Research shows that businesses typically see $42 in profit for every $1 spent on emails. This means that a mailing list is one of the most profitable business assets that you can develop.
Building a house is a process – there are specific steps that need to be completed in a specific order to ensure that the house is a solid structure capable of standing up to time, weather, and everyday living. Building a marketing and advertising program for your small business is very similar – there are four distinct steps that need to be taken so that your business stands up over time. The good news is that, unlike building a house, you can go back and fix any of the steps in your marketing program you may have missed along the way without the whole thing falling down! Let’s take a look at each step in the process:
Every small business should have three plans: a Business Plan, a Marketing Plan (that is separate from your Business Plan), and a Budget. Unless you are seeking bank or investment funding, these plans do not need to be massive, minutely detailed documents. They can and should be used as a tool for you, the owner, to lay out your vision for the business, your short and long term goals, the action steps you will need to take in order to achieve your goals, and how much money you will need to allocate toward achieving those goals.
A solid foundation for your marketing program includes five (5) elements: your logo, brand standard, website, social media profiles, and business collaterals. These are the items that make your program stand strong across all of your strategies, campaigns, events, printed materials, media, apparel, and promotional products. It is your company identity and usually the first impression a prospect has of your company.
Think of your framework as all of the elements you will need to build your house. Make sure everything you do incorporates your brand and shows your company in the best possible light. Included in your framework are:
Finishing touches are the things that make your house a home, so to speak. Your house won’t fall down if you don’t have these things, but when you can afford them, you should incorporate them! Included would be things like promotional products and apparel, but should also include things like your building exterior signage, parking lot and landscaping, your showroom or lobby area (any place that customers are allowed to be in), vehicle graphics, and client gifts. Incorporate your brand colors and your business personality into these items to further grow your customer and prospect relationships.
Overwhelmed? Don't be! Chances are you already have most of this done - somewhere. Take the time to organize your thoughts, put it in writing, and share it with your team so that everyone is one the same page!
To your success!
P.S. If you are a small business owner (or want to be one), whether you are just starting out, or have been in business for awhile, I hope you will become part of the Next Level family. Visit our website (www.nxtlevel.baselinedev.com) or check out our Facebook page (www.Facebook.com/NextLevelAd) for tips, tools, and resources to help grow your business. We now have a Facebook Group, Next Level U, for those who are interested in joining a private community of small business owners and marketers.
Some of the links in this publication are Affiliate Links, meaning that – at no additional cost to you – Next Level Advertising may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Please know that when you see an Affiliate link from NLA it is for a product or service that we use ourselves or that we have thoroughly researched and reviewed!
Laura Olson-Oxley is an entrepreneur, coach, speaker, marketing and business consultant, and sales professional. She has over 25 years experience working with small businesses in a variety of industries, focusing on strategic business growth through effective marketing and advertising. Also a strategist, numbers nut, project manager, and life-long learner, Laura looks at the big picture to analyze and recommend the most effective tools to take businesses to the Next Level.
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