Marketing is one of the most important things you do for your business. A common mistake new entrepreneurs make is thinking that they only have to market their business in the beginning to obtain new customers and get their business off the ground. You have to market your business every day forever. Here are some things you can do to help you in your marketing endeavor:

  • Networking, join a chamber of commerce or rotary club
  • Give speeches or seminars
  • Volunteer at local events
  • Create a Gift Certificate or Coupon
  • Make your self newsworthy by holding a contest, sponsoring an award etc.
  • Ask existing customers for referrals
  • Advertise in a local paper and on-line
  • Write articles and columns
  • Send out Direct mail in an unusual or lumpy package, include a sample

One clever method is used in my area by a local landscape company. They place their flyer in a small plastic bag (the flyer is folded in quarters) along with a few small landscape rocks and seal the bag. Then in the neighborhoods that they already work, they drive down the streets and toss these bags onto the driveways. It’s fast, covers many homes, and because they are unusual, the flyers get looked at and read!

The Federal Trade Commission has strict rules on when a business can use the telephone to solicit customers. Violation of these rules can result in a fine. The rules are:

  • Call only between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.
  • Inform the customer that it’s a sales call
  • Describe the goods or services you’re selling
  • If there is a prize involved, explain the odds of winning and that no purchase is required to win

Marketing can be a fun part of your business day, make sure to do at least one thing to market your business every day. Don’t get discouraged; it can take months or even years to see results from your marketing efforts. I recently obtained a new customer, which was the result of my visiting their office over a year ago and leaving a folder of my information!