Wisconsin industry appointments update - 06/06/2006

Wisconsin industry appointments update - 06/06/2006

June 5, 2006

Ten simple ways to increase your business without spending a fortuneJim DonovanIncrease mortgage originations
The following are 10 simple ways you can market your business
with little or no expense:
1. Get rich in a niche
If you already have contacts and inroads in a particular industry
or with a particular group of people, focus your efforts in that
niche. By specializing in a specific industry, you can make the
most of your marketing and maximize your effort.
2. Make every action serve more than one
If you are giving a speech or seminar, use your outline to develop
an article that you can use as a special report or newspaper story.
If you are writing a sales letter, extract the key points to use in
a speech to your local networking group. Design your advertising in
a way that will enable you to use the same basic ad in different
formats and publications. This will allow you to make the most of
everything you do.
3. Mine the gold already in your business
We tend to spend a lot of time chasing after new business while
there are untapped opportunities with our existing customers. Learn
to mine the gold you already have in your business. What other
products or services could you offer your existing customers? How
could you increase the frequency with which people buy from you or
the amount of their purchases? You already have gold within your
business just waiting to be mined.
4. Avoid mass media
Unless you have very deep pockets, you cannot afford to use mass
media to advertise. Daily newspapers, radio, TV and such can be
very expensive ways to reach customers. Depending on who your
customers are, you can usually find less expensive ways to reach
them. Targeted publications, such as business journals, parenting
publications and shopper and trade magazines, are generally less
expensive and deliver to a more targeted audience. Telemarketing
and writing sales letters to a highly focused mailing list of your
target market are also effective solutions. The key is to define
your customers and zero in on them with a focused message.
5. Use reports and specialized
Writing reports and articles is one of the best advertising methods
and costs next to nothing. If you have knowledge that others find
useful, you can write a special report and offer it to prospective
customers. You can use the same information as the basis of a
speech to groups who represent your customer base. You can send a
letter to your prospective customer, offering a free report that
will be of interest to him and solve a problem he has. The same
approach can be used with an ad that gives an 800 number and says
something like: "For 10 ways to ..., call (800) XXX-XXXX for a free
6. Use newsletters
Another inexpensive way to build your business is by using
newsletters. A newsletter has a 400 percent better chance of being
read than an ad. This is because newsletters address the needs of
your customer. A good newsletter will be about my needs and deliver
information that will help me, the reader. Newsletters can be
inexpensively produced on your computer and need not be fancy. The
key is that they are sent at regular intervals (quarterly at the
very least) and help your customer solve a problem of theirs. You
can even offer advertising to other non-competing businesses as a
way of sharing the costs.
7. Ask "What else can I do for you?"
It always amazes me how people tend to overlook this simple
question. If you ask it, you may be pleasantly surprised at the
responses. There are needs your customers have right now that you
could help them fill while building your business in the
8. Use classified ads
Classifieds are a powerful, inexpensive method of reaching new
customers. A well written classified can do wonders for your
business. They are also a great way to test an idea before you
commit to a larger ad budget. Many highly successful businesses
have been built, using the lowly classified.
9. Form a mastermind group
A powerful strategy first defined by Napoleon Hill in his classic
book "Think and Grow Rich," the mastermind group is simply a group
of like-minded individuals who meet on a regular basis to help each
other succeed. Find a small group of people whose ideals and
aspirations are similar to yours and arrange to meet regularly. The
power of the group consciousness can multiply your brain power many
times and bring you new insights and ideas. For more about this,
read "Think and Grow Rich."
10. Serve your customers
Continually look for ways to improve your service to your customer
and add more value to your products and services. You will never be
without a steady supply of business. The more you can add value to
doing business with your company and provide more service to your
customers, the better success you will enjoy. Institute a practice
of making small incremental improvements daily in every area of
your life.
Jim Donovan is an author, business consultant and speaker,
with more than 25 years of experience in business marketing and
human performance. He may be reached at (215) 794-3826, via e-mail
at jim@jimdonovan.com or
visit www.jimdonovan.com.