5 creative ways to beat the competition by a mile

You need to do something different, something that helps you stick out from the competition, if you want your business to be successful. Doing the exact same thing as everyone else in your industry is just going to get you lost in the fog. That’s where creative marketing comes into the picture.

shutterstock_144561377Take note of the top outside-the-box marketing ideas below. Implement these into your overall strategy to use creative marketing to earn big profits. Thinking differently can be very profitable.

Develop a strong core

While creative marketing can be very effective, it will accomplish little without a strong marketing foundation. Pursue all the traditional marketing avenues first. Establish yourself with social media, content marketing, and email marketing before attempting anything too creative.

At the same time, don’t be afraid to put your own unique spin on traditional marketing tactics. For example, a creative ad is always better than a bland or boring one. Another great idea for online marketing is creating an infographic. If you put in the work and make your infographic correctly, you might just see it go viral.

Know where to place ads

There’s nothing wrong with good old-fashioned advertising, especially when you tailor it to your audience. Take a moment to think about who your community is and where they go. Where will they be most likely to see your message?

Figure out where your customers frequent and then tailor your ads. If there are certain bars they tend to visit, place print ads there. If there are certain websites they visit, place online ads there.

Word of mouth – With a twist

Nothing beats word of mouth when it comes to marketing. The reason for this is that it’s organic. The message isn’t forced. Your brand is mentioned customer to customer, creating a lot of trust.

So take a look at your current community. What can you do to encourage them to share about your business more? Creativity is key here. Naturally, things like affiliate marketing or referral marketing almost always work.

But dig deeper than that. Create something on a personal level. Coke’s recent “share a Coke” campaign is one of the best examples. Cans are personalised with a variety of personal names, prompting customers to share selfies with their cans when they finally find their own.

Host an event

Nothing beats networking when building a brand. Yet it often takes a long time for any of its effects to show. So why not condense months of marketing into a single event?

Hosting an event is a surefire way to build hype around your business. An event creates a lot of exposure for your business. Better yet, the people that attend the event are already part of your target audience. You’re marketing directly towards the people who are most likely to buy from you in the future. Having face-to-face interactions with your customers builds even more trust and helps establish a long-term relationship.

Even small businesses can host an effective event. The key is to start small. While big business events might attract hundreds of people, even an event with twenty people can be effective.

Utilise promotional products

Some people consider promotional products to be tacky. Yet their effectiveness speaks for itself. People simply like to get free stuff.

The key to utilising promotional products once again boils down to creativity. Though pens, apparel, coffee cups, and calendars are always popular, there’s literally no limit on what can be turned into a promotional item. The best ones are those that relate to your business in some manner.

Lanyards like those available from lanyardsfactory.com.au are an easy way to gauge the success of a promotional product campaign. They are cheap, easy to give away, and can be personalised with your business’s logo. Start with a lanyard giveaway and then move on to bigger items if it’s successful.

It’s also important to keep shelf life in mind. You want to give away a product that your customers can use time after time again. This drills your company logo and message into their minds. Items like sticky notes are used up quickly while a lanyard can be used time after time again.

There is no tried and true method for outside the box marketing success. What works for one business might not work for another. The key is to think creatively. Constantly brainstorm and come up with new ideas. And don’t be afraid to experiment.

Richard Perry runs his own marketing company which mostly works with start-ups and has become known for his unique marketing methods that work. He shares his insider knowledge at a selection of business and marketing blogs every so often.