“Growth is never by mere chance, it is the result of forces working together.” – James Cash Penney.
Many businesses feel it is necessary to spend more on advertising when the intention to grow arises. Apart from offering discounts or promos, there is not much value in every of these marketing efforts.
This is where PR work becomes crucial. If you haven’t noticed, I’m a strong believer in PR and its effectiveness for small businesses. This is because it reaps better benefits compared to marketing and best of all, it is cost-effective if applied properly.
So here are my tips on growing your business further:
Collaborations / Partnerships
Collaborations are great to extend your market reach further. It is a great platform to build relationships with a new group of consumers. This is because your brand is seen associated with your business partner which helps launch your relationship with your new audience. A certain degree of trust is already developed.
Comparatively, it becomes more difficult for a new brand to penetrate into a new market on its own. It becomes less difficult as consumers become more susceptible to accept a brand which is associated with someone they trust.
There are a few ways to ensure successful collaborations.
One of my favorites would be to sponsor your new partner with your premium product. Have them agreed to promote your product in one of their events or a simple special day which you have agreed.
You can even provide your product as one of the gifts for special contests organized by the company’s events.
In return, the company’s consumers become more aware of your brand, becomes more susceptible to your brand’s offers or promotions, which you can include in the prize giveaways as well.
Exhibitions / Trade Shows
Joining exhibitions is another method to tap into more market for your business. This can be expensive depending on the establishment that you intend to participate.
While this can be costly for new businesses, it is seen as a future investment for your business to grow beyond that stagnant growth.
What I like about these exhibitions is that the event management team does all the marketing and PR work for you after having paid the hefty fee, of course.
The first problem you need to solve is to ensure that your company’s booth is strategically located in a high-density area in the exhibition hall (this can be expensive but worth it).
Next, make sure your booth is well presented. Thousands (and maybe millions if televised event) people will be flocking to the area and it is best to demonstrate your company at its best.
Finally, don’t forget to distribute the flyers, offers and any other materials that you have at your disposal. My best tip to distribute them is to send your a few part-time employees near the entrance and exit.
A business which is socially responsible helps further achieving its goals and objectives. Your target audience is also humans with feelings. When a business is able to emotionally connect with those feelings, they are more inclined to do business with you.
There are a few ways to do this:
- Sponsor an event
- Perform company charity movement
- Help rebuild a community suffered from natural disasters
- Create sanctuary for animals
- Provide scholarships to poor students
- Make donations
By becoming involved with the community, you are extending your company’s reach beyond your targeted market.
In fact, consumers are more inclined into supporting your business since your company helps people which they want to be a part of too.
Offer Public Talks, Personal Coaching or Tutorials with Consulting Firms
Once your business shows promising growth, it helps whenever you begin to offer business talks, coaching, and even tutorials.
How will this help grow your business?
Some of the talks and consulting firms organize numerous activities with their business clients or for any business events, which you can take advantage of. They have connections with a lot of people and by participating in their activities will help to direct some of the traffic to your business.
Also, keep in mind that each time you present your materials in those activities mentioned above, sneak in a few flyers, discount codes or gifts that direct the people back to your business too. The opportunities are endless here.
When I talk about publicity stunts, I never fail to mention Richard Branson in the conversation. He is one of the few entrepreneurs who know how to attract people to their own brands respectively.
From rolling a World War 2 tank along the Fifth Avenue in New York to making silly bets with popular individuals – he’s always making top headlines.
While marketing is great in educating your consumers of your product/service, publicity stunts are great at pulling the market’s attention towards your business.
Publicity stunts can exist in all kinds of forms. Here are a couple of examples which might inspire to create a stunt of your own:
- Red Bull Stratos Space Jump – Who could forget the amazing space jump by Felix Baumgartner breaking the sound barrier all on his own in a 23-mile free fall.
- Uber Ice Cream – Another popular brand who is familiar with making television headlines. While the company was struggling with numerous legal issues in 2012, Uber managed to win people’s hearts (in a positive way) by providing ice cream delivery service.
- The Blair Witch Project – I remember watching this low-budget horror flick back during childhood. The movie was able to build a hype after the director had it sent to colleges presented as ‘Real Video Footage’ which caught much attention.
Final Two Cent
It’s always important to continuously incorporate new strategies into your business to ensure further growth. Use the ones above and try to mix and match them as you see fit for your business.
Growing a developed business can become a challenge if you are not prepared. It is an entirely different problem which can’t be resolved using similar business strategies applied when you first started your startup. You need to constantly become innovative to attract people’s attention.