Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Education and the Entrepreneur can be debated for ages. For every college educated successful business man, there is an equally successful one who barely graduated high school. The point of this post, however, is to get you thinking about garnering sales from sources outside the box. One of my clients is a manufacturer of orthotic devices to help patients recover or make their rehabilitation more comfortable. The devices are sold throughout the country and used by O&P professionals, Physical Therapists, and lot's of initials that none of us really know what they do, LOL. My job is to raise sales, market share, and awareness about my clients company, and they have never had a marketing person before, so they are very open and receptive to new ways of thinking.
My most recent strategy for the company was to develop a scholarship in the founders name to a couple of specialty programs that teach the very people that use our products. There are 8 highly respected programs to learn Orthotics and Prosthetics around the U.S., including Northwestern University in Chicago, and Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. We have chosen 2 of these schools to establish our scholarships, and hopefully to inform the next generation of our product purchasers of what we offer. We are able to have them give recommendations from their teachers and create a short essay to be selected for their scholarship, so we learn a little more about them. The cost is frankly comparable to placing an ad in one of the national publications we have appeared in, and in my opinion, is a very good use of those dollars from once a quarter. Another benefit for the company is our now perceived link to the school, AND we are able to present their now as well. A very good use of advertising dollars to both bolster education, and our bottom line.
This idea, and many more like it, are what a good marketing company can bring to the table. You can also come up with ideas like these, by just brainstorming around the office conference table. The key is the implementation, and then getting the word out on the promotion. Think outside the box, create campaigns that not only benefit your own business, but the community around you as well.