The shockingly-simple marketing plan that will actually work for small businesses

This guide is based on Mixergy’s course with Amit Kumar.

After realizing that big-company marketing tactics weren’t going to get revenue-hungry small businesses the customers they need, Amit Kumar created a system for building marketing plans that will actually work for small businesses.

It was all done using five marketing tactics, so we invited him to teach them to you.

Amit is the founder and CEO of Lexity, which offers simple advertising for e-commerce businesses.

Here are the actionable highlights from the Marketing Plan Course. You can connect with Amit on Twitter at @akumar

1. Awareness: Use social media to get the critical first customers who’ll help you improve

When Andrew did this at Mixergy, he heard that the over-eager tone of the site made it feel obnoxious, so he started toning it down, which lead to more traffic.

Take Action:
Search Twitter for people who are either upset with your competitors or curious about your startup, and strike up a one-on-one conversation with them.

 

2. Distribution: Sell where your customers already go so you won’t have to work as hard

Amit sells his app for e-commerce merchants on Shopify, an e-commerce platform, and picked up clients when the app was featured in the Shopify store.

Take Action:
Look for platforms they frequent, like Amazon for a product or Facebook for a software tool.

 

3. Site Sales: Test your site after you’ve built some traffic so tests will be meaningful

At Mixergy, increasing the size and visibility of the “buy” button, grew orders.

Take Action:
Once you have users, jack up your conversions with A/B tests using Optimizely or Visual Website Optimizer.

 

4. Evangelism: Convert customers into evangelists to grow your business on the cheap

Amit says iPad case manufacturer DODOcase uses Curebit to let customers immediately brag about their purchase on Facebook, and referrals account for the majority of their sales.

Take Action:
Give customers a discount for referring friends and offer a coupon to the people they refer using a tool like Curebit, ReferralCandy, or ShopLogic.

 

5. Loyalty: Stay in touch with customers to make easy follow-up sales

Amit signed up for BabyCenter while his wife was pregnant, and three years later he still gets their helpful checklists and visits their site before buying baby gear.

Take Action:
Send helpful information on a regular basis using a program like MailChimp, AWeber, or Constant Contact.

 

Want to make sure you get results?

Written by April Dykman, based on production notes by Jeremy Weisz

  • http://www.workyourart.com/ Debbie @ Work Your Art

    I love these cheat sheets, very useful!

  • http://mixergy.com Andrew Warner

    Turns out they’re harder to put together then they seem. But we’re working on a system for cranking them out.

  • Varma

    curebit is a great tool!

  • 9fold

    Great piece.  Loaded with good info.  You guys never disappoint.  
    Love the cheat sheets by the way.  

  • http://www.centeye.com/ Geoffrey Barrows

    Have you considered setting up a wiki so that we, your readers, could collectively write/improve them?

  • http://mixergy.com Andrew Warner

    I’ve tried different approaches to getting the community to write or even just vote for the tactics they liked, but it never worked. Participation was always too low.

  • http://www.centeye.com/ Geoffrey Barrows

    That’s too bad- I would like to hear one entrepreneur paraphrase another’s lessons.
    So tell you what- If you think it’s appropriate, I volunteer to write a “cheat sheet” for one of the courses. I see it as a challenge- having to condense one person’s course into this format would force me to learn the material better than just by listening to it.

  • http://www.workyourart.com/ Debbie @ Work Your Art

    Why not have the interviewee (or course leader in this case) write
    the notes down beforehand, after all they have to write down the bullet points for the lesson anyway. They could add some notes to that and sum it all up.

  • Husseinamrosman

    loving the cheat sheets model, it’s simple, precise and to the point 

  • http://mixergy.com Andrew Warner

    That’s how we start off.

    I give the writer our production notes and the transcript.

    The production notes include the outline, stories and visuals that we put together with the course leader.

  • http://www.workyourart.com/ Debbie @ Work Your Art

    Aah, I see! Great going. You obviously tested lots of different approaches.

  • Quantum999

    Cheat Sheet is great. One of these or a synopsis before commiting the time to watch a presentaion is helpful. There is only so much time and a seeming endless amount of ways to fill it with information. I’m definately going through TMI. Perhaps a course (short course) on how to quickly make a reasonable determination of the efficacy of any given program. Also interstingly enough, I’m 55 and watching some of the late 20, early 30 entrepreneurs is fascinationg. Speaking with a broad brush the carrot looks a lot more appealing at 35 than 55 although an income is still important for me. I have zero interest in mutitasking , working 12-14 hour days or going after ‘results’ only. Relating, connecting at whatever level is appropriate is also forefront on my list.