There is one question that every business owner asks ‘experts’ about: ‘What is the best…
5 Questions to Ask Before You Start Marketing
Marketing your own business can be tough.
You are too close to it to see the value that others appreciate. However, it is not difficult to find out exactly how to position your business so that you attract more of your ideal clients. As a video producer, I am often required to help refine the message that is being developed to attract more business.
Recently I was talking with a new client who was struggling to identify their point of difference. As he listed a number of features all I kept hearing was the same things that everyone else says about their business. I didn’t know enough about this organisation to offer anything more specific, so instead, I discussed a better way to find out exactly what their point of difference is. The plan was to send out a very simple survey using Google Forms or Survey Monkey. I think I was inspired by the $122 million postal survey that I could have done for half the price (well maybe even less) on a computer with a free online survey. I digress.
Here are the five questions that we very quickly developed:
- Why did you choose our organisation?
- What do you like about working with our organisation?
- What words come to mind when you think of our organisation?
- How did you hear about our organisation?
- What media do you watch/listen to/read?
- Free-to-air TV.
- Catch Up TV.
- Printed media. Which ones?
- Which stations?
- Social media. Which ones?
- Websites you visit.
Questions 1 to 3.
These are all about the ‘language’ that your customers use. How do they describe the organisation? What features were they most interested in? How do they feel about the organisation? How does the organisation help them?
It is common for an organisation to defer to generic terms that they think their customers are interested in. Your customers can much better describe the value you provide in words that potential customers will relate to. This is the key. You want to be using the language that resonates with your target audience. What are they looking for? What is important to them?
You will be surprised with some of the common themes that crop up. Services or features that you give little thought about could be the highly valued by your customers and therefore important to your potential customers.
Another tip about your customers’ language is to review testimonials you have accumulated. What common themes/words crop up amongst those?
Questions 4 to 5.
These are about how to be ‘seen’ by your target audience. Where are they hanging out and consuming media? If you spot some trends, you can target your message there. Do 50% of them subscribe to the Financial Review online? Are they avid fans of Mamamia.com.au or are they spending way too much time on Facebook? When you know how they found you and where they spend their time you can target your message accordingly.
In the absence of collecting this information, it is common for businesses to just guess or ask Facebook to guess on your behalf. You can be lucky that way, or you can be strategic and do the research.
Take the time to understand your customers and the language they use to describe you and then use that language to connect with your ideal customers where they are spending their time.
If you are interested in knowing more or accessing my free downloadable lists get in touch in the comments below.
“The opinions expressed by Smallville Contributors are their own, not those of www.smallville.com.au"
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