To be able to achieve your business goals and grow your small business, you must do some online marketing. Think of marketing as an investment and not an expense. While you may need to spend some money, there’s return on investment (ROI), making it all worth it.
There are many ways to market your business online; some require money and others require time and effort. What’s important to note is that your business won’t bring in profits or grow overnight; therefore, patience is key. Before getting into marketing your business, it’s essential to have the foundation well-aligned.
Do all businesses succeed in marketing?
The answer is no. Putting up an advert or applying some out of the box ideas for marketing doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll attain your goals. Marketing has to be done very strategically. There are things you should do before you start marketing, during, and after marketing.
The point of marketing is also to bring in customers long after ad campaigns are done. This means that your creative marketing ideas must be effective and timeless.
Before You Start Marketing Your Small Business…
For a pre-marketing checklist, you can look into a few things such as:
- Studying Your Audience
- Prepping Your Official Website
- Dividing Your Goals into Workable Parts
- Creating a Marketing Strategy for Your Small Business
The above will help solidify all your marketing efforts, bringing success to your small business.
1. Studying Your Audience
Studying your audience should in fact be your first step before creating your product or service. Your target audience are your prospective customers. This means that customers are the most important people, and their opinions matter most.
You can identify your audience by their age, race, gender, demographic or ethnicity. You can also dig deeper and find out their hobbies, personalities and the social platforms they often use. This information helps you easily target them.
For example, if your product is designed for teenagers who hangout on Instagram almost 24 hours a day, then running adverts on a business platform like LinkedIn will be an epic fail.
One way to learn what your audience likes is to run online surveys. Let them give you the answers upfront. However, ensure the questions you ask are beneficial to your brand. You can also host a focus group and listen to their opinion on your product or service. Here is a section of a target audience survey:
(Image Credit: Vertical Response)
2. Prepping Your Official Website
Anyone can design a website; however, having a beautifully designed website isn’t enough. First of all, your website is where at least 80% of your leads will land. This means that you must perfect it for conversion.
A few ways to improve your website’s conversion rate is by:
- Ensuring it’s responsive to mobile devices
- Creating web copy that clearly explains what your brand is about
- Having a simple user interface that is easily navigable
- Having buttons and links to contact pages or email forms for prospects to reach out
The above are just a few of the things you can do. If you lead prospects from other platforms to your website and your website copy is a mess, then they’ll quickly click out and find another brand to purchase from.
3. Dividing Your Goals into Doable Parts
As a small business you probably have many goals you’d like to achieve. Some big, others small, and some are short term and others long term goals. Experts advise that you should start small and climb your way to the top.
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As for large goals, slice them up into doable parts. Once you achieve a mini goal, you move to the next until it’s all done. This builds momentum as you progress. Also, start with the easy-to-do goals. The complex ones will only slow you down and demotivate you if you start with them. If you feel overwhelmed keeping track of your goal progress you might want to look at Google Analytics goal tracker. Here is what that will look like:
(Image Credit: Learn Digital Advertising)
4. Creating a Marketing Strategy for Your Small Business
Finally, before you start marketing your small business, gather all your creative marketing ideas and create a valid marketing strategy. A marketing plan is good in two ways; one, it helps you create a path to your goals which makes it easy to follow, and two, it helps you identify what will work and what won’t in advance. You can spot loopholes and fix them before they even happen.
A marketing strategy will help you plan your budget as well so you don’t end up spending more than you should. This is the stage where you do major research to land the best out of 101 marketing ideas for small businesses.
So, which marketing ideas can you consider for your brand? Below are a few marketing tips for small business 2021.
Search Engine Optimization
Whenever a customer wants to buy an item, the first item is to look for the available options online. If a customer wants to buy a smartphone, the first step is to type the keyword on Google. Lots of smartphone brands and dealers will emerge.
The first pages on Google do not land there by accident. The search engine ranks these pages based on the relevance of information that they provide. If you want your audience to find your site, you not only need to provide extensive information, but you also need to optimize your page accordingly.
The process entails providing the best possible content, developing a user-friendly website, and prioritizing the content by giving value to the users. Search Engine Optimization helps to attract people to your site and encourage them to buy one of your products. As such, you have to give your customers exactly what they want.
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Blogging and Content Creation
Consistent blogging is one of the most effective ways of building brand awareness since it helps to provide relevant content to your target audience. Also, it’s one of inexpensive marketing ideas for small businesses that drives traffic to your site and attracts more prospective customers.
Having an effective content creation strategy can enable you to develop blogs that will expose your brands to visitors and provide the information that they are searching for. Defining your goals clearly helps you to develop the right blogging strategy.
In addition to driving traffic to your business, you need to update the visitors on the services that you provide. Once you identify your prospective customers, you need to know where they hang out.
Most of your prospective customers hang out in Facebook groups. Develop various types of blogs and choose the ones that performed well. Alternatively, visit your competitor’s websites and see the blogs that were most liked and shared. You can also check out SEO competitor tools such as Majestic to compare your blog to your competitors, for example:
(Image Credit: Orbit Media)
Repurpose Your Content
This is just one of the popular out of the box ideas for marketing. There are two ways to make old website content useful. One is to update the content. The other way is to repurpose the content.
Updating content involves editing it to keep up with new trends and technology. If some of your posts discuss methods that were valid in 2017 and aren’t valid in 2021, then that content is dead weight for your website.
Scroll your posts to filter out outdated ones and find a way to add valuable and up-to-date information. Not all will apply, so those that can’t be updated, don’t hesitate to click delete. Google doesn’t like to crawl websites full of many useless web pages.
If your content is up to date but isn’t bringing in good traffic or conversions, try repurposing by doing some of the following idea marketing examples:
- Create a video about that post to reach viewers on video sites like YouTube
- Create social media posts that discuss the post and have a link to redirect readers
- Turn the post into a mini eBook and add more detailed information to it
- Turn the post into a discussion, assign a hashtag and let your followers ponder on it
- Create a follow-up post and name it ‘part two’, so readers have to read part one so as to follow the second one
- Split the post into two posts and go in depth with each post
The art of repurposing is all about looking for different ways to draw attention to one post, other than writing the post. The point of repurposing is to remind readers of that post and the goals of the post, as well as to bring new eyes into that post.
Every post on your site must be bringing you value, just like every page should. Whatever isn’t should be immediately deleted or updated. This one inexpensive marketing ideas for small business that’ll boost your website traffic and authority in the industry.
Social Media Marketing Ideas For Small Business
Having the right social media marketing ideas for small business development is the key to success. When done properly, social media marketing helps to increase traffic and improve the overall conversion rates. Once you engage a broad audience of consumers with the right content, they can like and share your page.
Once people begin to interact with your content, you will build your businesses’ reputation while the brand awareness and loyalty will improve.
Every network that is exposed to your brands becomes your potential customers. Having a social media page can help to develop a diverse audience for your small business.
As a small business owner, you need to constantly evaluate the social media marketing strategies and techniques.
Designing the right social media strategy is a challenging task. For the best outcomes, small businesses must invest in social media marketing to increase engagement, get more leads, and convert more visitors into customers. You can also track engagement and customers using a social analytics tool, for example:
Marketing is all about getting brand popularity, and one of the 101 marketing ideas for small businesses is brand collaboration. This means reaching out to different brands either in your industry or outside of it to run campaigns together.
It’s advisable to work with a brand different from yours, just to keep competitors off your lane. If your business sells milk, then collaborate with a coffee company and show followers how the combination of the two makes the best white coffee in town. Another example would be an energy drink company collaborating with a game console manufacturer. For example:
(Image Credit: Xbox Wire)
The best thing about brand collaborations is that you get to tap into a new market and attract a new audience. This boosts brand popularity and in turn will increase sales. Just be sure to collaborate with other reputable businesses so as not to hurt your brand credibility in the process.
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Email is one of the channels that delivers good ROI for small businesses. When developing the ideal email marketing strategy small business, owners must seek to not only reach out to new customers but also retain the existing ones. This medium helps to drive sales by updating the consumers on the future prospects of the business.
The ability to foster healthy customer relationships helps small businesses to improve their profits substantially albeit on a shoestring budget.
The campaign starts with a list of qualified leads that are interested in your products or services. You can develop this list by getting your website visitors to subscribe. Avoid overwhelming your subscribers with too many emails.
Rather, send targeted email marketing copies that welcome people into your business with a hook and encourage them to read on. Then, develop some personalized emails that provide specific content that elucidate the potential benefits of using your products or services.
Pay Per Click advertising can have a positive impact on your business. In addition to offering a quick entry to the market, the results are easy to track. From high brand exposure to great lead conversion, this medium bestows an array of benefits to your brands.
PPC is the middle ground when it comes to nurturing your content by encouraging visitors to download the brochures, sign up for monthly newsletters, enter into contests, and download your apps.
The secret is to link your products to the keywords that people click when looking to buy items online. You can also determine the demand for a particular product by looking at your competitor’s websites.
Once a small business owner understands the problems that customers are looking to solve, they can improve their products to cater to such needs. A business can launch a successful PPC campaign by solving problems and creating a compelling call-to-action.
Take Part in Online Campaigns and Events
There are so many events that your business can take part in. Whether it’s an online event with a hashtag or a charity event that the world is celebrating, it’ll do you good to join in and show concern.
Almost every month of the year has a set event. You can take part in all or a few of them like breast cancer awareness, black friday, Easter weekend, 4th of July and the like. People are very excited and fully participate during these events, so that’s a good window of opportunity to grab their attention.
Aside from joining other people’s programs, you can always create your own. Every day the world is facing something so you can’t run out of programs to create. Whether it’s a charity program or just a fun hashtag for people to join the conversation. Be a trendsetter. For instance take this tea house, they joined small and large businesses in Brigham City to form a “Not So Peachy” celebration because Peach Days an annual event everyone looks forward to was canceled.
(Image Credit: Monarch Tea House)
Be Active on Forums
Other fruitful yet inexpensive idea marketing examples are the use of forums to popularize your brand. The internet has so many forums, but the most popular ones with good traffic include Reddit and Quora. However, let’s not forget social media groups which also act as forums.
Setting up a Reddit or Quora account takes less than five minutes. It’s simple and doesn’t require complex details. After signing up they will send you an email confirmation to click and you’re done.
Both platforms have hundreds, if not thousands, of subgroups where different issues and topics are discussed. On Reddit they are referred to as subreddits. All you have to do is join relevant groups and be active. Here are a few subreddits on business topics:
(Image Credit: Reddit)
Don’t just throw in advertisements callously. Forums are all about helpful information. For example on Reddit you can either open your own subreddit and discuss issues surrounding your business industry or join one that does. Frequently look at what others are posting about and try to share your two cents on the topics.
You can also create new posts and share advice on how to achieve certain things. In these posts and comments, you can include a link to your website so people can willingly visit your site for more information. This marketing strategy small business can get you solid traffic without spending a dime.
id=”chapter16″Diib®: Let Us Help Market Your Small Business!
The above list comprises just a few idea marketing examples that can take your small business brand to the next level. Before you go for costly options like billboard advertising and TV advertising, consider these inexpensive options. Diib Digital can help you monitor and track all aspects of your small business marketing campaigns. You’ll quickly know what ideas are working and which need adjusting. Here are some of the features of our User Dashboard that set us apart from the crowd:
- Keyword, backlink, and indexing monitoring and tracking tools
- Google Core Algorithm monitoring
- Link auditing
- Alerts to broken pages where you have backlinks (404 checker)
- Alerts and Objective that guide you to strengthen your website
- Monthly call with a growth expert
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Below are just a few examples of good marketing ideas:
- Publish helpful and well written content.
- Get ad promo credits.
- Make your own infographics.
- Create instructional videos on topics frequently searched.
- Reddit is an excellent place for marketing.
- Be savvy on social media networks.
- Update and reuse old content and data.
Social media ads and classified ads have a starting value of $20 which makes them some of the cheapest ways to advertise and get your business out there.
Here are just a few of the ways you can market your business for free: start a blog, be active on social media, post YouTube videos, SEO your website, join an online community that is relevant to your business and contribute.
To advertise your business locally you should first sign up to Google My Business to get your business onto the local searches results. A few more ideas include: joining a local group, giving back to your community, and running contests.
A few ways you can promote your business through social media are:
- Create profiles on several different social media networks and platforms.
- Clearly define what your marketing goals are.
- Post content on a regular and consistent basis.
- Form a relationship with your followers.
- Give customers a reason to want to follow you.
- Run contests and giveaways.