Find the right people to talk enthusiastically about your business. Who are "the right people"? That depends on your product or service. For some businesses, teenagers are the best buzz creators. For others, they may be store owners. Buzz creators are messengers who truthfully communicate the value of your product or service. If you can get them excited about what you do, they will naturally create a buzz. Not only do they buy from you, they tell others to do the same.
For many businesses, celebrities are excellent buzz creators. If people see Charlize Theron wearing your latest design or Steve Mokone eating at your restaurant, you're guaranteed to generate some buzz. Most of us, however, only need to create some local excitement to be successful.
How do I reach buzz creators?
The first step is clearly identifying them. How old are they? Where do they shop, eat, play, work? What do they read, watch, and listen to? Find out as much as you can.
How do I get my product or service on their radar?
Use the following examples to get folks talking about your business.
- Use giveaways.
- Take it to the source. Market your product or service directly to the people who will use it the most.
- Get your buzz creators involved. Sponsor a focus group, send your customers free product samples, and ask your customers for their feedback.
- Use publicity. Creatively tell your business story to the local press. Start small and stay local. Take time to develop and grow valuable relationships with local reporters, who can help spread the word.
- Host a special event. A grand opening is usually expected of a new business, but try something offbeat instead. Celebrate a little known holiday. Customers will be interested, and reporters might be interested too.
- Sponsor a local school team or club. You'll win with students, parents, and community leaders by showing an interest in children. Display their photos, create T-shirts, and host an end-of-season party. While getting your name out, you're also supporting a worthy cause. You can't lose.
- Be the best. Be the best donut shop, barber, dry cleaner, or pizza place. Some local newspapers, Chambers of Commerce, and other business organizations sponsor a "Best of…" award contest. Find out what's offered and get entered.