While the new year has already started for many of us, a sixth of the world’s population will now come together to celebrate Chinese New Year.
This 15-day spring festival is steeped in mythology, with 2021 recognised as the Year of the Ox. While this animal is a symbol of strength and patience, small business owners still have to work hard and fast to achieve success.
To help you start both the Chinese and Gregorian New Years right, we’ve put together some inspiring quotes and pearls of marketing wisdom that might help give your business that all-important edge:
1. “Your brand is so much more than what you sell.” – Jon Iwata
Every business wants to sell stuff, but that’s not always enough to win customers. The ensuing conflict means we are constantly fighting the instinct to talk about and promote our products.
Think beyond the (bottom) line. Focus less about crunching the numbers and more about your business’s particular personality. Your ‘brand’ can’t be everything to everyone so think carefully what it means to you. Whether your tone is funny or your colours bright, these qualities will forever define how you are perceived by others.
Building a strong brand is a vital process for any business. Carefully crafting a distinctive personality is how you will stand out from your competitors and forge customer loyalty. If you put all your focus into your product, you run the risk of people losing interest every time you make a mistake or try something new.
Not sure where to start? Read our handy explainer on the basics of branding.
2. Stop selling. Start helping.” – Zig Ziglar
The market is changing, bringing with it brand new platforms, tools and mindsets that are making traditional outbound selling less effective.
Managers like to tell employees, “the customer is always right” – but few businesses actually make the customer the focus. Keeping your customer front of mind is a great way to win their loyalty, and it can be something as simple as a ‘contact us’ box on your website. This will help you resolve queries and complaints and avoid losing business over trivial disputes.
When it comes to the relationship between company and customer, it’s more important than ever to build trust. According to a recent study, 81% of customers believe that the ability to trust a brand to do what is right can be a deal-breaker. It’s not enough to have a great product; customers need to know there are good people behind it.
3. “The customer expects you to have knowledge of their stuff, not just your stuff.” – Jeffrey Gitomer
Staying well-informed should be a no-brainer for any job. When it comes to marketing, you should never forget empathy in the quest for technical expertise.
Having a vast knowledge of your niche area undoubtedly shows you’re an expert in your field. But if you want your business to attract loyal customers, you must also understand your audience.
Knowing customer needs is at the centre of every successful business, so it’s imperative that you try your best to meet them. A good place to start is market research. While you can’t interact face-to-face with your customer right now. conducting end-of-campaign surveys, Facebook polls, and regularly analysing your website analytics, will help you better understand your customers (and how you can sell to them).
4. “Content is fire, social media is gasoline.” – Jay Baer
You may think your small business has little need for content marketing, but publishing creative content is a cost-effective way to establish a solid brand identity and show people you exist.
Save yourself the hassle with our sponsored content options and let our professional journalists write a high-quality online article on your behalf. We will showcase your business around engaging content relevant to your target audience. Furthermore, this piece of content will be shared across our local news titles, viewed in publications that people trust.
Whether you write it yourself or it’s written on your behalf, posting your content on social media will grow its audience and boost its engagement.
Social media can be an intimidating space, but this explainer should help you pick the right channel for your business.
5. “Increasingly, there are only two kinds of companies: brave and dead.” – Seth Godin
Competing in a crowded market can be very tough, but it is possible for you to compete and succeed.
Establish early what makes you unique. Every time you speak, write or design anything, make sure you think carefully about what you want it to convey. Whether it’s your offbeat sense of humour, back story, beliefs or brand colours or logo; it’s important to find an honest and consistent brand presentation and voice.
If you’re struggling for inspiration, try something new. As we enter the new year, it’s the perfect time to do something different, and something that your competitors aren’t. New strategies, such as voice search, video advertising, and AI could be just the thing to help you stand out.
2020 was a tough year and 2021 hasn’t got off to the best start. But with the market continuing to evolve, this could be your year for bold initiatives and taking chances.
Chinese New Year is an auspicious time, and we hope these pearls of marketing wisdom will get you excited about all the possibilities waiting around the corner this Year of the Ox.
Enjoyed this blog? We have more sage advice here: