I just finished reading Tom Patty’s new book, Marketing Without Money, a welcome read on my flight from San Francisco to Philadelphia. Tom skillfully weaves his experience as a top marketing expert with ad agencies, his owned “failed” experience as an entrepreneur and his role as SCORE counselor into a comprehensive set of no-cost marketing ideas for small businesses.
Small businesses have little time and money for marketing. But without marketing, small businesses cannot survive. Here’s what I found most worthwhile from this book. Patty says that in marketing, one way to increase value is the use of positioning. Listed below are a few things he says that any business can do to improve its “value equation”:
- Offer a money-back guarantee
- Include shipping at no additional cost
- Create a value pack
I bent the corner of this page because I believe there is merit in taking a look at how I might make these changes in our business.
Patty speaks of the importance of promotion as another way to increase awareness. Small businesses often don’t have the resources to pay for expensive television commercials, but in the example given – a business that advertised during the super bowl – it was the idea, not the commercial that created a lasting impression. Ideas are free. Small businesses should get publicity that gets others talking about the business. Press releases are boring and are self-promoting.
The ultimate set of ideas I gained from Patty are about marketing leverage. He offers strategies to grow your business by asking questions like:
- What is my customer really buying (instead of what am I selling)?
- How can my business be more attractive to my customers?
- How can I make my business more convenient?
- How can increase my value to my customers?
Marketing your business can help you attract new customers and grow your revenues. Investing in this book and the ideas it presents may add a boost to your business. I intend to go back to the many sections of the book I’ve underlined and dog eared and follow through on a few good ideas to help grow my business.