Many of the business owners I meet are looking for the same thing, more sales. They often moan  that new leads are slow and costly. Most business owners rely on just two or three marketing strategies to attract new business. However, there is a multitude of ways to drive new business to your door and the reality is many business owners are just not doing enough to ensure success.

Here are a few low-cost options you might like to try:

Networking. It’s not what you know it’s who you know, there are literally dozens of networking groups and events you can visit or join, they are a great opportunity to not only meet new prospects but also expand your supplier network. Regular networking is relatively low cost and should be at the core of any good marketing strategy.

Referrals. This marketing strategy places a close second in preferred methods of generating new business leads. The key here is to ensure that you take a proactive approach rather than a passive one. Instead of assuming that a satisfied client will refer someone to you, ask for that referral. Tell people who your ideal client is and ask for their help in finding these types of clients.

Writing. This often under-utilised marketing strategy is an excellent way to become recognised as an industry expert. Every industry has trade magazines and most are hungry for good content. The Internet is also filled with websites and e-zines looking for material to send to their subscribers and customers.

Newsletters. This is another powerful marketing strategy to keep your name in front of your customers and prospects. Provide key insight into business challenges and offer solutions to them. In other words, help your prospects and customers solve problems. Some newsletters are nothing more than advertising, this can put prospects off. So be sure to provide valuable information to your customer. Although it is less expensive to send a newsletter electronically, you can issue it in paper format.

Offer a guarantee. A concern many people have when changing suppliers is the risk associated with the change. They may not be completely satisfied with their existing supplier but the risk of choosing a supplier who may be worse can prevent them from changing. Eliminate this concern and offer a guarantee.

Advertising. This can be a great marketing strategy if you know how to create a good ad. The best marketers know that a great sales copy is what makes the difference. Glance through the ads in your trade magazine and you will quickly notice that most ads focus on the company’s product features instead of on the customer’s problem. Create a great ad by concentrating on the problem you can solve.

There are many other ways to market your business and generate new business leads. However, the marketing strategies I mention in this article are effective low- or no-cost options. Use them consistently and watch your sales grow.

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