Do you have the courage to make your small business interesting, different, and creative? If you prefer the safety of your industry tribe, read no further.
Otherwise, we have three articles to inspire some rebellious marketing creativity and even make you some money.
It’s been my experience that breakthrough marketing ideas almost always come from outside my industry. One of the best sales letters I ever wrote for product sales in the printing industry was inspired by a chiropractor. An ex-professional rugby player showed me the best strategies for effective direct response marketing.
With that in mind, each week we plan to round up great content from all types of industries to help small business owners get better results. The businesses featured today are totally unrelated, at least on the surface.
What can you learn from the landscaping industry, professional services, and restaurant menu engineering? Plenty, if you’re open to it, and you look just below the surface.
Read how Bryan Clayton grew his solo lawncare business into an 8-million-dollar annual operation. After selling this successful venture, he launched GreenPal, an online marketplace that connects homeowners with reputable lawn care services. It now has over 20,000 customers.
Some of the things he talks about:
• How he overcame his biggest mistake
• How he avoided negative cash flow
• How he turned the problems he saw into a new business
• Tips for small business owners just starting out
Anyone that can go from cutting lawns to operating a multi-million dollar businesses is doing something right.
Author John McDougall, writing on Hubspot's Marketing Blog, discusses one of the most powerful ways to fix common problems we struggle with in our businesses at one time or another, when:
• Marketing lacks direction
• There isn’t enough time in the day to focus on marketing
• Your value proposition isn’t clear
• Content falls short of expectations
• Your website’s backlinks aren’t good
• Your social media and SEO isn’t working
McDougall offers tips on how to become an authority in your field and why. Although he specializes in helping professional practices like lawyers and accountants, the principle of authority applies to ALL businesses.
Remember, our landscaping pro Bryan Clayton was successful, in part, because of his authority in the field (no pun intended!)
You don’t have to own a restaurant to benefit from this article. Letha Wicker outlines a simple 3-step technique that gets more profit from a restaurant’s menu items. Focus on that.
You can easily do the same fast analysis of your ‘menu’ of physical or digital products too. Whatever it is you’re selling, this menu engineering exercise will reveal:
• What items are your top sellers. You might be surprised.
• Which are the worse.
• Which items are most profitable.
• Whether your top selling items need a price adjustment.
• 5 Quick Ideas for New Pricing Strategies
When you know more about your top-selling items, you get insight into what your customers really want. This can help you create new hot products to replace those that aren’t so hot.
Did you ever get a breakthrough idea from outside your industry? Please share it below in the comments. Or if you want to be featured in an article about marketing in your local small business, use the Contact Us form to let me know.