We need to connect our business in the same way we build our own support network of friends. Friends support each other, and groups of businesses also support each other.
You don’t pay your friends to associate with you and neither should you pay businesses to support you – so don’t compete solely on price. Give them the benefit of your expert knowledge, share your wisdom so they can figure out the best supplier (you) of what you offer. How do you do that?
Put your information onto the internet. You can utilize your own blog or any business-related website.
The biggest business-focus website is LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/). Placing information about your organisation there, or the business pages of Facebook, will deliver your details to a wider audience than you can otherwise reach. You might also be able to use sites like eBay, Amazon or Kindle.
There are obvious attractors to using the internet for business, and you can decide to take the step – establishing a business presence or not – by looking at your own business.
Can you deliver what you do over distance? Products can be shipped, and information can be delivered almost immediately. How much of what your company delivers can be delivered to remote corners of the world?
You can also use the internet to increase your scope, the ‘reach’ of your promotional activities. You can connect with new people and establish your credentials, and demonstrate your niche knowledge.
If you don’t currently utilize the internet – can your products or services be marketed and delivered to a wider range than your current premises allows? Would it be effective if you promoted your business to a wider geographic range? Would your sales improve if you could target specific types of people to deliver your message to?
You also might choose to promote your business on the internet if people will travel to where you are to use your services. That doesn’t have to mean a special trip – maybe your service is attractive to tourists who are arriving near you anyway. Maybe you operate a specialist bus service taking tourists to a particular type of local sights: historic sites, natural wonders, shopping tours, or pub cruises.
It comes down to: where are your clients and how do you contact them?