Cards vs Cash - what costs more for your business
Accepting cards for your business? Sounds like a great idea, until you realise this will mean spendi
Getting your hands on, or even creating, a fabulous new product is a holy grail for many businesses, but it’s only the start of the journey. Successfully marketing and promoting said product so Joe public is not only aware of it but wants to buy it is what’ll bring in the big bucks.
With that said, most business owners wants to know how, so we’re here to help you reach your full potential. Whether you’re a start-up looking to launch your first range or simply want to widen your audience, read on for our 11 must-know strategies that could help you promote a product.
Shown to be one of the most consistent channels for effectively acquiring new customers, emails are a great way to instantly promote your products.
Better yet, it doesn’t need to take you an age (we know you’re busy enough) because you can set up automated campaigns designed to boost revenue. Here’s a couple of ideas:
What would you do if you were struggling to think of a great gift idea? Chances are you’d open a search engine and type ‘birthday gift ideas for mum’ and see if anything takes your fancy.
Well, a great way to promote your products then is to get featured in a popular gift guide. Take a look at the first couple of search engine pages for guides relevant to your products and reach out to see if they’ll include your items.
Remember: Your product needs to add value to the author of the guide, so provide a solid reason why your items are distinct, unique, and worthy of being included.
If you’re not making as many sales as you’d like but you’re a bit strapped for cash, adding an affiliate programme could be a great solution as they allow other people to promote your product for a commission (only if a sale is made).
Affiliate programmes usually look a bit like this:
Top tip: If this sounds perfect for your business, remember to give your affiliate all the information about your product so they’re marketing it the way you envision rather than making it up as they go along.
In the technological revolution we’re living through it can be easy to overlook the good old-fashioned marketing tactics that have been tried and tested for years. AKA press exposure.
Posting an ad in your local paper is one way to do it, but you could also try to get featured in an article or via a press release. This is famously tricky, especially given how many businesses are fighting for column space, so improve your odds by thinking outside the box and aim for bloggers instead.
Successful bloggers have 1,000s if not millions of subscribers, so getting featured in an article would be huge. To start, reach out with a personal email highlighting your product and offer to send them a free sample.
There’s no more comprehensive way to show how great your product is than a video. You can film it from every angle, demo any nifty features it might have, highlight how easy it is to use or set-up...the options are endless.
You can create and share videos on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, so the potential audience reach is ginormous. If you do make a video, it’s also a good idea to encourage consumers to ask any questions they might have, it’ll really boost engagement which could help sell your product even more.
Collectively, social media boasts 2.77 billion active daily users so if you’re not on it already, what are you waiting for? It has the potential to expand your audience exponentially and if your purse strings are a bit tight you can even do it for free.
We could talk all day about the different channels and how to use them to promote your products, but here we’ll give a whistle-stop tour of the biggest names.
With 1.7 billion active daily users, Facebook is the Adonis of social. You can promote your products on your custom business page using photos, videos, polls, and adverts, and it’s a great tool for interacting with your audience and building a rapport.
The key thing with Instagram is the visuals, it’s a platform built around top-class photos making it ideal for sharing pictures of your new product. Stories are the most popular feature of the site and allow you to create a narrative and add a call-to-action.
Twitter allows posts with a 250 character limit, so it’s all about short, snappy and attention-grabbing tweets. The platform offers live tweeting during events and this is a great way to get your business seen and gain new followers. More followers = more people who’ll see your products.
One of the great things about Pinterest is that pins can lead to click-throughs to websites, and so by uploading images of your product, you can attract a new audience to your site. The stats show that 93% of users plan their purchases via the platform, and two-thirds have discovered a new brand using the app, making it a valuable tool for businesses.
So, we’ve been through the top-four social media platforms and given you info on how you can use them at no cost to market your product, but now we’re going to discuss paid for advertising.
Using Facebook you can choose to ‘boost’ your adverts and reach specific target audiences, and this is particularly effective if your product is niche or perfect for a sub-section of audiences.
With Twitter you can also opt to pay to promote your tweets, account or trends, increasing the chance your product will be seen by your desired audience.
And finally, Instagram and Pinterest also offer paid ad-targeting, so if your bank accounts allow it, you can promote your product to the people who are most likely to be in the market for it and boost your sales further.
We mentioned earlier about the popularity of Googling (other search engines are available) gift ideas, and search engine optimisation (SEO) is the tool you’ll need to put yourself in the search results.
It’s all about optimising the content on your website - like keywords, pictures and copy, so Google’s ranking bots put it high up in search results. If you can get your site on the first page of results you’re onto a winner since only 6% of traffic makes it to page two.
So, if you want your products to get noticed, spend some time on SEO. For a more detailed guide head here.
Good to know: SEO is very effective but requires a long-term commitment. You need to keep your finger on the pulse if you want your efforts to be fruitful because Google’s algorithms, as well as keywords and other factors, change regularly.
The aim of the game with referral marketing is to get other people talking about your product in an aim to raise awareness and sales - it’s a similar notion to word of mouth.
How? By encouraging people to share your content in exchange for a small incentive. Here are a couple of ideas:
If you’re an online-only business you might be wondering how to reap the benefits of face-to-face selling (building a rapport, upselling, etc) without shelling out for premises.
In most towns and cities there are spaces available for pop-up shops, so you could make your mark and get to meet your customers all while creating an exclusive event that’ll likely gain some local media coverage. It’s a bit of a win-win.
If you’re worried you won’t fill a shop or are on the hunt for something more low-key, then keep your eye out for local markets and trade-shows you could book a stall at. In the same way as a pop-up, it’ll give you a chance to interact with your customers and build momentum.
Top tip: A pop-up shop or stall is the perfect opportunity to offload some excess stock or old inventory at a discount price!
Blogging can be a nifty way to drive traffic to your site and promote your products. Done successfully, it’s been shown to increase website visits, boost your search engine rankings, capture the attention of customers, the media, and high-profile bloggers, and ultimately help you sell more.
If you don’t have the resources to maintain a dedicated blog on your website, that’s okay, you can publish an article to your Facebook page or add a link to your social feeds. You might even get it published on someone else’s site (just make sure it’s relevant to your business to promote your items to the right audience).