MARKETING ON A SHOESTRING BUDGET – ANJALI VARMA
Anjali Varma is a business coach for female entrepreneurs and a marketing consultant that specializes in marketing, strategy, personal branding and business trading. This was her second time joining us at a WEC conference, and we were delighted for her return. Here are some key tips and tricks we learned during Anjali’s presentation:
The overall goal of marketing is about decreasing your customer acquisition costs. In other words, you acquire the most paying customers for the least amount of money possible.
While this is the overall goal of marketing, make sure to analyze what your specific goals are. Do you:
- Want to bring in new customers?
- Raise brand awareness?
- Maintain a relationship with existing customers?
It is likely that you want to do all three of these things. However, each goal predicts a different marketing strategy, so if you want to accomplish all three, make sure to prioritize between the three.
It may even be that the most cost-effective way to increase revenue is not to expand your marketing efforts to reach new customers, rather you can increase the average transaction value, or size, of your already existing customers.
Upselling your customers is all about offering them a profitable deal to your already existing customers that will encourage them to spend more.
Anjali illustrates this point with the donut shop example. If you have a customer who spends $1.25 on a donut for you every Saturday, and you sell coffee separately for $1.00, try offering him the coffee for just 50 cents. To him, you will market a breakfast for under $2.00. If he purchases this deal for $1.75, you will get an incremental increase of 50 cents per his transaction. While this may seem like a small figure, if just 200 customers accepted this offer for an additional 50 cents, you will generate $5,500 in annual revenue. As Anjali says: “this isn’t chump change!” She’s absolutely right. So think to yourself, do you actually want to expand your market reach, or can you focus your efforts on getting just a little bit more from the customers who already love you?
Cross-selling your customers is a way to expose them to other goods/services you offer that they maybe haven’t considered yet.
One of Anjali’s businesses, Kidville Bethesda, a daycare and play space located in downtown Bethesda, provides daycare, events, and salon services to families. However, she realized that her customers (mainly moms) only knew about one of their services, never even considering the others. As a remedy, Anjali sent out an email to her customers advertising all of her businesses, which converted moms who bought the service in one area to also purchase additional services.
Find your rock-star customer!
Another stellar marketing plan is to figure out who your “rock-star customer” is and incentivize them to promote your brand. This is commonly done by creating an affiliate program where customers can elect to being a brand ambassador in exchange for deals, discounts, and other exclusive offers.
Anjali provided us the example of her Mompreneurbootcamps, a class she offers for women entrepreneurs. She reached out to a customer who had a large following of her target audience and offered them a deal on her class in exchange for a promotion. As a result, the customer received a valuable discount and Anjali sold out her camp. Win-win!
Or let someone else find your next rock-star customer!
Another critical person to target is influencers. Influencers are people with a large following on social media. However, do not fall for the novice mistake of choosing quantity over quality. A user with a following of more than 10K users may get less engagement with your target audience than a user with a following of only 1K users, thus making them a worse choice for your brand despite the vast amount of more followers. Influencers can be incentivized to advertise your brand with free offers, trials, and more, just like your rockstar customers!
Plus, did you know that there’s one influencer who would die for your brand and is easily accessible? Who am I referring to? Yourself, of course! By establishing yourself as an expert, you become your own brand ambassador. People will come to you for FAQs on your industry, and you can then refer them to your product or service as the solution. A great social media site where you can establish credibility in your space for free is Quora.com. Quora allows users to post questions that can be answered by anyone. By answering questions in your area of expertise, you gain credibility and a following, which you can leverage for your brand awareness!
Anjali has tons of more tips and tricks on marketing, so we highly encourage you follow her Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter accounts. If you find yourself spending too much on marketing with too little results, remember it’s never too late to start revamping your efforts and achieving the profit you deserve! Make sure to check out our other WEC Recap posts for advise on how to effectively jump start your business and financially order your household!