You are a wealth of information. If you were here last week, you read about the poor, beleaguered public school principal who’s resigned himself to the new reality: “I have to be a marketer now.”
Well he’s not exactly the Lone Ranger, is he? We all have to be marketers now. Whether you’re a business owner, an independent professional or a corporate employee, you have to let people know your value or you’re done.
Lucky for us there are smart people ready to help us get the word out in all kinds of ways. Here are a few of them who responded to my quest for information we can all use.
At Mettacite, their research tells you how to keep your clients happy. Managing Director Nancy Schuetz has some suggestions:
- Understand who your most profitable clients are and why … then spend more of your resources to go find more client just like them.
- Understand that sometimes your favorite client isn’t your most profitable client. If they are a real bright spot for your team then they’re an asset because they bring positive energy to your day.
- Keeping a good client is far more beneficial to your business. Make sure they know they are important to you and WHY you’re important to them!
Lot of us use social media as a marketing tool. And a lot of us use it badly, don’t we? It pays to hear from the pros.
Catherine Marsden is one of them. At Ardent Scope Marketing she’s telling clients:
- Create a marketing campaign, not just a marketing job function. Set specific marketing goals, and identify what you want to happen as a result of your marketing – some examples include: new sales, inbound calls, shares, likes, website hits, downloads.
- Find out how your target market spends time online and promote content they will care about. Regularly post on your company’s blog, email newsletter and on social media. Remember, the customer holds the reins today.
- Set up a listening post and measure your marketing campaigns to make sure you’re getting a return on your investment, e.g. the goals from step 1.
And at Mediavine Marketing, Michele Rempel has some great suggestions.
- Think about using social media like attending a networking event. Do you run for cover when you see the people who are always pushing their products and services on everyone they meet? Don’t be one of those It’s OK to talk about what you sell, but don’t do it all the time.
- Other people and businesses are also sharing content that is important to them, so take the time to comment, like, retweet, view, and share their content. They’ll remember and appreciate you.
- Frequency + consistency = visibility. If you don’t have the time and/or resources to keep up with all of your social media accounts, then scale back and post to the ones you know you can do with consistency and frequency.
Video is the hot, hot, hot marketing tool these days. Whether social media or your own website, the research shows people stick around longer and come back more often when you use video. (Bad news for those of us who have a great face for radio …)
Nervous about getting in front of a camera? You’re not alone. Kelly Luchtman puts entrepreneurs at ease at Snap! Web Video. And she’s encouraging all of us to take the video plunge.
- Video is the most efficient way to introduce yourself to potential clients. They can get a feel for you and decide if you are the right fit for them. This is especially important in the “helping” fields – coaches, therapists, doctors.
- Use video to demonstrate what you do. If you are a chiropractor and want to demonstrate a patented technique, or a hair stylist who excels at color.
- Use video to teach or deliver value added information. If you teach people something, they will consider you an expert and want to hire you for that particular service. I call these “tips and tricks” videos.
Jared Silver’s At a Glance Marketing produces teaser marketing videos to engage your people, qualify them and bring them to you. To make sure that happens, he says:
- Use appropriate lighting and lavaliere microphone. If you do not have clean sound and picture, a large percentage of people who click on – will click off before you make your offer.
- Give prospects a great offer/reason to contact you, to take the first step into your sales cycle. Typically there are 6 to 9 touch points over 12 to 18 months before the first transaction occurs with a new client. A cleanly produced video(s) with a great offer will qualify more prospects faster for more sales sooner.
- In this age of “Information Overload” we must keep our videos very short with a laser focus on one topic, with easy to read and hear contact options at the end.
And Internet Video Maven Israel Leichtman says it’s important to target your ideal client:
- If you want to attract business with your videos, have your ideal client in mind. Why would they want to watch your video? Provide tips or solve a problem that they might have. Telling an entertaining story will increase the likelihood that your video will be “liked” or shared.
- Use an External Microphone. People will tolerate a visual that is not perfect. They don’t care as much how you look as long as you have interesting content and good sound. You can get the Audio-Technica ATR3350 lavalier microphone for a pittance and the sound will be an enormous improvement over your on-camera microphone.
- Practice, Practice, Practice. It takes time to be comfortable with a video camera. Imagine that you are talking to a client who inspires you to do your best work. Watch your video with the sound off and listen to the video with the screen off and be prepared to make improvements.
As important as video is, sometimes marketing still means we have to write. That’s where Marianne Griebler can help us.
- Know your audience. Ask: Who are you writing to? Why? What problem are they wrestling with that you can help solve? Are these people you want to work with? Where do they like to consume content? The tighter your focus, the better. Throwing a large net only works in fishing, not marketing.
- Remember that it’s not about you; it’s about what you have to offer to your potential clients. Show, not tell, is one of the oldest chestnuts in the writing game. But the reason it’s been around since dirt was young is because it’s true. We connect with stories, not lectures, and we want to work with people who get our problems instead of shaking fingers at us.
- Think about the platform – and mobile. If you’re writing for digital, it’s really important to think about scannability:
- Strong, clever headlines that hint at the payoff without being click bait
- Lots of white space
- Very short paragraphs (2-3 sentences)
- Bold key phrases to draw the reader’s eye to your main points.
- At least one strong visual
And of course I’m a big believer in speaking to connect with your ideal clients, intrigue them about what you offer and open a relationship. Some suggestions from me:
- More than anything else, what your audience wants is you. It’s not about your facts or your information or even about your idea worth spreading. It’s about you being present with them. Develop your material yes. But know that contact trumps content every time.
- That means delivery skills matter. And if you had to pick the one to work on first, eye contact will give you the biggest impact.
- Make it about your audience. Use “you” more than “I.” Speak their language instead of your jargon. Go into your talk knowing what you want your listeners to think, feel or do as a result of the time you’ve spent with them. And make sure by the end, they know, too.
So now. What are you going to do to put these suggestions into action?
My suggestion is that you choose just one to start with. Otherwise it’s too easy to get overwhelmed, throw up your hands and do – nothing. Tell us what you’re planning.