Build your marketing plan by creating awareness

You probably already have a coordinated marketing plan, set prices, and know what you’re doing. However, to create more awareness and increase sales of your offerings, you may need to make some minor adjustments to your overall marketing strategy.

Create greater awareness to sell more

Even if you’ve got the world’s greatest new product or service, you can still have trouble selling it if consumers aren’t aware of it. To market your business’s offerings effectively you’ll need:

  • A clear understanding of why customers buy from you – what are the trigger points that make consumers choose your product or service? Is it quality, location, excellent after-sales service, or responding to sales with instinctive purchases? For example, a segment of your target market that frequently dines on Italian cuisine may choose your restaurant over your competitors because of its friendlier service. Incorporate your friendlier service into your marketing campaign to create greater consumer awareness of it.
  • To know who your existing and prospective customers are – the research you gather about your target market(s) is highly valuable. Find out everything you need to know so you can promote your offerings to them successfully.
  • To get your message across to potential customers – the more you know about the people in your target market(s), the better chance you have of communicating with them on their level. For example, say you own a kitchen appliance store and you discover that most of your customers are actually middle-class females with families. You’ll be able to use language in your advertising that they can relate to.

Put some effective steps in place

It’s important to consider a range of possible marketing paths to get the word out there to as many consumers in your target market(s) as you can. Try:

  • Enhancing your presence on social media – link to and from other relevant sites, and between your own website, blog, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest pages. These can all be vital tools in creating brand awareness if used regularly. For example, if a customer can ‘like’ what they purchase off your Facebook site, this information can trickle down to their friends and even their friends’ friends.
  • Improving your in-store displays – ensure the highest margin offerings you sell are in the best viewable places (either in store or online). Are complementary products or services easy to find after a customer has decided to purchase a major item?
  • Making the most of mobile technology – more purchases are being made on mobile devices off the Internet than ever before. Your business’s site should be user-friendly on mobile devices.
  • Employing traditional advertising – many of your potential customers may still read newspapers and magazines, watch television, and listen to the radio. There are still opportunities to build awareness via these methods.
  • Sponsoring and networking – sponsorship can mean displaying your brand, products or services to many people at a single event. Networking may help you widen your reach, especially if you have influence or contacts in the media.

Be aware of your competitive advantage and promote it

Work out which of your products or services are selling well, be aware of your competitive advantage, and check that your marketing includes clear messages about how you’re different from the rest.

Re-examine your promotional activities by keeping the most successful aspects, letting go of any promos that aren’t working, and adding new ideas and technologies.

Enhance your ways of communicating with customers

If you have an Internet presence, ensure it’s user-friendly on mobile devices (especially the product selection and checkout functions). Is your business website and its related social media set up to handle different devices and numerous browsers?

Are your social media platforms working well? If not, find out why. Do you need to give another platform a go, or invest more time in your existing online promotions?

Re-examine your pricing

Can you do a better job justifying certain prices, or adding incentives to make them more enticing?

To sway fence sitters, brainstorm with your advisors and staff members some ways of offering deals to your regular and potential new customers, to rejuvenate your marketing activity.

Evaluate your new marketing results

Did you see a better return on your investment? If you need to tweak your promotional activities again, run through a similar process so you can fine-tune everything.