A: This is a very common marketing question from our clients. Advertising is just one possible type of marketing promotion that you could do. Marketing involves more than just advertising.
Other possible marketing tactics are direct mail or postcard marketing, email marketing, blogging, etc.
Take a look at this article on developing your marketing promotion plan. It describes how marketing promotion involves much more than just advertising, and gives some other ways to promote without having to spend on advertising.
A: Many people use a variation of their own names to come up with company names, but that usually only makes sense if your name is already recognizable to your target customer base.
A better approach is to try to write down the types of keywords that describe the value proposition of your products or services to your target marget. See if you can come up with a name that resonates with that value proposition. Another thing to keep in mind is that your company name should be easy to find online: the domain name should be available (preferably as a .com), and it's great if the name includes a keyword or two that customers might use when searching for a product like yours.
We've put together a list of the top ten things to consider in naming your business, so take a look at it here.
A: The marketing plan is a written document which describes all the marketing tactics and activities that the business will focus on, usually including a marketing budget and timeline. Often, the marketing plan includes a section on the marketing strategy also.
This article describes what is a marketing plan, and how it relates to the business goals, market strategy, and marketing mix.
Basically, your marketing plan is where you describe what market segment you are going after, what target customers, who is your competition, what is your unique value proposition, and then finally what promotion activities you will engage in (such as blogging, marketing materials, tradeshows, advertising, website, etc).
A: You need to make sure that potential customers are able to easily find your website. Make sure it is search engine friendly (good use of keywords) and you have submitted it to the search engines.
It can take a lot of traffic before you start to see business through your website. Not only is it true that most visitors do not purchase, and most do not purchase on the first visit. But it also takes time for a new website to get credibility in the eyes of the search engines as well as potential customers.
To help drive potential customers to your website, you can advertise it in online forums or discussion boards, get your site listed in some online directories. You could also use Craigslist or eBay, or some of the freelance sites like eLance.com and guru.com (also look for some that are specialized to your particular services area).
For additional help with your online marketing question, take a look at this article for help on developing your internet marketing strategy.
A: We have a couple of resources that could be helpful to you:
There are a number of sites you can use to define and execute a marketing research plan. This marketing research article shows you how.
Also, you need to research the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) of your business or product idea. Take a look at this overview of doing a SWOT analysis.
A: You should first come up with your Unique Selling Proposition: what is the benefit that makes your product or service unique compared to its competitors? What customer segment do you target? (luxury, budget,...) Then use that to put together your slogan. Ideally, it should be less than about 12 words.
Take a look at this article with some tips for good advertising taglines.
A: Take a look at this marketing plan outline. It should have all the pieces you are looking for to put together a strong marketing plan.
A: If you want to focus on customer acquisition and retention (an excellent strategy in a recession, by the way) then you should focus on marketing strategies that build customer relationship.
Here are a few ideas:
For some more ideas, take a look at this article which includes 100 easy marketing tips.
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