It seems there are ever more ways to reach prospects, you know, social media platforms like LInkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. And you've got to have a website that could have a blog or vlog or email newsletter associated with it. There are phone calls and snail mail, and conferences of all sorts that are virtual now but will probably return to in-person, at least partly, soon, I expect. And let's not forget advertising. How do you sort through it? What really works for a small ISO these days? I just struck out on my own, and the future's a big unknown.
Francis Swan, Hopeful ISO builder
Congratulations on embarking upon your own business. The types of outreach that work best depend on multiple variables that only you would know. All options you mentioned could be useful, depending on your situation. According to marketing experts, the most important factor is your target customer. If you're going after several merchant verticals or particular demographics, begin by researching just one group, because each method will work for some and not for others. Once you have a clear picture of the likes, dislikes, needs and challenges common to people in that group, consider where and how these people spend time online and off. Find out how they like to communicate, and base your outreach efforts on that.
Also factor in where you feel most at home. For example, if you love interacting on LinkedIn and can't stand Twitter, it's okay to leave Twitter alone. Do the same for each group you want to reach. This is a process of trial and error that you'll need to refine as you go. Experts also suggest focusing on a limited number of outreach methods at any given time to keep things manageable and avoid spreading yourself too thin.
What outreach methods are most effective for you? What about what hasn't worked as well as you thought it would? And are there new outreach methods emerging in 2021 that look promising? Please send your answers or pose a question of your own to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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