Why You Need to Keep Advertising When Business is Going Great
When a business asks us if they should continue their marketing and advertising efforts when business is booming, we always have the same answer: YES. Whether business is busy or slow, you need a marketing plan in place that aligns with your business cycle. Don’t stop marketing when things get good, just change up your strategy to maximize results year round.
Business is cyclical, marketing is not.
At first, it might not make sense to continue marketing efforts to bring in more business when things are busy. “Why would I continue to market my business when I legitimately can’t take any more clients right now,” you might think. However, remember to take into account where all this business came from in the first place. You probably did a ton of marketing, advertising, networking, and prospecting to get busy in the first place. If you stop all marketing activities because you are swamped, you’ll be less likely to scale your operation.
Think about advertising in the sense of exercising. Let’s say you work out for a while and start getting results, but you stop once you reach your goal. For a while, you might not see a change, and you might be able to maintain your shape due to the work you already put in, but eventually, all those results will diminish. The same goes for marketing.
But what if you’re so busy, you can’t take any more customers? What if you’re afraid of upsetting customers because you’re unable to service current demand, or are booking out weeks or months in advance? There are plenty of marketing activities you can do today to create a better future, even if you’re too busy to fathom any more business today.
The best time to build your business is when it’s thriving.
Times of rapid growth are perfect opportunities to focus on enhancing that growth for tomorrow. Cash flow is higher, so you have more to invest in your company’s long term prosperity. You have more room to make investments and take risks that might be more difficult in turbulent times. In this scenario, your company presumably isn’t under pressure to generate an influx of leads right now, so you can create opportunities that typically take longer to bear fruit but are more valuable for your company growth.
A good strategic marketing plan identifies a variety of tactics that you can implement throughout the year that are designed to help you reach different goals. This means that whether business is great or slow, you’ll have a blueprint to guide you in the right direction. To make sure you’re business stays ahead of the competition year round, here are a few ways to market your business when you’re slammed:
1. Generate online reviews.
Often an activity that goes to the back burner, generating online reviews is one of those “little things” that goes a long way. According to a recent inc.com article, as many as 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. This can have major implications for your business, and, if you do it right, you can leverage online reviews to your maximum advantage. That said, online reviews don’t “work” right away; it often takes months or years to build up a solid group of reviews people will trust. This is especially true if you’re in a highly competitive industry in which all of your competitors are also generating online reviews. This is why your business should focus on a review strategy while it’s busiest. More customers can write reviews during these busy times, and you have plenty of time to let the system play out.
When it comes to online reviews, it’s not (necessarily) about quantity.
Generating online reviews doesn’t mean you need hundreds or thousands. It would help if you focused on getting more than the competition. For instance, if your company installs residential roofs and the top dog in your area has 10 positive reviews on Google, you can quickly overtake that company by making a concerted effort to get your best 20 customers to write positive reviews. While this might not have an immediate impact on sales, it will likely increase your Google Maps ranking over time and demonstrate to prospective customers that you’re a trustworthy vendor for the service they need.
2. Respond to online reviews (good and bad).
Just as crucial as getting reviews is then responding to those reviews. The person who wrote the review will greatly appreciate seeing your acknowledgment. Additionally, potential customers will love seeing that your business took the time to thank the reviewer for their feedback. This gives your business a personal touch, which elevates it in your potential customer’s mind, improving the likelihood that you’ll receive more inbound contacts.
3. Focus on search engine optimization.
Adopting a robust search engine optimization strategy is an effective marketing strategy during busy periods because it typically doesn’t have an immediate impact on your leads. If your industry is competitive at all, there’s a good chance your SEO strategy will take weeks or months to drive your listing to the top of Google search, and this is especially true if you’re focusing on the Google My Business platform. Google’s algorithm rewards long-term, sustainable increases in domain authority and content creation, so there are very few quick wins that will affect your leads in any meaningful way in the short-term. It’s best to focus on an SEO strategy when you don’t need leads right now, which happens when your business is jammed with customers! However, SEO can create massive traffic for your business in the future for which you’ll be able to plan and staff up.
4. Try new advertising strategies.
When businesses need to generate leads immediately, they often revert to tactics they know well. This is fine, but it often short cuts long term growth and learning. Additionally, these tactics are often highly popular which makes them highly competitive and expensive (think HomeAdvisor, PPC Advertising, etc.). If your current business load affords you the opportunity to explore new marketing avenues, new campaigns, and new strategies, take advantage! The fact that your business is already very busy means your business won’t be crippled if the new strategy does not work. People won’t need to be laid off if your new theory for driving traffic to your website doesn’t bear fruit. You won’t be shutting your doors if that new YouTube video doesn’t produce a single lead. This is all made possible by the fact that your business is busy. Use these times to your advantage!
If you’re up to testing new marketing strategies, here are a few to explore:
- Try a new Google Ads campaign. Instead of going after the lowest-funnel (and most expensive keywords), set some budget aside to test a new, lesser-known strategy.
- Set up Google Guarantee. This is an incredibly valuable way for many industries to drive traffic, but it doesn’t work right away. Google Guarantee can take 6-8 weeks to set up and requires lots of verifications. But when it’s set, it can be a boon for your business. Learn more about Google Guarantee for your business here.
- Try a new platform. Are you wondering if you should try advertising on LinkedIn or Google? Want to finally get your business up and running with a strong social media presence? Do so during your busiest times because, like most good things, these platforms take time to move the needle.
- Begin building your email list. A robust email list with a strong email marketing strategy can drive predictable, long-term traffic for many businesses. Unfortunately, most never take the time to generate that email list. When your business is booming with new customers, this can be a great time to build that captive customer list. Not into emailing customers? You can create a text list instead! We provide text marketing services to give your customers the ability to opt into receiving text messages from your business. This is a great way to drive demand for your future promotions, and many people prefer texting to email.
- Launch a new loyalty program. Loyalty programs can be like email lists on steroids and can bring customers back repeatedly if appropriately executed. They pay dividends because not only do Loyalty programs enhance your captive audience, but they often make that captive audience even more committed to your brand because they get something in return for being in your special club.
The main takeaway here is that no matter how busy your business gets, never stop focusing on moving the bar upward, and that means keep pouring fuel on the marketing fire. Marketing and advertising likely got your business to where it is, and continuing those efforts will move you to ever-increasing levels.