marketing tipsIf the marketing strategies you’re using are pretty much similar to that of your competitors, you’ll never be able to obtain an unfair advantage over them.

It’s exactly because of this that businesses nowadays are keen on looking for innovative, and unique marketing strategies to give them the competitive edge that they need to get more customers.

If that’s what you’re looking to learn, then you’re definitely on the right page.

Allow me to share with you 3 out-of-the-box marketing tips that I personally use to get more customers, and grow my business.

1) Use cellular phone directories together with Linkedin.

LinkedIn can be a great way to build a list of leads. It allows the users to download a spreadsheet that contains their connections’ available contact information.

You can collect their email addresses, and their phone numbers (among others), which you can log into a Customer Relationship Management System or into your own contact list.

The platform also allows you to create public and private groups which are based around a niche or topic. You can then nurture the group and use it to reach your target market.

Should you decide to start a group, be sure to remember the 80/20 rule. It is advisable that you share only about 20% of promotional and branded content, while sharing about 80% of informational content that provides massive value to your group.

Once you’ve grown your network in LinkedIn, you can then reach out to them using their contact information.

Important note: there will be instances wherein you can’t view your connection’s phone numbers. At this point, you can use an online cell phone directory such as National Cellular Directory’s Happy Hour, so you can obtain their cell phone number (for free) by doing a name and address lookup.

2) Feature your prospects on an expert round-up.

The gist of this strategy is to contact your prospect customers, telling them that you’ll feature them in an expert round-up.

Of course, before you do that, you need to make sure that your prospects are in fact experts in their own field, and that they have a good enough clout. This is to make sure that you’ll benefit from the expert round-up several ways; a) once they share your expert round-up, they’d have helped you with marketing your business, b) you’d have been able to build a relationship with influencers in your industry, and c) during all of this, you can pitch your services strategically drastically increasing your chances of closing the sale.

Allow me to share with you a 2 things that you need to keep in mind before running an expert round-up:

  1. These influencers are usually busy. That said, don’t ask them for anything that requires too much of their time. I usually ask them for their 1 best tip on something. This makes it easier for them to participate since it isn’t THAT time consuming, and they’ll be featured on the same article as other experts.
  2. Be sure to have a bait. The thing is, if you don’t give these influencers a good enough reason for participating in your round-up, the chances are good that they’ll just ignore you, or straight-up decline your offer.

Here’s a round-up where I featured 19 influencers that shared their best customer service tips. We’ve gotten several inquiries for our services because of this piece so it’s a classic example of how these powerful this technique can be.

3) Leverage the power of introduction.

Zig Ziglar was spot-on when he said, “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”

As you can probably imagine, there are TONS of ways you can help the people in your network.

For a lot of us, the most immediate method of helping our customers would be to sell our services. While that might be OK at first glance, we need to realize that almost everyone is doing that. And if you’ll jump in the bandwagon yourself, you won’t be able to set yourself apart from the rest of the pack.

Instead of offering your services immediately, why don’t you go about this using a different route.

Why don’t you introduce your connections to each other instead, so they can benefit from growing their network and having a wider wiggle-room as far as growing their business?

Businessmen that are worth their salt will almost always appreciate the gesture since the power of having a large network can play a crucial role for a business’ longevity.

However, before you start introducing your connections, you need to make sure that the introduction will make sense for both parties. Otherwise, you’ll just be wasting everyone’s time.

For example. If one of your connections offer content writing services, you can refer him to one of your connections that’s a web developer. That way, once the web developer is done with working on his client’s websites, he can send over his client to your other connection that offers content.

At this point, the content writer can give the web developer a commission for every referral he shares that would end-up ordering content.

It’s a win-win situation for both parties, right?

Now can you imagine how grateful they will be to you since you proactively introduced them to each other?

By introducing your connections to each other, you’ll surely be able to take your relationship with them to the next level, making it easier for you to offer your services and getting them to order from you.

What makes this strategy even more amazing is the fact that people will want to introduce you to their connections whom they feel is a perfect fit for you. All because you helped them to begin with. You can read more about the psychology of reciprocity through Robert Cialdini’s book, “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion”.

Important note: I use a tool called Entro to manage my introductions. What makes this tool so amazing is that it helps me track the introductions, send follow-ups, and use templates (among others). The tool integrates with your Gmail account and it doesn’t look intrusive at all.

What’s next?

If there are other marketing strategies that you feel should be included, please add them in the comments section below.

Lastly, if you found value this post valuable, please take the time to share it. Cheers!

Photo courtesy – © Mark Carrel / Dollar Photo Club