenge it, and be willing to share the solution you have.
What’s your natural talent, what comes easy for you, and what is foremost in your mind? Myself, I am a verbal person; I reiterate my passions through my radio show, I market through this show. I leave the writing to my blogger. I go to places where I can talk, meet people, shake hands, and let them know that I specialize in management.
So, what are you willing to do to be findable? God wants you to share your gifts and business.
A large and important part of marketing is branding, websites, business cards, one-page flyers, brochures, pricing sheets, logos, etc. Choose a branding platform, the yellow pages, Yelp, industry specific magazines, a website, links in emails, and consistently market. For me, I use a Facebook wall, a professional page, not a personal page, and I am no expert about it, but I hear great things about Linkedin. Strive for an expert status, work to be an expert in your niche. Decide what platforms you can pony up to and find the right platform for your business. If you are a service based business, or one that is a low-cost business such as a barber, a dog groomer, a café, plumber, find platforms that fit your service.
No matter your business, market yourself and your company; give seminars, speak at the local Kiwanis club, rotary club, or chamber of commerce.