7 Actions for Marketing A New Business

If you are just starting out in the online business world, marketing a new business, should be your number one mission. Using your marketing efforts, you are on a constant mission to get new customers. If you’re just starting out, how do you get those customers? Sure, if you have a bit of money you could do an Adwords Campaign or other types of advertising. But before you start, we need to do some testing (with little money) to see if that product or service you’re trying to launch is something that the market is after. We need to find out whether you’re solving a specific problem your customers will pay you money for?

Furthermore, if you don’t have a way to tell people about what you do, you really don’t have a business. Every business needs a customer, that is, someone who will to pay you for your product/service.

In the beginning you could well be spending a lot of time on marketing your business, and seeing little or no return. You may feel like you’re working for pennies.

The general consensus is that it could take 1000 days to really get momentum, before all your efforts will start to pay off. If you don’t have the stamina for that, perhaps you should go back to getting a job.

(TIP: If you do still have a job, even part time, during the first 1000 days, think about keeping, if you can, for as long as possible, or until you feel comfortable to switch to full time on your business.)

Making connections and reaching out to other people is super important. Having them experience your business, your product, your service, or anything that is your business, getting their feedback in invaluable. If you can’t do that, there is nothing there.

1. Target Audience

First we need to decide who your target market is.

Define your audience. We need to narrow this down to a specific person, your ideal customer.

What do they look like? Are they young or old? Are they Male or Female?

Do they like this and doesn’t like that. You need to ask these questions.

You NEED to get a real feeling for this ideal customer. We can’t be to board here. Start with the average user of your product. Narrow it down to a specific person. Our ideal person, the perfect one, and the one we want to sell our product to. Have a very good idea of who this is.

A good way to do this is to talk about who is NOT in your market. Who is your customer NOT. Who is it you do NOT want to reach out to.

So describe our perfect customer. Put yourself in their shoes, frame your perspective, taking into consideration what they like and don’t like. Think like your ideal customer.

2. Study your competition

Now start to search for your competitors, view your competitors from your new target markets perspective. Look for the things they are doing well from this perspective, and also look for the things they are doing poorly.

So we steal the good things and we improve the poor things of our competitor, and try to set ourselves apart. Differentiate yourself.
The best place to start doing some research is to search for your competitors backlinks. (Links that point to your competitor’s website)

Go to Yahoo.com
(Google does not tend to give such a comprehensive list as Yahoo) type in. Link: www.your-competition-website-name.com

Start a spreadsheet for these links. Remember we are looking for places where your ideal customer will hang out.

This will give you a good look at who are linking to your competitors. Study these links. Go to the websites that link to them. See how they got those links.

Sometimes they are link directories. Add your link.

Sometimes you will find interviews with the competitors. Get interviewed by people who have interviewed your competitors. Unless they are high profile site, it may be better to wait a little here, seeing you are just starting out, but if there are secondary or lower industry sites, blogs, etc, try to get an interview and talk about the difference with dealing with you.

Start a spreadsheet for these links. Remember we are looking for places where your ideal customer will hang out.

And RATE these sites as potential targets for you.

1. How big is there audience?
2. How relevant is that audience to your target person.
3. Reach out to a relevant or related audience

We should start to target blog sites with a mid to low level audience size with high relevance to your market first. Build up some communication skills with a smaller audience first. Reach out to these site owners. Start commenting on their blog. Maybe introduce yourself. Get your name out there. Offer them some value for free. Start communicating here. Start to build a relationship with the site owner.

WE DON’T WANT TO SPAM. OFFER REAL VALUE to the site owner RELEVANT to the target audience. Sometimes, even offering free work with no strings attached can be invaluable.

Forums are another great area, but you need to be careful with forums. If you do it wrong they can be a real disaster. Just remember to add value to the conversation. Answers questions without mentioning your business, you just need the profile link that’s it. Be helpful to the users and add value where ever you can. So, to start, you join the forum. Fill in the profile information.

Do a search in the forum for something you know really well or are passionate about.

Stay on topic. Get in there regularly and start to answer questions. If you do this well you will begin to be seen as an expert in the field. Again, if you have solved a problem in the industry, put up your own thread to answer that problem.

Don’t just link to your website, write it in the forum. This helps the site owner and could be the beginning of a relationship.

4. Systemise the process

At this point we need to start to systemise this process. This is a whole process on its own, and I will explain more of this later. But, just by starting a spreadsheet is the beginning of the system. Then we take this a bit further and add a bit more and more over time.

So I just want to say we don’t want to be spending all day every day doing this. But we need to do this regularly.

In the initial stages of the business we should be spending about 70% of your time reaching out to your target audience. The other 30% should be spent on content for your site.

We need to spend time on marketing ourselves and spend a good portion of your day building relationships and maintaining them.

So do this regularly, and systemise it:

A Simple example of this process:

Monday’s at 9am to 12am. Contact X number of blog owners and make X number of valuable comments, set reminders to keep in contact with these relationships we have built, every month, and our goal is to add value here.

Tuesday’s at 9am to 12am, Participate in forums. Set specific goals, like start a new thread, answer users’ questions, start small and don’t spam. Again our goal is to add value, and have people think “gee that guy is helpful”

You get the idea; it is the beginning of a system, the system for how you market your business.

Set a schedule and stick to it, design a system to help you to do these task, set follow ups, design email templates for constant contact with leads and relationships.

5. Money is not everything

On one hand we are in business to make money, so we need to focus on making a profit, but this cannot be the ultimate approach.

Remember, helping and supporting people will lead to money.

We don’t just do things just to make money. People will see right through you. Genuinely plan to help and provide value wherever you can.

6. Share information with your relationships

If you come across some information that may be of value to one of our contacts, share that information with them.

Send a letter and say “I found this information, thought you might be interested” this is great for building and maintaining relationships.

Do this often and stay in regular contact with these relationships, even when you don’t need the customers and the extra marketing effort.

7. Set up Google alerts for your business name.

When people talk about you or your product on the web, Google can alert you of this. When people do mention you, do go to the source and leave a comment, send an email and always thank them for the comment or mention.

This can also help to build and maintain relationships. It’s those personal touches that will really help make connections with your customers that other people are not doing.