2 Critical Strategies To Include In Your 2009 Marketing Plan
2009 is going to be a challenging year for all small business owners. There are 2 critical marketing steps that will help you through this difficult time. Learn these and they will stay with you forever.
Copyright (c) 2009 Kaye Dennan
A marketing strategy that small business owners have always been encouraged to understand is that they must cater to what the customer'wants' and not specifically to what the customer 'needs'.
During the more difficult financial times that the world has been experiencing since 2008, it has become obvious that customer buying patterns have changed.
Customers have to make more economical choices, and they also have to choose items that will last, rather than purchase the look or color that they may prefer to buy. They have to make sure that the items they buy will last the distance, and usually this means that they need to be more practical than fashionable.
There has always been the distinction between what your customers want and what they need. In other words, your customer may need a low fat cooking book, but want to buy all the latest chocolate recipes.
Because of the world financial crisis of 2008 your customers will, more than ever before, be looking for quality, best price and lasting power of your products.
It does not matter who your customers are, if they are lucky they have the same income and the same expenses, but we are all aware that our financial circumstances may change in 2009. Because of this people are spending less, saving more, and buying better.
Have a look at your products and at the products you will be purchasing in the near future. Make sure they fit the criteria we have outlined: quality, durability, perhaps not so fashionable, and the best price for the product.
Before purchasing check what your competitors are offering and at what price they are selling their items. Before you see sales reps, find out what they are going to be offering you, and at what price. You want to be informed about your competitors' prices before they visit you. If they do not want to tell you prior to their visit, tell them not to bother coming, or alternatively tell them to come if they like but that you will not be ordering until you can check out local selling prices.
Small businesses owners have the upper hand at the moment, especially if you can pay cash. Suppliers need your trade, so do it on your terms.
Buying To Run Specials
Firstly, only run specials when you are trying to quit a certain line of stock, and in this case do not advertise it, because if you have it still sitting on your shelf you may have limited customers for it, and therefore any advertising you do will not meet your wider range of customers. Just do in store promotions to get rid of it, or get rid of it as an add on in an advertised promotion.
Secondly, during your marketing campaigns, only offer stock which you have been able to purchase as a discounted price. In today's business climate you cannot afford, as a small business owner, to be selling your stock at a reduced profit unless it has proved to be dead stock. Query your customers, find out what their most purchased items are, find a supplier who will talk reduced terms and deliver on your terms (maybe extended payment so you can set up your marketing campaign with the knowledge you have stock on hand to sell), and plan your marketing strategy.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kaye has been a small business owner for over 25 years and understands the problem faced when trying to market a small business. It is often hard for a small business owner to sit down and read about marketing so when purchasing our Marketing Must Do's for Every Small Business you will also get a free bonus audio CD. For your copy just go to http://ebooksnowonline.com/small-business/marketing/