In this innovatetosuccess.com blog, I share with you what do do if you ever ask yourself the question, How do I market my IT Business?
More importantly, I share with you how marketing alone won’t help you grow your IT/Tech Business, in fact it will potentially regress your ability to obtain fresh leads and improve your profit margins.
Over the past few months, I have seen and spoken to many clients, prospects, and contacts throw thousands and thousands of pounds down the drain while trying to grow their IT business. They engage with a marketing agency and then subsequently get limited or NO results.
Now, don’t get me wrong marketing is an absolute essential part of growing your business. But without aligning it to the bigger picture, it’s like setting sail in the ocean without your Sat Nav or a map!
When you “Go to Sea or Market” you must have a map with you, as this guides your direction, focus and in this case, your business growth plan.
The plan/map contains simple fundamental elements like a crystal-clear view of your customer avatar and who you are trying to attract.
Your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) is next and you must have spent time on this working it out internally in your business before you even contact a Marketing Agency. Also clarity around what products and services are you offering that align with your customers’ requirements.
Finally, the one thing that everyone forgets is really understanding how you are going to measure your Return On Investment of your Marketing Spend.
I ask people on a daily basis, “Who is your target market?” and the response I normally get back is “Well…….” When the response starts with “Well” it tells me a tale that they don’t really know!
Where am I going wrong?
Marketing a Tech Business can be very hard, mainly because you compare yourself to all of your competitors. You think that all you need to do is compete on price and you will be successful. This is where 99% of all IT and Tech businesses go wrong!
In an effort to boost your profits and your business, you engage with marketing agency and your world is saved. You sit back and wait for the abundant flow of leads pour in through your door.
The best bit, is that they won’t tell you how many leads you will get for the £,000 of your monthly spend (and don’t forget the additional Advertising spend). There is a reason for this – because they simply don’t know.
A reputable marketing agency will be able to give you some idea of what channels you should be using and where your target market is hiding. The most important part is knowing what they’re doing in those channels – as you need to know yourself what data you need to put into your SatNav!.
One of the biggest areas where you will hinder your marketing performance while using social media channels today is that people just don’t create relevant content. They don’t take the time to sit down and write an article where they can add value and resonate with their target client which then prompts them to contact you.
Over the past few months, I have been working with many IT businesses on refining their target market, refining their niche, and working out exactly how we going to move forward and generate more leads in a sustainable and strategic way.
Then, and only when we have completed this exercise can we then pass the tactical side on to a marketing agency to help them turbo charge your profit and performance.
So, before you engage with a marketing agency, today I have three Innovate to Success Golden Nuggets that will help you get better value for money:
Understand Your Target Market
The first tip is that you must have an absolute understanding and clarity on your target market. Start with who are currently your best customers? If you don’t know who your ideal target market is, then run this exercise with your team and identify who you are best serving and why. What problem and solution are you fixing? Why are you unique? And answer these questions honestly and dig deep so you have tangible unique differences to your competitors.
Enlist Help! Know Your Business Model
The second tip is to have real clear understanding on your own business model and exactly how you are going to help your target Avatar through your customer journey. Where do they start, what happens when they first come into contact with you and how do you start to build up that all important trust. Does it start with a free audit or a trial period? You need to demonstrate your expert status quickly and build up trust from there. Draw this out and see what steps you will take your prospect on before they commit to engaging you.
Know Your Marketing ROI
And finally, number three is all around how you are going to measure the performance of your marketing agency. They will be more than happy to take £1,000 a month to run a few campaigns PLUS Marketing and Ad spend, (which would quite easily be another £500 pm). You could easily have a £1500 a month expense and you need to know your numbers. How many customers you need to secure to #1 break even and #2 start making a profit. You must hold the agency to account and although they won’t guarantee your results, you must have a handle on what their expectations are.
As with everything when growing your IT/Tech Business its all about small steps and ensuring that you have a structured and connected Growth Plan.
At Innovate to Success we use our very own tried and tested Drive for Business Model to help you market your IT Business. This helps you understand the day by day steps that you need to take to sustainably grow your business and increase your profit margins. Check out my LinkedIn Introduction video on my profile to learn more about the model works and why we should connect on LinkedIn.
I hope you enjoyed this Blog and if you want more like this, then check out my other Business Development Related Content specifically for IT / Tech based Businesses. Alternately if you want to have a quick chat about how the Drive for Business Model can help you and your IT Business then click HERE to book a call.