Everyday Marketing Attracts Clients!
“I don’t have time for marketing” is a common complaint (or excuse!) I hear from entrepreneur holistic health practitioners. When you run your own business and you wear all the hats – client care, business management, marketing, sales, cleaning and errands – time becomes your most precious commodity. With so many priorities, it’s no wonder that marketing often takes a back seat! But it’s crucial to the success of your practice that you make time for marketing, regardless of what phase your business is in – start-up or established. Marketing is the lifeblood of your business – it’s your primary tool for attracting and keeping clients!
24 hours a day often just doesn’t seem like enough time to fit in all that you need and want to do. While “getting it all done” may be a myth or an unattainable goal, there is a way to maximize the time available to you – it’s called Everyday Marketing.
The answer is not to find more time for marketing, because we can’t add more hours to the day. So the trick is to put more marketing into your time. Incorporate marketing into your other activities. Every day, we do time-consuming activities that don’t include marketing. Although I don’t usually advocate multi-tasking, there are easy ways to combine marketing with things you’re already doing, without compromising the effectiveness of either activity. Here are some examples
- Doing errands. Talk to strangers! Strike up a conversation while waiting in line at the bank or grocery store. Start with a comment about the weather or other casual topic. Steer the conversation toward the other person – their job, interests, hobbies. If you ask someone what they do for a living, chances are they will reciprocate by asking you the same question. This gives you a perfect opportunity to say something interesting about your work. For example, instead of saying simply, “I do massage,” you could say “I help people overcome pain so they can function better in their life.” The other person will naturally want to know how you do that, giving you a perfect opportunity to tell them about the benefits you provide, and offer them your biz card or intro coupon.
- Social events. The best business relationships often begin socially. Keep your business cards in your pocket when you attend a wedding, housewarming, holiday party, or your child’s soccer game. After asking, “How do you know our hosts?” or “Which child is yours?” make your next question, “What do you do?” Their natural follow-up will be to ask you the same question, giving you a golden opportunity for some friendly Everyday Marketing!
- Relaxing. You may have a long list of marketing projects that will take time but not your full attention. Consider doubling up these mundane tasks with a fun activity or some pleasant company. Enter business cards into your contact database on your laptop at the pool. Listen to a teleseminar while sitting on the beach. Make phone calls from the hot tub or a park bench. Review your prospect list while watching a DVD or listening to music. Stuff and address envelopes as a family activity. Take your project to a friend’s house so the two of you can work together on marketing over a cup of tea.
- Workshops, business meetings, networking and cultural events. Invite a business contact or potential client to join you, which will contribute to building a stronger relationship between the two of you. It will give you an opportunity to get better acquainted in a more relaxed way than in a one-to-one meeting. With a colleague, you can explore opportunities to work together in a joint venture that could benefit both your businesses. With potential clients, they have an opportunity to see you participate in a professional activity outside your office, giving them a broader view of your professionalism, knowledge and expertise.
- Lunch or coffee with a prospect or colleague. If you are already planning to meet with someone, invite a third or fourth person to join you. With more people, it feels like a social event, but of course you can still accomplish your business mission. Everyone invited has an opportunity to make new contacts, you have more people to educate about your work, and you may find that group conversation sparks new ideas and creativity!
- Traveling. On a business trip or vacation, arrange to meet for lunch or dinner with a client, prospect or colleague. On a business trip, this is usually more enjoyable than eating alone. As a tourist, a meal you would be eating anyway takes no time out of your vacation schedule, plus you may get local tips about where to go, while making a sale or enrolling a new client.
- Take a hike! Get exercise and get clients at the same time – walking, gym and other exercise. I’ve gotten a few great clients on my morning walk around the ‘hood! I even got a joint venture opportunity that led to acquiring several long-term clients! Meetings don’t have to take place in an office or restaurant. Invite someone to join you for a run around the track, a gym workout or a game of tennis. Not all business deals take place in an office or on the phone – golf courses are famous as business meeting venues!
- Reading an article. When you read an interesting article, send it to 3 people – colleagues, clients or prospects. Take a moment to write a quick “Thought this would interest you” note and make a big impression on the recipients. While forwarding emails and links is increasingly popular, receiving postal mail really gets people’s attention, because it’s more personal. It impresses people that you took the time to mail something of interest to them.
As you can see, there are many ways to include marketing in your busy life. We can’t add more hours to the day. So instead of wishing you had more time for marketing, why not include marketing into the time you spend on your errands, chores, travel and social life! Maximize your time by combining marketing with your daily activities – Everyday Marketing!