Cross Promotions in Strategic Marketing

I was staying at a local Bed and Breakfast.

They had my room all ready, and along with things, they had an envelope that inside contained two passes for the Hot Springs.

This was an excellent example of cross promotions.cross_promotion

A cross promotion is simply when on business refers or promotes another.  It can be one way or uni-lateral promotions.

In this example, it was only one way, although it still benefited both businesses. The Bed and Breakfast could make their clients happy with free passes, and the Hot Springs could get new customers in their door.

Cross promotions can be very cost effective. By coming up with original ideas and including them in your overall strategy, they can bring in new customers that you may not be able to reach any other way.

Cross promotions are also very efficient. Other than the initial set up and possibly some printing costs, there is often very little other cost until you actually have a client in your business.

The best cross promotions are very targeted.  If you do not do your research and partner with the right business they can be much less successful. But when two businesses each have very similar target markets, they can be powerful.

A key to getting the most out of your cross promotions is to have a good follow up strategy. This includes getting contact information for new customers, or some other way to follow up with them.

Another important factor is to continue to build the relationship with the other business. Do not think it is something you can start and then forget about them.

Creating something original also can increase the effectiveness of a cross promotion strategy. This could be the marketing material, or it could be your offer.  Either way, it can make it more memorable to both your new customers and to your cross promotion partners.

Try out a cross promotion strategy, you may be pleasantly surprised at how much new business comes in the door.

Marketing … Really, Really Simple

Marketing is really pretty simple.
At its core, it really is communication.
Telling people what you do… telling the right people what you do.
That is it.

The strategies to do this can be complex or simple… and there are many different ways to do this.its-easy

But it all really comes down to telling the right people what you do.

So who are the right people?

They are the ones that want or need what you have to offer.

Pretty simple!

If you change oil, it’s someone who has a car and needs an oil change.
If you provide therapeutic massage, its someone with sore muscles.
If you sell ice cream, its someone who likes to eat ice cream.

Now… does that not make sense.

Someone who only rides a bike – an quick lube business does not need to talk to.
Someone who feels good and relaxed – probably not thinking about getting a massage.
Someone who doesn’t like ice cream or is on a strict diet… no need to tell them you have 199 different flavours.

So communicate – tell them what you have… tell the right people.
That is marketing.

And marketing is not evil or twisted or manipulative.

It is about communication… and good marketing is just about communicating correctly – as best you can.

If you are in a relationship, do you not think it is a good idea to learn how to communicate.
If you could learn more about communicating with your partner, and your partner could learn about communicating with you, and you could each better understand each other… is that not a great thing?

Well that is what good marketing is about. That is what a professional marketer will help you with… or that is what you can learn by reading books, taking courses, or talking to a marketing professional. How to communicate better with those people that want what you have to offer.

Marketing…. really really simple…..

Marketing …. really

Here are some marketing quotes that have a bit of truth in them.trust-me-marketing-person

Give your opinion.

So long as there’s a jingle in your head, television isn’t free.
~ Jason Love

It is our job to make women unhappy with what they have.
~ B. Earl Puckett

“[Sales and marketing] have to start talking to each other. They’ve got to stop spilling each other’s beers.”
~ Ann Handley

Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you’re doing, but nobody else does.
~ Stuart H. Britt

Nothing draws a crowd like a crowd.
~ P. T. Barnum

“If we are smart, we make a lot of mistakes.”
~ Raman Frey

A gossip is one who talks to you about others; a bore is one who talks to you about himself; and a brilliant conversationalist is one who talks to you about yourself.
~ Lisa Kirk

sea-pandas“I think the biggest mistake that salespeople make today is that they try to pretend they’re not salespeople.”
~ Irreverent Sales Girl

Marketing is what you do when your product is no good.
~ Edwin Land

Talking

What’s the best marketing advice in the world?

Talk to your customers!

That is the number one way you can improve your bottom line…. Talk to them, ask them questions, and listen to what they say.

The more you do this, the better your business will be.shutterstock_289830740

What are some questions you should be asking?

  • How was your _______________? (meal, experience, stay, the service, etc.)
  • How did you find out about us?
  • Why did you choose us?
  • Anything we can do better?
  • Did we do anything that you really liked?
  • What did you not like?
  • Would you refer your family or friends?
  • When would you be coming back?
  • What else can we do for you?

These are just a few questions that will help you get a real sense of what your customers are looking for in regard to your product or service.

As you talk to your customers, you will start to see trends.

Sometimes thing jump right out at you, things you need to change right away.

Other times a trend will slowly emerge, and it is something that can have a dramatic impact on your business.

As well, the huge benefit from talking to your customers, sincerely engaging in a conversation is that you will begin to care about them as individuals, and they will start to sense that with you.

At that point, your whole business culture will be shifting – to a customer focused business.

Start today!

Key Marketing Info

I talk to so many people struggling with getting new clients, selling more product, increasing sales.

One thing that I see time and again is not having the key marketing information easily accessible to potential clients.

Too often a business owner will not look at their own marketing items critically enough, through the lens of the customer.

So here is a few areas you should check in your own business.

Contact information – What is the best way for people to get in touch. Email? Phone? Contact Form online? Whichever way is best, make sure it can be accessed directly. A clear link to your contact information is vital.

I even recommend putting your contact information on every webpage, and anywhere else a potential client may be looking at. This also includes all your social media properties and all your other marketing items (flyers, poster, brochures, advertisements, etc.)marketing001

Product information – What are you actually selling? Does your prospect know and understand what they are buying. Is that information clearly available to them? Is it easy to access? I have found many business people do not review this information enough to refine the message so that it is easy to understand. Customers need to know exactly what they are getting.

Sales Process – Can your customers easily buy what you are selling? What is your offer??? Do they even know how to purchase? Have you lowered the risk of purchase (Guarantee, low-entry product, reviews, etc.)

Personalized Message – If you are a small business owner or solo-entrepreneur, who are you? What is special about you and your business? How can you connect in a personalized way with your customer. Let them get close to you through telling them about yourself, your values, your story, whatever makes you unique.

Check out your own website and other marketing items. Look at them through the eyes of your customer. Do they measure up?