One mistake made by many small business owners is to assume marketing is an expense.
It isn’t. Marketing is, in fact, an investment. Once you have a clear understanding of where to invest, you can get one step ahead of your competitors.
However, many small business owners feel intimidated by marketing as they believe they can’t beat the larger companies. What they fail to get is that it wasn’t about defeating anyone. Instead, the idea of marketing is to attract maximum eyeballs for your venture, not merely to pull you out of the slump.
Marketing is worth an expense. Why?
Here is a piece of golden advice by Scott Stratten, “Too often, feeling intimidated becomes our excuse not to be awesome.”
Usually, the small business owners chicken out from marketing plans as they presume it is less critical. Let us tell you a fun fact – marketing (when done the right way) can help you grow bigger than major companies treading in the same niche. It is crucial to gain the prospects’ attention, developing the products/services they desire and turn them into loyal clients.
According to Gartner, marketing executives of the most successful companies spend an average of more than 21% of their marketing budget on advertising. A rough calculation reveals that they spent 8.9% of their budget on digital advertising, 5.3% on paid, and 7.0% on offline advertising.
You can use marketing to promote the existing products or services or increase anticipation for upcoming items. This can bring immense success to your small venture.
Small Business Marketing Tips
Being a small business, you are probably on a shoestring budget. The overwhelming number of spaces asking for investment may compel you to overlook marketing. Before you make this mistake, wait. We might have a solution for your misery.
This post highlights a few marketing tips for small businesses that won’t burn a hole in your pockets. Let’s scan them together!
Always carry business cards
Despite all tech advancements, business cards are irreplaceable. No amount of automation is ever going to take their place. It gives you a quick way to exchange information, plus it lends an air of professionalism to your business.
Business cards are also a component of the branding exercise adopted by marketers to beat the competition. Besides providing your contact details, they speak favorably for the business. Every design element like typography and logo helps to leave a desired impact upon the audience.
Make sure that your card design is compulsive enough to gain referrals. Hire a competent professional like logo design valley to develop an impressive logo and entice the consumers. Your chances of referrals go higher when the business card is impressive enough.
Jeff Tan from Dentsu Aegis Network conveys the same perspective when he says that it feels meaningful and personal when giving/receiving business cards.
Develop a referral network
A referral network, essentially, collects all organizations or individuals who provide referrals. Official referrals include companies in the same niche. They band together to provide a reference to one another.
For example, a wedding planner could have some photographers on her referral network she recommends to her clients. The photographers do the same for her.
A study by Goethe University found that referred customers had 18% less churn than other customer segments. Meanwhile, they generated 25% more profit. The best way to nurture your referral network is through building relationships first. Cold-calling or emailing doesn’t bring the same results as meeting in-person. Start looking at other vendors for your clients and find how you can connect with them.
Optimize your website
When a business has an optimized website, potential customers can find what they are looking for. Investing in your website is the key to scale your business without spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on physical expansion.
When optimized, content and topic can bring in a lot of traffic. This traffic is led through the SEO pipeline, and they aim to find specific things. It isn’t necessary to be an SEO pro to design a stellar website. You can learn the basics of SEO. Or you can opt for professional assistance or install online tools like the Yoast SEO plug-in to walk you through SEO basics.
Some benefits that tag along with SEO are:
- It builds credibility
- It ensures a better user experience
- It increases traffic and conversions
- It impacts the buying cycle
- It is long-term and cost-effective
- It is quantifiable
Implementing a robust SEO strategy on a website gives a boost to brand marketing. A report published in The Manifest reveals that only 30% of small businesses have a search engine optimization strategy. Hence, now is the time to leap onto the SEO bandwagon and make the most out of it.
Create social media profiles
Buffer recently reported that 77.6% of small businesses use social media to promote their business. And why not? The word on social media can spread like wildfire. From product recommendations to where to go and what to do – you can suggest a plethora of things to the social media users.
News spread faster than ever before on social platforms. Users of your brand have now turned into the most-trusted brand ambassadors. To cut short, social conversations are the holy grail of managing your business reputation.
If your company is not on social media right now, you might be losing out on an incredible opportunity. Every business should have social media profiles on relevant platforms. A design agency, for instance, can have better chances to gain attention on Instagram and LinkedIn.
Take the example of Coconut Bliss, for instance. You might think about what an ice-cream company has to do on social media. Right? The company has successfully managed to keep customers from promotions, contests, and giveaways on social media.
Marketing doesn’t only help your business to grow. It is crucial for the survival of your beloved venture. These small business marketing tips might help you kickstart your journey of growth. You can look up and adopt more as you move ahead. Feel free to share your plans with us!