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61 Quick Tips to Marketing Success

These marketing ideas are simple, easy-to-implement and will produce dramatic results if you follow them consistently.

By Ike Devji, J.D.

As we carry out our daily tasks, we sometimes forget to do the one thing that is guaranteed to keep us in business: marketing. Here are a few tried-and-true ideas for marketing yourself and your services, courtesy of the Small Business Administration?s website.

  1. Never let a day pass without engaging in at least one marketing activity.
  2. Maintain a tickler file of marketing ideas for later use.
  3. Carry business cards with you (all day, every day).
  4. Create a personal nametag or pin with your company name and logo and wear it at high-visibility meetings.
  5. Collect competitors? ads and literature; study them for information about strategy, product features, benefits, etc.
  6. Ask clients why they hired you and solicit suggestions for improvement.
  7. Ask former clients why they left you.
  8. Join a list-serve related to your profession.
  9. Subscribe to an internet newsgroup or a list-serve that serves your target market.
  10. Establish a marketing and public-relations advisory and referral team composed of your colleagues and/or neighboring business owners. Share ideas and referrals and discuss community issues. Meet quarterly for breakfast.
  11. Train your staff, clients and colleagues to promote referrals.
  12. Get a marketing intern to take you on as a client; it will give the intern experience and you some free marketing help.
  13. Maintain a consultant card file for finding designers, writers and other marketing professionals. Hire a marketing consultant to brainstorm with.
  14. Take a creative journey to another progressive city or county to observe and learn from marketing techniques used there.
  15. Remember that business cards aren?t working for you if they?re in the box. Pass them out! Give prospects two business cards and brochures?one to keep and one to pass along.
  16. Produce separate business cards/sales literature for each of your target markets.
  17. Create a poster or calendar to give away to customers and prospects.
  18. Create a signature file to be used for all your email messages. It should contain contact details, including your website address and key information about your company that will make the reader want to contact you.
  19. Update your media list often so that press releases are sent to the right media outlet and person.
  20. Write a column for the local newspaper, local business journal or trade publication.
  21. Publicize your 500th client (or another notable milestone).
  22. Create an annual award and publicize it.
  23. Get public-relations and media training or read up on it.
  24. Appear on a radio or TV talk show.
  25. Create your own TV program on your industry or your specialty. Market the show to your local cable station or public broadcasting station as a regular program, or see if you can air your show on an open access cable channel.
  26. Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper or trade magazine.
  27. Take an editor to lunch.
  28. Consistently review newspapers and magazines for possible public-relations opportunities.
  29. Submit tip articles to newsletters and newspapers.
  30. Conduct industry research and develop a press release or article to announce an important discovery in your field.
  31. Create a press kit and keep its contents current.
  32. Ask your clients to come back again.
  33. Return phone calls promptly.
  34. Set up a fax-on-demand or email system to easily respond to customer inquiries.
  35. Use an answering machine or voice-mail system to catch after-hours phone calls. Include basic information in your outgoing messages such as your business hours, location, etc.
  36. Record a memorable message or tip of the day on your outgoing answering machine or voicemail message.
  37. Ask clients what you can do to help them.
  38. Take clients out to a ballgame, show or another special event?just send them two tickets with a note.
  39. Hold a seminar at your office for clients and prospects.
  40. Create an area on your website specifically for your customers.
  41. Redecorate your office or the location where you meet with your clients.
  42. Serve on a city board or commission.
  43. Join a community list-serve (email list) on the internet.
  44. Advertise during peak seasons for your business.
  45. Obtain a memorable URL and email address and include them on all your marketing materials.
  46. Provide Rolodex cards or phone stickers preprinted with your business contact information.
  47. Promote your business jointly with other professionals via cooperative direct mail.
  48. Advertise in a specialty directory or in the Yellow Pages.
  49. Write an ad about your services in another language to reach the non-English-speaking market. Place the ad in a publication that market reads, such as a Hispanic newspaper.
  50. Mail ?bumps??photos, samples and other innovative items to your prospect list. (A bump is simply anything that makes the envelope bulge and the recipient curious about what?s inside)
  51. Create a direct-mail list of hot prospects.
  52. Improve your building signage and directional signs inside and out.
  53. Sponsor and promote a contest or sweepstakes.
  54. Get a booth at a fair or a trade show that your target market attends.
  55. Sponsor or host a special event or open house at your business location in cooperation with a local nonprofit organization, such as a women?s business center. Describe how the organization helped you.
  56. Give a speech or volunteer for a career day at a high school.
  57. Teach a class or seminar at a local college or adult-education center.
  58. Sponsor an Adopt-a-Road area in your community to keep roads litter-free. People who pass by the area will see your name on the sign announcing your sponsorship.
  59. Donate your product or service to a charity auction.
  60. Give your sales literature to your lawyer, accountant, printer, banker, temp agency, office supply salesperson, advertising agency, etc. (Expand your sales force free of charge.)
  61. Extend your hours of operation.

Ike Z. Devji, J.D., is executive vice president of The Wealthy 100, based in Phoenix. You may reach him at 602-343-2272 or at



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