Solopreneur? Segment your marketing dollar for maximum returns

Solopreneur? Segment your marketing dollar for maximum returns
by: Custom Toll Free , August 1, 2017

When you’re a solopreneur aiming to make the most of every dollar in your budget, you may be tempted to simplify the marketing process by funneling all your resources into one venue.

That kind of strategy would almost certainly be easier, but it’s definitely not the way to optimize your ROI. To wring maximum benefit from the money you have available, it’s a good idea to incorporate multiple channels targeting different elements of your audience.

Savvy marketers these days employ a mix of digital and traditional methods for covering all their bases to reach their best customers, since 98 percent of Americans switch between using multiple devices and venues in any given day. In fact, a recent U.S. study found 65 percent implement two or more media channels in their campaigns and 44 percent use three or more.

Another study found companies enacting omnichannel customer engagement strategies retain an average 89 percent of their customers, compared to 33 percent for those using more singular strategies. Still, another determined 50 percent of multichannel marketers “usually” or “always” hit their financial targets.

Consider how the following suggestions could help you get started with marketing via several venues.

Know your customer. Keeping your key audiences in mind is easier when you create personas, which are fictional characters with characteristics and probable behaviors matching your various customer demographics. Use the personas to define exactly whom you’re trying to reach.

Establish your brand. To help customers recognize and identify with your company, you’ll want to present your marketing messages in a certain way. That requires establishing a “voice” that fits. Ask yourself what your company or products represent and how you’d like them to be perceived. Are you trying to be cutting edge, or traditional and reliable? Irreverent or respectful? Silly or serious? Inexpensive or worth investing in? The better you pre-define your brand, the easier you can craft meaningful messaging.

Understand your marketing budget. Start by compiling the average lifetime value of your typical customer, i.e., the length of time they remain a customer, the amount they spend over that time and your gross margin on their expenditures (guesstimates may be necessary for new businesses). Use that metric in determining a reasonable expenditure for earning each new client. Multiply that by your annual target number for new customers, and you’ll have the basis for a budget that makes sense.

Create an email campaign. This requires planning ahead, but it is an effective, free way of engaging a range of customers. Mix information and promotional messaging and offering regular newsletter featuring content of value.

Embrace call marketing. This method combines the advantages of digital marketing and traditional phone sales. You place multiple online and offline ads encouraging end users to pick up their phones (or with mobile ads, just click a button) to respond to an offer. You train staffers to answer and convert the calls, while software informs on who’s calling so you can better define your customer base and understand which ads are most effective.

Exploit social media. Consider a mix of your own free, regularly updated posts and the purchase of targeted ads. Learn which audiences prefer which outlets through the Pew Research Center.

Go traditional. Learn whether TV, radio, billboards and/or newspaper ads can reach your key markets, as certain demographics still gravitate toward those mediums.

Go digital. Online ads such as Google Pay Per Click ads offer the advantages of flexibility and precise targeting toward your target markets. And be sure to list your business in free online directories, including Google Business, Google Maps and Yelp.

Offer content. To foster engagement and trust with customers, write or purchase informational or entertaining content they can access through your website, social media and/or email campaign. This is especially effective in reaching customers who employ ad blocking and/or simply don’t trust traditional ads. Ensure your content aligns with your specific audience interests; your mix might include blogs, videos, podcasts or infographics.

Go guerrilla. List all possibilities for creative and/or “guerrilla” marketing that cost little to nothing. Possibilities include media interviews, webinars, car decals, flash mobs, booths at community events, publicity stunts, contests, branded freebies, distributed fliers, sponsoring of community fundraisers, sidewalk chalk and sandwich boards outside your door or presentations you give to groups.

Partner up. Strategize with businesses and/or nonprofits that complement yours, promoting them in your campaigns and asking them to do the same. With your customers’ permission, you may also exchange customer lists.

Your marketing plan doesn’t have to be pricey, but it should make the best use of every dollar you decide to invest. Combining venues in your marketing strategy can make that happen.

Talk to Custom Toll Free about optimizing a strategically chosen phone number for your next marketing campaign.

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