When it comes to marketing your small business, company owners have so many different options available to them today. The internet has quickly become the main hub of several different marketing channels – to the point where you can easily get by marketing your business completely online and never touching a single physical marketing method.
Whether you’re running a small business from home, have an office, shop, restaurant or another location, sell products, offer services or something else, finding effective ways to market your small business and get the word out to your potential customers while staying within your budget isn’t always easy. So, we’ve put together some top options to consider that have been tried-and-tested and proven to work in a huge variety of different industries with businesses of all sizes.
A Good Business Website
First of all, your business is going to need a website – it’s going to be tricky to advertise online at all if you don’t have one. Perhaps some companies have managed to get by with social media alone, but chances are, your customers are going to want to have a website to visit where they can find out more about your company and what you offer, and having a website adds that layer of professionalism that will get you off on the right foot. And, the good news is that with so many different platforms that you can use to build any kind of website today, you don’t have to break the bank paying a developer to do it for you – it’s easier than ever to do it yourself.
Once your website is up and running, be sure to include an email newsletter sign-up form front and center for visitors to see. Even better, offer an incentive to customers who sign up to your email newsletter, like something for free, money off their next order, or some exclusive content like an eBook or membership of a private social media group. Many small business owners mistakenly believe that email marketing is only for the big guys, but the truth is that when it’s done well, any size business can benefit from it. There are many affordable email marketing platforms out there that are ideal for small businesses without a lot to spend.
Social media is often the first place that new business owners turn to when it comes to advertising their business, simply because it’s a really easy and effective way to get the word out to hundreds of people at once. You should start out by creating profiles for your brand on the big social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn and come up with a regular content strategy to ensure that they stay active. Today, it’s not enough to simply create a profile and leave it there – your followers and customers will want to know what you’ve been up to. Apps like Canva can be really useful for creating little infographics and social updates to grab the attention of your followers.
A Business Blog
While blogging might seem like something from the last decade, it’s actually still a very effective way of marketing your business. If your website allows for it, publishing a new blog post regularly gives you the chance to connect with your customers and provide them with some useful information. And, since it’s now easier than ever to share your latest blog posts straight to all your social media platforms, you can be sure that they will reach a wide audience. Get your customers engaged with your brand by asking for ideas on your next blog posts and following through with the most popular ideas.
More and more of the content that we consume online is in video form, so it makes sense for all businesses to be utilizing this very powerful marketing channel. And the good news is that you don’t necessarily have to spend thousands of dollars on a professional marketing video to make an impact. Facebook Live videos tend to get loads of engagement, and they can easily be filmed using your smartphone, or you can get an inexpensive camera and some kit and do it yourself. In addition, there are tons of user-friendly video marketing software programs that you can use to put together short animations and explainer videos that you can upload to your website, YouTube, and social media platforms.
Working with influencers is becoming an increasingly more popular way of advertising your business. Find an influencer in your niche who tends to have a good impact on their followers – remember that a lot of followers does not necessarily mean that somebody has a lot of influence and it might be better to choose somebody who has fewer followers but posts content that has a bigger impact on these individuals. You can find influencers who will promote your brand in return for a free product or service, while others work on a paid contract basis.
Finally, while online marketing is definitely the best and most popular option today, there are still plenty of things that you can do to spread the word about your business outside of the internet. Attend industry events armed with intriguing business cards or hand out flyers in your local area. You could even get a sticker of your brand and contact details for your car, or put up posters on local notice boards. When used in conjunction with a wide range of online marketing methods, offline marketing can be ideal for grabbing the attention of passers-by and encouraging them to go online to learn more about your business.
As a small business owner, there is a myriad of different options available to you when it comes to marketing your business. Pick a few that work well with your brand and utilize them to their full potential.