In running an independent business, there is one thing that will be the greatest determinant of success or failure, and will tell you, essentially, whether you’re going to end up expanding and growing or opening your doors after a few years. I’m talking about profitability. Now, profitability doesn’t just happen over night; there’s not some set of magic elves that come out of the woodwork when you close shop and fix up the look of your store while crafting an amazing ad campaign that speaks to the people you’re trying to bring into your business. It takes a lot of work, and a lot of work can cost a lot of money. Keep in mind, while you’re trying to find profitability, your larger competitors aren’t worried about it nearly as much. They’ve already shown that they can be profitable, that’s why they’re bigger, and sometimes immensely so, than you are. They also probably have at least six months’ worth of money in reserve in case they happen to find themselves having a terrible run of luck, meaning that, if, tomorrow, by some terrible stroke of misfortune or Earth-shattering scandal, people simply just stopped coming into their store and purchasing anything, they’d be able to continue running as they exist right now for six months without having to worry about not being able to pay the bills. Then there’s all the assets that they have, which can be used for guaranteeing a loan, things that you won’t be able to do.
How, then, does one achieve this all important profitability, and then, more importantly, maintain it? You have to get the word out there that your business exists and let people know what you’re offering. More importantly, you need to tell them, or, to be more precise, convince them that what you’ve got to offer is a better product that is a better fit for them than what your competitors offer. It’s also good if you can convince them that you’re offering a better version of the same product, at a better price for the value, with more expertise behind it. Does marketing make a real difference, some may be asking at this point. Well, it does, and has in the past. Look at the VHS cassettes that you may have seen as a child; they were in competition with Betamax cassettes to be the chosen format for in-home video viewing. Betamax was, in every single way imaginable, a superior product. It was smaller, had more features like subtitles and the ability to skip by chapters, and even allowed for multiple language tracks. What Betamax didn’t have, however, was a marketing plan for the big markets, and because of this, they lost to the technologically inferior VHS cassette, and we all had to suffer through years of VHS mastery until the dawning of the age of DVD.
Now, we’ve established the importance of marketing as it relates to profitability, but how do you get the word out there about what you’re doing, speaking from a practical standpoint? You have to market yourself via various media. The popular choices are also the older ones, things like printed media, newspapers and magazines, that is, or things like television and radio advertising. There is, however, a much better, and much newer, way to get your message out there; with social media management services (provided by your local pr firm, because you’re not likely to have the time for this) and with social media marketing.
Social media is a great way to get your message out there, because the people on it are actually telling you what they’re likely to want to see, without even knowing it. Or, to be more specific, they’re telling an algorithm what the people are likely to purchase. Everything you write on social media, every post you make, every page you like or follow, and everything you share is being recorded and will be viewed later by algorithms to determine the likelihood that you’ll make a purchase and to better compartmentalize you for future marketing need. Because of this, with an expert pr firm, you’ll be able to craft an ad campaign, and you’ll also be able to make sure that the people who are seeing it are the people who are going to buy your product, meaning you’re getting more proverbial ‘bang’ for you marketing budget buck.
So, if you’re looking to find and attain that hard to find profitability, look into hiring a PR firm to help you with social media marketing. You won’t regret it.