An Introduction to Marketing.

Every business needs to market their product or service

There are many definitions for marketing and everyone has their own interpretation.  In simple terms marketing is what a business does to obtain new customers and keep them satisfied.  It’s a process that involves many aspects of business promotion and not limited to just advertising.  Most successful business owners believe the core value of good marketing is customer service and know without taking care of the customer’s needs all the sales and advertising in the world is not going to keep them.

Developing a plan

In developing a marketing plan there must be a clear understanding of what the customer wants, what they are willing to pay, where to locate them, and how to contact them.  Researching, gathering information, and putting it together into a plan with a clear focus will increase the chances of success.

Have a recognizable brand

Having a recognizable brand or identity distinguishes one business from rest.  This image sets the business apart and may identify it as a place for providing excellent service, have the best pizzas in town, be the most professional, have affordable prices or is the best place to purchase a product.

 Create an Identity

Creating an identity includes using both offline and online tools and depending on the type of business some methods work better than others. Traditional presentation is still important and includes stationery, business cards, brochures, sales letters and other related promotion material.  Trade shows, advertising, special events, direct marketing and other long-established methods still work and should not be ignored.

 A Company website

A company website creates an online presence and makes the business accessible 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year and is perfect for promoting new products or services, a place for potential customers to ask questions or buy products, providing information on the business, and can be used for recruiting employees.

Promoting online

Online promotion through social media networks should be a major part of every business’s plan.  It’s not complicated or time consuming and does not have to be expensive, nor is it just for big businesses with huge budgets.  The social network sites Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Digg as well as others when used properly can help build business relationships.

Take Action

Taking action is the next step but only after a decision is made on the types of marketing to be used and all the necessary tools in position. Having a system available to evaluate each step will make it much easier to know what does or does not work.

Build Relationships

Marketing is all about relationship building and connecting with potential clients.  Satisfied customers or clients will return and are more likely to refer others which helps keep the cycle going and the business thriving.

Marketing will be the key to success

Whether a business has been in operation for 10 years or is in the early start-up stage, marketing will be the key to its success.  A marketing plan provides the business with a clear understanding of the business and budget keeping them organized.  Knowing the needs of the customers guides the business in the right direction.

Here’s to your success!

Carol Ann Quibell

 


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