The essentials of shoestring marketing
Why is marketing so important?
Having a successful marketing strategy for your business is like having a powerful train driving customers through your doors. Once these customers are through your doors, you can then work on selling them your goods and services. All too often businesses concentrate their efforts on the sales function without really bothering about marketing, which results in poor sales because customers aren’t coming to buy.
I am going to assume that you don’t have thousands of pounds to spend on marketing. Even if you have a large budget available, be forewarned that the amount you spend on marketing your business does not necessarily equal the size of your sales.
Learning from larger businesses
Before we look at marketing techniques, I want to tell you about an excellent, free way of getting up-to-the-minute telesales training. Every year big businesses invest millions of pounds training their telesales staff in the latest techniques for telemarketing. As soon as you open your business, you will get bombarded with all sorts of people trying to sell you something. Personally, I never buy anything over the phone; even if it’s something that I’m interested in I will only decide if and when I see written information including terms and conditions.
How to approach a cold sales telephone call
You’ll learn a lot from how they work the call so as to get through to the decision maker. Obviously the last thing they want to do is waste their time selling advertising space to someone who is not a decision maker.
So listen to how they make their initial approach. What distinguishes professional telesales executives from the others you’ll get calling you is that the pro will have their homework done. They’ll have the name of who they want to speak to. The amateurs or no-hopers will simply say something like, ‘Hello, can I speak to the business owner, please?’ or another favourite, ‘Can I speak to the person who handles the utility bills…?
How to overcome common objections
The reason I urge you to tell them you’re not interested is because then you’ll learn how to handle initial objections. The most important thing when handling any objection is to keep dialogue going and build up a relationship because people find it more difficult to say no to someone they like.
Coping with rejection
Whatever business you’re planning to start you’re going to have to learn to handle rejection as you’re going to get it. Often in truck loads. When a professional telesales executive calls you and you make it clear you don’t want whatever it is they’re selling you, they won’t take it personally. ‘Well thank you very much for your time this morning, Mr Power, I appreciate how busy you are, but if you ever do change your mind.
Why advertising doesn’t always work
Too many advertisements are dead simply because they can’t achieve what’s expected of them. For example, a common, and easily made, mistake is to use a small advertisement to try to sell your products. A single advertisement can’t do this. So the objective for the advertisements we run for our Dutch bikes is to get people motivated to get further information on our products. They can do this by either visiting our website or phoning us for a brochure.
Rather than see your advertisement as simply a tool for selling your goods, instead use it as a vehicle for bringing potential customers to either your telephone line or website to find out more about your products and services. This way at least your advertisement stands some chance of achieving its objective.