Suffering from Buzz Blues? These 17 Tips Will Get Your Business Out of a Marketing Funk

Is your business suffering from the buzz blues? If your marketing and publicity efforts are falling flat, your marketing strategy may need a jump-start to get the customers flowing in the doors again.

Buzz! Buzz! Buzz!

Buzz refers to word-of-mouth advertising about your business. Since most people make shopping decisions by consulting friends, generating buzz to get people talking is important for your business. Try some of these 17 tips to generate more buzz for your business.

1. Write a Guest Column

By writing a guest column in a printed newspaper, magazine or online blog, you expose your business to a wider audience. This can generate a buzz around your business, and people will come in and check out what you are doing.

2. Give a Lecture

Many public libraries, health clubs and chambers of commerce are looking for speakers. Giving a lecture can get your business more exposure and can generate leads. This works best if you are offering a service. For example, a professional organizer can give a lecture about office organization. If she demonstrates her expertise, then a few members of the audience might be interested in hiring her. Others may be able to make referrals.

3. Participate in a Community Event

There are many community fairs and festivals that your business can support. If you have the budget, you might sponsor the event to have your business info appear on the signs and other promotional material. You could also get a table at the event to give demonstrations, sell products and try to meet new leads. Try to find an event that matches your niche. If you have a pet store, find a pet-oriented event to participate in. If you sell sporting goods, sponsor a local 5K race.

4. Support a Charitable Cause

There are many local charities that help the community in your area. Pick one that you are passionate about and find out how your business can support it. In return, charities can give you free publicity by putting your name on an event, linking to your website and other buzz. Even sponsoring a local sports team gets your name on the back of their uniform shirts.

5. Do Something Unique

Sometimes, you just need an over the top publicity stunt to get a little buzz for you business. Think of the popularity of the ALS ice bucket challenge. Or how the CEO of Lifelock.com dared people to steal his identify by putting his social security number on the ads. If you are creative, you can come with something unique that will garner some attention for your business.

6. Create a Humorous Video

People love funny videos on the Internet. Write a humorous script for a video related to your business, and post it to YouTube, on your website and social media accounts. If its funny, it will start to percolate around the Internet creating a buzz for your business. It is important to relate the humor to your business. Otherwise people may not connect the video with your business. If your video starts to go viral, you will get a lot of buzz for your business.

7. Create a Meme

Memes are the images with inspiring or humorous text imposed on them that you see on your social media newsfeed. Pick a popular image and use a meme creator to impose some text on the image. Create a catchy phrase about your business, products or services to put on the meme. Share your meme on your social media accounts. You might try to create your own meme in a simple graphics program. You can include your logo and website on the meme to let people know the origin. This is another way create viral content for your business.

8. Create a Social Media Offer

Create an offer to entice people to follow you on social media. You can also tailor the offer to get your current fans to share your social media page. If you are a restaurant, you could ask people to share pictures of the meal on social media. Offer the winning picture a free meal or a gift certificate. There are many other great offers that will get people talking about your business online.

9. Use Lawn Signs

Contractors use lawn signs in front of houses they are working on. Your business could use lawn signs as well. You could ask your customers to display signs, or you could post the signs along busy roads and intersections. Lawn signs are seen by many people each day. An eye-catching sign can create a real buzz for your business.

10. Put Up Fliers

Create an attractive flier about your business. You might include a special offer on the flier. Many public places and businesses have bulletins boards to post fliers. You might check out bus stops, coffee shops, supermarkets and gas stations. Hang the fliers, check them weekly to see if they need to be replaced.

11. Every Door Direct Mail by the Post Office

This service provided by the Post Office allow you to send a flier to every home in a neighborhood for a reasonable rate. You don’t need names and addresses, just pick a neighborhood. If you have a flier with an attractive offer, you can send this to neighborhoods that you want to target in your marketing. Most of your business comes from people who live within five miles of your store, so this is a great strategy to generate some buzz and get people in your store.

12. Host an Event

Another way to generate buzz for your business is to host an event. A pet store could bring in a dog trainer to help people to train their pets. Many restaurants offer live entertainment. A natural foods store could have classes on eating naturally. Promoting these events brings people to your business.

13. Form a Strategic Alliance

Imagine you own a pet supplies store. You could form an alliance with a popular pet groomer in your area. For customers who patronize both businesses, you could create special offers. This allows you to create a buzz among customers who patronize your ally. To form alliances, look for businesses in your niche that do not compete with your business.

14. Use Press Releases

Press releases are easy to issue. There are online websites dedicated to posting press releases. Many journalists looking for stories will see your release. You need to learn the standard press release format and have a real news item for this strategy to be effective. If your press release reads more like an advertisement no one will pay attention to it. You could take an event you are sponsoring and turn that into a press release to publicize the event.

15. Pitch Your New Items Directly to Journalists

You can also contact journalists directly to pitch your story. Local papers and television stations are always looking for positive stories to feature. If you present an interesting and unique narrative, you can attract the attention of a local journalist.

16. Offer an Amazing Product or Service

If you are looking to generate buzz, marketing tactics can only get you so far. If you get people into your store, but your products and services are lackluster, word will get around. You need to make sure that you have truly amazing products or services to offer your customers. That is some of the best buzz there is.

17. Take Good Care of Your Customers

Unhappy customers will create negative buzz for your business. You want to make things right for your customers and give them an incredible experience when they come to your business. You can even encourage them to let other know about the great experience on their social media accounts or review sites. Happy customers make for great buzz.

If you are looking to create a buzz for your business, these tips should help you get people talking.

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