MARTINA WITTER, who attended the Northern Power Women event in and has been nominated for an award in its ‘One to Watch’ category, is the founder of Rapha Therapy Services and Black Women in Business and Professionals Network (BWIBP).
BWIBP delivers quarterly exclusive networking events in Manchester for black women in business and black professionals. The goal is to improve opportunities for career and business growth through expanding networks and gaining access to role models, including coaches and mentors. For readers of The Voice, Martina presents her top five tips to leverage your small business in 2020…
1. Mentorship is critical in establishing a successful small business, as you are able to acquire strong leadership skills from a professional who has already walked in your shoes. Consequently, you are able to learn from their experiences – which are not available in textbooks – and you can avoid any pitfalls that they may have encountered.
2. Develop a social media strategy which assists you in achieving your business goals. It’s important to identify which platforms are best suited for your brand as your ideal clients may be on Facebook and not Instagram; therefore you wouldn’t want to waste time creating content marketing on the latter platform. It is important to understand what you wish to achieve on these social media channels: is it heightening brand awareness, brand identity, establishing thought leadership through publishing articles on LinkedIn or creating videos on LinkedIn/Facebook Live? It may be that you want to drive traffic to your website in order to generate sales of products or services. If you are not on social media, I would encourage you to set up a business and/or personal account/page/profile.
3. Focus on how you can attract more customers and convert leads into sales. I would encourage you to focus online and offline as traditional marketing methods such as flyers and mail-outs are still highly effective alongside online marketing. It is important to be visible – therefore regular networking, exhibiting at business expos, advertising in publications, being a podcast or radio guest and delivering workshops online and offline may be advantageous to your company.
4. Collaborate and partner with other organisations that share your company values. It’s important to consider both SME, community and larger corporations as this will increase your brand visibility and credibility. This growth strategy can contribute to greater brand awareness, brand repositioning and financial gains.
5. Be clear on what your unique value proposition is and talk about this when promoting your brand. It’s critical that you are able to succinctly identify your customer’s pain points and how your product or service provides a solution that is far greater than your competitors’ offerings.