Formulating a new marketing campaign from scratch can be a little daunting. So think of the following as your 5-a-day, some basic essentials to keep you performing to the best of your ability.
1. A website that reflects how great you are
You’re an IT company. So potential customers will expect you to have a fantastic website! Yes, we know that web design may be a million miles from the services you actually provide but this is the misconception you’re dealing with. And after all, with the Internet providing the starting point for most new supplier research these days, you know that any new prospect who sees a dog’s breakfast hosted at your company domain will be passing over your site fairly promptly.
No spelling mistakes, no endless paragraphs of technical product description, no out-of-date news pages and absolutely no cliché images of businesspeople dressed in suits on the beach connecting remotely to their offices.
We’re talking about your shop window, so your website should always appear engaging, up-to-date and beautifully presented. Build it using a dynamic Web 2.0 theme, preferably one that includes a blog, and make sure the words and design remain both professional and relevant, which means no spelling mistakes, no endless paragraphs of technical product description, no out-of-date news pages and absolutely no cliché images of businesspeople dressed in suits on the beach connecting remotely to the office.
2. Regular contact with existing clients
It’s a mistake to believe marketing activity should be reserved only for your new prospects – just because your customers have already signed on the dotted line doesn’t mean you should neglect talking to them. Marketing should be thought of as an on-going conversation, not simply for ‘brand new customers only’, but also as a means of periodically engaging with those who are already loyal to your services and may well be open to the prospect of further products and services you have available to them.
3. Understand what you do well
Think you know what makes your business so great? Your customers probably have an even better idea than you do!
If you’re looking for ways to promote your IT company, speaking to your existing customers to find out what it is they believe makes you special is a highly beneficial exercise. A telephone survey of your customers may be a time consuming project which requires the assistance of a marketing agency, but it will reap long term rewards as you gauge customer satisfaction, ‘check in’ with them, keeping the relationship ‘warm’ and maybe gain a better understanding of your own USPs than you would ever have on your own. You may even get some juicy testimonials from them you can use to promote your company to new prospects!
4. Targeted email marketing to prospects
Email marketing allows you to get your message directly to your prospects’ inboxes. Campaigns should not only be beautifully designed, but contain content relevant to your audience – if you know who you are speaking to you can target your message to them, sending them information on products and services you know they could well be interested in. Email marketing is measurable, allowing you to analyse the results and success of each campaign and track new business which comes as a result of it.
5. Get yourself noticed with SEO
Once you’ve got a website, you need to ensure potential customers can find it! Search Engine Optimisation specialists are experts in getting your site high up in the rankings of all the main search engines, working to ensure you will be found in searches by keywords which depict what you offer. If someone is searching for companies offering your services, they are more likely to opt for one of the first results that pop up rather than trawl through pages and pages. So if you lack prominence, you may well lose business.