Marketing Tips for Bespoke Businesses

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It’s one thing to run a business that sells bespoke products or services and another thing entirely to run it successfully. How can marketing teams and agencies working with bespoke businesses alter their tactics to deliver the best results?

1. Understand why the business offers bespoke products or services

Every business is different, which means that different businesses will use the same tactic for different reasons. Marketers need to understand why the tactic is being used in order to keep their messages consistent with what the brand is trying to do.

Broadly speaking, there are two main reasons why a business might go down this road. The first is that they’re in a sector where bespoke products or services are expected. This is particularly true of companies in a luxury market, like high-end furniture makers, or B2B businesses selling software solutions like CRM systems. Marketers in these businesses are working with an audience that probably already knows they need bespoke products, which means they should emphasise the quality of the bespoke products, whether that means the quality of manufacture or the ability of a product to meet any needs a client might have.

The other reason for offering bespoke products or services is to set a business apart from competitors. For example, a recent LexisNexis report found that independent law firms are winning clients from bigger competitors by offering bespoke, personalised services that the bigger firms aren’t flexible enough to compete with. In cases like this, marketers will be appealing to an audience that may still need to be convinced that a bespoke service or product is better than the standard offering from a sector’s established leaders.

2. Settle on a message that fits the brand

The need for marketers to tell engaging stories about their brand has received a lot of attention in recent years, and rightly so. I won’t cover the same ground, but I will say that settling on a message that emphasises the key points of your business’s bespoke offering is essential.

How do you find the message? The message is the link between two things: what a business does and what you want to achieve with your marketing efforts. How do you use what you have to get what you want?

In general, you will be finding the link between a business that offers something bespoke in a particular niche or sector and your goal of winning more customers from your target audience.

I’ll use some the examples I’ve already suggested to show what I mean:

● A luxury furniture maker has excellent design skills and the capacity to make unique items of furniture and wants new customers with large amounts of expendable income. Their message could connect the two by offering to help make customers’ dream homes a reality, or by offering to make unique furniture that will set them apart from their peers.

● An independent law firm has the flexibility to adapt to clients’ needs and to work with them for as long a time as they require and wants to take on professional regulatory cases. Their message might focus on how they will work closely with a client for as long as it takes to reach a resolution, emphasising their genuine care for each individual and their situation.

3. Communicate the message consistently across marketing channels

There’s no point settling on a message if you’re not being consistent with it. If you’re serious about winning new customers to your bespoke business – something that will often involve tempting them away from more established competitors – they need to read the same message on your homepage as they do on the display ad that they see the next day and Facebook ad the day after that.

I’m not saying that they should read the same words, but that each of those channels will communicate the same idea. They should look to evoke the same emotions, expectations and thoughts in your prospective customers with the goal of getting to them the point where they will become a customer (and, ideally, a loyal customer).

4. Encourage reviews on your site or whatever review site you use

The final point is that reviews are even more important for bespoke businesses than for others. When your offering is unique and innovative, potential customers will want to see that your business is trustworthy. This is why you should make sure your business can meet any expectations that your marketing creates.

As your bespoke offering matures, your reviews will often be the decider in whether a prospective customer converts or not. If the reviews are bad, there needs to be an investigation as to why that is the case and it may be that your messaging needs to be adjusted.

If they’re good, then use that to your full advantage, aligning future marketing efforts with the positives that existing users are already finding. Ultimately, successful marketing of bespoke businesses involves understanding your audience and giving them what they want.

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