Home – New Forums Marketing mastery Where the hell do i go next

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  • #998537
    linkit
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    • Total posts: 2
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    Hey All,

    My wife and i started an I.T company 8 years ago, Its been good but no where near where we wanted it to be. We are still hovering around the $500k turnover mark which we got to around year 3 of business, The trouble is we made a few mistakes as we all do. But have learned from that.

    Our biggest problem is we are not growing. We specialise in medical IT and we are very good at it. we have not lost a single medical client we have gained over the 8 years. We do have non medical clients in our books as we all know money is money. But as i am an IT nerd and not a marketing guru i do not know where to go next.

    Our biggest gain of client base came from a direct mail-out we did in the early days. It just happened to be right place right time. We sent 1300 letters and gained 9 clients. Which from research that is an incredible response. But we have not been able to replicate that since. we have sent probably 5000 in the last year and had no response. We went to a trade show and spent $8k on the stand and got 1 client. Which essentially made us break even.

    I am exhausted. We are not big enough to hire an extra person to help me but i am in desperate need of help. I haven’t had a proper holiday in 8 years. Anywhere i go with my family it usually has to be somewhere with perfect mobile reception and a power point close by.

    Being B2B its harder to market through the usual channels like social media and such but where the hell do we go from here?

    Thanks
    Mat

    #1214627
    eatyourveggies
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    I think the assumption you need to grow is possibly the problem. Having been in a similar situation many times I’d recommend you look at system automation, improving / optimising processes, etc. LOTS can be done in this area.

    #1214628
    linkit
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    eatyourveggies, post: 258508, member: 60116 wrote:
    I think the assumption you need to grow is possibly the problem. Having been in a similar situation many times I’d recommend you look at system automation, improving / optimising processes, etc. LOTS can be done in this area.

    Already way ahead of you, First 3 years everything was done manually. Everything that i can have automated is done. I have 38 clients on my books with a total of 487 PC 58 servers and i am the only one doing the work.

    #1214629
    elissa.doxey
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    I’m not sure what medical type of client you’re targeting, but have you explored:
    – email lists through medical associations
    – sponsoring a CPD event
    – running a free webinar (data security, privacy laws, health records)

    #1214630
    Quinn Askeland
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    • Total posts: 16
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    WOW! I can really hear where you are coming from. It’s like you got everything right but it’s worse than a job! Been there.

    The first two posters may have an awesome point in terms of getting the lifestyle balance right. I often recommend the book “Emyth Revisited” – its a game changer.

    But I love marketing so in terms of getting more business there are likely many different options that could work for you. The challenge is which one is right for you and your business, right?

    I believe the way forward to have a deep dive into what works in your market and what you are enthusiastic to do. The intersection of the the two is the sweet spot for what works for you and your business.

    It is very easy to try new different great ways (like social media and trade shows) to get new business but its all for nothing if you can’t scale in a way that works for you.

    Does this make sense?

    #1214631
    bb1
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    Is it a case that you cant afford to put someone on or that you don’t want to put someone on. Even if you increased business further would you actually employ someone or just put in more hours anyhow.

    Before looking at increasing more clients look at can you really let go, are you actually charging enough for your service and that’s why you cant employ, go back to basics before you get yourself in a deeper hole.

    #1214632
    JacquiPryor
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    Hi Mat,

    Essentially my services are B2B as well. Like you I thought popular marketing channels wouldn’t work the same way as they do B2C – but, I actually think there’s a place for those efforts in B2B. Your sort of services I would imagine are best sold when its word of mouth?

    Have you tried/considered:

    a) Joining industry specific forums and similar where IT questions might arise that you can answer such that the asker becomes a client?

    b) Join Social Media groups (on Facebook for example) that are relevant to your field, again, questions get asked and if you’re around to answer they could turn to paying clients

    c) Blog at your website? Answering common questions that prospects might have etc?

    I too have not had a proper holiday in a number of years. I did, however, recently employ another qualified professional a couple of days a week to help with the work load, and, hopefully be in a position to have a proper break… well worth the cost in my view! I’m already feeling less exhausted and stressed having the extra set of hands just those couple of days a week.

    All the best :)

    #1214633
    storewall
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    Take a look at what others are doing in your space, what their website’s say about them, where they are advertising and what they are attending to promote themselves. It takes time but the research is free.

    B2B is hard because you are trying to get the attention of people when they are working. It can be hard to distract them.

    The Medical space has many other suppliers you could also look to hookup with them, be it software or other hardware that is sold.

    Arthur K
    [LINK REMOVED – please set up signature here: http://www.flyingsolo.com.au/forums/index.php?account/signature%5D

    #1214634
    Paul – FS Concierge
    Keymaster
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    All very good replies – thanks to all above.

    Do you have a specific question [USER=110668]@linkit[/USER] ?

    #1214635
    AllyJ
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    Didnt see anything about your website or digital strategy and what youre doing in that space…….

    #1214636
    AllyJ
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    • Total posts: 16
    #1214637
    battlers_everywhere
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    You mentioned 3 things you tried: 1300 letters, then 5000 letters, then a trade show. What else have you tried? You need to fire off multiple marketing strategies, try many things and have multiple marketing tools working at once (keep the good, discard the bad).

    You also need a budget for an amount of money you can invest in the marketing process. Think about how much can you spend, what mediums to use, how to present your product, etc.

    Marketing is a skill and its very difficult so also invest in yourself for learning it. Maybe read some books on the subject, watch some youtube videos.

    #1214638
    PowerofWords
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    Hi Mat,
    It sounds like you’re working remarkably hard and feeling frustrated. I have two easy-ish suggestions:

    1. Did you know that if you repeat mail (3 times) the same list perhaps in three different modes (like letter, letter with offer, postcard reminder), you are far more likely to gain a response. This was proven by Dan Kennedy at GKIC. Also, ensure you use a direct mail copywriter.

    2. Get yourself over to SourceBottle.com There is an alert on there for small businesses to be on Kochie’s Business Builders. If you’re lucky, not only will they provide free expert advice but free publicity – what could be better?
    Make sure you explain the entire story and depth of your need.

    Right, hope that works in one way or another!
    Jen

    #1214639
    RoseC
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    • Total posts: 58
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    Hey [USER=110668]@linkit[/USER] I’ll keep this short, but take a look at your digital marketing strategies and then get yourself in with one of the copywriters and marketers from this directory
    https://www.medicalwriters.org/

    They specialise in medical – so should know exactly how to talk to your audience – and maybe it will be a case that you pay for one off campaigns. Test out the ROI and build up a marketing strategy with the help of a freelancer, rather than having to take someone on board full time.

    Hope that helps. Best of luck!

    #1214640
    John Romaine
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    • Total posts: 1,108
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    Remove the guesswork.

    Reach out to those who are where you want to be and ask/learn from them.

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