5 Simple Rules of Marketing for Small Business

Home / Blog Newsletter / 5 Simple Rules of Marketing for Small Business

5 Simple Rules of Marketing for Small Business

Our family has been in the marketing business since the 1970’s and these 5 simple rules of marketing are part of our “Secret Sauce”.

Now you might be asking yourself, “Why share your secret sauce?” The truth is the when it comes to marketing a business, it is a lot harder than it looks. No matter how much money you spend, if you don’t spend it in the right places, it won’t matter. While our focus is mostly on the field of online marketing, offline is still a very important marketing tool for many businesses.

The 5 simple rules of marketing come from many years of study, both in college and in the field. The thoughts and the process have been handed down from the first generation to the next. Even before marketing the business, my father was a political marketer developing campaign slogans for politicians and they were normally the winners. I could count these down backwards, but if you read them and execute them backwards it won’t work.

Simple Rule of Marketing Number One

Be consistent. If your marketing message changes with the wind, customers get confused. This is true in politics and in business. If your car wash is the “premier car wash” and then a month later you are the “highest volume” or “lowest priced”, the customers won’t know if they should trust you. I have a car that sits in the garage that I usually hand wash. From time to time I take it to the premier “hand wash” car wash. The place is very expensive and a regular wash takes at least an hour. Everything about the place says “premium”.

The same company also has a mid range drive through I take the Cooltoys TV Jeep too. After all it is a Jeep. That wash is still almost $20. For my every day car which I paid $3000, I go to the “high volume” and “best value” drive through car wash in town that has free vacuums. At each place, each car fits right in.

Simple Rule of Marketing Number Two

Know your customer. This might sound funny, but the reason that I turn down clients most often is that they refuse to define their customer. Lets face it, not everyone will go to a $100 car wash. Nor will they go to a $5 DIY spray booth. I don’t care what business you are in, you serve a very very small part of the population. Even WalMart and Target don’t serve “everyone”.

simple rule of marketing - know where your customer is
This guy knows where his money is.

One of the best techniques of marketing that we use here, is to find your “best customer” describe them in one or two paragraphs and then find some random photo that can be that person. All of our clients have that paragraph and photo in the front of their file, so we know who we are writing ads too.

Simple Rule of Marketing Number Three

Know Where Your Customer Is. This might sound funny, but it is extremely important. If your customer is in a gated community, you don’t want to pay for fancy door hanger flyers that will never get there. You might part a big van just outside the gate that says “Best Car Wash” or “Best Pizza”.

If your customer is a high school teen that has a sever case of FOMO then you advertise on mobile friendly services. Your customer can be “on a phone” or “in a car” or “on a bus”. Ad placement in places where your customer isn’t is a big waste of money.

Simple Rule of Marketing Number Four.

Know Your Customers Triggers. Every customer has a slightly different trigger. For most kids today it is FOMO, the fear of missing out. In marketing that is the “fear of being left behind”. This is slightly different that the “need to belong”. If you sell tech toys, maybe you are looking for customers that “need to be first”. There are about a dozen well known marketing triggers.

If you know who your customer is, and where they are, figuring out their triggers is pretty easy. Here is where you can start A/B testing ads. An A/B test is a way to try two or more triggers and then eliminate the one that performs the least.

Simple Rule of Marketing Number Five

The Customer You Have Is The Best Customer. This rule is the one that cable companies, airlines, credit cards and cellular companies ignore. All of them are in a semi-saturated market and want a monopoly. So instead of giving the best deal to existing customers, they give it to new customers hoping you won’t switch back when the good deal ends. 70% don’t.

What those companies lose out on is the long term ability to upsell and get referrals from the customers. The ultra high end car wash gives you your 11th wash free. They also offer a $2000 paint protection package. Yes $2000. How is that for an upsell? How many people do you think leave their home for a $2100 car wash day? Getting the $2000 sale from the new customer is very hard. I didn’t get the offer for the paint package until my third visit. They knew I trusted them with my favorite car at this point.

In our business over 70% of our new clients are referrals. Who do you think gets the best holiday baskets each year, our new customers or our long term customers. Those baskets still cost less than the cost to acquire a new client.

If you aren’t sure if your marketing plan is following these simple rules of marketing, give us a call for a free evaluation.