Once you’ve established your business as a Sole Trader, it’s time to promote your company with an effective marketing plan. Marketing will help promote your goods (or services), make your company name recognizable, create & deliver your brand and its message, and ultimately make the phone ring and bring in some business!
The right way to market your business is as unique as you are. How do you market it correctly? There’s no one right answer – it is really whatever works for you!
For sole traders, marketing really is the work that creates demand for whatever it is you sell, so your business achieves the goals of whatever you want it to achieve.
It’s very important to do your research and understand what is important to your target market. What you might think is important to them might not be – and what you underestimate the importance of, might be crucial to your target market.
What’s the right answer? Research, research, research. With great enthusiasm and excitement, get out there, ask questions, find out directly from your target market what really IS important to them, and analyse their feedback. Find out what they want that matches with what you have to offer.
After analyzing all of the target market feedback, ask for feedback from friends, family, and even those who don’t like you! Family and friends will be nice and might just tell you what they think you WANT to hear…those who really don’t like you will probably give you very honest and possibly critical feedback.
It is important to analyse all of the information, create a marketing plan, execute it, and launch your business! Here are a few different areas to consider when creating your marketing plan:
Whether it’s adding a blog to your website, creating tutorial videos, or establishing a Facebook page, building up your online presence will help you get the word out about your company, your services, and what sets you apart from your competition. Using these various marketing channels requires planning, so here is a marketing calendar example which may assist with your strategic planning.
Website bells & whistles
Make sure you have an appealing website is important, as you only have one chance to make a great first impression. Adding some easy to use bells & whistles to your site can help convert potential customers to customers. For example, adding a live chat to your website can create an interaction with a potential customer with ease. Whether those conversations are answered by you, or a trained member of your staff, the live chat can act as a virtual sales person for your business.
Adding videos to your website can really draw in potential customers. Videos are more engaging than static images on the site and can not only share information about your products or services but can also give a sense of what your company’s identity is like.
search engine optimisation is another great way to get your name out there. Potential customers who may not yet know your company may just turn to a search engine, like Google, to find the type of company you own. Using the right key words can help your business show up in search engine search results. If you’re not sure exactly how to do this on your own, consider contracting an SEO expert to optimise your website content to contain these key words to your site.
Write a blog
Adding a weekly blog to your website (with SEO keywords), can help raise your visibility and drive online traffic to your website. It will also provide an opportunity to show your knowledge of industry issues and establish your credibility.
With a solid marketing plan in place, you are starting out with clear goals, prepared to establish your business reputation, ready to bring in new customers, and launch your company!
In addition to marketing your business, it’s critical to identify and maintain suitable business insurance for your company. Quotes for insurance can be obtained from a range of sources. You can contact the insurance companies directly, however this generally involves a lot of running around if you want to compare quotes from a variety of insurers. A better option for many business owners is to use an insurance comparison website.