I see too many small local businesses people with no marketing plan. They either have tired several marketing avenues, wasting valuable time and money, or they have resigned themselves to the idea that new technology is beyond their abilities. In this blog post I want to give you an extremely affordable small business marketing plan that you can implement over the next 7 days. In a short period of time, 7 days to be exact, you can take advantage of these inexpensive tips on how to get your small business to tap into the two most powerful and cost-effective methods of procuring your best clients – Referrals and the internet. For a few hundred dollars and some consistent effort and application of hard work, you could be reversing your fortunes. As 7 is a lucky number, let us turn the tides and get Lady Luck on our side. So, here you go with an adventurous week!

Day 1:

1. Get out a survey to your email list using SurveyMonkey.

2. Call all your best clients and ask them WHY they decided to do business with you. Market research is about finding the WHY’s. Ask them about the challenges you have helped them to overcome, the value that you bring to their lives and the uniqueness you offer with your presence and assistance. In essence, WHY did they decide to conduct business with you. After the survey, ask for a referral.

3. Based on the results of your “market research” from 1 and 2 above, formulate, simplify or clarify even further, your marketing message.

Day 2:

1. Update your LinkedIn profile. Make sure you use your survey results to highlight your message and skills. Now, post something on LinkedIn. Once you posted something, ask your best clients for a recommendation so that others will be able to see the positive things that your clients have to say about you. “62% of companies using LinkedIn have acquired a customer from the network.”HubSpot

2. Send an email offering some type of free or discounter service as a “buy now”, such as a free consultation. Again, highlight what was found in your marketing. Follow up at least two more times, with variations, to your email list over the next week. Answer any replies immediately.

3. Post your offer to all other of your social media channels about your offer, such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

4. Make 30 phone calls to your best clients and friends. Tell them about your business, recent success, new features or offers, etc. Then ask them if they need you help and if they have anyone that they can refer.

Day 3:

1. Make some more calls. Yes, make some more calls. Even if you do not feel like it, make some more calls. Now see if there are any collaboration possibilities. If you are a florist, team up with some wedding planners.

2. Write a short blog post or article. Keep in mind what came up in your market research when you are writing it. Publish this and also distribute that through your social media channels and to your email list. “57% of companies with a blog have acquired a customer from their blog. 92% of companies who blog multiple times per day have acquired a customer from their blog.” – HubSpot

3. Search for some local business networking groups, such as BNI, Rotary, or some such group. Google the term, “(Your City or County) business networking groups”. Pick the one that sounds the most advantageous and find out when the next meeting is. Book yourself to go.

Day 4:

1. Make sure that your small business is taking advantage of directory marketing. 150 million Americans with visit one of the directories, such as Yelp, MerchantCircle, Manta or the such, in the next 30 days! Your directory listing can rank very high on local searches. There are over 50 online directories that could drive traffic to your website and business. Contact me on how get your company featured on these directories.

2. Post again on LinkedIn, and other social media channels. This could be an offer, a recent review from another client or featuring some aspect of your business or services.

3. Make a video using Videolicious. Send that out to your email list and find some smart high school or college kid (Your nephew?) or your SEO dude to upload onto YouTube and optimize it properly. Video marketing is a much more effective way to rank high on Google. Very few businesses

Day 5:

1. Blog again. You should be blogging 2-3 times a WEEK. Yes, a week. Studies show that companies that blog often rank higher on search engines. You saw the stats earlier, so blog more!

2. Post this blog article on your social media channels and to your email.

3. Make some more calls.

4. Get the book, “The New Rules of Marketing & PR” by David Meerman Scott. And start reading it!

Day 6:

1. Visit, in person, 2-3, of your past referral sources that generated you the best business. Take them to lunch or just drop on by to say hello and tell them how much you appreciate their referrals. If appropriate, bring a small gift or some flowers to say “Thanks.”

2. Post again, some offer or feature, to on all your social media channels.

Day 7:

1. Attend that meeting that you booked on Day 3. Get to know people, hand out cards and have a good time.

2. Review the last 7 days and see what worked best.

3. Write out a new marketing strategy for the coming weeks and months.

In Conclusion

Whether you follow this 7 day small business marketing strategy exactly is not the point. Have a plan of some sort, follow it and see your sales funnel grow and eventually you will be making more profits. Call me if you need any assistance. Oh, can I now ask for that referral?

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