To promote my character entertainment business I use a Website and MySpace account, and I frequently hand out fliers. Unfortunately, I’m having difficulty attracting customers. What am I doing wrong, or not doing at all?
— T. Johnson
You’ve built a business catering to perhaps the most important decision-makers in the family: the kids. They are your clients and go-to persons for figuring out what attracts them and their parents to your services. Although it may sound daunting, utilizing market research tactics can help you peer into the minds (and wallets) of your targeted audience.
Internet marketing—when done correctly—can yield the return you seek. Re-evaluate current initiatives, and look to develop an updated online strategy that would appeal to clients young and old.
Much of your business should be garnered by word of mouth. What’s the consensus following one of your gigs? Survey your clients right after with a follow-up phone call. What did they like? What didn’t work? Don’t be afraid to ask if they’d hire you again, or recommend your services to a friend. Their answers can help you tailor your approach and bring together the relationships you need to generate new leads.
Also, look critically at your competition. What are they providing that you aren’t? Are the price points on par? Offer discounts to returning customers, or savings coupons to first-timers. Remember, your total package needs to be just as approachable as your characters.
This article was originally published in the January 2009 issue of Black Enterprise magazine.