Everyone has heard ads on the radio, seen them on TV, and maybe even caught a billboard on the side of the highway. You may be wondering if these are the only options available for marketing your adventure, or if they are the right ones for you.
Chances are, especially if you are just starting your adventure, THEY AREN'T the avenues you should be pursuing right now. Instead, you might want to consider the following top five best marketing strategies for a start up Real Small Adventure...
#1. Start a Database. This is actually more of a tool than a campaign strategy. But, it is the single most valuable tool you will ever have for your adventure. From day one you MUST start capturing the information of the people who do business with you. This info will become the foundation of your marketing and sales efforts to follow. When you have a contact's name and at least one method of contact (try for 3 minimum), then you have a person whom you can market to directly forever after. More than that, if you are gathering continual data, over time you will be able to market more and more effectively to that individual, producing better and better results.
Start a database. Then start capturing the contact info of every person who engages your adventure. How? Consider offering a discount coupon if they will subscribe to your monthly email SUBSCRIPTION (I hate using the term "newsletter").
#2. Set Up a Solid Website. Honestly, unless your adventure is an online only entity, you don't NEED a very extravagant website. But, we constantly encourage all of our peeps to build their website in great detail, because we believe the process forces Real Small Adventures to address marketing, image, and content issues that are otherwise easy to put off. Whether you create a super site, or just a one page splash, it is CRITICAL that you make the thing look PRO. Your website is today's number one source for FIRST IMPRESSIONS, and you want that impression to be perfect. Whether you like it or not (or believe it), the plain fact of the matter is that the majority of the world's consumers are using online presence as a means of determining if something or someone is worth engaging and trusting. You MUST look good on the web.
Take the time to create a solid website (even if it is only a Facebook page). You may be surprised at how inexpensive they actually are, and how easy they are these days to build yourself. Still need some help? Check out our website building services.
#3. Establish an Effective Social Media Presence. There is a noticeable trend in user-types on social media lately. It seems that either a person is REALLY into social media, spending a lot of time there and getting a lot of their purchasing information from it; or they hate social media and avoid it like the plague. If you are of the latter persuasion, we are sorry to tell you that not only are you in the minority on this one, but you need to get over that phobia and accept social media for what it CAN BE - a highly effective and wonderfully affordable marketing tool.
If you are already a social media nut, then we have to warn you about the need to get focused if you want to be an effective social media marketer. It is just too easy to get your time sucked away by going down rabbit trails on your wall. Make a plan and stick to it.
Effective social media marketing revolves around two concepts - Regular Engagement and Valuable Content. Paying to boost your posts or have ads show up on other people's walls is just a bonus. First you must make sure that you are posting regularly - at least daily (preferably 3 to 5 times a day!). Don't miss a single day for any reason. Consistency alone will get you the exposure you are looking for better than anything else.
And when you do engage with your online peeps, make the content VALUABLE. No more "quick shares" and pictures of your last meal. Instead, post pics and videos that capture attention. Then include SHORT content that adds value to your peoples' lives. Always include a call to action of some kind. But BE CAREFUL not to continuously come across as a sales ad.
Need help creating or managing an effective social media marketing strategy? Ask us!
#4. Collaborate with Other Adventures. A good example of this is how NAPMA (the National Association of Professional Martial Artists) got started. Their founder had the great idea of bringing a much needed increase in professionalism to the martial arts industry. Although he had the knowledge on how to run a successful and professional martial arts school, he didn't have the finances to promote the organization nationally like he wanted to.
So he piggy backed. He cut a win-win collaboration deal with the leading martial arts equipment supplier of the day, Century Martial Arts Supply (CMAS). He would add value to being a CMAS customer by giving all of their customers a free copy of NAPMA's monthly magazine, IF they would give them access to their database. Instantly NAPMA had exposure to thousands of martial arts school owners across the nation, and an organization was born that has changed the quality of martial arts instruction worldwide over the past 20 years.
You must find another adventure in your community (or 2 or 3) that would be willing to work with you on giving you exposure. You'll get the best responses if you can find a way for everyone involved to see a win from your collaborative efforts. Want a generic idea? Offer a SUPER DISCOUNT coupon for your adventure to all of the patrons of your collaborative partner. Your partner wins because they are adding more value to their peeps. Their peeps win because they are getting a great deal from you. You win because you are getting recommendation level exposure to people you otherwise would potentially never have met through your own efforts.
#5. Start a HIT LIST. From day one you need to start a "hit list" consisting of names of real people with whom you wish to engage regarding your adventure. If you are a business that sells to other businesses, then that hit list will likely contain names of CEOs and owners of businesses that you would like to market to. Whoever your target market is, start getting specific about who you want to have as a contact.
Once you have some names, then start getting the word out that you want to be introduced to those individuals. You would be surprised at how many people you already know that have direct access to a potential contact of yours. Heck, your best friend's father may be your best future client, and you didn't know it because you never asked.
The above marketing strategies are almost all COST FREE. They do take time to implement. But, we consider all of them as FOUNDATION LEVEL MARKETING CAMPAIGN STRATEGIES. Don't even bother with any other kind of advertising until you have these ones down. God speed you on your way to success. If you need any help in creating or implementing any of the above strategies, let us know. We're here to help!