To advertise is to communicate; rather, to persuade an audience to act upon a product, service or ideal. With a target market in mind, companies intend to convey a distinct message. While you need to keep your marketing campaign fresh and innovative, it doesn’t have to be over-the-top expensive.
It takes time, energy and imagination to get your brand presence realized and your identity solidified to the public. There are ways to provide clarity and transparency to any market through thoughtful design elements and practical, yet clever solutions.
Creating meaningful relationships is the foundation for success in any business. With the growth of social media and ever-evolving social circles on the web, the success comes from not only knowing how to stay connected but to foster alliances. In the formation of your social media community, it’s not the number of “friends,” but the ability to engage and launch smart conversations with the ones you have, ultimately maintaining more stable connections.
Business relationships go both ways. The willingness to give, share and support must be mutually maintained. The conversations, whether face-to-face or through digital media must be real. There’s no time for small talk. If you find yourself too busy and your business relationships become neglected, they’ll wither away, and the value of what had been carefully cultivated in the past loses steam and could eventually end.
Never Fear! Some Tips:
- Don’t listen with your answer running; meaning, actually listen before you decide how to respond. You’ll never fully understand what the other person is trying to say if you already have a response created in your head.
- Encourage constructive criticism. It takes courage, but it helps a business grow and improve.
- Be an expert in the field and be honest with your peers, employees and competition.
As any savvy entrepreneur knows, it only makes sense to develop an understanding of your target customers before you launch advertising and promotional strategy. With letterhead, notepads, pens and thumb drives, putting your brand logo on usable, high-quality items, makes customers feel they’re being rewarded for even considering your product or service. Trust ensues and then comes growth.
Bookmarks, stickers, personalized CD covers and plastic cards can be a refreshing change from the everyday business card or brochure that gets tossed in the recycle bin before a client even really looks at it.
Niche publications offer a way to nail down your specific target audience and gain visibility in your industry. Not only that, but they allow you to keep abreast with the competition as well as the latest industry trends (even though you’ll be at the forefront of innovation). Advertising in a trade publication also speaks directly to the distributors on the front line who are selling your product. Relationships are formed, and trust becomes determined on a superior editorial package in a well-designed magazine that keeps the readers interested.
For example, the lighting industry has a trade publication called enLIGHTenment magazine. It highlights edgy products, notable award winners, seasonal and aftermarket trends, energy-efficient lighting and news in and around the business. Whether a manufacturer or distributor in this industry, your presence in this trade publication will be seen not only by competitors but vendors and enthusiasts.