(from USA Today)

If “making more money” is one of your goals for your small business in 2011, then add “do more marketing” to your list of new year’s resolutions.

To make money, your prospective customers must know about you. That means marketing, and I’ve got some key marketing tips to help you succeed.

Marketing options are more confusing than ever: Is it really worthwhile to spend your time tweeting or building a following on Facebook? What about mobile devices? How can you be visible when customers check smartphones to find the best place to shop?

In the midst of navigating these new marketing options, don’t forget tried-and-true methods. Even in a new mobile, connected, global business environment, many time-tested marketing principles still apply.

As you begin your 2011 marketing efforts, keep these 11 key marketing tips in mind:

1. Get out there. People do business with people they know, so build your business network. Attend industry conferences, join community organizations. Be seen frequently. Connect in person and not just online.

2. Get listed — free. Want to show up in search engines and mobile devices without spending a cent? Be sure to set up your free business pages in Google Places, Yahoo Local, Yelp and others. You can list your products and services, hours of operation, specials, even add photos or offer specials. It’s a key, free way to market on mobile devices and Web search engines.

3. Keep your top prospects in view. Make a list of your top 10 prospects or referral sources and keep it on your desk, your mobile phone, or use it as the “wallpaper” on your computer. Contact each of these key income-generators at least once a month.

4. Create a strong company brand and identity. Start with a distinct look-and-feel — logo, colors, typeface, etc. — that conveys what you’re about. Use those consistently on everything — your website, business cards, packaging, newsletters, marketing materials, job ads. If possible, give your brand some zip and personality that makes it memorable.

5. Repeat, repeat, repeat. This is the golden rule of marketing. Whatever marketing tactics you use, you must repeat your message to the same audience in the same place, over and over again. It takes a long time for your message to sink in.

6. Tell people what they get, not what you do. In your marketing materials and messages, focus on the benefits the buyer receives — rather than just long lists of features of your products or descriptions of how you perform your services. Of course, customers compare features and services, so you’ll need to include those. But always emphasize the benefits those features bring.

7. Create an e-mail newsletter. An e-mail newsletter is one of the most effective and inexpensive ways to regularly stay in front of customers, prospects, and referral sources. Make sure your newsletter provides some value for the recipient, such as useful information, details on discounts or a special offer.

8. Get a tagline. Devise a short phrase conveying what you do or makes you special (like “The world on time” for FedEx). Even a simple descriptive phrase can set you apart (like “Bonded janitorial services for banks”). Give prospects a reason to remember you. Use your tagline on your website, business cards, even e-mail signature.

9. Attend or exhibit at a trade show. Trade shows are great places to find many customers in one place, do research on your competition and meet referral and information sources. Research which trade shows target your customers attend and check them out.

10. Be visible online. Make sure you have a website. Learn about social media. If you sell to consumers, get a Facebook page and consider a Twitter feed. Monitor your reviews on Yelp and other review sites. If you sell to businesses, look for industry-specific social media sites.

11. Get a contact management system. Keep track of past and current customers, prospects, referral sources, and more. This data is an invaluable business asset — use it for staying in touch, making sales calls, announcing new products or sales and more.

Most important, make marketing a priority.

After all, customers can’t buy from you unless they know about you — so get out there and toot your own horn!