As you develop your marketing programs, are you relying on your competitors for inspiration, or are you taking a good look at your clients and what they want and need in their business?
If you’re letting current/standard industry practices determine how you need to market your business, you could be missing the boat. If you want to create a compelling marketing program that attracts new customers, you need to focus your energies where those prospective clients are and what they want. For example, if you don’t think you need to blog or tweet because none of your competitors are doing it, you’re not seeing the full picture.
Visibility is everything in marketing. You want to be where your customers are before they look for you. Are your clients online? Are they researching products and services before they make a purchase? Are they scrolling through their Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram feeds? If so, it makes sense for you to be there, too. Don’t make people search far and wide to find you. Make it easy for them to see you, understand you, and get to know you now— before they even realize they need you. Not sure how to make this happen? Here’s how to get started.
Yes, you should have an idea of what the current industry standards are. But you should also realize that they may not get you where you want to go.
Highlight what sets you apart
Your target market wants to know what you have to offer and what makes you different. Even if you’re offering the same basic things as other businesses, there’s something special about you. Something that sets you apart. You talk about it in staff meetings, on the phone, and in business meetings. It’s part of your company training, your company culture, and your company DNA. And yet so many companies allow themselves to get stuck looking at the competition for marketing cues.
To make the greatest impact, you’ll want to look to your clients and prospects themselves for inspiration. Specifically, your best clients and your ideal prospects. If you want to be appealing to your clients, go directly to the source.
Research is key
Carefully review your target markets. Look at their preferences, their behaviors, and what they are doing online. Ask your best customers what they love about your company, your service, or your products. Ask them why they chose you initially and why they keep coming back. Doing so will give you a much better idea of what they value in your company rather than simply evaluating the marketing efforts of your competition.
Once you’ve done your research, you’ll be able to build a marketing program that reflects right back at your clients and prospects exactly what they want and value.
Make it about your customers, not your competition
Think about it – you’re not trying to get your competition to do business with you. You’re trying to attract happy customers and clients.
If you focus obsessively on your clients, and consistently communicate how you can help them or make their lives better, you’re going to stand out as the superior choice.
- How does your company make your customers’ lives easier, more convenient, and more efficient? How about more meaningful?
- Do you help them save time, money, and resources? What about the environment? Or the world?
- Does your company offer new and different ways to help people achieve their goals and reach their full potential?
- Are you listening to your customers’ comments, kudos, and complaints?
Zero in on what your customers care about and then put together a marketing plan that blasts those messages out loud and clear.
And if your competitors are inspired by what you’re up to, all the better. Because that means now you’re the one worth noticing.
Our goal is to take your business where you want it to go. Get in touch with Raffa to find out what working with a true employee benefits consultant feels like.
Photo by Sheila Fitzgerald