Grow Your Business With Creative Marketing
Every business, no matter how small, can benefit from smart marketing. A friend of mine from high school (OK, kindergarten – we go waaay back) recently started a business providing face painting services – Facepaint Fun by Cara. While I know she’s talented – she’s always been a great artist – Saturday night was the first time I have seen her in action. And let me tell you, she did not disappoint.
Over the last few days I’ve been thinking about ways Cara can market her business and help it grow, and with her permission, I’m sharing them with you here. While I’ve used examples specific to Cara’s business, many small business can use the same tactics.
Read any blog or article about social media marketing and you will be advised to create “shareable content.” Shareable content is simply something that can be shared and that people want to share. Images and videos are popular forms of shareable content, but so are infographics and blog posts. Cara’s work is the perfect example of shareable content. It’s visual and she literally creates new content at every event. It’s fun and relatable.
Sharing With Permission
However, because the events that Cara face paints at are for kids, it’s not OK to take photos of someone else’s kid and post them online without permission. So this leaves Cara in a unique position – she has lots of great images at her fingertips, but she can’t easily share them.
Consumer Created Content
This is where Cara could add some clever marketing tactics. Adding a large open frame next to her table with the name of her business on it and her Facebook page or website gives parents the perfect invitation to post photos of their kids on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. This also takes two burdens off of Cara – getting permission and taking the time to stop painting faces to take photos.
Make Referrals Easy
People ask Cara all the time about her services. Having something tangible for people to take at events is an easy way to share her information. A simple business card would suffice. Moo has great options that allow different images to appear on each card, which would also make a great display at the events, showing off her other work. Two for one!
Make A Tutorial
If Cara wanted to expand her sharable content, she could make tutorials, sharing some simple techniques. While it may seem counter-intuitive to give away your knowledge – which is how you make your income – it’s actually a smart tactic. By doing so, Cara shows of her knowledge and establishes herself as an expert in her industry. If she does a video, this also gives potential clients an opportunity to see her personality, which is important when someone is interacting with kids.
Working with other businesses in your field is a great way to spread the word about your business. It also provides a service to customer, limiting the amount of work they need to do. As a face painting service, Cara could partner with another provider – say a bakery. For every referral she receives through the bakery, she could offer them 10%. And the same goes for her customers – every time she refers someone who purchases a cake or cupcakes from the baker, she would receive 10%.
Everyone Loves a Free Sample!
Giving away a small sample of a product or service is how many businesses try to hook their customers. Face painting is a popular activity at festivals, and Cara could offer her services for free for an hour or two for a non-profit in exchange for advertising. The advertising could include flyers, programs, and signage.
Give Them Something Useful
After my kids got home and it was time to remove Cara’s artwork, out came the baby wipes. This would be a great giveaway that Cara could provide, along with her contact information on them.
One way to get new business is to find new customers. Face painting is just for kids, right? Well, not so fast, there! There are lots of opportunities to bring adults into the mix. What about a comic con or comic book store, transforming adults into superheros? Holidays are times when people want to be more festive, and it doesn’t need to be limited to Halloween. St. Patrick’s Day is an ideal time to set up at a local bar and help the patrons get into the spirit.
Use Your Imagination
Sometimes you just need to use a little imagination to find new ways to market your business. Most of the suggestions I’ve made cost nothing or next to it. So go on out there and try something new!
Until next time,
Image Credit: Facepaint Fun by Cara