Competition is good for your business. It means that there are people interested in the products or services you are offering. However, it also means you have to work extra hard and smart to make your target audience take note of you. But how do you do that? The answer is marketing.
Indeed, marketing is essential for any business. But marketing can only let people know that your business exists. How do you grab the attention of your audience long enough for them to consider investing in your products or services over your competitors’?
Small Business marketing techniques
The trick is to invest in marketing techniques that will help you to stand-out in the crowd. Especially now, with so much information available and so many businesses selling the same things in different packages, it becomes essential to do something that catches the eye of the relevant people.
Depending on where your business stands in the market, here are five techniques that you can consider. These are tried and tested marketing techniques that, if applied smartly, will definitely make your brand look different and special.
Stage 1 – This is the ideal stage for any business. It means you are the only one offering a brand-new product and service, and hence have no competition whatsoever. The good thing is however you market your brand, being the only one in the market, people will buy from you. The bad thing is because you are the only one you have to build that knowledge and trust among people about your product or service.
Let us take an example to explain all the stages. Say, you are selling a face mask. If you are the only one selling it, you have to convince people that it is indeed good, effective and without any harmful side effects. But saying things like “A face mask to make your skin look radiant” should make the cut.
Stage 2 – At this stage, other businesses have noted how your brand is doing well, so they start to enter the market as well. Since there is more than one brand offering the same product, you would have to market your business in a different way to stand out. So, at this stage, the strategy is to make bolder or bigger claims.
Taking the face mask example, you might have to say things like “A face mask that instantly makes your skin look radiant and makes the glow last forever”. The claims like instantly and forever glow are the words that would make people notice your brand over your competitors.
Stage 3 – This is the stage where all your competitors are making bold claims so the previous technique does not work anymore. What do you do? You go deep into explaining the mechanisms of the product that makes it different than your competitors’.
Talking about things like, “This hand-made, organic and antioxidant rich face mask gives an instant glow to your skin by attacking the free radicals”. Note how you incorporate the workings of the face mask into your marketing content.
Stage 4 – So now everyone is following your technique and talking about the mechanisms of your product. At this stage, the smartest move would be to do the opposite of what everyone else is doing. When everyone starts listing down the benefits and mechanisms, you do you and take the road of simplicity.
For example, in a market full of ‘radiance-boosting’ ‘glow-enhancing’ ‘antioxidant-rich’ ‘organically crafted’ face masks, just simply say “An easy to use, everyday face mask for a clean skin”. The simplicity of this marketing is what will catch the attention of your audience, among all the noise of tall claims and mechanisms that few truly understand.
Stage 5 – This is the last stage where nothing else works. This is where you appeal to the individuality, emotions and identity of your audience. This is a marketing technique that will help your audience feel good about themselves when they buy from you or invest in your business.
The best example of this is what The Body Shop does. They make sure to let people know how they help the community, practice fair-trade and are against animal cruelty. It appeals to people. Similarly, you can promote your brand through a tagline like, “Become truly beautiful with our face mask. With every pack you buy you help another woman smile”. Maybe you can mention that you donate the proceedings to domestic abuse survivors or refugee women.
The above are very brief descriptions and examples of how to make your business stand out through five stages of marketing. Research, study the market and apply these techniques smartly to help your small business grow from strength to strength.