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Marketing ain’t hard. But it ain’t easy either.
When we initially sit down with small business owners one of the first questions is always “how much is this going to cost?” Sometimes followed shortly afterwards by “why do I need you guys?” Are we offended or surprised - obviously not. We understand what’s influencing their concerns. They can’t spend willy nilly on marketing - they need results - and they need it to be affordable.
Most small business owners can market, but….
What we’ve found is that most small business owners have lots of very good ideas on how to market to their customers. They usually even know how to reach them effectively. What they lack is time and design talent.
Every business owner is busy, but small business owners are even more so. They often wear all the hats or are involved in day-to-day activities. So they’re working every minute keeping their business running and customers happy. What usually falls to the back of the list (even though they know it’s important) is marketing.
When marketing is thought about it’s when something is urgently needed or sales are slow - you know - when it’s already a tad late in the game. Then it’s all about getting something done fast and cheap. But if you don’t have design expertise or a nephew or neighbor kid with web design “skills” how do you get done what you need to get done?
Marketing works best when consistently executed
That’s when we usually get the call. They’ve either heard about Nuvonium via word-of-mouth, via our marketing efforts, or found us online. We sit, listen, learn, then get to work. We usually jump on their immediate need - but we take time to develop a plan and strategy to keep their marketing flowing consistently.
Which leads us to our answers to the earlier questions…. “how much is this going to cost?” and “why do I need you guys?”
How much is really a question we reflect back to them. We can work within most realistic budgets - we simply tailor our efforts and tactics to get the biggest bang for the bucks available. Obviously, the more money allotted to the budget - the better and faster the results will be. But you’d be surprised - it doesn’t have to take a huge investment to achieve good results; and quickly.
So when asked that, we simply ask “what’s your budget?” Which of course leads to a bizarre evasion by most - they don’t want to reveal how much they have available for two reasons. One, they don’t want to share an amount thinking we’ll hear “cha-ching” and charge every penny of it. Or two, they honestly don’t know - either they haven’t thought about it or they’re unaware of what things should cost?
This is when we try to gauge whether it’s reason one or two while simultaneously discussing ballpark figures for various tactics and deliverables. Things like, if you need a brochure - it can range from $500 to $5,000 depending on the size, pages, who’s writing the content, taking the photos, or if the fee will include printing? Or do you need a website - that can range from $2,500 to $50,000. At the low end you’ll probably be using a templating system like WordPress - and we’ll customize it - but again, where’s the content coming from? You want ecommerce - that’s going to increase the price? Customer or partner portals? Lead generation systems? It can all be done - but it all adds to the price. So we often work to determine what the essentials are and start small…after all…things can always be added or expanded later.
Why do I need you guys?
When asked why they need us - we generally acknowledge it’s a valid question - but if they didn’t need us - then we probably wouldn’t be talking - nor would they have found us online or via referral. It’s basically rhetorical - but we understand - what they’re really asking is - why should I choose you guys?
Again, it’s a valid concern. They know they need help since they don’t have time nor the design abilities. But they’re also hesitant to give away their trust and money easily. We rely on our track record, client testimonials, and good reputation to assuage their fears. We know we can do an excellent job and we’re happy to prove it to new clients.
And so we get to work….
Once we’ve been engaged - we get to work. As I mentioned we take care of any immediate crisis and then start to implement a long-term plan. Just because marketing ain’t hard doesn’t mean it’s easy. It takes time, talent, and experience. To small business owners we offer all three and much more. We become their “external marketing team” using our design talents and marketing experience to achieve their desired objectives. More importantly, we help to identify and prioritize what the most important steps are - and we start to knock ‘em out one by one. And we let our small business clients get back to managing their business day-to-day.
Mar 16, 2013
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We work with large and small companies, but sometimes budgets, schedules, or differences get in the way. There's always the next one.
We're not miracle workers, but we've been known to perform a little magic and help your businesses take off. And we keep working hard.
Our biggest reward is when our clients tell us we've done a good job and thank us for it. And then when they hire us again and again.