This week’s Marketer’s Spotlight picks the brain of marketing expert Chris Fourgere, owner and creator of Freedom Marketing Coach.

Chris, I see that Freedom Marketing Coach offers a wide range of marketing services. How did you get started in this industry and how has it evolved since you started?

I started helping people with just marketing and sales.  Then it morphed into fixing and creating systems and organization for their businesses so that they can hang onto and handle the sales increases! We use new media or ideas with tried and true methods. ie using Facebook fans to build our databases or client databases.

When it comes to marketing in general, what are the biggest mistakes you see small businesses make?

They do not have a strategy for getting more 1st time clients and then converting them to regular clients. They are constantly looking for a quick fix, without understanding that you can actually get paid to build your database and use automated systems like email to followup with all your prospects!

Do these type of mistakes often come from a lack of marketing strategy, or are there other factors that you see being the major contributors?

For sure a lack of a marketing strategy and the skills to create one, plus they have a hard time understanding how to leverage technology to do most of the work for them. They rarely also have a lifetime value of a customer/client figured out, so they are afraid of “giving stuff away.” ie. one of my other businesses is a restaurant, now I could run a magazine ad all pretty and stuff extolling the virtues of my restaurant, or I can put an email widget on my website giving away FREE appetizers to anyone who will give me their name and email. The money I spend on giving my prospects the Free appetizer drives way more business, and I know it because we track it, then a brand building add in a magazine. This trial run process can be used for ANY business.

Example: We work with a chiropractor who gives his new clients a 65 dollar chiropractic pillow when they come for the initial assessment. The visit happens to be 65 bucks also,  so the net out for the client is zero in essence. So now the chiropractor pays out the cost of the pillow, and time gives out $130 worth of value for $65, but he now can put that person on a care program. I am on it with this particular chiropractor. and will end up paying $1200 this year to have optimum health in regards to my back and neck so easily worth it for me and maybe even more for him!

With the growth of digital marketing, how to you see the landscape of marketing changing over the couple of years?

It is easier then ever to build a database online and two giants, facebook and groupon have continued to prove, the money is in the list. So get in touch with someone who can set you up with at least email marketing to begin, then facebook, then some type of loyalty program for starters, and make a marketing funnel for your prospects and clients to get into and stay in relationship with your business.

Obviously you are involved with email marketing. How do you see this type of platform helping your customers, especially those in the small business arena.

I recently spoke in front of a class of business students at a local college. It was 11 am in the morning and I asked how many of them had been on social media already 75% of the hands went up. Now the cool thing is, I asked how many had been in their email, and 99% of the hands went up. So as hot as social media is email is still king, and will be for a long time. They key is to begin with email which is as common as having a phone and integrate with social media later. But start with email and get out some communication to your prospects to educate them and let your clients know what is new, cool and can help them too!

What are your favorite tools to recommend using when you start people with their email marketing and why?

If you have a brick and mortar business where people come you must go to staples and get a drawbox and starting giving something away for a monthly draw in exchange for the email addresses of your visitors. This way you can build your list and followup with everyone automatically!! You can also use a tablet to help with the signups if you want. Android le pan on Amazon is what I use,  and short cut the entering in of all the written ballots. But either way get going today. I have 15,000 people on my database and this is the method I use. Otherwise, get going with ActiveCampaign right away and you don’ t even need a website as they can host a form for you. Just get started and use the inexpensive tools like ActiveCampaign and a $35 draw box and a gift basket or gift card to giveaway to build your list online (your website or Facebook and instore if you have a physical location).

What are top 3  pointers you can give for those who are still in transition mode from pure traditional marketing to digital platforms?

  1. Get started today.
  2. If you don’t know how to do it hire someone who does it will be one of your best investments
  3. Remember traditional marketing to digital marketing is still marketing the delivery system is the only thing that is changed. So embrace change and profit!!
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