You’ve been open for a while.
You have filled some of your space, but you have offices left to sell.
Maybe you’re profitable, but you sure aren’t laughing to the bank.
You’re in the dreaded middle zone.
You’re two or three key members away from losing money, so it’s not like you can just throw money at the problem.
What do you do? The answer is to set one brick at a time.
I’ve never seen a company turn around overnight. I’ve never seen a failing or mildly successful company get high on the hog with one key change or turn of the dial.
What’s required is incremental change. Here’s how I think about marketing from a process perspective (at a very high level).
Step 1: Go back to the strategy drawing board
Who is your target market? What are you selling? What makes you unique? What can you over-deliver on? What do your members love about your space? What are they saying they would value if you added it?
Dig deep, talk to your members, and go all-in on over-delivering on just a few key things.
Step 2: Get your messaging in order.
Knowing what your best members actually want and appreciate about your space, and assuming you can over-deliver on that thing, describe your space in a way that says three things:
- What services you offer
- Who your services are for
- How your services differ from the competition
Keep it short and concise. Use that language everywhere consistently, from your home page to your social media profiles, to your ad copy.
Step 3: Get your website in order
Put your key messaging front and center on your home page. Make it unambiguous who you’re for, what you offer, and how you’re different. Make it pass the 5-second test.
Be clear on the single most important thing you want people to do on your website.
Is it to call you, fill out a form, book a space, take a tour, or something else? Put that call to action message everywhere.
Invest in good design, write copy about the reader and how their needs map to your space. Nobody cares about your space unless it impacts them personally in some positive way.
Keep it simple. Don’t say more than you have to. Use lots of images. Make them high quality.
Step 4: Promote like crazy
Spread your core message far and wide. Demonstrate how you exceed expectations and over-deliver on just a few key things for just a few key groups of people.
Be specific in your messaging–especially when you advertise. Specific about who you serve and how brings the right people to your business. And you only want the right people, after all.
Step 5: Measure what’s working and do more of it
Find out where your leads are coming from. Double down on the areas that are working best.
And for everyone’s sake: measure as much of it as you can.
The only way you know where to invest is to measure where your results come from.
If you start at Step 4 like most fledgling companies, you’ll end up spinning your tires.
Marketing is all about process and iteration. No lasting results happen quickly without putting in the groundwork. That’s the law.
Nobody wants to be in the dreaded middle zone, so don’t stay there if you are.