Selling a Product or Service? Create a System
How to sell a product or service strongly depends on your brand awareness and your specific market segment. Selling becomes easier if you have an established brand for what you are trying to sell. At the same time you still need to implement a system for selling specific items or services. In order to be successful at selling you need three mayor ingredients. A quality product or service Quality is the perception of fulfilling or exceeding your customers expectations in relation to competitors items and price. Nothing is easier today than finding reviews and evaluations of products and services online. They can be written by either a customer, who already owns the item, or by companies who test and write reviews professionally. Either way, you can get a good impression about something before you buy it. Additionally, a great way to receive some free marketing, helping you selling your offer. A lesser quality product has to have a significant lower price in order to be competitive in the market. You will find buyers which are more budget oriented, as well as those who look for a superior product and are willing to pay a higher price. How to sell your particular offer needs exact determination of your niche. The system you establish to make people aware of it must be appealing, consistent with a clear call of action, and a follow up system. An excellent system in place to sell it The implementation of a how to sell system is also depending on your selling method and the market you target. Are you a wholesaler? Then your target would be retail shops and resellers. Are you operating online only? Then you need to establish a system which identifies and leads potential customers to your product. Do you sell in a retail store? Then your system would be more steered towards advertising campaigns on TV, Radio and billboards. In any event a how to sell system can be build best by gathering data about buying patterns. Then target your efforts towards building a list of potential customers and follow up with them in the future. What you want to accomplish is that you make people aware of your brand and offerings, and have the ability to target your market to those who have shown already interest in similar items or the same brand. By building a list of those potential clients you have a way to stay in front of them. Building the system includes: Determining your target market Marketing to potential clients Call to action List building Follow up system Retargeting if necessary Drive massive traffic to your offers The art of how to sell anything, finally needs a massive amount of potential customers looking at your offer and not somebody else's. Therefore you must drive traffic through your marketing campaigns. In the online world you would target specific "keywords", if you are a wholesaler you will do business to business advertising and as a retail shop you will specifically use a mix of advertising through the internet, newsletters, radio and TV shows. Local marketing and networking, as well as the usage of social media is strongly recommended for brand recognition and the establishment of trust. Remember to be consistent with your marketing strategy, ideally you want to plan for one full year of activities when you are starting out. Once you have established a list of customers you can work on a follow up strategy and also market new products or services to those clients first.
What marketing is and how to get it started
If you have a company and have difficulties to gain more customers or to get brand awareness, than the question "What is Marketing" is probably a good one for you to ask and analyze. I see this problem with a lot of professionals, whether they are Attorneys or CPA's, Doctors, work in Real Estate or the Mortgage industry. All of them are studied academics with at least a bachelors degree in any of their specific areas. Now the problem is, that a title or a position, does not get you any clients and you must market your company, brand, service or product to an audience. In layman's terms you could say that "marketing is the ability to create a positive perception to prospective customers about what you have to offer, in order to sell something" . Notice the word perception? It means nobody has to know that you are just starting out, or that your product is new and untested. You can make it sound better than it actually is, as long as you can live up to the expectations. So in detail, what is marketing and what are the different areas you need to concentrate on in order to market well? Branding You can brand yourself or the name of your company, but also a certain product. Apple is a master of branding, the name and the logo, which align with the whole product line, as well as the description of the products. Imac, iphone, ipod, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, etc. This is a great example of branding the companies name and integrate the whole product line, easy to identify for potential customers. In order to brand you need to Create a logo Create a tagline Have a website, where people can research about your company, products or services add logo and tagline to all marketing material including letterhead, email signature, business card etc. Make it easy to identify what you do or sell. Spread your brand to potential customers consistently Create a list of people you are in contact with and market to them frequently. Marketing means that you want to be in front of them when they need what you have to offer. Identifying your customers needs A big part of what is marketing is identifying and creating a demand for your products or services. This can be a certain untouched niche market, a better and improved product or something of better overall value. Particularly if you have competition, you need to concentrate your marketing a lot on what you can do better. Can you offer a better service or price Identify a different target group and tailor to their needs Location and season specific needs More variety Better overall experience Offer discounts to new customers Survey previous customers to see how you can improve New Product launches New products are a great way to market to your customers, create anticipation and excitement is the single best thing to keep in touch with already existing clients and create "The Hype" to gain new ones. Television and radio advertisement Internet advertising Expositions Product specific events, news and press releases Social Media Marketing In terms of what is marketing, social media cannot be longer ignored. It is a great way to interact with your existing customers, entertain and convey your message. Facebook business page Twitter account Instagramm Google plus and local business page Blog on your website The most important part of marketing is that it has to be consistent. Marketing can be expensive and time intensive; however a well designed marketing plan will usually pay you ten dollars on every dollar you spend.
Build relationships instead of selling
If you want long term success in any of your ventures, build the business relationship first instead of selling your product or services. People will buy from you if they trust you, no matter what you may have to offer. You have to start somewhere, why not building your personal brand? That way you can offer any product or service, as long as it is associated with your brand. Look at some of the recognized names, Dell, Apple, Microsoft, Ford, General Motors, Anthony Robbins, Donald Trump just to name a few. These are household brands, famous for a certain category and the majority of people which bought products from them, become believers. They trust the quality of the merchandise and therefore recommend it or become repeat customers. Even though they might not have the only or best product available, they have build the business relationship first and maintain the trust of their customers. People do not change easy, they like to work with what works and where they can receive the best customer service. It takes time to build that trust, but it is well worth it. Consider that your best customers are the once you already have. Make sure your brand is seen Repetition is the mother of skill, once you have developed your brand and slogan, keep it in front of your consumers. your email signature letter head business card advertising material your car embroidery on clothing Building and office signage promotional items Let your brand be seen and repeat often, let it will sink into the minds of your potential and existing customers. Build and keep the business relationship strong, by being exceptional. Join a professional Networking organization Networking is a great way to receive referrals and build trusting relationships. There are many local, national and international networking organizations to chose from. Local chambers of commerce, providing network events, seminars and meetings Bilingual Business chambers, oftentimes organized by foreign countries doing business in the USA City clubs or bankers clubs, offering business accommodations, meeting facilities and gastronomy with many benefits for its members Rotary Clubs, an international organization, well structured. Business Network International, an international organization with multiple chapters in each city. Build a business relationship with not only potential customers, but other businesses who each have a network of trusted clients, they can recommend to you. Remember trust is everything and people tend to believe a positive review or referral. Provide excellent customer service Especially if you are new, providing a better service than your competitors, can increase your market share. Keep in mind that the customer can go where ever he / she decides to go, give them a reason why they should come to you. Customer service is not a luxury, but essential to maintain a strong and loyal customer base. Remember that these people spend their money on your offerings and they eventually pay your bills by doing so. Keeping this in mind should encourage you to tread them like kings and queens. The stronger your business relationship becomes, the easier it will be for them to recommend you to their network. Create added value Everybody likes to get a better deal, by providing added on services, you differentiate yourself from the competition. It does not always have to be a big ticket item, nobody is expecting you to work for free. However; sometimes going the extra mile for a customer will result in large returns. Give first before you expect to receive, it will bring you much further than just going for the quick sale. Building a strong network where you value your business relationship first, will bring you an unlimited amount of new and existing customers, happy to refer more business to you.
Develop a marketing concept that gets results
One of the most asked question in business is "How can I get more clients"? Simply answered, you need a marketing concept. Marketing is the key to obtaining more customers; obviously, only because you have started a business does not necessarily mean that they know you exist. There are many ways you can differentiate your marketing from the other and particularly larger companies. Don't be afraid of competition, if you market your niche in the correct way, you will have a great amount of followers buying your products or services. In general when you first look at developing your marketing concept, determine what you want to accomplish. A simple formula to remember is, amount of leads generated x conversion rate = profits. Your marketing will create prospective clients (leads), which than need to be converted into paying customers. You can see that the success of your marketing concept has two components, the actual lead and the ability to convert. If your lead generation is great, but you cant get more customers, than you need to work on your conversion technique. On the other side, when you convert many leads into clients, than you just need to work on your lead generation methods. Oftentimes business owners get overwhelmed when it comes to develop a marketing concept, but it is really not that hard, the only thing you need to do is choosing some ideas and than stick to it. As a small business you are more flexible and much closer to your actual customers, you can react faster to changes and demands, use this to your advantage. List building and email marketing A classic and still oftentimes very underestimated. The definition of marketing is that you present your company in a way that you place it in front of potential customers and at the time they are ready, they think of you. Building a list of potential, existing and previous customers is essential. Think about it, these are people who are already interested in your product or services, why would you not keep them interested. send out special deals and coupons, e.g. if you have a restaurant, you could offer a free desert with the next visit. If you are a barber shop give a haircut for free after they paid for ten, etc. This works especially well in the service industry. send customers a birthday or anniversary card. Show them you care and remember them, trust is what creates repeat business. announce new products or services keep customers informed about your growth and development. Include a specific service, which is only offered by your company Larger companies have a disadvantage when it comes to fast and flexible action. Changing anything in the initial marketing concept takes a long time. Use this to your advantage, offer a business specific item or service which only your company has. Bundle offers and give discounts, go the extra mile, make the customer want to come back. People pay you for value added services, even better, they remember you and come back the next time. Create a blog for your website Many companies have still not realized it, having a website alone is by far not enough anymore. In fact a website without getting any traffic is useless. Having a static website is snow from yesterday, if you are not keeping up with the customers demand for information, you are left behind. A website is a great tool to produce a large amount of traffic. This requires particularly one thing, fresh content. It must be a top priority of your marketing concept to have an ever growing web presence. Feed you website with industry specific information, reviews and news. Share your content on social media and write guest post on related websites linking back to your own. Hire a search engine optimization specialist to advice you how to write targeted content and optimize your website to rank high in the search engines. This is a science and changes all the time, so it is good to outsource this to an expert. Be active on social media sites Having followers, means you have control about data. Advertisers are paying millions of dollars to get access to your list of followers to place related ads. Views, likes, hits and commenting is called engagement and that is what you want to accomplish with social media. Get to know you potential customers and get them interested and engaged with your company. Post product updates, news, discounts and entertaining content around your business, several times a day. One post a week is not enough, depending on the interest of your audience, you have to post 10 to 15 times a day to create true momentum. Add these ideas to your marketing concept, be consistent and you will see the results.