The Complexities of standing out in the modern SME market

The importance of standing out from competitors has become one of the most important things you can do in the current, and future, business market. This means taking on-board marketing and advertising as well as knowing which parts of a business are or aren’t working and using them to your advantage are vital as part of any on-going business plan.

Sadly, the fact of the matter is that up to 50% small to medium sized enterprises fail within their first year according eHow money. This can usually be put down to numerous factors but this is usually because of a bad business plan or marketing strategy; however sometimes it could be from something as simple as lack of consumer demand. Other times it can be a fantastic idea but tactlessly wrong in its execution.

Any right-minded company will not undervalue the importance of an internet presence. In fact, most successful businesses will be guaranteed to have a website/twitter presence/Facebook page but also correlate this along with off-line marketing. It is recommended to put your website address on any offline marketing material you would be willing to give out. An important lesson here is to remember, that with the relatively modern concept of 24-hour connectivity that you can engage with an audience that you would have previously not been as easy to communicate with.

One of the most important things to remember is that you can’t only rely on your online profile. Although, very important, it is important to keep an eye on your offline presence. If you are on a budget and need to keep the purse strings tight then it’s worth looking at sites like Vistaprint who offer free business cards; which in due course you can brand with your website and increase naturally traffic to your site. Getting your business as well-known as possible is now possible to do without the aid of a huge marketing budget.

Continuity in branding cannot be overlooked as brand association is one of the key success factors in recognition of your service or product. Keep the same logo across all the social media platforms that you use; it looks unprofessional and unorganised to not do so. If your company doesn’t know its own direction then you will be unable to build up trust. It would be a PR disaster to be associated with a negative news story, and again, with the internet; everything is becoming more and more easily archived and searchable.

Do you have a niche? Is there enough clientele ready to part with their cash for what you have on offer? So, how can you stand out!? Learn what your competitors are doing; use what they are doing well to your advantage, and learn from the mistakes they have made. Research needs to be done, and although it may seem like it’s something that just takes a couple of minutes early on; it is well worth spending the time on this instead of getting to the point where you have essentially ‘missed a trick’ and your competitor has the forward footing.

6 things every customer wants illustrates this point perfectly as well as addressing the very important point of loyalty.

There is still money out there; people are just being more and more careful on what they spend it on. It’s not impossible for successful small businesses to develop themselves in the current climate but it will only work with decent research and commitment.