News, Views & How-To's

Fishing for Buyers

During a recent salmon fishing trip to Sekiu, Washington, I was reminded how similar fishing and searching for buyers can be.

You can be sitting in the middle of a fog bank, bobbing around on a large ocean, cold and wet, when the fish aren’t biting and no clue as to where they are. It’s times like this you can start to doubt your bait, your location and everything else about what you’re doing.

Confidence comes with experience, studying the fish reports, knowing the tides, depth of the water and weather conditions, and listening to other anglers on the radio. But mostly, you just have to believe in yourself and that you’re doing everything right, including following the basics.

The first rule of selling should be the same for fishing: “You can’t catch fish if your bait’s not in the water,” is one of the oldest rules in the book.

For many small businesses, “bait” can take on several different forms of marketing. Many of our customers say the best advertising is a vehicle wrap. In fact, statistics say a wrap is among the cheapest forms of advertising available for reaching potential customers.

An even more cost-effective tool is referrals. The real estate agents in my area always leave a flyer on my doorstep when they’ve listed or sold a home in the neighborhood. Likewise, when you’ve hung a prominent sign or banner at a customer’s site or wrapped their commercial vehicle, it makes sense to hand out your business card at surrounding businesses and leave a few with the customer in case someone asks who did the work.

The most cost-effective marketing of all is your place of business. In addition to window signs and building signage, your lobby should display prominent examples of your work. Can you imagine MacDonald’s not having photos of their food on their menu boards? And when you order, they always ask, “You want fries with that?”

Your goal is to get someone ordering a banner to see that you also sell decals, decorated t-shirts, POP displays, etc. In addition to being reliable, one of the great things about Roland printers is their versatility. For ideas on how to expand your product offerings, check out our online Gallery.

Your web site should represent the work you do and be kept fresh. The search engines and customers will find you if you do it right. Roland offers a fast and convenient way to build a custom online store in minutes through our partnership with Keen.

Back to the fishing analogy: You may not catch your limit every day, but keeping your bait fresh and in the water will go a long way toward finding buyers.

Patrick Kersey

Patrick Kersey

Patrick Kersey is Global Public Relations Director at Roland DGA. His professional background includes over 35 years in marketing both for advertising agencies and on the client side. He is also a published author.