Self-Marketing for Small Business

If you can’t beat your own drum, blow your own horn instead. No; I am not asking you to play the role of Captain Horatio Horn blower and lead your ship on a perilous voyage around Cape Horn and into the Pacific. All that I insist on saying revolves round the fact that for a small business person like you, there is nothing wrong in letting people know what you are trying to sell. In other words, self-promotion through word of the mouth can be your key advertising mantra when you can not afford a sumptuous budget for it.

However, Word of Mouth will work best provided you stick to the following norms and regulations.

Provide Good Customer Service

This is one area where you can easily compete with big business houses or large corporations all your own. Do you know how? As a small business person you can service your customers individually, even by mentioning their names and sending Christmas Cards to them. If you do this consistently, they in turn will tell their friends and relations about this wonderful treatment and as a result your customer base will develop fast.

See to it that you are easily reachable

Ineffective communication can ruin your reputation much faster than it takes to grow. Business phones need to be answered on priority basis (not by children) while websites must provide easily accessible contact data. Also, do not forget to use the answering machine even during odd hours since you never know when a customer may need your services. Incidentally, take a look at “Phone Answering Tips to Win Business” to fortify yourself on this topic.

Always keep a Positive Image

Keep your image clean and steady before your customers – either online or offline. Respectable customers prefer dealing with respectable business persons. Always try to satisfy your customers’ queries, even if they are not related to your business. This friendly yet positive attitude will prompt your customers to invite their friends and relations to do business with you. And finally,

Ask for Testimonials for Display

Testimonials, in the form of brief written statements, from satisfied customers are perhaps the best endorsements that can spark good word of mouth any day. However, once you have got those favorable testimonials, brook no delay in leveraging these to your best advantage. Post these on your website, on your Facebook page – in fact wherever these will be visible to the public.

Bottom Line

Even though big publicity budgets are considered essential for steady growth of business, small startups can hardly think of taking such steps. Word of the mouth, on the other hand, can work wonders for these one-man/one-woman business ventures where courtesy, generosity, honesty and other human values are the only forms of intangible assets that the owners usually possess and employ.