How to Grow Your Business with Relationship Marketing

Posted on September 10, 2014. Filed under: Blog, Business, Business Development, Business Events, Email Marketing, Event Marketing, Marketing, Social Media | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Blog Image- September 2014
Dictionary.com defines a relationship as a connection, association, or involvement.  It also defines marketing as the total of activities involved in the transfer of goods from the producer or seller to the consumer or buyer.  

My definition of Relationship Marketing is the activities involved in building a greater connection with your clients, prospects and partners.  This strong connection often leads to the sale of products or services, and also increases loyalty to your brand or company.

With that said, Relationship Marketing is a key part of your overall marketing strategy, and should occur both online and offline.

In this blog post I will mention a few activities that you should include in your Relationship Marketing:

ONLINE

In order to build a connection online with your clients, prospects, and partners, it is important to have an online presence.  Included in your online presence should be the following activities:

  • A Company Blog–  In addition to having a company website, a company blog can help to build the relationship that you have with your audience, because a blog allows you to show your expertise, knowledge and personality in ways that a website alone does not accomplish.  The key to a successful business blog is:
    1. It should be updated frequently
    2. It should contain valuable content relevant to your audience
    3. It should showcase the personality of your brand
  • A Social Media Presence–  It’s not necessary to be on all the popular social networks out there, but it is beneficially for your company to be on social networks that have a high percentage of your target market, and networks that will showcase your business well.  Social Networks are a great way to strength your connection with your clients, prospects, and partners because it allows you to create a conversation around your company, industry, products, services, values, beliefs, etc.  The key to a successful social media presence is:
    1. Know your audience
    2. Post content that is interesting to your audience
    3. Create conversations
  • An E-Newsletter or EZine–  An email publication that your company produces is a great way to strengthen the connection that you have with customers, prospects and partners.  It is a great way for your audience to get to know you and get to know what your company stands for.  The key to a successful E-Newletter is:
    1. Know your audience
    2. Give valuable information in each ezine
    3. Provide 80% valuable content and only 20% company promotions

OFFLINE

  • Events–  Plan events to show appreciation for your customers and partners.  Taking the time to host these events can build a strong connection with you and your customers and partners.  It also helps to solidify their loyalty to your company.  You can also have events to introduce your prospects to your business or your brand.  Grand Openings, Launch Parties, etc. are all great ways for people to get to know more about you, your company, and your brand.
  • One-on-One Meetings–  When possible, schedule one-on-one meetings with your clients, prospects and partners.  This is a great way to build a strong connection, and for people to get to know, like and trust you.
  • Send Cards–  It is important to send your customers, prospects and partners cards on various occasions.  This could include birthdays, anniversary, Thank You for Your Business, Thank You for Your Time, Happy Holiday cards and more.   Taking the time out to send your customers, prospects and partners cards really helps to create loyalty and build trust.

These are just a few ways you can use Relationship Marketing to GROW your business.  What other ways can you think of in which you can use Relationship Marketing to grow your business?

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The best kept secret to using social networking to grow your business (Part 2)

Posted on September 24, 2013. Filed under: Business, Business Development, Business Events, Event Marketing, Marketing, Networking, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

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In my last post, The best kept secret to using social networking to grow your business, I talked about a popular social networking site that doesn’t get as much attention as the other major sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest, but is a very effective tool to grow your business, and that social network is Meetup.com.  As I mentioned in Part 1, there are two ways that you can use Meetup to grow your business, joining a meetup group or organizing a meetup group.  For the sake of this post, I will talk about how to organize a meetup.  Here are five ways to grow your business by organizing a meetup group:

1.  Start a Meetup specifically for your target market.  Once you know your target market, it is easy to start a group that caters to your target market.  Your goal is to create a community of individuals who are in your target market and provide them with valuable information and fun events.  The goal of the Meetup should never be to sell your product or service, but to offer some value to your community and in turn that should lead to business for you.

Tip:  Make sure the name of the group and/or the description of your group is very clear so that you are attracting the right people to join your Meetup group.  Adding the specific area (i.e. Women Business Owners of Atlanta, Foodies in Chicago, etc.) gives the feel of a large group designed specifically for the people in that area.

2.  Create more than one Meetup Group.  Meetup allows you to create up to three Meetup groups for one quarterly fee.  As of now, the quarterly fee is just $45/per quarter, which amounts to $15/month.  If you have three Meetup groups that amounts to just $5/month per Meetup group and you can create very specific niches of your target market and tailor your meetups to this specific niche (i.e. women who are vegetarians, men who are in finance, etc.).  The more specific your niche the more specific you can make your Meetup, but keep in mind a broad category will attract more people and a specific category will attract a smaller group.

3.  Have consistent Meetups for your Group.  The most effective Meetup groups I have seen have been groups that have consistent events that are planned out well in advance.  For example having a meetup every first Monday of the month or every other Tuesday, helps to show that your group is consistent in the events that they offer.  Even being consistent with the type of event you are having can help to build up your Meetup having a monthly or bi-weekly outing,  breakfast, luncheon, workshop, networking, etc.

4.  Create a leadership team.  It always helps if more than one person is assisting with the organizing of the group and running of the Meetups, so having a co-organizer or other members of the Meetup as your Leadership team is very helpful.

5.  List your business as a sponsor of your Meetup Group.  This is nice subtle way to put your business name out to the group without feeling like you are hard selling your products or services, you can even offer a discount to individuals from the Meetup who decide to purchase your products or services.

Have you created a meetup group to help grow your business?  If so, share what has or hasn’t been working for your meetup group.

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