by Lidia Varesco Racoma of Lidia Varesco Design
Since 2000, I've been helping my clients brand and market themselves so I know the value of marketing. But I also know how easy it can be to let your marketing slide when you are busy with client work— and how this can negatively impact your business and cash flow (hello, dry spell!)
When I was several years into my business, I initiated “Friday Afternoon Marketing”—an afternoon dedicated to working ON my business, instead of IN my business. After my first child was born, my marketing time became limited so I had to find a way to do more marketing in less time.
I was pleasantly surprised with how much I could get done in small chunks of time. I started sharing weekly “10-Minute Marketing” posts on my blog—these were tried-and-true marketing, branding, client outreach, public relations and social media tasks and branding that could be accomplished in a half-hour or less.
Here are my top 5 tips for getting more marketing done in less time:
1. Make a list of your marketing essentials
What are marketing essentials? The marketing channels that bring you the most return on your investment of money and especially, time. With so many ways to market yourself—and so little time—it’s best to focus on no more than 3 marketing techniques that are working, instead of trying to do it all.
Here are some examples of marketing essentials:
Printed promotional materials
Cold calling (or emailing)
2. Write your positioning statement:
Your positioning statement details what makes your business unique and why your audience should choose you. It’s a crucial part of your branding and marketing and should be used as reference before doing any type of client outreach, such as drafting website copy, writing a blog post, or planning a marketing campaign.
Your positioning statement can be broken down into the following:
What unique service or product you provide
Who you provide it for
Why they should trust or believe you
Example: Since 2000 [WHY], Lidia Varesco Design has been helping education-focused organizations [WHO] share their mission through strategic branding and marketing [WHAT].
3. Survey your clients
How often do you ask your clients questions? I know how easy it is to get caught up in projects, but if you stop to ask questions it can offer insight into how you can enhance your projects and relationships.
Here are a few questions to ask your clients:
What do you need?
What are you struggling with right now?
How can I help?
How can we improve upon our working relationship?
How else I can help you?
To get your answers, you can simply call or email them, or send out a short survey (I recommend SurveyMonkey or Typeform). I also like to keep a running list of client inquires or pain points in Evernote to refer to as needed.
4. Make a list of places to share your story
Sharing your story or expertise is a great way to get the word out about your business and to position yourself as a thought leader. I regularly contribute to small business blogs, as well as HARO (Help a Reporter Out) requests.
Here are some places to share your story:
HARO (Help a Reporter Out)
uPitch or other PR apps
5. Share a project on social media
Sharing a recent project is a great way to connect with potential new prospects or strategic partners. Remember, many of your social media followers may not know exactly what you do.
And yes, it’s OK to toot your own horn on social media—as long as you mix it up with useful, non-salesy posts. Make sure to include a link to your portfolio page or better yet, direct them to a case study or blog post you’ve written about the project.
I would love to hear how these quick marketing strategies work for you. Connect with me @lsvdesign on Twitter or Facebook.
Lidia Varesco Racoma of Lidia Varesco Design in Chicago helps education-focused organizations share their mission through strategic branding and marketing design. Read more branding and marketing tips on her blog Educated Design. www.lsvdesign.com
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