Oct 24, 2011

Maybe it’s time for us to steal from the credit card companies

Andy Boyd is works in the credit card industry. But you can still trust him. 

Do you own a small business? If so, there is a good chance you are facing an uphill battle when it comes to your marketing campaign. But as we all know, getting your message in front of the right people is essential to your long term success. The way that you do this depends on many factors including your industry, knowledge, and overall goals.

Why not take marketing cues from companies that are currently running successful campaigns? For example, credit card companies are well known for marketing their products with a high level of success. By taking the principles of what they are doing and combining with your current strategy, you can formulate a plan that will yield the results you have been searching for. Here are three ways that credit card companies market themselves. As a small business, you can learn from these strategies.

Be Consistent

How many credit card offers do you receive in the mail every year? Like most people, you probably don’t know the exact number because you get so many of them. However, you are sure that you receive these mailers on a regular basis.

Credit card companies are consistent (and persistent) with their marketing efforts. They continually put their product in front of you, time and time again, in hopes that you will eventually do what they are asking.

No matter your business or industry, if you have a great product or service and stick with your marketing campaign it will eventually yield results.

Use as Many Methods as Possible

As you know, the credit card companies spread the wealth when it comes to their marketing dollars. From direct mail to internet advertising to television commercials, they are doing practically anything and everything they can to get their message in front of as many people as possible.

Unlike them, small business owners don’t have near unlimited marketing budgets. Along with this, most do not have the budget to advertise in nationwide publications, radio or television stations. With that in mind, you can learn from the way that credit card companies market in many different ways.

Avoid getting stuck on one method of marketing your company ‚Äì even if it has been proven successful. By focusing on several different avenues you are giving yourself a better chance of success, especially if one of your marketing channels goes sour. Google’s recent ‘Panda’ updates, originally targeting content farms but now killing off thousands of smaller websites, is an excellent example of what happens when you rely too heavily on one particular channel. On top of this, you can get a solid idea of what does and does not work for your company and industry.

Give Potential Customers a Reason to Get in Touch

Imagine this: you are opening a letter from a credit card company. What are you going to find? In addition to a letter of introduction that offers basic information, you can be rest assured that there is a “hook.” This could be anything from a zero percent balance transfer offer to free reward points for doing nothing more than signing up.

What incentives can you offer your customers? When you offer something for free or at a discount, you will more than likely see an almost immediate increase in the number of responses received. Couple this with a push on the social networks and your message, brand and offer can quickly be in front of thousands of potential customers.

This article was submitted by Andy at Credit Card Compare. His Australian-focussed website helps businesses get a credit card with rewards and other benefits.

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16 comments on “Maybe it’s time for us to steal from the credit card companies”

  1. I agree incentives help boost sales, but on the other hand you need the customer to come to you even if you’re not offering an incentive. If banks have unlimited promoting resources, other companies don’t have. So, you should organize a series of campaigns per year, and rest of the time, you need to sell your products as it is.

    October 25th, 2011 at 6:09 am

  2. Due to global recession credit card companies are more couscous, but it does not encourage them to come up with innovative ideas.

    October 25th, 2011 at 6:55 am

  3. In real estate, incentives are always a good payoff when a seller wants to make their property more attractive. It always makes the buyer feel like they are getting more. Waterfront Properties agents always gives that advice to their clients. Great post and thank you for the information.

    October 25th, 2011 at 8:22 am

  4. maybe you´re right…

    October 25th, 2011 at 3:27 pm

  5. As a small business (I believe), you should not try all the marketing methods. You should choose the methods that work for you and stick to them. Great example is a social media marketing where quite a lot of companies started engaging in social media with a complete failure, reason: not appropriate channel – who would want to be followed by Rentikil pest control?

    October 26th, 2011 at 6:01 am

  6. That reminds me of when we were all laughing at being followed by @pajamajeans

    October 26th, 2011 at 6:40 am

  7. Marketing needs patience, choose the right way, work on it and wait…

    October 26th, 2011 at 1:12 pm

  8. I admire credit card companies for being consistent and persistent. Somehow they could create a need even when you don’t! Ah, that’s the power of marketing.

    October 27th, 2011 at 7:06 am

  9. Consistent and persistent is the name of the game. And you just gave me a blog post idea thanks!!

    October 27th, 2011 at 7:23 am

  10. I’m glad to say that I’ve thus far avoided the credit card companies completely :)

    October 28th, 2011 at 5:55 am

  11. Nice Share thanks for this post

    October 28th, 2011 at 11:59 am

  12. What happened to the good old days when you could pay with a debit card, checkque or even cash? I know electronic money is more secure (they say that), but why do we really have to rely on credit cards when we have enough money saved in our bank accounts? Can anyone answer me?

    October 28th, 2011 at 12:00 pm

  13. I think that some of the strategies used by credit card companies can be a little too spammy for smaller businesses. It’s about striking a balance between being consistent, but avoiding becoming annoying.

    October 31st, 2011 at 5:55 am

  14. I agree with some of the counter arguments in the comments – targeted marketing is more efficient and more effective.

    November 21st, 2011 at 8:02 am

  15. We also have to know what the customers want, because when we do it is much easier to lure them in for the sale. We give them what they want(partly) and get them interested enough to signup then we get something from them in return, that’s business. It also works for blogging.

    November 27th, 2011 at 10:01 pm

  16. They spend the money doing research on how to get people to sign up for credit cards. I think it’s a great idea to use their strategies to benefit your own small business.

    February 1st, 2012 at 11:19 pm

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