When making a purchase, 46% of people will turn to social media for feedback and reviews[i]

With ever-changing buyer behaviours and a growing number of suppliers in already busy marketplaces, it’s more important than ever to stand out from your competitors. Whether your business sells products or services, it’s vital to ensure your brand stays front of buyers’ minds. But where do you start? Do you need to invest huge amounts of budget in external marketing agencies? Do you need widespread national advertising campaigns? Not quite. Here’s a few ideas you can implement quickly and efficiently.

Increase your online visibility

82% of smartphone users consult their phones on purchases they are about to make in-store[ii]

We all do it – before buying any product or service, we stick a few words or questions into an internet search engine and review the results for helpful information. This is the process that nearly all of your customers will go through, and also explains why it’s so important to feature prominently online. Although it can be difficult for your website or landing pages to feature high on page one of search results, you can overcome this by opting for search engine advertising. Websites such as Google provide a wealth of helpful information and tools with regards to advertising on their site, and this will ensure that your company’s ad appears when a potential customer is searching for topics related to your product/service.

Think social by default

92% of people stated that while making a purchase they are influenced by their peers[iii]

Worth-of-mouth marketing has always been a valuable tool for any business – and this still remains true today. However, it’s changed a little. Although people will still tell friends, family and colleagues about a good product they’ve purchased or service they’ve received, these types of recommendations now tend to happen on social media. And this means you need to be active on these platforms too. Make sure your company has a social profile on all of the social platforms typically used by your audience, ensure you respond to any comments from buyers, and always ask customers to leave feedback and reviews on your social pages.

Give great gifts

85% of people do business with an advertiser after receiving a promotional item[i]

Once people have identified a need for a particular product or service, their next step is to choose the supplier (or company) to buy from. With such strong competition in marketplaces, this is the point when you need to give prospects a reason to buy from you – and free gifts are a great place to start. Forget free pens and desk clocks though. What will set you apart is the ability to provide a thoughtful gift that the prospect truly wants. This can be difficult with a varied audience demographic, so instead opt for the next best thing – gift cards.

At M&S Corporate gifts, we can provide gift cards, e-Gift cards and e-Codes with values from £1-£1,000 which can be spent in 730+ stores nationwide and online – meaning your prospective customers can treat themselves to everything from an award-winning bottle of wine, to a brand new outfit. And of course, once your prospects have become customers, our gift cards can be used to build customer loyalty and increase your retention rates.

To find out more about M&S corporate gift cards and motivating your employees, simply call us on 0330 0580 734.

[i] https://www.holbi.co.uk/social-media-marketing-stats

[ii] https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnellett/2018/02/08/new-research-shows-growing-impact-of-online-research-on-in-store-purchases/#4f481dbd16a0

[iii] https://growthhackers.com/articles/build-your-peer-to-peer-marketing-strategy-in-6-steps

[iv] https://www.exhibitorsonly.biz/smart-exhibiting-how-to-choose-the-perfect-promotional-product-for-your-business/