Marketing Ideas and Sales Strategies
Customer retention is important to the success of your small business. Apply these customer retention strategies in your business to build loyalty and keep customers coming back.
Don't let business card mistakes cause your cards to be discarded. Make your business cards more effective by avoiding these 12 common mistakes.
Starting a business on a shoestring? Looking for ways to stretch your small business marketing budget? Marketing a business doesn't have to cost a lot. Here are 39 low-cost, high-impact methods to advertise and promote your business.
No matter what your job title is, you're in sales. And even though nobody likes the idea of being "sold," everyone does it. Here are four tips to help you embrace your inner salesperson.
Finding new customers is expensive and time consuming, but necessary if you want your business to grow. Use these nine strategies to make sure you're going after the right ones.
What marketing ideas work for small businesses? What strategies can you use to get customers to notice you and bring you their business? Here are 36 ideas to help you reach your target market without spending a fortune.
What’s killing business for traditional retailers? Consumers are skipping them and finding better ways to satisfy their needs. The retailers who are winning are those who improve the experience of acquiring goods and services for the customer. Here’s what you need to know.
To grow a successful career or business, you need a good network. These four tips can help minorities build that network.
What kind of connector are you? Do you naturally make lots of connections with the people around you or do you tend to be uncomfortable with it? Take this quiz and find out what your style is.
Just because you're an introvert doesn't mean you can't be successful at networking. The trick for anyone, whether introverted or not, is to find your natural and preferred style of networking.
Competitive analysis is as important for a small business as it is for big businesses, and it’s easy to do. You can keep tabs on your competitors by using these 15 tactics to gather and analyze information about them.
Word of mouth marketing is an effective and inexpensive way to bring in business. Getting a recommendation about your business from a friend or acquaintance can be the confidence booster potential customers need. Here are 21 ways to generate great word of mouth for your small business.
Which digital marketing tactics are working for small businesses today? Read what experts say to help you decide which online marketing options to use in your business.
Referrals are an invaluable source of new customers for small businesses. When a friend or colleague recommends your business, the selling is already done for you. Here's how you can encourage existing customers to give you referrals and good reviews online.
What marketing strategies work for small businesses today? What are the best ways to get customers to know about your business, contact you, or make a purchase? Here are 29 marketing strategies that work for small businesses.
Saying "thank you" is a simple marketing strategy that can make your business stand out from the competition. But just printing it on your receipt and even saying it face to face isn't enough. Here's a way you can say "thanks" that'll make a lasting impression.
Today, enterprise organizations are attempting to use managerial mechanisms from previous ages to direct software delivery in this one. IT and software delivery costs have been growing for decades, yet our organizations do not have adequate visibility or understanding of what is now one of the largest costs of doing business.
Don't think that customer is interested in a high tech product because she's an older woman? Or another couldn't possibly be in the market for a minivan because he's a single man? Here's why labeling customers is costing you sales.
You've only got 15 seconds to make a first impression, and that's why your elevator pitch needs to be even shorter than it already is. Here are five tips for writing the perfect 15-second elevator pitch.
How can you make your sales brochures better marketing tools? How do you write copy that gets your business brochures, pamphlets and flyers read and gets customers to respond? Use these 14 copywriting and brochure design tips to create effective sales literature.
Are your sales campaigns chasing the wrong prospects? You may need to change your strategy. Make your sales efforts more successful by asking these three questions before your staff chases that next big sale.
Do you struggle when it's time to give your elevator speech at business networking events? This simple three-step formula will help you craft an elevator speech that works.
Customer policies are important to protect you from those few customers who might try to take advantage. But are they costing you money? Flexible policies might invite the occasional opportunist, but they'll garner plenty of goodwill and repeat business, too.
If you're not leveraging your existing customers, you're losing out on a low-cost source of new business. Here are eight ideas for getting more business from your current customers.
Do you get the feeling sometimes that your customers don't like you? It might not be your imagination! Here are the top 7 reasons customers dislike salespeople.
Most business owners are too close to their businesses to see the mistakes they are making. Don’t expect the customers to tell you either. Try this to see your business through your customers' eyes.
Are you dissatisfied with your business sales? Belief in any of these 4 sales myths could be limiting your sales.
Price objections can take you off guard, especially when you thought the sale was closed. Find out the real reason customers sometimes think your prices are too high.
Want to improve your negotiation skills and learn how to start from a winning position? Here are seven ways you can give yourself a head start in any negotiation.
Confused about how to advertise your business? Here are 9 steps for planning an effective advertising strategy and choosing the best places to advertise your business.
Your existing customers are essential to your business' continued success. Be careful that what you and your employees say to them doesn't make them want to leave. Here are seven things you should never say to customers.
You don't have to be a marketing professional to come up with good marketing strategies for your business. You just need to think outside the box. Here's how to do it.
What makes your brand special? What makes it stand out? Figure out which of these 12 brand archetypes your business falls into so you can market your business better.
Spotting a trend ahead of the competition can give you a big leg up. But how do you recognize a trend is before it develops? Here are five ways you can spot trends while they are still on the horizon.
Every business owner wants to have loyal customers that love their business. But if you want loyalty, you have to give it. Commit yourself to excellence in these five key areas and your customers will reward you with their repeat business and dedication.
Are you selling as much as you should be? If you're missing your sales goals, you or your employees may be making one or more of these 5 fatal sales mistakes.
That's the most important marketing question you need to answer. Knowing your customer is the secret to business success. Download our free Market Research Worksheet and use it to understand who is most likely to buy what you sell and where to find them.
Has your small business fallen on hard times? To recover you need to take action now. Use these marketing strategies to put your business back on track to success.
How can you spread the word about your business without going broke? Where can you advertise effectively for little or no money? Here are 39 proven, low-cost ideas to promote your business.
Segmentation is one way to build your brand, but the best way is to identify your ideal, perfect customer and base your branding on that. Here are five reasons you should focus on finding your unicorn customer from branding expert Deb Gabor.
Advertising your small business is expensive. How do you know which ads are working and which ads aren't? Use these tips to find out so you don't waste money.
Making that first sales appointment with prospects is the hardest part of selling. Between not knowing who to call and gatekeepers blocking the way, just getting the right person on the phone can seem impossible. These strategies can help you get your foot in the door.
Misunderstandings and miscommunication are bound to happen with clients, but it's how you handle them that's important. No matter who's at fault, these are the three areas you should address when clearing up a problem with your client.
There is tons of advice telling entrepreneurs to use in-person networking to build their businesses. But, in many cases, for one reason or another, owners make a hash of it. This article shares a surprising and effective networking technique used by 7-figure entrepreneur and co-founder of Examine.com, Sol Orwell.
When you find new avenues to reach customers, you gain exposure to a whole new market you might have otherwise missed. Here are six places you can sell your products or services that you may not have thought of before.
Sometimes consulting prospects just need an extra push to get them to sign on for your services. Here are four things you can try to quickly turn prospects into paying customers.
Small business owners who struggle with marketing can improve their results by learning the top two reasons marketing efforts fail--and developing a plan to address both.
In very small businesses the owner and business are one and the same. So, when you're marketing your business, you're really marketing yourself - but that isn't easy for everyone. Here's advice for getting better at selling yourself and your business.
Owning a business doesn't make you a natural salesperson, yet selling is the most important thing you'll do in your business. Here are tips to improve your selling skills.
Price is often the primary consideration when customers make a purchase, but cutting prices isn't the best way to compete. Here's how you can add value to your products so you can avoid discounting.
Festivals, business expos, health fairs, and other community events are all good opportunities to promote your business locally. These tips will help you make the most of your booth or table.
Getting customers is expensive, so once you've won them, you want to be sure you keep them for the long haul. Keep an eye out for these seven tell-tale signs that a customer is about to leave so you can resolve their problem before it's too late.
Selling is difficult enough, but you can't even start selling until you're talking to the right person. So how do you connect to decision makers? How can you get in touch with people who have the authority to make purchases? These ideas can help.
Once you get good testimonials from satisfied customers, you need to put them to work. Here are the best places to use testimonials so potential customers will be assured that your business is one they can trust.
Testimonials from happy customers can be a powerful marketing tool for your business. Testimonials give prospects reassurance that your company is the one they should buy from. This article shows you how to get those testimonials so you can put them to work.
Nothing is worse than wasting a ton of time and effort on a client who ends up not doing business with you. Here's how you can tell in advance which prospects aren't going to pan out before you've invested too much time with them.
Looking for ways to increase sales? Here are five different types of marketing campaigns you can run that will bring in customers and generate new sales.
Your competition isn't just the business across town that sells similar items as your business. There are other types of competitors your business faces that aren't quite so obvious. Find out what they are, and how to beat all of them, here.
Most businesses face a sales slump during the summer months. These six ideas can help you bring in more customers during slow months and combat seasonal income fluctuations.
A lot of different things go into building a successful business, but one tactic that will serve you throughout the life of your business is networking. Here's how one entrepreneur has used networking to build his business from the very beginning.
If you want to get your prospects’ attention, make an emotional connection and be remembered, harnessing the power of storytelling is your best bet. Learn how to use storytelling to grow your small business.
Getting new customers for your business is hard work, but it's necessary if you want to be successful. Here are 10 ways you can get the attention of new prospects and turn them into loyal customers.
You want your hard-won customers to be happy and to come back again and again. Get repeat sales by letting them know you value them with these 8 simple tips.
How do you put together a press kit? What should go in your press kit? Whether you make it available online or have your press kit printed - or both - these are the basic elements you should include in it.
The thing about marketing successfully is you have to work at it consistently, even when business is slow and you don't want to spend the money. If you master these five fundamental marketing strategies, your business will prosper.
Should you advertise your business in the newspaper or a local magazine? Print advertising is still a good way to market. Use these 6 tips to be sure you get the most for your money.
Want to build a list for text message marketing? Getting customers to sign up to receive offers from you via text message is almost as simple as letting them know that they can.
Make sure your marketing efforts are productive. Use this marketing plan worksheet to plan your marketing strategy whether you're a startup or existing business. It will help you know who your customers are and make your marketing efforts more successful.
How can you get customers to spend more money with you? Use these six tips to increase your average sale, encourage repeat business, and get more from your existing customers.
Direct mail is more affordable than ever with Every Door Direct Mailing (EDDM) from the US Postal Service. And, EDDM makes it easy to target the exact neighborhood your business needs to reach. Here's a step-by-step guide for using EDDM to market your business.
A slogan makes your brand more recognizable and memorable, but writing a catchy slogan isn't easy. Follow these steps for help creating a slogan for your business.
Whether you're new to running a business or have had one for years, understanding the difference in types of marketing and how you use them can help you be more successful.
Businesses that are thriving and growing have a steady flow of repeat and referred customers. And they get those customers by attracting them rather than pursuing them. Learn their secret to attracting clients here.
Why should customers notice your business? What makes you different from your competition? Here's how you can make your business stand out and get your customers' attention.
How can you become an expert? Will reading about a topic or industry make you an expert? Here's the low down on what it really takes to become an authority in your field.
Certification as a small business, socio-economic disadvantaged business, woman-owned business, veteran-owned business, or some combination of those can give you an edge in bidding on contracts with the government and with prime contractors who sell to the government. Here's the scoop.
What's the trick to finding the right mix of sales techniques and skills? Which ones, when combined, will win the most sales and customers? Here are the top five sales techniques you should use.
You’ve heard that the best way to gain access to someone in a high position is to know somebody who knows somebody. But, if you’re relying on this to technique to network with the people you’d most like to meet, you’re holding yourself back. Try this strategy instead.
Sales objections are a fact of life when you're in business, and how you handle them can determine whether your business struggles or thrives. Here are 15 tips to help you overcome sales objections more easily.
Does your idea of “networking” involve nursing a drink in the corner while your more gregarious colleagues mix, mingle, wheel, and deal? Whether you consider yourself an introvert, socially awkward, or just a networking newbie, fear not. Here are 11 tips to help you connect more confidently and take your business to the next level.
What is the objective of your advertising? Getting someone to call you? Building name recognition? Promoting a particular product - or your entire business? Here's why defining your advertising goals is important to its success.
What's the difference between businesses that grow and those that never get much beyond the startup stage? In a word, persistence. Here's how you can take inactive former prospects and turn them into buying customers.
Showing customers that you care doesn't have to be costly. Here are five ways you can thank your customers and earn their loyalty without breaking the bank.
Coupons are often used to attract new customers and entice old customers to come back. At first glance, offering coupons might seem like a great idea. Before you begin discounting, consider these pros and cons.
No matter what you're negotiating for, the techniques you use are the same. If you want to come out on the winning end, be sure you ask these seven questions during negotiations.
Just telling your customers they are valued isn't enough. You have to prove it to them. Use these 10 tips to make your customer service stand out.
Knowing your target market is the best way to be sure your advertising dollars are spent wisely and that the products and services you sell are actually what your customers want or need. Here are six things to help you identify your target market.
Do you have a public relations plan in place for your business? If not, you're missing a huge opportunity to win name recognition and customers. Here's what your PR plan should look like.
Now that the holiday shopping season is over, what can you do to help your business thrive? Here are five areas you should evaluate and tips for keeping your business healthy during the slow season.
Small business owners who feel stuck when it comes to lead generation can use these 12 ideas to find new ways to get more clients.
Are you missing your sales goals? Find out if you or your employees are making any of these sales-killing mistakes.
Selling your goods through a consignment shop gives you another avenue to reach customers. Here are a few tips on finding a good consignment shop and working with them.
A sales funnel is the pathway that captures sales prospects and moves them from awareness of your product to interest, desire and ultimately the sale. Here’s the way to create a sales funnel for your company.
How can you win back customers after they've been disappointed by your product or customer service? Here are 3 solutions that work to regain customer loyalty and confidence.
Are you marketing to millennials? If not, you're missing a $600 billion market in the US alone. Use these tips to understand and sell to millennials and boost your bottom line.
Although the Internet has forever changed the way businesses advertise, you can still market your business with old school offline marketing methods and get results. Here are seven offline marketing tactics you should give another chance.
Want a bigger piece of the pie? One sure way to grow your business and increase your market share is by coaxing away your competition's customers.
Running a special offer to attract customers? If you want your promotion to be a success, you need to get your offer in front of prospects who are interested in it. These 10 tips can help.
Giving out promotional products is a great way to keep your name in front of past and potential customers. Use this advice to choose the best way to use promotional items for marketing your business.
Spreading the word about your business necessitates a bit of self-promotion, a smidge of bragging, and a lot of rubbing elbows with different people. Here's how to work your network without alienating everyone around you.
Government contracting seem too complicated for your small business to try? It's a huge potential source of income, so don't be too quick to disqualify yourself. Here's what you need to know to get started in government contracting.
You work hard to attract customers, but sometimes they just quit coming back. Lost and inactive clients still have potential, even when you haven't heard from them in months or years. Here are six things you can do to get those lost customers buying again.
Your total sales may be on target, but are all the members of your sales team meeting their goals? Here’s why it’s important and what you need to do if some salespeople are underperforming.
Remaining one step ahead of your competitors is essential to the success of any business, regardless of size or niche, due to the fierce competition evident in today’s crowded marketplaces. Defining your USP or Unique Selling Proposition is a major part of this process.
Price, features, quality - these are all things that are a part of your customer's buying decision. Their first consideration, however, is trust. Here's how you can establish trust with your customers.
It may seem like small businesses trying to compete with big box stores are fighting an uphill battle, but in reality, there are many things that can make smaller businesses more appealing to customers than their big corporate competition.
Don't like selling? Many business owners don't, but your success depends on it. Here's how you can get the sale without actually selling.
Small businesses have many advantages over large corporations, but they can still benefit from taking steps to make themselves look a little more like big businesses. Here are 8 things you can do to make your small business look bigger.
What are the biggest marketing challenges small businesses face? Finding customers is always a tough task, but what about other things like fighting the competition and just having enough money in the budget for marketing?
Sometimes the truth is hard to hear. The way B2B companies approach innovation is deeply flawed (dare we say “downright dumb”?). Find out what so many are doing wrong-and get insights on how to engage your customer in a way that gets buy-in on those bright ideas right from the start.
How you handle unhappy customers in your restaurant will determine whether they leave satisfied or angry enough to tell all their friends and family. Use these tips to turn dissatisfied customers into happy ones.
There are seven common selling myths that can trip up any salesperson. Whether you've developed your own preconceived notions or have bought into other sales people's misconceptions, believing these myths can hurt your ability to sell. Find out what they are here.
Networking doesn't come naturally to everyone. If you find it awkward, try these seven strategies to make networking more enjoyable and profitable.
When the phone rings, are you annoyed at the interruption? The way you and your employees answer the phone sets the stage for your customers' experience with you. Here are five tips for ensuring your phone skills give a good impression.
Even though we all know we need to sell our products and services, many people are fearful or anxious about actually doing so. These 10 tips can help you shift out of fear and into excitement about selling your product or service.
When marketing your business, you need to do more than just attract customers. To be effective, you also need to focus on conversion and retention.
Customer service training is great - if you can remember to consistently apply what you've learned. One way to make sure you and your staff don't forget the basics of great customer service is to follow a series of steps like these each and every time.
Want to improve your sales skills? Great salespeople have several habits in common. Learn what they are and make them part of your routine to become a better salesperson.
Networking is one of the best ways to market your business, but not everyone is a natural. Use these ten tips to make your business networking more effective.
Business cards are still a valuable marketing tool for your business. These seven tips can help you design a professional business card that will help customers remember you.
How can you build your B2B sales? The answer isn't to work harder on your pitch. It’s to become a trusted adviser. Here’s how to do it.
Networking events can be a great source of ideas for how to grow your business. In fact, they can offer you so many new ideas that you can't keep up with them all. Here are five steps to help you make the most of business networking events.
Good customer service doesn't end when the product is delivered. If you don't want to risk losing your customers to the competition, you have to be proactive about regularly following up and addressing their needs.
To keep your doors open, you need to keep a steady flow of customers coming through those doors. Follow these eight steps to attract more new customers to your business.
Not following up with your prospects and customers is the same as filling up your bathtub without first putting the stopper in the drain! Here's how to create a follow-up system for your business so you get more sales with less effort.
Launching a new product or a new marketing initiative can raise the awareness of your company. Here are steps to take to help ensure the success of the launch.
Looking for an inexpensive way to get the word out about your business? The media - bloggers, newspapers, radio, and television - are always looking for unique stories to share with their audiences. Here's how you can get their attention.
The more information you have from your customers, the better. Here are six ways to get feedback so you know what customers think of your business.
Want to beat the competition and have more customers choose your business? Here are three things you can do to make your business stand out from your competitors.
Want to see your small business sales skyrocket? A strategic sales plan is your map to more sales and profits.
How can you get customers to return to your business? How can you stand out from competitors in a crowded retail environment? One secret is to focus on a niche and build up a cachet. Here's how.
The success of a retail business often hinges on how well its sales staff relates to the different types of people that walk through the doors. Here are the four basic personality types of retail customers and some tips on how to deal with each one.
One of the latest small business marketing strategies is SMS marketing. Marketing with text messages lets you reach customers wherever they are, without busting your small business budget.
Virtually every person who enters your business has this question in their mind. To truly maximize your revenues you need to give people a reason to buy from you versus a competitor. These strategies can help you differentiate yourself from your competition.
Webinars are one of the most affordable ways to market your product or service. Use these pointers to produce a webinar that is effective and successful.
If you're thinking about developing a marketing program, you need to begin with a marketing plan. Fortunately, it doesn't have to be complicated in order to work. Here are the ten basic parts of a marketing plan.
A flyer is an inexpensive and highly effective way to grab attention in a very busy marketplace. How do you make your flyer stand out in the crowd? Here are some techniques that professional designers use to make flyers pop.
If you think your customers exist solely to “buy your stuff,” you’re missing a huge part of the picture. Bill Lee, author of The Hidden Wealth of Customers, says your customers are uniquely equipped to influence your product development, sing your praises, and even close sales for you. He describes seven things they can do better than you.
Following up with networking contacts after a networking event is important if you want to turn those prospects into paying customers. Here are five s