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Ask Doris - Second Year of Trading Marketing

Ask Doris - how to market a business in the second year of trading

“We're in our 2nd year now and business has been growing really fast, I'd like to drive more customers but not sure where to start first with the marketing, there seems like so much to do and so many platforms?” DP

Dear DP

Congratulations on your business growth in year one!

To identify the type of marketing activities you can adopt to continue with your growing business, I would usually ask companies in a similar position to yours the following questions:

  1. What are your business objectives for the coming year? Understanding what you want to achieve is key to identifying what marketing activities will help you achieve those goals i.e. sales targets, number of new contracts, increased number of leads etc.
  2. Who are you targeting? Defining your key markets may mean that a different approach or message could be used more effectively
  3. How do you measure performance? Are there processes in place to monitor the effectiveness of current marketing activities, is this reviewed and used? Dependent on the answers, this would give a clearer idea of the type of marketing activity (platform), your business could invest in for your second year of trading to aid with your growth plans.

This may include (and in no order!)

  • Website – online presence can serve as your ‘shop window’ or as a brochure to your business products and services
  • Printed Advertising – targeted adverts in the right regional / business / trade publications
  • Online Advertising – banner adverts on key websites / social media channels or a Pay Per Click (PPC) campaign using key phrases
  • Social Media – using key channels can be effective in driving traffic to your website and creating awareness
  • Digital Campaigns – electronic bulletins or newsletters can be highly effective
  • Events – hosting or speaking at seminars, round table sessions or workshops
  • Sponsorships – supporting a community project, sporting activity or charity can provide brand awareness opportunities
  • Networking – building relationships in your local business community or within your industry can help with word of mouth referrals
  • PR – communicate your successes in business to your local / regional / business / trade press
  • Branding – office signage, workwear, merchandising can all aid in promotion
  • Telemarketing – sales lead generation or supporting an event

Not all marketing activities will be appropriate for all businesses or all industries or objectives. In most cases you can test a campaign, review the results, adjust, review again and don’t be afraid to make further adjustments.

For help and advice on choosing the right platform for your needs, contact Helen Stott at Marketing Doris on 0790 3727750

Feedback:

Dunham Forest Golf & Country Club
Philip Weisberg
"Helen has proved invaluable to us in helping bring the smooth launch of a new website to fruition, no mean task for a Golf Club steeped in tradition, but one that had fallen behind in terms of both promotion"
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