Ways of Advertising a Small Business.

Contributor: Mr. Panache

Marketing 2019

This article seeks to find ways for businesses to benefit from marketing. It will change perspectives, moving people from traditionally looking at marketing and embracing the contemporaneity of this management process through which goods and services move from concept to the customer. Every strategy requires research and if that is for a business, then the focus of the research would need to be on a business's competitors, customers, market size and the potential for market growth. After reading other complementary articles building up to this one, we realise that once a business has achieved its product/market fit, then growth is simply a matter of smart marketing on the front end and a good customer retention on the backend.

According to an article on https://simplicable.com/new/business-tactics, “Where strategy provides long term direction to a business, a tactic deals with day-to-day realities to seek gains and avoid losses.” Fact remains, you need to focus on more than just attracting new customers or clients. With experience, we find that entrepreneurs tend to use pure attraction approaches as tactics because they often feel that people are most familiar with. Advertising does not have to be expensive, especially if an entrepreneur will focus on the brand, considering where the clients or target audience is.

Publicly out there, we often get bombarded with ads that we see on TV, radio, sides of buses, magazines and newspapers, and yes we also play a part in this category. The usual combination at most times incorporates ads that are nothing more than a catchy image, slogan, Web address plus contact details. With great strategies and tactics effected, awareness can be created for your business and suitable opportunities can also be attracted. What entrepreneurs really need is to be doing market research and writing a marketing plan.

With proper research and effective plan, a guideline can be provided keeping the company on track in terms of being focused on what it need to do for growth. Without anything like a plan, a small business is ought to focus its attention on bringing in new clients through networks, referrals or printed media. Essentially, these efforts end up shouting “attraction”, and half the time they take the longest to generate results which a business can really bank on.

Perhaps, entrepreneurs need to always remember the goal of marketing which is to connect your business’ value to the right customer base. The different industries will present competition that requires your business to constantly innovate, introducing improved and better products or services. While the different strategies and tactics may exist for a business to deal with pressures such as those brought by competition, an article on https://smallbusiness.chron.com/business-tactics-strategies-5148.html cites “Other companies use low-price tactics presenting rebates, special sales and deep discounting. Other tactics that lower the price of purchase include inexpensive financing and delayed payment due dates from 30 days to as long as one year.”

Unlike a strategy, it is usually unlikely for a tactic to make assumptions about the future but work or react to current situations. Much like with prices, they can be maintained as a tactic in most companies, playing on people’s psychological tendencies to equate high quality with high prices. Instead of investing so much resources in straight attraction tactics that you are just going to prioritize and sit back hoping that people will decide to call, perhaps a business can also just subscribe to the 4Ps, making up a typical marketing mix - Price, Product, Promotion and Place. Several other Ps like Packaging, Positioning, People and even Politics as vital mix elements can also jut be added to keep abreast of industry practices.

A lot of understanding, market research and consultation with industry experts, including several other entrepreneurs is necessary and can help keep the company focused on the much needed growth. Attraction tactics do not often prove to be effective in terms of results and consistent rapports established. Research tells that it is often hard to track results from an attraction tactic as this type of tactic does not provide a bang for the buck. On the other hand, while you may have the 4 and more Ps as best strategies, marketing can really work magic tactically if a mix of other efforts is used, such as:

1. Conversion tactics to get people to take action, call, sign up or buy
2. Retention tactics to keep you in touch with past customers, and ideally turn them into repeat customers and referral sources.

With the Conversion Tactics, the entrepreneur seeks to move the prospect down the path of marketing in order to clinch a sales transaction. Much like when a prospect visits a website and actually takes some action desired, such as clicking on relevant emails and leaving messages of interest. In this case, the conversion would have occurred, turning the lead or prospective into a paying client. Marketers use this approach a lot as they seek to understand why clients are or not taking action when visiting their websites and might opt for content optimisation with strategic reviews that will transform a lead into a “convert”.

Retention Tactics would work best when there is a retention program specifically set to increase customer value and encourage them to revisit or repurchase the company’s products. Sometimes referred to as lifecycle marketing or loyalty marketing, retention tactics are known to be less expensive than customer acquisition/conversion tactics.