Marketing is extremely important in businesses because it increases the awareness of business. When people aren;t aware of your business, it can be next to impossible for you to make money. Most business owners are aware that they have to market towards their target market (customers or clients) when advertising, but there are two other groups that all businesses will have to market towards at some point.
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One of the first people you’ll have to convince that your business is worth it is an investor. An investor provides financing for your business— and since the average cost of starting up a business is $35,000 (including first-year costs), most people will need a way of financing their business. So how do you market your business to investors?
Develop a Business Plan
If you’re just starting out, the first thing you’re going to need is a business plan. This is a detailed explanation of how you plan to achieve all of your business goals, and the first chance you get to attract investors. Because you haven’t made any profits yet, the financial portion of your business plan will consist mostly of financial projections explaining how over time, your business will make enough money to repay your investors. This is why the other sections of your business plan (goals, market research, etc.) are extremely important.
Attracting New Investors
If you’re already established and you need some more financing, you have a little more of an advantage when it comes to attracting new investors. You’ll already have a track record when it comes to profits, and you can use these records to show investors that you’re worth taking a risk. There are many other strategies you can use to attract investors:
- Focus on investors within your niche— this increases your chances of gaining more financing.
- Establish your online presence (your website and social media profiles) so it’s easy for investors to interact with your brand.
- Host/attend business networking events.
The next group of people that you’ll need to market your business toward is potential employees— that is, if you’re going to hire employees. Many startups may not need any employees, but as a business grows, it may become a necessity. So how do you market your business towards potential employees?
This is the marketing of your business with the intention of convincing job seekers to choose your business over another, similar business. The techniques used in recruitment marketing brand your business in an appealing manner so that only the most qualified candidates will apply. Hiring employees this way, as opposed to posting job openings on job search websites, reduces employee turnover rates and can help you build a talent pipeline. For this method to be effective, you’ll need to understand the best practices for recruitment marketing.
Finally, you’re going to have to market towards the people who will ensure that you have a thriving business— your customers/clients. Depending on the type of business you are, there are different ways you’re going to need to market.
“B2C” stands for business to consumer, and this is the type of business that the majority of new small business owners create. Consumers are either customers (paying for products) or clients (paying for services). Examples of effective B2C marketing strategies include:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Marketing uses strategies that make your website rank higher on search engines.
- Social Media Marketing allows you to market directly to your followers on social media.
- Marketing Automation is a software that monitors your marketing operations, whether it’s on social media, through emails, and other campaigns.
“B2B” stands for business to business, as there are businesses that provide goods and services to other businesses. These types of businesses use many of the same marketing strategies as B2C marketing (SEO, social media, automation). Other marketing strategies include:
- Pay Per Click, or paid ads on sites like Google and Facebook.
- Email marketing promotes events and discounts, helping to promote customer conversion.
All three of these audiences are necessary for your business to thrive, although many would probably agree that you’ll constantly market to your consumers more than anything else. Still, it’s important to know how to market towards investors at any point in your business in the event that you need more financing. The same goes for marketing towards employees— as your business grows, you’re going to need more help, and you’re going to want the best employees working for you.