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Ask the Experts: How to Raise your Profile

Question: My revenue has decreased recently, and we’re not getting the same influx of customers as we used to. I’ve also noticed that my competitors seem to have a higher profile than I do. Are these two problems linked? How can I change this?

It sounds like you need to start from scratch, and undertake some research. You might think you know everything there is to know about your specific sector, but take a step back: investigate competitors and what’s going on in the market.

You might tell me I’m mad for saying this, but now take your findings, and to an extent, ignore them. Figure out what your vision is. Go through your marketing plan with a fine-tooth comb, and answer these questions in as much detail as possible: who is it that you want to target? How is it that you’re going to do this? By questioning everything, you bring to the surface your purpose, in contrast to your competitors.

Start planning out your PR campaign, pinpointing strategic objectives:

  • Take a look at your brand, re-work it, improving your logo and design work. By doing this you’ll brush off the cobwebs from your original brand, disposing of any worn-out, tired visuals. Customers notice changes in aesthetics.
  • Next step; tackle your content. It’s essential to remember your new vision and not slip back into old terminology and phrasing. Cut out waffle, and just present your services clearly.
  • Developing a plan to converse with your stakeholders is vital: these include suppliers, recruitment agencies, influential people in your sector, and anyone that might mention or refer you to others. Build a detailed profile of these people so you know what type of information is relevant for you to send them, and the way in which they expect to be contacted.
  • Think about how to attract attention to your company among the public: attending shows and conventions is a great way to engage in your sector and generate interest, where you can demonstrate your services or allow people to sample products. You might even host your own event, making your business appear as a dedicated, motivated market leader.
  • Events are also relevant to customer relations: host your clients at strategically appropriate events, and invite potential customers or influential figures for one-to-one suppers to build a close working relationship.
  • Consider the most appropriate way for you to reach customers. Although online engagement has become increasingly successful these days, sometimes other forms of media are more relevant.
  • Media relations on and offline are vital to maintain. Treat them with the same respect and courtesy that you show your clients.
  • Manage your website, SEO and social media content with meticulous attention in order to maximise online exposure to your target audience. Discussing timely topics and engaging with trade news increases your image as an expert in your sector.

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