Introduction to Small Business Marketing
It doesn’t matter if you are a brand new business or have been around for years, you can always take your marketing to the next level. If you are a small business owner, you have to take a different approach to marketing than the huge corporations. You may not have the large marketing budgets and gigantic marketing teams, but we have lots of free marketing ideas you can implement. We are going to give you 20 small business marketing ideas that will elevate your business.
1. Make a marketing plan
The first most important part of small business marketing is getting organized. Formulating a marketing plan can help you prioritize, establish organization, increase productivity, improve team consistency and set goals for the new year. If you need help creating a marketing plan you can refer to our blog post “How to Build a Marketing Plan for 2021”. It will tell you everything you need to know about making a plan that fits your business goals.
2. Have a website
The first thing someone does is google your business. If you don’t have a website, you will not be taken seriously. A website provides people with valuable information about you and your business, which will make them more likely to become a customer. It is important your website is user friendly. A clean and informative website will translate to impressed potential customers.
3. Create social media platforms
We are in the 21st century and social media is here to stay. In fact, 97% of people learn about local businesses online more than anywhere else. Facebook still holds the majority of traffic, so create a page today if you don’t have one already. Social media is an outstanding way to market your business. It is monumental in helping you create and build your brand.
4. Offer coupons, discounts or free services
I know this sounds like it will cost you a lot of money, but hear me out. By offering incentives to customers to try your business out, you are creating brand loyalty and awareness early on. A satisfied customer will become a returning customer. Happy customers are also very likely to tell their friends and family about you.
5. Focus on your SEO
Search engine optimization is the process of enhancing the quality and quantity of website traffic from different search engines. One study found that organic traffic accounts for 51% of the visitors that land on a website. And 81% of consumers perform a Google search before making a purchase. Focusing on bettering your SEO can drive great results. For a more detailed breakdown of how to improve your SEO, you can refer to one of our past blog posts here.
6. Prioritize video marketing
Video marketing is an extremely powerful tool in the marketing industry. In fact, 88% of video marketers are satisfied with the ROI of their video marketing efforts. By using videos to market your company, you will be able to capture your audience longer, build brand awareness, and increase your sales.
7. Create shareable content
The content on your social media platforms are the bread and butter to marketing. In creating content that is creative and captivating it motivates people to want to follow your business. You can create infographics, downloadable PDFs, giveaways and challenges for people to participate in. By creating content that others are motivated to share with their followers, you are increasing the audience you are seen by exponentially.
8. Implement customer participation
Get your customers involved in your business. Host a contest to name your latest product/service on a social media post. After customers have been given the chance to submit their entries, you choose the name you like best. The customer who provided the submission gets some type of reward. In doing this, you are encouraging customers to participate in your business. It will create a lasting memory of your brand in people’s mind and they will feel like a part of your business.
9. Start a blog
A blog is a great way to increase website traffic, boost your SEO and provide valuable information to current/potential customers. The content of your blog should always be created with the goal to provide value and education to your readers. Blogs are a great way to show customers you are knowledgeable in your industry.
10. Send weekly emails
Life gets busy for everyone, so it is important you continue to remind your customers what value you provide. You can do this by sending out a weekly email newsletter. Send information about your blog, social media platforms, promotions you may be running or an in depth look at a service/product you provide. Keep your business on the forefront of the customers mind.
11. Partner with companies
As a small business, you might not be growing as quickly as you might hope. A simple solution to this is to work with other companies. You can team up with another company for a social media giveaway. In doing so, you are doubling your exposure. Both companies reap the rewards of being discovered by new customers.
12. Work with influencers
People trust the word of others, especially their favorite influencers. You can team up with an influencer to promote your business. Working with influencers is a great way to build relationships and your reputation.
13. Collect customer reviews
People are way more likely to purchase a product or service if other people have also enjoyed it. Did you know that 9 out of 10 customers will consider reviews when making a purchasing decision? It is essential you have positive reviews from customers. Getting customers to leave reviews can be a difficult task, but lucky for you Lift Local can do it all for you.
14. Handwritten thank you note
It is hard to compete with large companies, but you can provide your customers with a unique experience. Show your customers that their business impacts you in a big way. Send a personalized thank you message when someone buys your product or service.
15. Give back to the community
You can sponsor a local sports team, donate to a community activity, or volunteer in a charity event. By doing this, you will get exposure all while giving back simultaneously. It shows your community that you care and want to give back.
16. Apply for business awards
In most industries, they have business awards you can apply for. If you enter and win these awards or competitions, it will help you stand out from the competition. Most awards come with badges that you can display on your website. If you win the competition, you will be given special recognition and it will build your credibility.
17. Implement customer referral program
Word of mouth can be the most powerful form of marketing. Did you know customers that are referred by a friend are four times more likely to buy? Incentivize your customers to share your business with others. Offer a free service, product or another reward for referring new customers.
18. Capitalize on holidays as a promotional tool
Holidays can be a wonderful asset to marketing. Everyone loves a good bargain. Holiday promotions are a great way to drive up sales and traffic. People are willing to spend more when they feel like it is a good deal. Identify the holidays that will be beneficial to you and plan ahead so you know exactly how to leverage that.
19. Recycle Content
Just because you used content in a blog post doesn’t mean it can’t be used for other social media platforms. Don’t shy away from using your existing content and repurposing it. Content can appear brand new with a few tweaks and a different perspective. A blog post can turn into a marketing video, all while using the same content. You will be saving yourself time and money by recycling content.
20. Excel in customer experience
There is no use to creating social media content and platforms if you aren’t going to build relationships with your audience. You need to reply to customers when they comment on your social posts. Make sure your customer is satisfied with the services you provide. Be on top of your customer service. Accordingly, you will build an outstanding relationship with your customer base.
Your Secret Weapon
As a small business owner you may play many roles. Trying to elevate your small business marketing may be too much to handle alone. If you need help standing out from your local competition or improving your marketing, Lift Local will be your secret weapon. We are here to help you take the guesswork out of marketing. Our expertise is executing solid marketing strategies at an affordable price.