Its a question that often gets raised, and when you compare large businesses with their smaller counterparts its one that you would be forgiven for asking as they seem light years apart, but there are key principles that actually apply to all businesses no matter what their size which reflect the effectiveness of the marketing they do.
If you were to look back into the history of most big companies and what made them successful, you would find that over time the principles that made them successful eventually become lost as the business got larger and embroiled in corporate policy and its own self importance.
Slowly these behemoths disengage from their market and marketing becomes a tool for telling people how big they are, how great they are and all sorts of other chest beating and ego boosting messages.
Rarely though does any of this actually engage with people. Because they have huge budgets and resources and have built up a loyal customer base they can afford to do what they like, or so they think. Following them could lead the small business up the garden path.
The main difference between small and large businesses is that smaller companies don’t have the luxury of big budgets and lots of staff, but they do have the need to generate more sales and keep profits coming in and with little room for error they need to get the most return from their investment. That means doing simply what works, not what everybody else is doing or because that’s what the belief they should do.
When you’re small you need the most return from the lest marketing effort
A lot of small businesses have or probably are doing some kind of marketing and they’ve either found it frustrating or expensive and wonder why they should bother to continue or sign the cheques to keep paying for those ads. That’s because they’re following conventional marketing beliefs which don’t actually generate the kind of response businesses expect.
Instead they are founded on fads or creative elements that are not proven to actually make any kind of money consistently. However, there are strategies that have been successfully used for many years that have withstood the test of time and are still used today by expert marketers.
Focus on fundamental principles to get marketing results
In fact so effective are these ideas that entrepreneurs such as Richard Branson, Alan Sugar and Martin Sorrell have built multi million pound businesses founded on these very ideas. Its so easy to forget the most important component in the whole buying and selling process and that’s people and whether you like it or not we all make decisions based on what is mostly an emotional or irrational response.
Many would like to believe that everything they do is perfectly logical but its impossible as we are driven by desires, impulses, needs and all sorts of other animals instincts which govern our lives.
So your marketing or selling should be based on delivering an emotional response based on what you can do for your prospects and customers. That is fundamentally the real difference between small business marketing and big business marketing. You connect directly with people and what’s important to them, make it simple to understand and get involved with and follow up and deliver in a way that delights your customers and separates you from your competition.
The small business marketing advantage
So, as a small business you have a distinct advantage that you are closer to your market and your customers, can react to their needs and desires and adapt to market shifts and changes quickly. The larger business will find it much more difficult to adapt to any changes if they ever see them coming in the first place.
By keeping what you do as human and personal as possible so that potential customers can answer one of the key questions that they are asking subconsciously and that is why should I buy from you, being small is about doing it right and the smaller you are the better you should be at doing it right if you focus on core principles.