To better market your business you'll need to think about your marketing strategy. It isn't enough to do sporadic marketing activities. A successful plan will help you to establish a constant flow of new business and allow you to more accurately forecast your staffing needs.
1. Describe your target market in demographic terms (age range, income level, occupation, marital status, geographical location, sex).
2. Describe your target market in psychographic terms (life style, desires, perceived needs)
This information along with demographic information will help you to find where your target market hangs out. What ever you choose in terms of marketing activities you always want to be sure you are in front of a significant number of members of your target market.
3. Estimate the size of your target market.
The larger the target market the easier it is to reach them. That said however a target market that is too large may prove difficult to reach because there is a lot of variation within it. You want to choose a target market that is small enough so that when you speak or write to them, they feel you are speaking or writing directly to them.
4. Analyze your competitors by detailing their strengths and weaknesses and where you see opportunities to compete with them and also where you see threats to them or to you in terms of competition.
5. Describe the product/service you offer and your competitive advantage.
This is an opportunity to get clear about your value proposition-the reason customers/clients choose you over the competition.
6. Put it all together in a positioning statement that takes this form:
The target market for my business is (describe the clients using the information from 1 and 2 above) who have this problem (what is the compelling reason they need this service?).
The service offered is (describe service as you did in #5) is unlike the competition because (describe competitive advantage as you did in #5)
7. Describe how you will deliver this product/service.
- Will the client come to your office?
- Will you go to the client? Is the service delivered on the telephone or over the Internet?
- Can the client get the service by regular postal service?
8. How will you price your product/service?
- What is the competitive pricing environment?
- Are their any constraints that limit what you can charge?
- Do you have a specific profit margin that you must get?
- What do you estimate it costs you to deliver this product/service?
- What are you basing your pricing on? Is it cost, quality, leadership, revenue generation?
9. What are the marketing actions and follow up actions you will take to get your prospects to become customers/clients? How frequently and where will you market your services?
10. How will you measure the effectiveness of your marketing strategy?
This is the only way to know how successful your marketing strategy is. After 3 or 4 months if the strategy is not working, you will want to alter the plan and try again.
By Alvah Parker
Photography by Edgard Rodriguez
Photography by Edgard Rodriguez
Alvah Parker is a Practice Advisor (The Attorneys' Coach) and a Career Changers' Coach as well as publisher of Parker's Points, an email tip list and Road to Success, an ezine. Subscribe now to these free monthly publications at her website http://www.asparker.com/samples.html and receive a values assessment as a gift. Work becomes more meaningful and enjoyable when you work from your values.Parker's Value Program© enables her clients to find their own way to work that is more fulfilling and profitable. Her clients are attorneys and people in transition who want to find work that is in line with their own life purpose. Alvah is found on the web at http://www.asparker.com. She may also be reached at 781-598-0388.