There is no denying the importance of having a marketing plan, especially if you have a startup or small business. A lot of people make the mistake of assuming that marketing is for large and established businesses – those that have the money to shout about their products and services online – but this is not the case. Marketing for small businesses is just as important. It’s an effective way of reaching a wider audience, reminding people of who you are and advertising what you have to offer. Small businesses marketing is important, but that doesn’t make it complex and unattainable.
Even if you don’t have a lot of marketing experience, you can still market your small business successfully online. Once you have a marketing plan in place, you can utilise a variety of strategies.
Key Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses
There are a lot of marketing strategies that work for small businesses, but knowing where to start can be tough. For the majority of industries, social media marketing, email marketing and content marketing are key.
- Social Media Marketing – Many business owners and entrepreneurs underestimate the impact that social media marketing can have. However, it’s one of the key parts of marketing for small businesses. Social media marketing enables you to reach a wide and varied audience, who are reachable with a quick post or update. Social media marketing involves consistently posting high quality content on your social media profiles. This can be done by sharing updates, promotions, news or industry insights. It’s also important to encourage engagement by responding to comments, messages and mentions. You can use hashtags relevant to your business to increase how easy it is for someone to discover you. There are a variety of social media platforms to choose from, with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn being the most popular for small businesses.
- Email Marketing – Email marketing is a strategy that has been around for many years. But, some people wrongly assume that it’s had its heyday. It’s an effective way of reminding existing customers of who you are, advertising promotions and discounts, and marketing products and services to new people. Emails provide a direct and personal way to communicate with customers and clients. You can tailor your messages to specific demographics, appealing to their interests, preferences and needs. The personalised approach of email marketing helps to build strong relationships and customer loyalty.
- Content Marketing – There is a lot that goes into content marketing, and it largely focuses on creating high quality and informative content, and sharing that with your target audience. Content can be in a variety of forms, but content marketing tends to focus on blogs and articles. For content marketing for small businesses to work, the content needs to be relevant, valuable and informative. The goal is to provide your target audience with answers to questions and interesting insights, in the hope of becoming known as an authority within the industry. Rather than directly promoting products or services, content marketing aims to educate, entertain and solve problems.
Top Tips for Creating a Marketing Plan
Small business marketing can seem daunting, but these top tips are sure to help you get started and create a marketing plan to be proud of.
- Have a Budget in Mind – It’s a good idea to have a budget in mind before you begin small business marketing. You don’t want to find yourself spending too much and having to cut corners elsewhere. Marketing as a small business doesn’t need to be expensive, as there are cost effective channels available.
- Define Your Target Audience – It’s important to know who you are marketing to as a small business. This information will allow you to tailor your marketing efforts and strategies to them, maximising your chance of success. Think about their interests and behaviours, and which marketing strategies are likely to appeal to them.
- Think About Your Content Strategy – Small business marketing requires a lot of content, and so you need to think about your content strategy. Consider the topics that you will cover. How will you use content on various platforms and how often you want to put content out? You might decide to focus your attention on blog posts and infographics. You might decide that video content will resonate better with your target audience.
- Set Clear and Measurable Goals – Before you kickstart your marketing strategy, set clear and measurable goals. Do you want to increase website traffic by a certain percentage, or are you hoping to generate a specific number of leads per month? Having clear and measurable goals will help you to determine how successful your marketing efforts are.
- Be Willing to Adapt – You might have a clear marketing strategy in mind. But, there is no guarantee that this will be successful. You need to be willing to adapt your marketing plan and change your strategy if things aren’t going to plan. Don’t shy away from trying new tactics, approaches and marketing techniques.
How do you approach marketing for small businesses? Get in touch and share your strategy.