You have your new business cards, a website, and a sign on the door. You are officially a small business owner! Now what? How do you find the work? Where are the clients?

This is the million-dollar question and it’s not a simple answer. It involves creating a daily system of marketing, networking, and promotion for your small business.

Here are 10 ways to get your new business noticed: 

1. Tell everyone you meet what you do:

If you don’t already have one, create a 10-word blurb or elevator speech so you can quickly and concisely articulate what you do. You never know when you may run into your next client, so having it handy will help avoid the dreaded, “I’m a [insert your profession],” response to the question, “So, what do you do?”

2. Talk to your friends about what you do:

Who better to sing your praises than the people who know you best? They probably know people who can use your service or product, not to mention they may even become a client themselves.

3. Hang out where the potential clients hang out:

Attend trade shows or other business events geared toward your target market.

4. Present yourself:

Get a booth at a trade event for even more exposure to your target market.

5. Attend networking events:

Meeting fellow business owners can lead to working relationships and/or job referrals.

6. Join a group related to your business:

Meeting people increases your chances of making business connections, as well as learning about job leads.

7. Ask for a referral or testimonial from current clients:

Chances are existing happy clients will be thrilled to give you a glowing review or pass along your name to a colleague.

8. Promote yourself:

Choose the best promotional method for your type of business (flyers, postcards, print or online ads) and get the word out. Pair up with a complementary business to make your advertising dollar stretch.

9. Be patient:

Business connections you make today may turn into a client next week or next year. Don’t give up!

10. Keep in touch:

Good business relationships are created over time. Follow up with prospects and current clients regularly.