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5 Replies Latest reply: Apr 15, 2012 1:22 PM by Moderator Berta RSS

Struggles reaching decision makers with new business

Dennyc716 Newbie
Currently Being Moderated

I recently started a web advertising business in a resort town.  I set up a website and basically businesses can advertise on my website for a very low rate.  I have on the website hotels, restaurants, things to do, services as well as a blog that I post numerous news articles.  My web traffic for a new website is actually very good, approximately 40k a month for a 3 month old site.  The town that I have focused on is a summer resort so the traffic numbers will increase drastically in the near future.  We have boasted our traffic by utilizing Facebook, Twitter, Stumbledupon, Pinterest, etc.  We share many articles from the blog on each of the social media websites and have been very successful with increasing traffic.

 

There are several other businesses similar to what I am doing that have been in business for a very long time but their price is much more expensive than what I charge.  I came up with the concept of charging a very small amount of money and focus on quantity.  I am doing basically everything myself and I dont have any overhead because I am doing everything out of my house.  My price is 10% of the other businesses rates, yet I am still struggling to gain business advertising.  My charge for an entire year is $250 vs my competitors charging $2500-$18,000 per year.  I have had a few businesses join with me but not enough to sustain long term.  I felt that when I started if I was very inexpensive, I would gather a large quantity at once and remain inexpensive to compete with the companies that have been in business for several years, who are charging much more. 

 

I have been out going door to door but the problem I am having is it is very difficult to reach the decision makers of businesses. I have also had this same issue when I call businesses.  I have recently subscribed to Hoovers to obtain names of business owners and managers but even with this information, its difficult to reach these people.  It seems to me that I am missing something or doing something wrong. 

 

I have spoken to many people that say the website looks great and think it will be a great success when I get my name out there but its a struggle to get to that point. 

 

My question is, do you have any suggestions on how to make an easier approach to reaching the business owners and managers.  Lets face it, no one wants to speak with a sales person but my product is really good and I am much cheaper than what they are currently spending.  Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  • Re: Struggles reaching decision makers with new business
    LUCKIEST Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    Welcome Earl, Yes I have two old fashioned suggestions (that worked for me).

     

    One. Support a local baseball team. The players will be playing the game with your name

    or your company name on their shirts.

     

    Two. Support a cause and let the world know. Maybe a 5K run or a hot dog or hamburger outing.

    Get local TV and newspaper coverage.

     

    Both suggestions should help you reach other business owners.

     

    Good luck, LUCKIEST

  • Re: Struggles reaching decision makers with new business
    Moderator Ilona Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    Does anyone else have an Idea to share? Please feel free to post them here.

     

    Ilona

  • Re: Struggles reaching decision makers with new business
    JMB Novice
    Currently Being Moderated

    Yours is an interesting issue.  I had a couple thoughts:

     

    -Business owners talk to each other. Can you go through your client list, reach out to them, and offer a deal if they refer you to new business?  That could take the awkwardness out of cold-calling for new clients.  Take a look at what resources you currently have, which is your customer base, and build up your reputation with them.  Satisfied clients can be your best free advertising.

     

    -You may have to expand your plan a bit to capture new clients and increase your page views.  For example, you mentioned that you operate in a resort town.  Is it a place for events such as destination weddings?  Your local catering and wedding vendors may be interested in advertising on your site.  What other activities are popular?  For example, if you're in a coastal city, are there local fishing, scuba or snorkeling clubs you can also reach out to?

     

    -Consider raising your prices.  Sounds crazy, but again, based on talking to other small business owners, when you price your services cheaply, customers tend to think something is "wrong" with your product.  I put "wrong" in quotes, because of course nothing is "wrong", you're just trying to build business. 

     

    With that in mind, customer perception is very important, and if you approach them with a very low quote, it could seem suspicious, as if (1) your company may not be around for long, or (2) you're keeping your price low to hook them, and then will raise it later.  

     

    You sound diligent and have a well thought-out plan, and you deserve to be successful.  You are three months in, so now is a good time to take a look back, and make tweaks where needed.  Best of luck to you! 

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