Showing posts with label July/August 2008 Resume Writers Digest. Show all posts
Showing posts with label July/August 2008 Resume Writers Digest. Show all posts

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Marketing Your Services in a Down Market: Specialization and Pricing

From the July/August 2008 issue of Resume Writers' Digest:

Last in a series of posts on Marketing Your Resume Writing Services in a Down Market.

One way to ensure your relevance in a downturn is to be a specialist. For example, the federal government is always hiring -- but these jobs require a federal resume. Now is the time to acquire the skills and certification required to serve these clients effectively. Identifying under-served niches and obtaining specialized training or experience will serve you well in a difficult economic market.

It will also enable you to protect your prices at a time when you may need to reduce your regular rates to attract "general" clients. Being a specialist in any area will allow you to continue to charge "premium" prices to clients in that industry.

And don't forget to target your base of existing clients during a downturn. Repeat clients are already "sold" on the value of the services you offer, and can offer a steady stream of income while you work to develop new clients.

Remember: No matter what technique you decide to use, don't wait until you need the business to start marketing. Even if things are going well, it can change in an instant.

As marketing expert Robert Middleton notes, "Many self-employed people think that the success of their business is completely dependent upon outside circumstances -- industry trends, the time of year, or the economy as a whole. But be honest with yourself and ask if you are doing the above activities on a regular basis or not. If you're not, it's no mystery why the phone isn't ringing off the hook!"

Want the whole article? Buy the issue here.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Marketing in a Down Market: Small-Space Advertising

From the July/August 2008 issue of Resume Writers' Digest:

Fifth in a series of posts on Marketing Your Resume Writing Services in a Down Market.

The Yellow Pages are still a vital source of business for many resume writers, even as more ad budget are being spent online. If your business targets a local clientele, if you are a generalist, and if you work with a wide variety of candidates (from entry-level to executives), the Yellow Pages can be a valuable source of new business.

But while it can be important to have a presence in the Yellow Pages, few resume writers are buying the large ads they once did. Instead, they maximize their space by using the Yellow Pages to drive prospects to their websites.

Remember, however, that not all prospects will have computer access, so you can't omit essential details by driving them solely to your website. Others will want to make a decision based on the ads they see, and not use the Yellow Pages as a stepping-stone to looking online.

Don't forget a strong headline, a benefit ("interviews guaranteed"), your credentials, and a call to action (including a phone number as well as a website address).

As resume writer Jackie Connelly, CDF, advised in a May/June 2001 article, "Know your market!" In Long Island, NY, where she operates Prestige Resume Services, most of her potential clients are blue-collar workers. So keep the size of your ad in mind. "When they see a large ad," she notes, "they feel the service will be more expensive for them."

Your print advertising opportunities aren't limited to the Yellow Pages, however. You can use small space advertisements in free community newspapers, theatre programs, school newsletters, career-oriented newspapers, daily or weekly news publications, neighborhood association newsletters. church bulletins, city magazines, and university and campus newspapers.

Salome Randall Tripi outlined her approach in the same 2001 article on small space advertising. She advertised in her local church bulletin, reaching 400-500 prospects each week.

"For 52 weeks, we spent $435 and gained $3,925 in new business as a result," she notes.

The key to effective print advertising is tracking your response. If you're not achieving at least a 3:1 return on your investment, you'd be wise to use your ad dollars elsewhere.

Addendum to article: If you do work with a local client base, one great thing you can do is register your business on Google Places. Not only will it help your organic search results, but you can measure your traffic and offer time-limited coupons and special offers.

Last part of the series: Specialization and Pricing

Want the whole article? Buy the issue here.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Marketing in a Down Market: Expand Your Network

From the July/August 2008 issue of Resume Writers' Digest:

Fourth in a series on Marketing Your Resume Writing Services in a Down Market

Resume writers tell their clients to network, but don't always follow their own advice. Yet there are more opportunities for business-to-business networking than ever before.

Traditional methods include professional associations (especially if you specialize in a niche, making contacts with these associations as well as contacts in academic programs turning out new graduates, is vital), plus business leads groups, alumni groups, and Chambers of Commerce.

Your return on your investment here will depend on the time you are willing to commit. Participating in organizational activities, writing for their publication and website, and volunteering to chair committees (membership recruitment and event planning are two in particular), can pay dividends.

Another growing area is using online social networking sites to cultivate referrals and build your credibility. Having a profile on LinkedIn or Facebook is quickly becoming essential. If you currently don't have a profile, create one!

Next up: Small-Space Advertising.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Marketing in a Down Market: Write! Publish! Perish! (Part II)

From the July/August 2008 issue of Resume Writers' Digest:

One of the most effective ways to land new business is to write about what you do. In 2001, the emphasis was on print newsletters. This is still an effective marketing tactic, but today's emphasis is online. Publishing a monthly e-newsletter is one thing, but weekly posts to your blog or contributing articles to websites and e-zines can be equally effective.

Writing articles can be used to keep in touch with clients and referral sources, to showcase your expertise, and even subtly promote your services to current and prospective clients.

In 2008, many people have adopted a "green theme" -- and it's applicable here too. You can also "recycle" what you've written, using the articles in your media kit, as handouts when you deliver workshops, and including them with other information you provide to prospective clients (either in person or online).

The key in writing articles is to inform, not sell. You want to establish a long-term relationship with current and potential clients. Your recipients will appreciate the information, and you'll be building credibility at the same time.

What should you write about?

You can provide career-related tips or strategies; introduce new services; provide professional advice (a "Q-and-A" format is particularly effective); and offer inspirational quotes.

Don't get too ambitious. In an article on client newsletters in the July/August 2001 issue of Resume Writers' Digest. Tracy Bumpus, CPRW, JCTC, of, talked about the content of her monthly opt-in electronic newsletter targeted to high-tech professionals and engineers.

"I usually have one primary job search or career-related article that I write myself," she noted.

Her newsletter also features "Humor Byte" and "Nuggets from the Net," a compilation of relevant information culled from various tech sites.

You can also write for professional association newsletters or provide articles for their websites. Consider trading articles with professionals in other industries, such as accountants, attorneys, real estate agents, and even mental health therapists (especially those that provide career testing and coaching, if you don't).

Whether using a print or electronic format, keep your articles short, simple, informative, and helpful. If you're producing an online newsletter, remember that consistency in publishing is critical.

"Getting my name out there plays a significant role in referral rates, marketing standing, and branding," Bumpus adds. "If I only distributed it every six months, I'd be wasting my time."

Next in the series: "SPEAK AND GROW RICH!"

If you'd like to purchase this issue of the newsletter, the cost is $3. Order here.