Marketing is a challenge for most businesses. It can take a lot of trial and error to find something that works and brings customers to us. When we find a marketing method that seems to work, we keep doing it.
Doing more of what works and less of what doesn’t is a good strategy. But what if there are other, better ways of reaching customers that you haven’t tried? Or what if what you are doing stops working? Get yourself out of a marketing rut by exploring new ways of reaching out to customers.
Do you know where most of your customers come from? If not, you need to learn. Start asking customers where they heard about you, or use other methods to track which activities are effective in generating new business. Online, you can use Google Analytics or other tracking to determine which web sites and search terms are referring web surfers to you. Offline, you can use a coded address for mail orders (such as adding “Dept. F34″ to track responses to a certain ad). Or include a name or extension number for telephone ads. When someone calls for “Judy” or extension 134, you know where they saw your ad.
Once you know how current customers are finding you, ask how you could reach more people with similar interests by expanding what you are doing currently. Is advertising working for you? Where else could you advertise?
What things could you do that would take you out of your comfort zone? For many marketers, advertising is easy. You write an ad and a check and you’re done. Other types of marketing, such as public speaking or publicity, are scarier because they involve putting more than money on the line. You have to put yourself out there. Are you letting fear stop you from doing something that would grow your business?
Some marketers will not do certain things because they just do not imagine them. For example, publishing a book can be a very effective way to market yourself and your services. However, if you believe that you can’t write, or you just can’t imagine yourself as the author of a book, you will not do it. Even though it could add six figures to your bottom line (and that doesn’t even count what you could make from book sales).
Take a chance. Is there something you have been avoiding? What have you got to lose by giving it a try? And what have you got to gain?