Here are some great business tips to help you succeed by Jack Humphrey.
- Never let a day pass without engaging in at least one marketing activity.
- Determine a percentage of gross income to spend annually on marketing.
- Set specific marketing goals every year; review and adjust quarterly.
- Maintain a tickler file of ideas for later use.
- Carry business cards with you (all day, every day).
- Create a personal nametag or pin with your company name and logo on it and wear it at high visibility meetings.
- Stay alert to trends that might impact your target market, product or promotion strategy.
- Read market research studies about your profession, industry, product, target market groups, etc.
- Collect competitors’ ads and literature; study them for information about strategy, product features and benefits, etc.
- Publish a newsletter for customers and prospects. (It doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive.)
- Remember, business cards aren’t working for you if they’re in the box. Pass them out! Give prospects two business cards and brochures — one to keep and one to pass along.
- Produce separate business cards/sales literature for each of your target market segments (e.g. government and commercial, and/or business and consumer).
- Develop a site on the World Wide Web.
- Create a “signature file” to be used for all your e-mail messages. It should contain contact details including your Web site address and key information about your company that will make the reader want to contact you.
- Get a memorable phone number, such as “1-800-WIDGETS.”
- Obtain a memorable URL and email address and include them on all marketing materials.
- Promote your business jointly with other professionals via cooperative direct mail.
- Advertise in a specialty directory or in the Yellow Pages.
- Write an ad in another language to reach a non-English-speaking market. Place the ad in a publication that market reads, such as a Hispanic newspaper.
- Create a direct mail list of “hot prospects.”
- Consider non-traditional tactics such as bus backs, billboards and popular Web sites.
- Consider placing ads in your newspaper’s classified section.
- Consider a vanity automobile tag with your company name.
- Create a friendly bumper sticker for your car.
- Code your ads and keep records of results.
SPECIAL EVENTS AND OUTREACH
- Get a booth at a fair/trade show attended by your target market.
- Give a speech or volunteer for a career day at a high school.
- Teach a class or seminar at a local college or adult education center.
- Volunteer your time to a charity or non-profit organization.
- Donate your product or service to a charity auction.
- Write a “How To” pamphlet or article for publishing.
- Produce and distribute an educational CD-ROM, audio or video tape.
- Publish a e-book.
- Start every day with two cold calls.
- Read newspapers, business journals and trade publications for new business openings and for personnel appointment and promotion announcements made by companies. Send your business literature to appropriate individuals and firms.
- Give your sales literature to your lawyer, accountant, printer, banker, temp agency, office supply salesperson, advertising agency, etc. (Expand your sales force for free!)
- Set up a fax-on-demand or email system to easily distribute responses to company or product inquiries.
- Follow up on your direct mailings, email messages and broadcast faxes with a friendly telephone call.
- Try using the broadcast fax or email delivery methods instead of direct mail. (Broadcast fax and email allows you to send the same message to many locations at once.)
- Using broadcast fax or email messages to notify your customers of product service updates.
- Display product and service samples at your office.
- Remind clients of the products and services you provide that they aren’t currently buying.
- Call and/or send mail to former clients to try to reactivate them.