A key question is whether your goods/services require personal delivery? For non-personal delivery to recipients you need partners/associates to help distribution and sales. For personal services delivery to recipients, you need 1)exposure of your services/goods to potential clients/customers, 2) participation in groups that can help to provide you with leads or that complement your products/services - that provide alternative avenues for client contact and/or distribution and 3) face-to-face performance aimed at client satisfaction and that will serve as credability for future business. Your question needs to be more specific.
Simon - you've gotten some great input from all theses comments which suggests there is no one path or theory to successfully marketing anything. So you have to chose one that "fits" your plan or your culture, and execute it.
I prefer to lead out with a value offer that I know or strongly believe will identify a greater need ("pain point") in the prospect. If they move forward with our solution to there pain point great. We deliver great service and build the P2P (people-to-people) aspect of our business. This is how you create the opportunity to ask for a referral.
However if the prospect chooses not to hire us to solve their pain, or the pain isn't yet great enough for them to act, we want the value offer we gave to have had a positive benefit to them. When that pain point becomes too great to bear they will hopefully remember who tried to help them solve it earlier and call us. You just never know.
Selling somebody anything happens when their problem/need/pain/desire forces them to seek a solution. The solution which is top of mind at that moment, or can get there quickly, will likely get the deal. Therefore your message has to always be in front of them and value always what you lead with,
Check out Amara Rose's post below as a perfect example. She's adding value to the entire group here and specifically to you as her answer to your question. She has given you (and me!) value without any expectation of immediate return. But she's now known to you and anyone who is tracking this thread so if they ever need marketing services she has shown her willingness to bring value early.
Hope this helps...
It is usually known as Sales & Marketing in that order for a reason. Marketing without a selling process is like a can of tuna without a can opener...nice to look at on the shelf but not very useful.
Theory becomes reality when you take action. What's your plan and how does it translate into implementable actions that can be tracked?
Attend and join a mastermind where you have access to strong and positive feedback, and look for the format you need as you will get feedback from -been there, done that, real time information with focused direction all looking to help you. No selling. Good luck. I run one for women, The Moxie Exchange Movement in New Jersey. This is what you need and here we follow a format to get down to biz, masterminds are a fantastic tool for everyone. Gayle
Who is your target and what are you selling? I would be able to help if you gave me a little background of your product etc.
I suggest you start with local Chambers of Commerce and find out about any networking events they host to get your name out there and meet those that you feel would benefit from what you have to offer. I also suggest that you study the correct and most effective way to network. A good read is Endless Referrals by Bob Burg. You may also want to go to meetup.com and research meet up groups that fit your industry or groups that you feel could benefit from your product or service and join those groups to attend any of their events. This is the best way to build a good contact base.
There is no one "best way." There are a bunch of ways. Turn yourself into your own marketing client:
What are you trying to do?
What are the best ways to do that?
Who is available to assist you?
What is your budget?
What is your timeline? (Need a timeline!)
What is working? What is not? (Drop items that are not working.)
What are you metrics for success? (How will you know when you're successful?)
I have been in marketing and public relations for 30 years. Good luck,
Sales conversion, and being present (brand presence/dominance) in the sell-to markets you wish to approach is critical. Engaging consumers of your products, services, or professional services with their intrinsic needs in mind ... not yours.
A scalable platform with social integration is part of your critical path, to gain real traction, engaging those with true buyers intent, versus social 'browsers' etc.
Innovate Products/Services across the entire horizontal value streams of new product/service development(aligned with VOC/Minimum Marketable Value Proposition Model with a competitive edge),fulfillment,post delivery throughout the entire product/service life cycle as a perpetual differentiator. There are no short cuts to perpetual value addition but there are only enablers.
Align & adopt with Technological changes faster than your targeted customer groups/markets/competition.
Use data for strengthening & fine tuning your marketing strategies/approaches.
Of course be cautious as some companies claim to offer big data crunching & munching to deliver ROI.
Just a thought.
Follow a business strategy by
Look into past (how was your business, how you satisfied the customers, feedback)
See the present state how u have come through the past (find out the gaps that you have overcome, solved,etc).
plan future(how you can make people attracted, what you want to prove, take a short testimony of the past n present customers feedback, check out what people are expecting from your service, is your work excellent? reflect on the areas where you haven't concentrated much.)
your publicity is the work you have done to your previous clients, make use of social media. You may not get response in a day, spread it viral in a form of video file so people will see what you do exactly.
Create a video clip of your organization containing 'what you do' and 'how you implement.
Hope the information provided helpful.
A good mix of TV and Radio specifically targeted to your demo. Remember if you can not afford to do both do one well. Your message is also important, depending on your product there are many different approaches that would get the right response for you.
You have to look at what your target market wants to see and where they want to see it...would it be better to advertise in a trade magazine, or are they big social media users? What is the call to action for them to contact you? It could be "call for a free assessment".
Hi there. =) You got an interesting post which I find it very insightful as well. Taking a step forward to your goal contains many things such as possibilities and at the same time, risks. With this, I agree with Vince. One should lessen his fear and don't take to much time of thinking and planning, because you can't reach success by merely dreaming of it, one needs to act and get it. =)
This was previously answered but I would say the answer is obvious.
You asked how you turn "theory" into "reality".
Well, go out and make it reality. The world is full of communication tools not least of which is a phone. The internet is a tool of convenience so use all the tools at your finger tips.
Remember that marketing is also known as testing, in our more geeky circles. We send messages to our market in whatever form (social media, targeted ads, emails, phone calls, surveys), we then study the overall reaction over a short period of time, dump the strategies that have little to no response, improve the ones that did get a response, refine our strategy, and do it again and again until our measured result is met or exceeded.
But the only way you'll really know what works, is to go out and test those theories.
As a marketing strategist I only have one piece of advice:
"there is no such thing as B2B".
There is only People to People. My website doesnt call you, my sales person does. My website tells you what we do and can accomplish, but my people make it happen and build the relationships. So know your market, their behaviour, their pain and needs and wants, ask them what they wish they had, ask them how they wish to have it, AND THEN, make their buying process as easy, fun, uninterrupted, mind-numbingly simple and effortless as possible.
Focus on Building a Relationship within your target market via social media (online) then engage, make contact (human face to face), meeting if possible. Social networks are about people and relationships. You engage in business, and you are also a human being, just like your potential customers and followers. Don't treat them as if they are just a "virtual reality". Reach out to them and reap the rewards. Technology sometimes gets in the way of our humanity. Connect, Be Social.
There is No promise when it comes to advertising. There are educated approaches based on others good and bad marketing attempts. There are a couple preliminary areas to discuss. How wide or narrow is your primary market? What budget is available? Is it a local, regional or national program? Three things I can say FOR SURE: 1) Be consistent with everything you do at any one time frame, 2) Keep your focus on the primary market, 3) Evaluate every quarter, give the efforts time to be successful. With that approach your chances of success are raised above the rest.
Marketers identify the needs. Does that need is answered in your theory? Yes, then draw actions accordingly.
I suggest a 4 step approach: 1) INTENT- what is it that you are trying to accomplish. The more clear YOU are the better off your effort will be, 2) AUDIENCE- who are they? The better you know them the better off your effort will be. Seriously, learn all you can about the people you are trying to reach, 3) VBNUE- where does your AUDIENCE go to get information? Everyone is different and knowing where they go to get information is critical (think social media, print, magazines, etc) and 4) CONTENT- once you have the first three nailed you can create the content. The content is informed by the first three elements. The temptation is to cut right to the content but this approach takes it to a whole new level.
I like many of the answers to date and I may repeat some in my own way:
1- Determine your sales proposition and how does your company differentiate itself from your local, regional or national competitors.
2- Use your initial marketing efforts to clearly define how your organization is different and why that is an advantage to your target market
3- Get that information in front of your target market by determining who they are and where will you most easily get your message to them...i.e. Traditional Print, radio or TV marketing; Social Media (least expensive option); Internet marketing; Social Networking with groups of like-minded people...and the list goes on 'ad nauseum'.
4. I'd recommend customer focus groups to determine what media may work the best for your product/service.
Overall remember this- Marketing is a process not an event. Over time if your message is crafted properly and in front of the correct target market sales will come. 30% of success is patience.
All the best,
Core Business Solutions