In 2017, it’s more like “build and they will watch or think about coming.”
Whether it’s brick & mortar or a completely digital company or church, people won’t come just because your “open” sign is on. Large corporations and franchises have an advantage in this respect because they either have the branding or the budget to drive leads with little to no leg work.
Small business and especially churches are at a disadvantage because not only are they fighting budgeting constraints and lack of brand awareness but they’re also competing against the large corporations and franchises that don’t have those challenges.
So, how do you get them to come?
Sorry, if you were looking for a one-step simple solution, I don’t have it. You shouldn’t believe anyone who says they do either. The answer is that there’s no one answer but rather multiple small improvements you can make and additional channels you can invest in to increase your brand awareness and drive leads.
Here are my top 3 recommendations for growth:
- Branding – Whether you’re a person, small business or church – branding goes far! This is where your brand awareness begins. A consistent look and feel, solid logo and tagline and a brand name and a voice that says who you are is your basic level of branding. Make sure you have it. People will learn about the products or services you offer as they familiarize themselves with your brand. Once they become comfortable with your brand, they begin to trust you. Trust turns in to $ales!
- Online Optimization – I’ve said it in a previous blog and I’ll say it again – to succeed, every business needs a strong digital presence. With that comes the need for a good website, social media presence, reviews, online listings and more. Optimizing your presence online is a necessary step in building your brand. Having a website is not enough anymore. You need to be present everywhere!
- Network! – Self-explanatory but I’ll explain. Your network isn’t just the people you know. It’s your potential customers and future members. Stop just putting marketing messages in front of them. Like their posts on social media, support what they support and engage them whenever you can. Stop asking for fans and become a fan; become their advocate and they’re one step closer to becoming your customer.