As small business owners shift their attentions from traditional advertising methods to those that rely on Internet, email, or social strategies, it's also important to keep in mind that focusing on customers who deal with them in the real world might be the best way to continue attracting new business.
While any company may be able to increase their sales figures and revenues as a result of their online efforts to market the various goods or services they offer, as long as their approach is wise and solidly strategized, many owners still say that their best chance of reaching new customers or clients comes as a result of word-of-mouth, according to a report from USA Today. Satisfied patrons who talk to their friends or family about the positive experience they had in dealing with a small business will likely go a much longer way toward encouraging people to check out the company's offerings than any ad, because no 140-character summary of why a product or service is great can match a real person's enthusiasm for them.
Of course, most small business owners already know that encouraging word-of-mouth isn't always easy, even when a company's offerings are top-notch, the report said. Few people make a point to actually talk about businesses that they deal with, even if they like them a lot, unless the enterprise or its employees go above and beyond expectations.
So how do entrepreneurs get their names out there?
When trying to make a company better-known in their local markets, it might be wise for owners to do more to make themselves visible, the report said. This might include sponsoring local charity events or youth sports teams, or making conspicuous contributions to organizations. In the latter case in particular, what a company gives doesn't have to be cash, can instead be given through things like equipment (particularly if the business specializes in something a group might need), or man-hours. Making sure employees are involved in volunteering can have a significant positive impact in the community, and on the business.
Companies that want to make sure they're financially capable of making such donations might want to consider shopping around for small business insurance. Doing so might help them to identify lower-cost plans, such as those for liability insurance, which in turn can free up thousands of dollars per year that can be better devoted to improving a company's bottom line or community.