As a small business, you face certain challenges the big guys don’t, especially when it comes to marketing. While you may not have the multi-million dollar marketing budget that a giant corporation does, you still have some tricks at your disposal that can benefit your small business tremendously.
Before you rewrite your entire yearly budget to boost your marketing, here are some easy ways you can market your small business that won’t cost much and will have a big return on your investment.
- Building your online content and presence is incredibly important, even for a small business. As you build that online presence, you can more easily engage with customers and your content will draw them in.
- Get people talking about your business by drumming up press about your company and, most importantly, wowing your customers.
- As a small business, you can have a major reputation boost by giving back to your local community, especially since they are the ones keeping you in business.
Build Your Online Content
Much of our lives are lived online. In the last couple of decades, we have transitioned to the virtual world for our socializing, shopping, and even work. Because your customers are online, you need to be, too. And you need to be there with great content.
Start by investing in a great professional website. You should look at your business website as the first impression many customers will have of your business. That’s why choosing a professional website developer and designer are critical. Keep in mind that 94% of first impressions on your website are going to be related to the design.
In fact, a recent report by Stanford found that about 75% of people will judge the level of success of a business based on its website. And if your content or layout aren’t appealing, 38% of users will stop engaging with it. Spend your money wisely by investing it in a top-notch website.
Along with your company website, you should also develop a company blog. This can give you the opportunity to communicate more in-depth concepts and information to your customers while also redirecting them back to your main website where they can make a purchase. Use your company blog to demonstrate new products, share reviews, answer their questions, and engage with them.
While you’re creating content for your website and blog, don’t discount the impact of video content. Whether you share a documentary about the history of your company or a how-to video, it’s the way people are connecting with businesses now. It can help you better show off behind-the-scenes secrets of your business and and really help connect with your customers.
Build Your Online Presence
It’s not enough these days to simply have content online. Your business and brand needs to have an online presence. Your voice as a company needs to be out there connecting with people where they are.
To start building your online presence, turn to social media. There are an estimated 3.8 billion social media users today. That means at least half of your customers are likely on some form of social media. When build your social media strategy, keep in mind your audience. If you are targeting moms with kids, you would want to focus on the social media channels those moms would use.
As you are creating your social media presence, don’t forget about the influence of influencers. Through them, you can interact with thousands of new potential customers. And as you interact with them, you’ll see your sales going up.
You can also take advantage of email marketing. By using email marketing, you can easily end up in the pocket of your customer. With the majority of people using smartphones that have access to their emails, you will have the advantage of going where your customer goes and popping up without them having to search you out. Cultivating a strong email list, starting on your company website and blog, is crucial.
Get People Talking
Think about the last time you were shopping around for a new piece of furniture or trying to find the best brand for that hot new appliance you’ve had your eye on. Where did you turn for opinions? If you’re like most customers, you likely asked your friends and family at some point. We appreciate the opinions of our loved ones and associates. That’s why it’s so important to get people talking.
It all begins with wowing your customers. No one talks about the companies that did an okay job with an alright product. We tend to talk about the companies and products we either love or hate. So, if you focus on making sure your product is flawless and providing impeccable customer service, you will leave a lasting impression on your customers that they will gladly share with friends and family who are shopping around.
Another great way to get people talking about your small business is through press. Your best bet will be to utilize local news shows, blogs, websites, and magazines. These will be going to your target market in your community and that will bring more people to your doors.
Being a small business, you are indelibly tied to the local community. You know the people, the issues they face, and the local economy. Your customers are your neighbors and friends and family. Your business is your home and because of that, you should look for ways to get involved in your local community.
Your best bet, when it comes to marketing, is targeting the local market, meaning the neighborhoods immediately surrounding you. This is a good way to keep your marketing budget manageable while also getting in front of the eyes of the people most likely to patron your business. Use things like discounts for locals and take advantage of local farmers markets. It’s a great way to advertise locally while also making money.
Another great option is partnering up with another local business. As small business owners, you have to stick together and through that partnership, you both can succeed. Sure, you may not want to partner with a direct competitor, but partnering with other vendors to spread the word and recommend your small business to their customers is an easy way to spread the word.
Finally, you have to give back. More and more people are choosing to shop locally, especially after the economic chaos that has come from the pandemic. To celebrate the community that is keeping you in business, give a little back. Not only will this improve the image of your brand and your business, it will increase your brand awareness. And as you give back, your customers will return the kindness you give to the community with kindness towards you.