A Guide to Effective Marketing
Every business needs a plan for attracting customers and selling products. Simply creating a marketing plan is simple, but creating an effective marketing plan requires some effort. Whether it’s getting more customers in the door or encouraging the customers you already have to buy more, the right marketing plan can get it done. An effective marketing plan takes into account who your customers are and how to reach them and makes sure they choose you over the competition.
Getting and Keeping Customers
Before you can do any effective marketing, you have to know who your customers are. While you can pay someone to figure this out for you, often you can figure it out yourself. What type of person do you envision using your product? Why? How? Once you figure out who your customers are, you need to determine how to reach them and how to keep them. Use these resources to not only figure out who your customers are, but how to attract new customers and provide excellent customer service to keep your current customers coming back.
- KnowThis: Managing Customers – Use this tutorial on managing customers to find new customers, learn about building relationships and discover ways to provide stellar customer service.
- 10 Tips for Acquiring New Customers – Figure out how to attract new customers to meet your base with tips on how to find qualified leads and build a customer database.
- BusinessTown: Customer Loyalty – Turn new customers into loyal customers with these tips and tricks.
- Three Cs of Marketing – Learn how to connect the three Cs of marketing (customers, clients and competition) to create a stellar marketing plan.
- Marketing to Customers in a Post-Recession Economy – As the economy changes, how you reach new and existing customers changes as well.
- Why Customer Service is the New Marketing – Stellar customer service can bring repeat customers and increase word-of-mouth traffic.
- 10 Need-to-Knows to Find Good Customer Targets in the Digital Age – Technology has changed customers’ attitudes and you need to know how to keep reeling them in.
- Customer Feedback Techniques – Use feedback from customers to help refine your marketing plan.
Understanding the Competition
You may have a stellar business, but it is worth nothing if you cannot stay ahead of the competition. Knowing and understanding your competition will help you set pricing, identify potential customers and learn how to attract those customers by setting yourself apart so you can gain your fair share of the market. These resources will show you that it is not always about putting your competition out of business. Understanding your competition will help you find your specific niche and the best way to give your customers something they cannot get anywhere else.
- Mplans.com: Everyone has Competition – Understand Yours – Learn how to conduct a simple competitor analysis and determine who your competitors really are.
- Econosystems: Understanding Your Competition – and Your Customer’s Choices – for Your Business Success – Discover what makes customers choose one business over another and ways to bring them to your side.
- Competitor Analysis in Product Marketing – Understand the importance of competitor analysis as a way of helping you market your products.
- Market Share Depends on Knowing Your Competition – Learn how to take over your fair share of the market.
- A Market Intelligence Primer – Get to know the four key areas of market intelligence: customer understanding, product intelligence, market understanding and competitor intelligence.
- How to Out-market & Outperform the Competition – Change the perception of your products to overcome your competition.
- Ten Ways to Keep Ahead of the Competition – Staying ahead of the competition is the key to business success.
- The Secret Recipe for Unbeatable Competitive Advantage – Utilize strategies to make the most of your data and gain a competitive edge in your market.
Using the Internet
The Internet has become one of the newest tools in marketing. If you do not know how to market yourself online, you are missing a way to reach new customers and get your business name out there. With these resources, you will learn how to use the Internet, including your website and social media tools, to market your business effectively.
- Entrepreneur: Online Marketing – Read up on the latest news, tips and trends in online marketing.
- TopRank: Online Marketing Blog – Check out the latest industry chatter and learn the latest ways to use online marketing in your business.
- Advertising and Marketing on the Internet: Rules of the Road – Make sure you’re not putting your business at risk and are following the rules with this guide from the Bureau of Consumer Protection.
- Internet Marketing for Smart People – Sign up for this free 20-part course and newsletter to learn how to maximize the potential of Internet marketing for your business.
- The Social Media Marketing Blog – Learn the latest trends and tricks when it comes to social media marketing and apply them to your business.
- Social Media Marketing Beginner’s Guide – If you know nothing about social media marketing, this guide will get you started.
- Social Media Examiner – Find articles, case studies and reviews on this top business blog focused on social media marketing.
- How to Use Mobile Marketing to Get New Customers – Learn ways to utilize mobile technologies to attract customers for your business.
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