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Sunday, January 2, 2011

Basic Marketing and Promotion Tip

This year, whatever you do, you MUST promote YOURSELF and your business.  Marketing 101 (and basic business sense) tells you that the biggest part of the sale is the marketing. You can build the best product ever, but if you do not promote it wisely, it's value goes way down.

Some of us are in business for ourselves out of basic necessity; others are working from home because that's where their life's passion lies.  Still, some of us are in it to win it (whatever "it" is!).  None of that matters if you sell nothing (and no, I am not talking only about products; many of us sell skills, integrity, loyalty, whatever).  Zero percent of zero is zero.

In this age of electronics, it's nearly impossible to NOT market, but people often overlook the most obvious and extremely affordable marketing strategies - use your signature!  If you have an email (or two or three or four), add a short blip about you/your business and simple contact information. Do this for your computer AND your smart phone.  Use a different signature for each account and change it up.  Most importantly, be direct and keep it simple.

Do you belong to Google groups?  Yahoo groups? Any online bulletin boards?  Check your account, they often allow a simple two or three line signature, as well.  Think about it - even if your odds of selling yourself/product are one time for every million signatures you share: it's one more you sold without much work.

When I'm emailing via True Crime Fanatic, my goal is to get people to read our website.  I can lead with an interesting case, but more often than not, the words "true crime" often trigger intrigue and I've been able to get away with this:

Teraisa Goldman

I do try to stay away from extremely high profile cases because they're the cases people literally go online to read, so I'll pick a quote from a book, a favorite author, or a tag from an online article.  When I'm using a short blurb, it may look like this:

"... Negroes on the plantation were to rise up and begin killing their masters with axes, hoes, and clubs while they were drinking and celebrating Independence Day."  Harry N. MacLean, The Past Is Never Dead

FYI: When emailing from your smart phone, include a single word at the beginning of your signature letting others know. Why? Because although we are professional, using a smart phone often causes a few unplanned typos. When your target market receives an email from you (we can all pretend we'll never do this, but I venture to say 90% of us will send at least one in the course of our business life), and we mean to say "Harry," but it comes out "hairy," we'll be grateful they can see we let our smart phone get the best of us, just as they have, and we'll quickly be forgiven.  Example of how it could turn out:

"... Negroes on the plantation were to rise up and begin killing their matters with axes, hose, and clubs while they were drinking and celebrating Independence Day."  Hairy Macintosh, The Past Is Never Dead

I leave you with this reminder: market and promote, but promote wisely.

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