A Really Simple Marketing Plan For Your Micro Business

Target your customers.What’s your marketing strategy?

It’s essential to your micro business.

What’s more, quality marketing helps tackle a micro business biggie:

How to find and keep customers…

In future weeks we’ll look at specific marketing strategies in more detail, but for now we’ve given you a broad overview and some essential tips to help you hone and improve your current efforts.

A speedy review of marketing week

On Monday we learnt about a buyer’s persona from Henneke Duistermaat. We discovered honing in on your ideal prospect (the one you’re best placed to serve) is the secret to raving customers and making more money.

On Tuesday I spoke about strategies that get customers talking about your business. Focusing on benefits, answering WIIFM and finding the right words are critical. These keys can help attract your ideal customer to your brand.

Then on WednesdayVee Roberts from Insight2Marketing explored the importance and value of building a recognisable brand associated with your business values.

And yesterday Janine Beattie from Optimum Business Support revealed the pros and cons of on and offline marketing. She helped us focus in on what could work for your micro business.

You see, the wrong approach to marketing can cost (and waste) a lot of time and money. But with foresight, you can maximise your return on investment.

So exploit free marketing opportunities as much as possible. Then supplement this with paid for services that you feel will add value.

Something for the weekend

How do you tie all this quality information together?

Well here’s a very simple marketing plan for you to mull over this weekend.

I’ll make no excuses – this plan is purposely very simple.

The deal is you’re busy. You don’t have a lot of time to spare. In addition your marketing plans may change depending on your cash flow, new ideas or those unexpected events.

But if you answer these five questions (along with any additional ones you identify as being relevant to your business) you’ll quickly hone your strategy.

So go ahead, try it out.

A really simple marketing plan…

1.  What do you want your marketing strategy to achieve?

A pretty obvious question right? But your answer is essential.

That’s because different goals will require a different approach. So start by clarifying what you want to achieve. Then you can choose marketing activities best suited to that goal.

For example:

  • If you want to promote a special offer, perhaps you’ll use a leaflet.
  • If you want to build your authority, a blogging / article strategy could be effective.
  • If you want to collect email addresses of potential customers, a free eBook could work.
  • If you want to a strategy that allows people to know, like and trust you, explore networking.
  • If you want to target specific customers, consider a sales letter.
  • If you want a free way to reach new customers, engage in social media.

2.  Who is your perfect customer?

You can’t create an effective marketing plan until you know who you’re trying to attract.

So spend some time creating a buyer persona for your business, and revisit Henneke’s post to remind you how to do it.

3.  What will get your customers talking?

If you can initiate a conversation with your customer, you’re marketing will be more effective. That’s because ideas spread through word of mouth, and you need to be the catalyst to make that happen.

So ask yourself:

  • What makes your business unique?
  • How can customers benefit from your business.

4.  Branding

Your brand is a valuable asset that can help you build recognition and association.

  • What do customers associate with your brand?
  • How can you exploit your existing brand awareness in your marketing?

5.  Pull it all together…

Next use a visual format to focus and channel your marketing efforts.

Here’s a really simple way.

Just print out a calendar template and write key milestones on it.

That way you can quickly see how your marketing activity is spread out. In addition, you’ll ensure you don’t miss any key dates that you could link marketing promotions to.

And to finish, here are some ideas of marketing activity you could incorporate. And remember, refer back to Janine’s pros and cons when you’re deciding what to try…

micro business action

Today’s micro action.

Complete your marketing plan.

How do you market your micro business?

I’ve noticed micro business owners are a creative, enterprising bunch.

So tell us. What marketing strategies have you used in your micro business? What worked for you? What pitfalls could others avoid? Please leave a comment and share your ideas.

Georgina El Morshdy

Georgina is the wordsmith at Gem Writing & specialises in helping micro business owners communicate their message through words that do justice to their business.

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Comments

  1. A question I have is – if you’re too busy with client work to spend time on marketing, should you worry about it?

    • Hi Jo
      I would worry awfully about it.
      My promotional gift business almost folded because I did exactly the same thing.
      Was making great profit (up in the six figure amount) and stopped doing any marketing because I was so busy and comfortable.
      All went wrong in about 14 months and profit dropped by over 70%.
      Was a bit of a shock to say the least.
      Best thing I have heard on this was just a few months back, which was ‘Do 90 minutes of marketing every morning before you do anything else’.
      And Nigel Botterill who said it is right.
      Just in case the rest of the day is manic at least you know you have done your marketing for the day.
      Have a fantastic weekend

      Paul
      Paul Cox recently posted..Small Business Processes: A Big Mac, Fries And Super Sized Lesson In Consistency.My Profile

  2. Hi Georgina

    Great article and great to see steps in there for setting goals and working out who your customer is
    Most micro business owners dive straight into the media rather than think about their market or message
    Superb article

    Paul
    Paul Cox recently posted..Small Business Processes: A Big Mac, Fries And Super Sized Lesson In Consistency.My Profile

    • Thanks for your comment Paul and I’m gad you found the article useful. The same problem is going to keep cropping up I imagine. Being a micro business owner you have so many hats to juggle you’re always going to have to prioritise and some important activities will inevitably end up taking a back seat. That’s what the Hub is here for – to encourage micro business owners to work ON their business and not just IN it. Marketing is crucial and as you say you won’t get such good result if you just dive in. You’ve got to hone your message and target your audience.

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