When you start out there’s a feeling that you don’t have the resources or the network to really get your business idea out there… but you kinda do!
Creating marketing tools – and with an incredible effort from my friends, family and colleagues – Accede IT managed to gather enough support to gain some key business contacts, some big, some medium and some one man bands. Utilising all of the areas below could help your business gain support and visibility whether it’s for a competition or your first marketing campaign.
The idea here is to make it really, really easy for anyone who hears about your business or promotion to pass it on. You start getting the word out through your close network. It’s a simple idea but I have found it to be very effective.
What networks do you actually have at your disposal?
“Tell everyone, and be nice to people!”
Friends and family
So your first call is friends and family. Ensure you make it easy for them to help you, send posters for them to pin up and message templates for them to post online.
Your work network
The next group is old and current colleagues. Perhaps you’ve been collecting contacts on Linkedin, or you have a stack of business cards hidden away? Again tailor your marketing tools to their tone of voice, so draft out a professional email message for colleagues to send out to networks and hopefully opportunities will start to appear.
Remember, make it easy for people, tailor the messaging and don’t feel shy. Although it can feel a little awkward to ask others for help, ultimately most people will want to see you succeed.
Contents of the marketing tool’s
Flyers and posters
I had a load of flyers and posters printed and sent them out in batches of 1,10, 100 and 1,000 to friends and family who were willing to stick them to any available surface they could find. Workplaces, homes, car windows etc… my own distribution service!
Ensure that you have all the relevant information in the design though. Ask someone else to double check the wording and overall messaging. You don’t want to go through all the effort of printing to find you’ve omitted something obvious. Pictures are great but will people know what your business is actually about or what to do?
Firstly I set-up a Facebook Page to build some online presence and reputation. I then asked people to post, like and if possible change their Facebook status to:
“Please help support Accede IT. To vote, goto page xxxx and click on Vote Now!”
Now my friend’s, friend’s, friends knew about what I was trying to do!
You can also draft out tailored emails for contacts to send out to their networks, especially those in large companies or with a big reach. Tailoring the tone of voice to the expected audience of each email makes the task easier for those you’re asking a favour from, and more likely that they will spread the word. For example:
“Hi everyone! My friend James Page from Accede IT is through to the final of … ”
“To win, he has to get as many votes as possible during the next month. It’s really easy to vote, just click here.”
A great way to get your business out there and really show people what you’re about is through video. Setting up a YouTube channel or regularly posting videos on Vimeo can build a following, and is easy for that following to then spread your content through their networks.
Another great way to spread the word like wildfire is to set up a blog. Once your blog is up and running, be sure to regularly post new fresh content. This keeps people interested and coming back for more. A little trick I used was to ask people to post my blog’s updates on their Facebook news feed. Most free blog platforms like Tumblr and WordPress have this functionality built in enabling you to post to your Facebook Page or for your friends to post on your behalf.
So Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and Tumblr are all readily available free platforms for you to utilise. You can read numerous article for help on crafting your Linkedin profile, and you should also make sure your business has a Twitter account that regularly tweets and re-tweets what you are up to.
Good luck with this and make sure you use every last little bit of resource you have available to you!
If you need any help with Web Pages or Social Media promotions we can put you in touch with the right people for your needs. We know of a number of excellent business that sole business is business and social media promotion, so dont fear if you need a little help or advice.