The key for any organization in marketing their services is to stand out! To be able to differentiate yourself from everyone else within your market – either by the services you offer, the benefits you provide, your quality, or by price.
Of course if all you do is sell on price alone, realize that really only one provider is going to actually have the lowest cost – so this is typically not an easy differentiator to live up to! As for the other key selling points, your success is incumbent upon your having a clear mission and message to communicate – and then a strategy to share these with your targeted audience. When you get right down to it, this is really Marketing 101 – plain and simple.
The real point of this blog though is not so much what we all need to do, but rather what you are actually doing about it? For instance, probably the most critical component of any organization’s marketing plan is their website. This is where you need to be driving potential prospects to on a regular basis – so how does yours communicate your mission? Have you made a point of updating it with relevant messaging – and then continued to do so on a regular basis? How does it compare to your competition’s site? It is amazing how many companies are still living with 5 or more year old sites!
Next thing to review is how you actually reach out to engage your clients or prospects. It is not enough just to have a sign out front, or to have a great website that tells all about you – if there is nothing you do to communicate on a regular basis with clients or to attract prospects to learn more about you, then your marketing plan is stagnant!
Many companies will start off with a strategy to place ads in a local paper, to either print or e-mail a newsletter, to make an introductory video, or to perhaps even write a blog. The common fault though is when they get distracted and not follow through! For instance, the number of businesses that utilize a blog to drive incoming traffic to their website is growing every year – but take a look at the majority of sites that include blog posts, and then check to see when the last post was added. More often than not, it has been pretty sporadic!
Another great way to stay in contact can be through social media. Not only can it be a great way to engage your clients in a very personal way, it is also very inexpensive – at least until you figure in the time that it takes! This is of course where the lack of follow through comes in again, it becomes a real challenge to keep the various sites active.
So at the end of the day or week – or month, what does it take for your organization to stand out? Commitment.
How well do you rate yourself for commitment on a scale of 1 to 10?