Many small business owners often start their businesses as a way of helping out someone else. They do a good job and get referred to another person needing assistance. This goes on and on and some businesses have been lucky enough to never have to market themselves or advertise. In past years this was certainly the way to go and your customer base would be very strong, localized, and loyal. However the evolution of technology has changed all that and the businesses that have not kept up with new marketing efforts are finding their client pools starting to dry up. I am seeing this much more and the businesses that are having trouble in this area have not had to market for a very long time. You always need to be marketing even when things are busy and you always have to be keeping up with the way people are looking for products and services.
Lets look at a bookkeeping business, for years your client down the street has been delivering their receipts for you on a regular basis, no questions asked, they have been a good loyal client. One day there is an internal change in management, they decide to assess their vendors and start looking on the internet for providers. They find three providers on the internet, one of which is not you because you don’t have a website, and ask for proposals. They receive the proposals and before you know it have switched providers and you have lost a client. As younger people come into the workforce they don’t understand or care that a company has been dealing with one business for a long time, many times it is about the numbers and not loyalty because they don’t have that original connection. It is extremely important to keep up with changing marketing possibilities.
I tell new business owners that the first thing they should have is a plan for their business, both operating and marketing, business cards, and a website. Once you have that you can start to expand your marketing efforts to target your ideal audience. If you are looking into a service provider for your marketing it is important to work with someone that understands your business. Don’t get left behind because you were too busy to market your company on an ongoing basis.
About the Author
Bruce Outridge is a business and leadership consultant from Canada. More information can be found on his services on his website at www.outridge.ca