There, it’s not necessarily secret, but it is free. Even something as simple as a exciting title can draw people in. Key words like “free” and “secret” not only help with search engine ratings but are attractive to everyone. We all like something for free. Free postage, buy one get one free, 50% extra free, we all know these terms and they’re there to draw you in. Just as relevant, everyone likes to know something everyone else doesn’t. The word “secret” is attractive and exciting, it will draw attention. Simple things like this can draw peoples attention.
In this article we will cover the different types of marketing and tips on how they can help you or how you can best use them to your advantage. Businesses that have just started need to seriously think about marketing. The key to successful marketing, is to recognise that potential clients/customers will fall into different groups, depending on their needs. You need to carry out market research to discover what those needs are (and how they vary for each group) then work out the best way to provide for those needs more successfully and effectively than your competitors, thus gaining a larger customer base, a bigger slice of the market and hopefully, a good sense of customer loyalty.
Marketing on a low budget is what new businesses need. Guerilla marketing is perfect for this. The idea is to be creative and different. Doing something unexpected that will stand out from the crowd and the mass of advertising out there and give your company the edge.
A good example is this campaign by Cadbury’s to promote their “Whispa Gold” chocolate bars, where they put up adverts which were messages from real people to their friends/family or loved ones. The fact it was an advert for a product was kept to a minimal.
Another example, this one a very creative an unusual technique, involved placing cups with magnets on the bottom on the roof of peoples cars. Making it seem like people had accident left them there themselves. This advert was carried out by a restaurant trying to drum up more business.
There are other quirky and unusual marketing methods along similar lines. Including things like buzz marketing, reverse graffiti marketing and undercover or stealth marketing.
Viral marketing works along the lines of word of mouth. Its advertising that gets people talking. There has been an explosion in this sort of marketing over recent years. The popularity of YouTube has gone hand in hand with the movement. Many companies have been using video as their advertising medium. Facebook and other social networks have also been used within this viral campaigns. Some campaigns go well and some not so well. The Cadbury’s drumming Gorilla was extremely popular on Facebook, it soon took off and was heavily used on TV as well. Many remixes (and spoofs) appeared on the popular video site and all across the internet.
In 2002 BMW commissioned a series of short films with Clive Owen and various famous directors aimed at promoting their cars and the features. The campaign was an unrivalled success, improving sales and exposure of the brand name and catapulting Clive Owen’s career.
The Sony’s PSP viral marketing campaign involving two fictional children who were writing a blog called “All I want for christmas is a psp” went wrong and ended up getting negative publicity for Sony. Still, word spread and in this case even bad publicity was probably helpful sales wise.
“Word of mouth”
This is a sort of marketing that money cannot buy. It is also probably the best sort of marketing there is. Simply put, you provide a great service or product and your customers talk about it to their friends, family, colleagues and if you are really lucky, perfect strangers. Let me give you an example from my own life. I recently bought a new mobile phone for my own personal use through my service provider. Its a Blackberry Curve. It is the best phone I have ever owned. As a result, I raved about its qualities, to friends and family and I’ll show it off whenever anyone asks. I’ve written reviews about it online and I’ll probably buy another Blackberry in the future. I am the perfect customer; satisfied and spreading the word.
As you can imagine, “word of mouth” is not the easiest sort of marketing to monitor but if you can encourage it you can help it grow and it can be the most rewarding for your business. In modern times there are so many ways to encourage it. Facebook, Twitter, Myspace and many other social network applications allow communication between members of the public, friends, colleagues, even people we forgot we knew and all those people might be told about how amazing your product or service is by a simple update on someone’s Facebook profile or a post on their blog or a post on an online review website.
This is an underhanded and slightly dubious method of advertising. Basically it involves marketing in such a way that the people being influenced do not even know they are being subjected to it. It has been happening for years, with actors being hired pretending to a member of the public and promoting the quality of the product. In modern times it has moved into the online world, as companies post reviews of their own products on forums and websites, purporting to be members of the public. It is risk, an ethical grey area and if the truth is discovered its unlikely to paint the company in a good light. Sometimes it can work if the product/service is good enough and sells itself.
This sort of marketing involves using small amounts of marketing over long periods to draw your customers in. The “Law of 29” that says a person has to see an advert, 29 times before it sinks in and they become a customer. So you need to keep giving them more, small bits regularly. The easy way to do it would be email newsletter. Automated and sent out according to a mailing list. This is also the most common. There are companies set up around providing software to help with these automated email lists, but you can always go further a be different. Send out adverts via snail mail or think about other ways to get people remembering your brand. Something as simple as a pen with your company name on it or a mug with your logo will still count as one of those 29 times and help people to notice you. Something different and unusual will give you the edge over your competition. Remember, give someone something for free and they’ll be drawn in.
For a start-up business, depending on your market, using the internet might be one of the best and cheapest sources of marketing. A well designed, visually impressive and easy to navigate website, jam packed with information speaks volumes about a company to potential clients. Clever use of search engine optimisation will get your website more traffic and more custom. There are two main ways to do this; organic and paid for. You can use Google advertising and pay to make sure that you have a link on the first page when people search for certain terms. Organic searches mean that by using other techniques you can get your website higher in google search rating with a few tricks. Simple things like getting your company name on other websites, putting links to your website out there on the world wide web can mean more traffic. Create a Facebook page, write a blog, buy the right domain name(s), get your URL on other websites like the yellow pages. The internet is a wealth of opportunity, find a niche and you can get the edge. A good example here is car parts companies who offer sponsorship to car owners clubs, thus getting advertising on their websites, offering help and discounts to members – people who will be potential (and loyal) customers. These are all simple ways you can get more exposure on search engines. The only problem is it’s time consuming. “Pay Per Click” advertising is the other alternative. Paying a search engine (commonly google) for every time someone clicks on your advert. They then manage the exposure and advertising for you.
This is one of the most common types of marketing. Inbound and outbound telemarketing; give customers a number to ring for a service you provide or hire sales people to ring potential customers and sell them your product or service. Telemarketing has negative connotations. The majority of people dislike marketing calls and the companies that make them. However, your company might well involve selling products/services to other companies, who will be more accepting of telemarketing as they are likely to do it themselves and appreciate the need. The keys to success in this area are simply making sure you have the right market/person, being polite and making the potential customer feel important and relevant. Get to the point, listen to what the customer wants and relate your product/service to those needs. Remember that telemarketing is all about volume, more calls means more (potential) sales.
Simply, outdoor advertising involves getting adverts on billboards, sides of buses, on your company vehicles. This sort of advertising is very popular as it raises awareness. Tied into the law of 29, this sort of advertising will expose members of the public to your products and services. If only getting them to remember your brand. It’s not cheap so keeping costs down while maximising exposure is important. There’s a lot more to advertising than meets the eye, even something like a letter box drop might seem effective and relatively cheap, but bear in mind the law of 29 and think they you might have to make that leaflet drop to the same people’s letter box 29 times before they remember you and pay attention. Think about the costs of producing the leaflet and distributing it.
This covers many things we are all familiar with, radio, tv, newspaper and direct mail. Once again, you have to think about your market, who your target audience are and how best to get your message to them.
Sending adverts straight to potential customers via email, snail mail, telephone or letterbox drops. Directing them to contact the company and buy a service/product. The success of this marketing is easy to gauge as you can compare the numbers of adverts sent out versus the number of new customers gained by it. The downside is there is no way to gauge the levels of people offended or put off by the campaign. Which could essentially be classed as junkmail in many instances.
This involves the use of a sales person to sell the businesses products or services to potential clients. Face-to-face technique is more personal and appealing. A confident sales person can really make a difference to a sale.
Which is best for you?
As you can see there are many different forms of marketing, some overlapping in nature. Its hard to say which will be the best for your needs. It is important to carry out market research first. Think about your target audience, potential client base and how to appeal to them. Think about the important points you have read. Remember that The Company Warehouse is here to help. We can provide you with domain names, website design, freephone numbers and many other helpful products and services to help you on your path to success. Take a look at our website and see how we can help meet your needs. www.thecompanywarehouse.co.uk