Category Archives: Marketing

07Jan

Product, Place, Promotion

Posted on January 7, 2013 by carole | 2 Replies

As a Small Business Owner it’s my responsibility to tailor my product for my clients, to ensure that it fits within the standards I want to portray and the pricing structure relevant to the client/customer that I am attracting.
This product has a place in the market which is again relevant to my potential audience, (no point selling car boot items at Harrods prices!) and each product has a place in my ‘store’ , in my case my website but it could be a physical shop, restaurant, market stall or shared space.
We all know the benefits of having an Impulse Buy close to the tills and of having products that you can ‘upsell’ when you know the requirements of the purchaser and can match them to their desires.
Promotion takes in all elements of the press & magazines, the radio, the internet, word of mouth, leaflets, business cards and more importantly, us, the Business owners and our responsibility for our own success by telling everyone what our product is, even our best friends because it is so easy to assume that people know what we do.
I saw a comment on Twitter before Christmas where a retailer had said ‘100’s of people walk by my shop everyday’
I have to ask the question of why they walk by and not enter.  Did they not know what the retailer sold? Why not? Had the product been promoted well? Or did the retailer not use the tools available to promote the business and product? Or was the retailer so involved in the negative aspect of people walking by, the cost of heat & light, cars parking all day in the street etc that they did not show the world what they sold?
If people don’t know what we have to offer they’re not going to be coming to us for it!!!!!!

 

Posted in Clients, Marketing, Networking, Promotion, Rural Meeting Place | Tags: | 2 Replies

27Aug

Customer Service or Not?

Posted on August 27, 2011 by admin | Leave a reply

One of my pet hates has always been the lack of Customer Service in the independent sector as well as the Nationals.

Poor customer service can break your business and in the current economic climate we don’t need something as basic as good customer service to slip.

I believe customer service if demonstrated and trained from the top should come as automatically as opening up in a morning.

Politeness costs nothing and serving in the service/hospitality industry is part of the job role.

My mantra has always been ‘Treat others as you wish to be treated yourself’ so it just makes me wonder how complacent we are becoming.

Customer feedback is not something to be feared but something to work with. It defines the areas of your business that need looking at to improve the experience of your clientele.

Perhaps you just need to stress the importance of customer service when you induct new staff, perhaps existing staff need a refresher on dealing with the customer.
Rewarding staff is a good way to generate excellence; its amazing the difference it can make by just presenting a Certificate to the Employee of the Month can make. Other staff members are automatically going to step up to the mark. Maybe the Employee of the Month could provide hints and tips for the Company Newsletter?
Your staff members are your reputation, their level of service can affect the balance in your till in the future, perhaps this could be the difference between staying in business or not.

What do you think?

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02Feb

Customer Service

Posted on February 2, 2011 by admin | Leave a reply

Yesterday I was pleased and surprised that a local chain of grocery stores contacted me and told me that one of their staff had been disciplined after I had complained on Twitter about her rudeness.

I had passed a comment; they got in touch, took details of my complaint and promised to get back to me. When they did it was telling me they had dealt with it and also will be looking at their staff training in that particular branch.

The most pleasing part of this being that they are on the look out for mentions of their business and are not frightened of making contact and addressing issues.

Are you as open to this form of customer service? Do you need to be more alert as to what your customers are saying about you? Are their steps you can take quickly and easily to be as on the ball as they are?

If it helps to keep customers happy and talking about you in a positive light perhaps its worth taking a couple of minutes to review your systems?

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02Jun

Monday Morning Musings.

Posted on June 2, 2008 by admin | Leave a reply

What is Networking?

The Dictionary definition is: Using contacts made in business for purposes beyond the reason for the initial contact. For example, a sales representative may ask a customer for names of others who may be interested in his product.

In essence it is the art of talking to people with a view to making contacts or procuring business from a trusted source. It does not matter how we do this, a drink after work in the local, over the Internet on a host of reputable Networking sites or in person at a pre-arranged networking event, it all brings the same result of increased business and allegiances with other business contacts who can ‘sell’ your business amongst their contacts. Every business networks in one format or another to produce the same results of increasing business without realising that they are doing it, so, with a little structure added to the mixture, imagine the results that can be achieved.

Corporate Companies are now adding Network Membership fees into their Marketing budget, so it makes sense for the small business to do likewise. In particular, networking is effective for the sole trader, as it gives him/her the opportunity to meet people and to discuss points that they perhaps do not have the answer for, believe me this happens in the bigger Companies as well.

However, for the people who want to come away from a network meeting with a full order book on the first outing, it does not work that way. Perhaps for a printer or a florist this will work but for most businesses it is a matter of getting to know people, what they do and what they are like before the automatic referral process starts to take place.

Some people attend meetings for the simple process of being recognised, rather than to get work, so it varies business by business.

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