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You don’t need millions to market your business

A philosophy known as ‘The Rule of Seven’ is based on the fact each prospective new customer will need to see your marketing or sales messages at least seven times before they even notice you’re there, says Barry Ashmore.

WHEN companies introduce humour to their advertising it can be an amazing success or a crashing failure, depending on the punchline.

Car manufacturer Hyundai recently decided that tutoring their potential customers in the correct pronunciation of their name is the way to sell new cars. It’s certainly an interesting and entertaining approach.

It’s certainly memorable. For any brand this is the holy grail – a potential customer thinking of your brand first and then searching for your product.

Hopefully, for ‘Hy-un-dai’ or ‘Hyun-day’ – however you say it – the company will see a return on their millions of pounds of advertising investment.

How do flooring contractors go about building their brand name? Unlike global car manufacturers, you don’t see millions of pounds of advertising pounds to spend, but if you follow a basic set of rules, you’ll find that good marketing will enable you to grow a more profitable business, without breaking the bank.

Your website
To feature well in Google searches it’s essential your website is designed for a mobile phone, as well as presenting equally well on a tablet, laptop or desktop.

We find that around two-thirds of visitors looking at the StreetwiseSubbie website do so on a PC or laptop, rather than a mobile phone. However, it still works perfectly on a phone for those that do. If your website isn’t to a format that presents well on mobiles, then you must address this sooner rather than later.

Second, what search words or phrases do you want to be found for? It’s essential you identify the key words or phrases a potential customer might type into Google to find the flooring products and services you offer.

Your website developer can add them into the backend of your website, which then helps you to be found for those key words. Maybe 10-20 words or phrases will be enough to start with.

A successful website is now more about content than design, therefore, if your web developer is not asking you for this information then they are not doing their job properly and you should consider making a change.

‘Google Business’ is something I have covered regularly, so if you’ve still not taken control of your Google Business panel (it appears top right of a laptop view) then you need to do so. It’s free, it helps improve your visibility in searches and enables customers to contact you easily.

Email marketing
Following the development of bulk email platforms like MailChimp, Campaign Monitor and AWeber, creating and managing your own email campaigns has never been easier.

As well as giving you a reliable and very cost-effective way to promote your products and services to new or existing customers, subscribing to a recognised email system means that you can maximise built-in presentation tools to give your email marketing a thoroughly professional look.

You can use copy and paste design to create emails that reflect your company’s corporate style and feel, feature text and images, schedule your email to go out at a specific date and time, and then importantly, measure results.

For example, standard reporting will tell you how many of those receiving your email opened it, the links they clicked on and any of your web pages they visited. It will also highlight the most frequent openers, as well as anyone who unsubscribes from future mailings.

People like to receive email as long as it is relevant to them, so do not shy away from using email marketing as it is an important brand building and direct response tool.

Social media marketing
Social media is an excellent form of marketing and brand building that is free to use. However, the most important thing is that you dedicate time and attention to it.

Managed well, it allows you to connect and engage with the individuals and businesses you want to sell to, promote latest developments, special offers, distribute sales literature, build marketing lists, drive traffic to your website, capture data and keep in touch.

If you want to make social media effective, then it is important that you have a properly branded business page on each platform you plan to use.

Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Twitter are well used by business marketers. Instagram, which is photo-based, is increasingly used by businesses, so if have good quality project photographs of your work, then Instagram is certainly the place to share them.

Hot on the heels of these is the relatively new kid on the block, TikTok, which is presently advertising itself as a source of instructional ‘how-to’ films, similarly to those found on YouTube.

Your marketing funnel
However you choose to market your business, the contacts or leads you receive all go into what’s commonly termed your ‘marketing funnel’. It’s then your job to move these contacts/leads into your sales process.

Think about this as an imaginary ‘conveyor belt’, with new prospects arriving at one end, and through ongoing marketing communications, turning into customers at the other.

This is done over time through building your relationship by telephoning, email marketing, connecting and posting on social media, face-to-face contact, and then keeping in touch regularly.

Marketing is not a quick fix. It is a process that involves some effort and is not something that can be switched on and off like a light. This is why repetition of messages is particularly important.

A philosophy known as ‘The Rule of Seven’ is based on the fact that each prospective new customer will need to see your marketing or sales messages at least seven times before they even notice you are there.

Going back to Hyundai, their advertising campaign was designed to reach a large audience, with each person seeing or hearing the TV or radio commercial many times more than seven.

As ever, if you would like more information about marketing your flooring business, or to find out how StreetwiseSubbie can help you to create a cost-efficient marketing strategy, send an email or call us.
01773 712116
Barry Ashmore is managing director and co-founder of StreetwiseSubbie.com

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