Small business owners are used to marketing their products and services. However, this tactic can also be ideal for selling the company as a whole.

There comes a time in the life of all firms when selling or merging becomes a reality. The owner may want to move on to bigger and better things, or just try their hand at a different business model. Either way, it pays to have a great financial plan in place for when this time comes – and marketing is a big part of that.

Why marketing helps sell a company
The obvious aspects of a sale are finding potential buyers, checking the legal aspects and performing due diligence, according to Inc. magazine. However, one element that is often overlooked is quality marketing

Why is this the case? For starters, the company as a whole is actually a product. Marketing can sell this, just like it can a pair of shoes or a dry-cleaning service. The goal is to get the most money possible. In order to do this, the firm has to be looked over from top to bottom. This includes checking business banking, reviewing the staff, analyzing legal documents and so on. The product has to be in the best shape in order for potential buyers to be interested.

In addition, the company itself has to be promoted to gauge possible interest, the news source noted. This aspect is often overlooked, but it is where creative marketing shines. Then, the really important buyers – those who will pay top dollar – can be identified. A small business owner should research potential suitors and create a positive brand image. The success of the company should be highlighted, as could where the firm is projected to head in the near future. 

Marketing can also directly impact price, Inc. magazine explained. The final value of a small business really depends on the buyers, so the more there are, the higher the final number could be. Marketing can truly swing the price, which could result in a drastic increase for the owner. That is one reason why it's so important.

Simple marketing strategies to sell
For a small business, the strongest support is often found right in the community. This network of friends, family and supporters can be valuable during any marketing campaign, according to Constant Contact.

A strong local fan base can be the perfect solution to any marketing problem, and that can start with some outreach programs, local deals and a personable atmosphere. The more these people support the company, the easier it will be for potential buyers to see the value in the firm.

In addition, Constant Contact explained that a small business needs an elevator pitch. Who knows when the next buyer will come by – so it can pay off to always be prepared. This type of marketing only takes a few seconds, and it provides a snapshot of the product. A small business owner should explain what sets the product apart, and why the person should show an interest in this specific company.

Perhaps most importantly, leaders have to network, the news source noted. A business can be built up from the bottom with this tool, and it can also help sell. Owners have to get out in public, meet neighbors, shake hands and learn peoples' names. The payoff can often take a little while to come to fruition, so management has to be patient. Results will be seen in time.

Overall, a small business has to remember marketing when selling the company. It is a product in its own right, and it should be pitched as such. With these strategies and financial tips in place, it might be easier to attract potential buyers and make a lot more money.