I’m going to start this week’s blog with a big thank you to everyone who read and commented on last week’s blog.  I have concluded that my maiden voyage into interactive blogging was a success.

The topic for this week was supplied by Michael Hodgson of cause4efffect.co.uk who made some very valid points and gave some great advice that charities should definitely check out.  http://debutmarketing.co.uk/2013/06/marketing-essentials-for-charities/

Michael asks:

“What’s the best way to market a business which has a very limited geographical market. i.e. because of the main service I offer, I can only take on customers within a 5 mile radius. How do I get the message to them, and not to people everywhere who I can’t turn into customers?”

The answer is direct marketing.  If you only want to reach a specific group with no wastage then your marketing has to be direct and targeted.  Use localised channels such as posters in shops, bus stop advertising, business cards in shops and frequented locations etc….

…Door drops are also ideal and this service is provided by Royal Mail and other “door drop” providers, you can even go down the DIY route to keep costs to  a minimum if you have some willing helpers.  As you can segment customers through postcode areas this is a great way to reach exactly the right people.

Another great way to reach a local audience is to target community groups and their particular interests.  Say you offer a dog walking service for example, you can advertise in the  local vets and go to particular places that the dog owners  meet and like to walk their dogs.  Doing this proactively will most likely lead to good word of mouth marketing too which can be worth its weight in gold in a small area.

Try and be innovative with your advertising and display eye catching posters or adverts in local stores or cleverly position a sign, van or bike in a visible area. You could also try advertising in Thomson Local or community publications.

Support local events in your target area and even consider sponsoring the local sports team.  It is also an idea to attend local events, markets and gatherings to promote yourself and your business.

And finally, take to the streets and go door to door.  Taking your services or goods to your target market directly will give you an opportunity to meet them face to face and talk about your business…mighty oaks come from small acorns and all that.

If you have the drive and determination, and it sounds like Michael does, then you have the ability to make anything happen.  Good Luck Michael.

Next week, as it will be the school holidays, we will discuss marketing products for children and how it can differ from the general principles.

Direct your Marketing

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