Marketing Tips, Tactics and Secrets

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Who Will Buy Your Professional Services?

Are you an engineer, IT consultant or marketing professional? Have you recently been downsized or laid off, or are you retired but climbing the walls to get back in the game?

If you provide, or want to provide, one of the thousands of professional services sought after by millions of businesses, then pull out your magic wand, wave it around and imagine creating your dream business – without fear of failure. What does it look like?

Got it pictured? Good. Now, take your magic wand and break it in half. Why? Because no matter what professional service business you choose to create, you’ll always be in the sales and marketing business. In a nutshell, if you don’t promote yourself and close deals, you’ll have a rough time staying in business.

One of the keys to your success in a service business is identifying who will want and who can afford your expertise.

Getting started
You need to figure out what the perfect clients look like. By answering a few questions, you’ll be well on your way to discovering who will want your services.

  • What business niches are they in?

  • What markets do they serve?

  • Who supplies those business niches with goods and services?

  • Where are those niches located?

  • Are there enough businesses in those niches to be profitable?

  • Can they afford your services?

  • Who would recommend their products or services?

Use different marketing approaches; some will work better than others. Some will start out like gang busters and then fade off. Others will crash and burn with no ROI. It’s all good because every success and failure is a lesson and brings you closer to succeeding.

Marketing tactics

The key here is to create an overall marketing strategy that includes 15 or more marketing tactics. The more tactics you try, the greater your chances are of attracting the perfect future client.

Keep in mind that people absorb information differently. For those who prefer verbal information, face-to-face interaction or a CD/DVD/Mp3 promotion is appropriate. For those who prefer visual data, communicate with them via videos, graphs, charts and pictures.

You should test many different marketing tactics. The following are just the tip of the iceberg:

  • Build an optimized website and use the Internet to describe the benefits of your service using video, audio and the written word.

  • Attend networking events.

  • Approach your suppliers for referrals.

  • Host webinars and podcasts because they are the 21st century "brochure."

  • Grow your database.

  • Market your growing database via email.

  • Create a local pay-per-click internet marketing campaign.

  • Develop a social media marketing (SMM) plan by joining LinkedIn, Facebook and three to four additional top SMM sites.

No matter the type of promotion you choose, you must provide a compelling reason for others to try out your services. If future clients have choices among numerous similar services or do not have a compelling need to purchase your service, your company will not grow fast.

Targeting big business

Your ideal prospect may be hidden deep within the corporate structure. Professional service providers sometimes find it easier to sell at a department level rather than target chief executives or CxOs. But, it can pay to go to the top first in order to name drop to the lower rungs.

Granted, it’s a lot harder to get to the CxOs. Is it worth the effort? You’ll have to be the judge. Now, keep in mind that birds of a feather flock together so when you do get an audience with a CxO, it could be your ticket to many more C-level opportunities.