Big companies can dominate markets with low prices, vast product ranges and mass marketing. However, if you have a small business you can get your edge back when it comes to quality, service and exclusivity.
Being a small business does not mean you have to be locked out from success. Large organisations may seem to have many markets covered, but their one-size-fits-all approach to sales and marketing is not for everyone.
Customers associate good quality with smaller business. They also like to know the face of the business. If a business is down the road, it gives a sense of product accountability and community.
Stress your difference
Small businesses are at an advantage when it comes to finding something different. Giving customers what they need rather than what they think they want. You should differentiate your offering. This can be in terms of quality or product type or offering something that isn’t available in the mass-market.
You should take every opportunity to show the benefits to your customers for buying from a small business. Try to include the message on all of your marketing materials – even the packaging. Some small businesses have started a community group to support local businesses. You should concentrate on quality and exclusivity: which may be family-owned, handmade, eco-friendly or provide bespoke goods or services.
Reinforcing your community ties is also important. Locally-sourced products have a less environmental impact because they have travelled fewer miles. Let consumers know if you are supporting the local community, charity or being environmentally friendly. This is important for people to know as it has become a popular choice when buying from different businesses.
Customer service is a vital selling point for small businesses, and it’s an area where large manufacturers and retailers struggle to compete. There have been many horror stories from customers about new unknown companies, where they have bought a product and something has gone wrong. This way your customers will feel safe knowing they can speak to someone local who can resolve any issues they may face.
Successful businesses tend to work closely with their customers. Small business can offer a friendly face, be trustworthy, flexible and approachable. You should always focus on providing exceptional customer service as this is the best way to gain success.
You should think about making a list of your regular customers and keeping them up to date with your products, services, offers, and news about the business. You could do this via an email newsletter as well as in person. Making an effort to attend local events, such as markets, will help gain more customers and upsell your business products.