Small businesses employ different types of marketing activities to meet their growth and revenue objectives. While companies should focus their marketing activities on growing their customer base and retaining existing customers, they may need to deploy other activities to take advantage of changing market conditions or meet the needs of important customers.

Lead Generation Activities

Lead generation is the process of collecting contact details of prospects so that a sales team can follow up and convert them to paying customers. Lead generation ensures that companies can continue to grow revenue by increasing the number of customers they serve. Marketing teams collect contact details by running advertisements that include a response mechanism such as a reply coupon, telephone number, email address or website address where prospects can submit their details. In return, respondents receive a special offer, such as a gift or discount for consumers or a valuable report for business prospects.

Generating Leads Through Telemarketing

Telemarketing is a form of marketing conducted over the telephone. One of its most important roles is supplementing the sales force. A telemarketing team contacts prospects who respond to a lead-generation campaign.

By asking questions, telemarketers qualify the leads to assess whether they are strong or weak prospects. They ask about the prospects’ intentions to buy, their time frame for buying and their current suppliers. The telemarketing team passes the strongest leads to the sales force for follow-up. They may also arrange appointments for a sales visit to strong prospects.

Market Education and Price Justification

Market education is a valuable tool for companies that market complex products or services whose benefits may not be immediately obvious to customers and prospects. A product that cuts customers’ maintenance costs by incorporating high-quality, long-life components may sell at a higher price than competitive offerings. The company must convince customers that the savings they make over the life of the product outweigh the difference in price. By commissioning and publishing independent reports on performance and operating costs, the company aims to educate the market and justify its premium pricing.

Channel Marketing Activities

Channel marketing is important to companies marketing their products through retailers or distributors. Channel marketing consists of support and training to ensure that channel partners have the skills, product knowledge and commitment to market the company’s products effectively. Channel marketing activities include product training and marketing support material, such as advertising and direct marketing templates, brochures and point-of-sale material. Companies may also appoint a channel marketing manager to work with partners and help them develop sales.

Social and Relationship Marketing

Relationship marketing helps companies strengthen customer loyalty and increase the revenue they earn from each customer. Relationship marketing aims to increase the level and quality of contact between customers and company and build a greater understanding of individual customers’ needs and preferences. Activities include newsletter publication, courtesy calls from a telemarketing team, personalized offers and loyalty discounts for repeat purchases.