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Good Question!

July 10, 2010

I’m always looking for better ways to market myself, my services, and my products. In one of the recent seminars I attended, I was given some questions* to think about. I found them amazingly valuable, and so I felt that it would be just as valuable to post them here, both for myself, and for you, my audience, to ponder and grow.

The first question is, “What business are you in?” The idea isn’t to answer with your title. It’s to say what you really do. For example, if you sell residential real estate, you may say that you are in the business of helping people find the place they can call home. So, answer the question, and continue to dig, define, and refine, until you have the essence of what you do.

The second question is, “Who is your target market and what matters to them?” This is a great way to narrow your focus to a very specific group, and then to identify their needs. What frustrates them? What scares them? Can you offer them a solution?

The third question is, “What makes you different and better?” We all know that it’s vitally important to differentiate ourselves from our competition. What makes you unique? Capitalize on this!

The next question is, “How can you add more value to what you offer?” In other words, can you provide a newsletter? write educational articles? have workshops? offer specials? There are always ways to add value.

The fifth question is “How could you narrow your focus?” This is one I always have to work on! I like the idea of doing it in phases. What does phase 1 look like? What does phase 2 look like? What can you add to phase 3? Doing this allows you to focus on one or only a couple of aspects of your business at a time.

The sixth question is, “Who can help you sell this?” This is using leverage in your marketing. Oftentimes, your product or service is the perfect complement to someone else’s. You may share target markets and therefore use each other’s market. For example, we recently found a person who was in the business of selling collectible baseball cards. In the comic book store, we have some cards, but not sports cards. We set up a partnership with him where we refer folks to him who are looking for sports cards and he refers folks to us who are looking for comic books. It’s a great arrangement!

And lastly, ask yourself, “Where is the low-hanging fruit?” In other words, who is easiest to reach? Who can market to others? Who has the money to pay you for your goods and services?

Apply all of these questions to whatever your business is. In fact, don’t settle for your first or second answer to each question. Keep digging, and you will find some interesting results emerging from your answers. I know I did!

* For more information from the source of these questions, please check out Jon Ward’s site: Click for Clients

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