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shill
03-01-2010, 11:51 PM
Okay, so I started my business last year, and I haven't really done a whole lot of advertising. I've only had a few clients and I really want to kick it off soon. I've been getting my website ready, my logo, business cards, and fliers have all been complete. I've just done a bunch of SEO on my website, and added myself to Google maps, and a free online Yellow Pages ad. I'm trying to get all of my basics down before I really start promoting. The question I have for you all is...What are some of the best ways to move forward from here? What are the best ways to bring in potential personal clients as well as business contracts? Thanks in advance for your tips!

ps. I did read almost all of the other threads in this Advertising, Marketing & Sales section. I'm just trying to see where I should go from what I've already done.

callthatgirl
03-02-2010, 02:49 AM
If you want my opinions, go read my post "what I did to market my business"....and that's a good list to read and figure out what you like and don't like doing.

I have tested a few guys here offline and everyone likes doing different things. Do what you enjoy!

:)

repairit
03-05-2010, 03:49 AM
Well, while there are other posts regarding this, I will toss my few cents. I started by walking postcards in my general area as well as spreading the word through friends and family. Granted, this only turned a few jobs (enough to pay for postcards and some profit) but combined with working SEO in Yahoo and Google Local, after a couple months, things started to pick up.

I started my personal business back in July of last year as a part time solution with a full time job, I find myself very busy and have in fact taken on another part time employee to help when I find myself overwhelmed (every week). I am currently looking into some local marketing with a very focused local newspaper/newsletter and only see things climbing from there. Not sure if this helps, but I found SEO and Local listings with both Yahoo and Google very effective in getting off the ground.

RhodyTech
03-05-2010, 09:28 PM
For residential consumers, you just need to blast ads everywhere and keep them going. It's expensive but what you're really doing is building up "equity" in the minds of the local consumers so when they actually need computer repair, your ad will spring to their minds. A yellow pages ad is important too but you need to have a "unique selling proposition", something to differentiate your ad from all of the other "clones". Don't list facts about the services you provide, rather tell the customer how you are going to ease their pain and fix their problems. Use an effective heading that asks a question like "COMPUTER PROBLEMS?" Way too many ads have the company name at the top which does not grab attention!

For business customers, you need to network. Chamber of commerce is a great start. Join and send out a post card offering something FREE (make it relevant to your business offering, like FREE network security check, or a FREE guide on solving common email problems....)

Of course this is just the tip of the iceberg... advertising is a complex beast but you should, at the very least, do a Yellow pages ad and join the chamber.

Good luck

kagman
03-08-2010, 02:17 PM
Does going to the chamber of commerce really do anything? Is it worth it... anyone had any experience dealing with it.?

shill
03-08-2010, 04:34 PM
I was wondering that too, also does it cost anything to join them?

RhodyTech
03-08-2010, 06:07 PM
Does going to the chamber of commerce really do anything? Is it worth it... anyone had any experience dealing with it.?

IN my experience, you get back what you put in. IOW, you need to attend the after-hours meet-ups, holiday events, luncheons, etc. to get the most out of your membership. You need to meet the other business owners, face-to-face, hand them a card, give em your elevator pitch and you'll definitely get some work.

In fact, offer your own FREE seminar over lunch and you'll do well with it too.

Beyond that, you can try regular advertising channels by sending postcards/email blasts or maybe even writing tech tips in the newsletter. These will have much lower response rates typical of standard advertising campaigns. IOW, probably not worth the dues fee just to say you're a member in the advertising.

What I did was locked down the actual Chamber office as a client and now they direct all inquiries about computers/networking to me. This has paid back my dues fees several times over (in referrals) and I have yet to attend a single meeting or event.

What I did was called and set up an appt to speak with the Chamber president about joining and offered a free network assessment while I was there. She said "absolutely!" I made sure I did an excellent job of the assessment, ie nicely written Word doc with my findings and potential enhancements, concerns, etc and my fee to implement. She hired me and that was that.

Give it a try. :)

shill
03-08-2010, 06:43 PM
I just looked at my local chamber of commerce, the only issue is all of their events are in the morning. Since I'm still getting my business started I still have a full time job at the moment so this wouldn't be very beneficial to me yet.(or at least I don't think it would be)

ProTech-MN
03-09-2010, 06:01 AM
I'll reiterate the comments about joining a local Chamber of Commerce... you get out what you put into it.. If you join, you need to start attending the meetings & events - it's all about networking and meeting prospective customers.

-Randy

LukeD
03-10-2010, 03:53 PM
I'll reiterate the comments about joining a local Chamber of Commerce... you get out what you put into it.. If you join, you need to start attending the meetings & events - it's all about networking and meeting prospective customers.

-Randy

This + start to position yourself as the local expert, don't throw any sales pitches, write some expert advice type white papers and when conversations lean towards technology say " hey I wrote a article about safe internet tips you might be interested in", or Iíve done some research and wrote a paper about what to look for in a computer repair business

If you give away free advice without being pushy other business owners will think to themselves, if I am getting all this value for free I wonder what I will get when I pay.

kagman
03-10-2010, 04:36 PM
Wow thats great... will check that out in my area... great advice.. :)