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Launching and marketing your business on the Costa del Sol

The Costa del Sol is a wonderful place to live, with a fantastic climate, lots to do and a great lifestyle, however career opportunities can be limited, as there do not tend to be a lot of large companies recruiting. Instead there are many entrepreneurs who fall in love with the area and decide to create their own business, often bringing ideas, influences and investment from other parts of the world. These entrepreneurs are an excellent asset to the local community, but can struggle because they do not understand the unique business environment and challenges which the area poses.

To help budding business people Georgina Shaw of Shaw Marketing Services SL is running a special event on Wednesday 4th February in neli g’s café Benhavista to give her insight into the area, the challenges, but also the opportunities and specifically looking at how to promote a new business for maximum chances of success. Tickets can be ordered by emailing info@shawmarketingservices.com or bought at neli g’s
Georgina is well placed to offer this advice, having set up her marketing agency here seven years ago and survived the crisis, now sharing her insights and expertise through training as well as supporting clients with marketing and PR services.

Ahead of the course here are a few top tips to thriving on the Costa del Sol –
1. Know the market – The Costa del Sol is a highly fractured area with many different nationalities and languages, many media outlets and different target markets with very diverse habits, buying patterns and needs. You need to understand this and decide who your product or service will appeal to so you don’t have to be marketing to everyone in multiple languages.
2. Don’t assume an idea which has worked well in other countries will work here – So many businesses here fail because they are concepts brought from abroad which have not been tested here, or which rely on assumptions that everyone wants what they are missing. Take into account the lifestyle, climate, habits, spending patterns and demographics of the Costa del Sol and do your research to make sure they want what you are planning on selling.
3. Build trust and be visible – New businesses are met with mistrust and the assumption is that if they don’t know you, that you’ll probably try to rip them off. Sad as this is, it’s a fact of life and it can be dealt with by networking, being transparent, giving a face behind the brand, proving your worth, giving assurances and procedures to allow for returns or money back guarantees and always standing by your word. Once you have a good reputation here it will stand you in good stead and lead to lots of referrals, but it does take time.
4. Plan for the long term – Due to this lack of trust, fractured demographics and seasonal population it takes time to become established here, so plan (and budget) for the long game. Don’t blow all your budget in the first month, spread promotion steadily over a year if you can, combining advertising with PR, networking and community involvement and building a loyal following.

To learn more, make connections with other new businesses and brainstorm for success join Georgina Shaw on 4th February at neli g’s email for more informtion.