That’s a good question, don’t you think? A lot of home business owners focus on building a reputation and generating referral business, yet many people don’t even realize the benefits of marketing to their target market. Referral business is great, and free advertising always has the best return on investment ratio, but there’s a lot of money to be made from new leads.
When you set up your business there were many things that you probably thought of: the product, who that product appeals to, how you were going to market your business, who your potential clients might be, where you were going to generate your first sales… the list goes on. What’s important is whether or not you actually followed your plan, and if you didn’t, why you chose not to.
Regardless, the success of your business depends on your ability to generate an income. Marketing and promoting products to people in your target market can help you bring about greater revenues, and hence a greater income, supposing that you market to them effectively:
- Address their needs – If you’ve decided that you want to start marketing a new type of cell phone to teenagers you are going to need to focus on what a teenager wants from their phone. It is unlikely that a teenager is going to want to be able to synchronize their cell phone with their PDA, but you can get that a teenager will be interested in a more advanced camera or an easier way to send text messages. Find a product that fits the niche, not the other way around.
- Use appropriate advertisements – This will depend on the type of product that you are selling, but the basic principle remains the same: offer a product to the market that the market will appreciate, and use market appropriate advertisements to make it appealing. If you are trying to sell waterproof car covers designed to high end cars, you’ll want the advertisements to show a high-end automobile using your cover, and you’ll also want that ad to let potential customers know specific things about your car cover- the fact that it won’t scratch paint, for example.
- Price matters – Pricing is difficult to determine as you don’t want to over or under charge. However, there are some basic stereotypes that are (unfortunately) pretty accurate: college students are broke, wealthy people want their needs addressed, and the average consumer wants value. It is unlikely that your product will sell to a college student if it is price $50 more than the competition, so price accordingly.
- Incentives – The type of incentive that you will want to offer will vary based on the market, but offering some kind of incentive is a great persuasive tool. The perfect example is Air Miles or reward points offered by your local supermarket. Offering some kind of points system that is later redeemable for cash or rewards is a great way to encourage (repeat) spending.
Large companies have the benefit of in-house advertising reps and marketing departments. Chances are good that your home business doesn’t. However, what you do have is an intimate knowledge of your product and of the market. Brainstorm some ways to appeal to that market and before you know it you’ll be rolling in green.
- Free Business Cards.
- Free Business Plan Template.