We’ve all heard the term ‘Marketing Philosophy’ but what exactly do we mean by this? The aim is to develop as many satisfied customers as possible because without them no company can survive for long. Dissatisfied customers won’t continue to buy its products – they’ll buy from a competitor instead.
So, what’s the best way to go about this? First, you must produce or sell the goods that customers want. This means it’s important to do your research and find out as much as you can about your customers, their needs and their preferences. This is the same whether you’re manufacturing a product, such as cars, phones and furniture, or you’re offering a service such as hairdressing, selling food or designing kitchens.
And once you’ve found out what they want you need to let them know that you can provide it! These days this doesn’t just mean paid advertising in newspapers, on the radio and TV. There are now lots of ‘free’ ways you can promote yourself and your products or services using social media – Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn etc. But you’ll notice that I put the word ‘free’ in inverted commas. That’s because none of this is really free - to build up a good social media presence you need to spend TIME reaching out to your customers. And time costs money. So, you’ve always to make sure that you put enough effort into promoting yourself using these methods, but not so much that you’ve no time to actually do your work!
Next you need to think about price. You want to charge enough to cover your expenses and make yourself a profit, but you still need to remain competitive. So always do your research and see what your competitors are charging before setting a price. You may not need to undercut them if you are offering a ‘premium’ product where quality rather than price is the issue. But it’s still important to think about his carefully.
If you’re selling a service online or are manufacturing items to sell on, then location isn’t an issue. But if you are running a shop, restaurant or café, then you also need to consider location. You need to be where people can see you as they walk past – they may be tempted to pop in on impulse and buy. Also, it helps if there is somewhere to park nearby.
One final, but very important point: ‘Service with a smile’. Yes, if you’re in a face-to-face situation with your customers, whether in a café, a shop, as a hairdresser, plumber or taxi driver, the best way to get customers coming back time after time is to be friendly and serve them with a smile. And if you employ staff, train them to do the same and impress upon them the importance of this at all times!
If you feel you need to know more about sales and marketing in general, to boost your business, then why not have a look at our Professional Sales Techniques course.