How to Create a Ridiculously Simple Promotion Plan for Your Micro or Side Hustle
Let’s continue to focus on the Four Ps of Marketing – namely, Product, Price, People and Promotion.
I’ve spent some time looking at your ideal customer profile, how to match your products or services to their needs and expectations, and why you should get to know your competitors a little better.
So with the hard work done, it’s time to focus on that final P – PROMOTION!
When it comes to promoting your business, there are two specific types of activity to consider:
Broadcast Promotions are the continuous, everyday messages you tell people about your business, such as social media posts and blogging. Broadcast is awareness raising, brand building, continuous, consistent.
Campaign Promotions are more specific, such as when you have something specific to sell or something to promote such as, an event or a course. Campaigns are planned, time sensitive and aimed at getting a specific group of people to take a well-defined action.
While these types of business promotional activities are different, there is one common ingredient for success in both – and that’s PLANNING.
If you’ve read any of my stuff before, you’ll have known immediately where I was going with this. One of my favourite mottoes is:
Planning is the missing link between Passion and Profit!
Another link between these types of activity is that they are all about being consistently connected and engaged with your customers, developing that vital sense of trust along the way.
Whether they buy from you immediately, or save your details for when they need them, your promotional activity answers that key customer question: “why your business, and not someone else’s?”
Your Broadcast Promotion Plan
The finer details of your everyday promotion plan will depend heavily on the needs of your ideal customers.
This is the reason why creating a specific customer profile or avatar is so essential – ‘People’ is one of the Four Ps of Marketing, after all!
Once you’ve got all those crucial details in place, you need to ask yourself: where do my customers hang out?
In other words, there’s not much point in devising a regular marketing schedule, full to bursting with amazing content that’s perfectly targeted to your ideal customers…
…only to post it in places they never actually visit.
So if your customers are more active on Twitter than Facebook, or on LinkedIn than Instagram, then that’s where your business should hang out, too.
Then it’s on to those other all-important questions:
- What do I want to say?
- How often do I want to say it?
Create a regular schedule based on this information – one you can easily stick to (remember, consistency is key to building trust). To make life easier, you could schedule social media posts in advance with one of the scheduling tools like Hootsuite or Buffer…and don’t forget to mix up your content to keep things interesting.
What that means is: don’t just write the odd blog post or social media update, then leave it at that. Create infographics, record a podcast or Live video, and use images to brighten up your written content.
Your Campaign Promotion Plan
I like to call campaign promotion activity “the process that gets people to want what you’ve got.”
So this is all about creating a plan that’s designed to prepare your customers over time for something you’d ultimately like them to do, such as sign up for an upcoming event or training course, or buy a limited-edition product.
(Think about some of the campaigns used by well-known brands. They will often begin whetting our appetites for particular products and services well before we actually need them!)
First, you need to define your goals. Are you looking for 20 course sign-ups, or 50 product orders? Who are the people you’d most like to target with your campaign – for example, repeat customers, or perhaps people who are part of a specific networking group?
Then, set your campaign dates, and give it an inspiring name!
Now it’s time for some build-up activity. Get blogging and posting about subjects that are connected with your event or offer – without specifically asking people to buy (these aren’t direct sales messages, you’re just using some of your knowledge to subtly signpost what’s to come!)
Gradually start to increase your campaign activity, and get more specific, as the end date draws nearer. Don’t forget to talk about your event or offer at networking events as you build new connections, and include the details in your email marketing newsletter.
Promotion Measurement and Follow-Up
One last point – whatever promotion activity you decide to run with, always remember to measure the results. That way, you can do more of what you know actually works, and ditch the rest!