Stop operating in a vacuum and realize that you are part of a team of vendors, suppliers, and service specialists who deliver a product to the consumer. The key is to create your own team rather than allow the consumer to shop for each resource. This is called leveraged branding. It could be a joint venture (taking online language offline) between a restaurant, a hotel, a florist, and a local gym. These are all resources a guest in town might need and find them all marketed in one place so there is no need to shop further.
This is all about teaming up to effectively market yourself to a shrinking prospect base. Realize that each of you has unique strengths and by leveraging these you'll go a lot farther than battling it out solo. So, how can you leverage your brand? Build a team of complementary professionals that work with the same target you do. That means when you create meaningful relationships that are reciprocal you will be able to leverage your branding opportunities to a wider prospect audience.
Now the chances are you aren't going to team with more than 3-5 fellow professionals. Each of you has been faced with shrinking market share and reduced budgets, yet you still all need the exposure and coverage. Do it together. That means creatively working on joint advertising, event opportunities (a booth is a lot more affordable when split three ways), brochures with a panel on each of you, direct mail to your coordinated lists, and more. You could even do this with someone as close as a competitor if they had a niche you didn't. Want to see it work?
As a designer, for example, if you specialized in color and a colleague emphasized window treatments, these are complementary to each other. As a contractor if you specialized in dry wall and a competitor specialized in paint, perfect complement. As a home furnishings retailer if you focused on lamps and lighting and paired with a furniture resource and again with an accent and accessory solution. You are crafting one-stop consumer solutions. As a printer you want to partner with a graphics talent and even a promotional goods resource (mugs, hats, pens and such.) As a realtor you want to join forces with a lender, a mover, a design professional, and a cleaning service. This will eliminate the shopping and provide cost effective and talented resources meeting consumer demand. Get it? Leveraging your brand is the key to surviving tough times. Together we'll all go farther.
For more shortcuts and strategies on building your business and igniting your success, be sure to download your f.r.e.e copy of www.changeyourrewards.com. And if you are ready to take your business to the next level, then check out www.sixfigureprofessionals.com to get your f.r.e.e. strategy session. Marketing mastery will make you the maverick success you deserve to be!