Marketing For Small Business
Posted on 25th August 2021 at 10:15
You have a fantastic product or service, now you need to let people know about! We’ll run through the key points to consider when setting up marketing for your company.
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Do Your Research
Before going public it is worth taking some time to investigate two broad categories that will affect your business – customer and competitor. You can send surveys out, employ friends and family as guinea pigs, experiment with elements of your product/service, ask potential future competitors direct questions; the sky is the limit but always keep an open mind and listen. You have to maintain a strong vision, this will see you through the late nights and curve balls on your journey but ensure this vision is founded in a deep understanding our your industry and audience.
1. Customer Research
Imagine your ideal customer – the one that will be the easiest to get on board and will become fanatical about your business. Once you identify this person it will be easier to find more of these people. Traditionally marketing professionals looked at demographic, geographic and psychographic factors. However, with websites and social media opening up potentially a global customer base to all business owners, the emphasis has become more focused upon the psychographic traits of your audience. Creating customer profiles is a great reference to have and will help you in every area of your business from inventing new products/services to creating engaging social media content. Really spend some time getting into the mind set and problem solving for your customer; where are the pain points, listen to friends and families opinions and push for negative feedback – it will only help you improve. You don’t have to be perfect right out of the gate but keeping your customers needs at the forefront will keep you on track.
2. Competitor research
Chances are, you are not the only company providing your chosen product or service and although you want to keep an eye on your industry peers, don’t get distracted by them. If it is feasible to go through the customer journey with them, do so. If not or there are too many of them, pick the ones that stand out to you and jot down a quick pros and cons list. What looks great about them and what do you think potentially lets them down. Without being inside that business owners mind it may be difficult to discern their actions, strategies and plans so don’t put all your eggs in the ‘let’s beat them at their own game’ basket. It’s easier to be different than to be better, so identify what makes you unique and focus on that.
Where are your customers? Identifying this will help you decide which channels will be most effective to market through. Ensuring you have the right message, in the right place, directed at the right people is the jackpot and may take some time to get right. We have listed a few avenues below to consider when advertising, putting campaigns together, copywriting and creating content.
Email marketing – an engaged mailing list is a invaluable asset to your business. With digital privacy becoming more important to people it is also vital that you own your customers data. Many email platforms will also help you segment your customers, this will enable you to target people more accurately, tailor your content and up your conversion rate.
Adverts – an oldy but still a goody! Depending on your nature of business these may still be as effective as ever. Consider trying a mix of print and digital, and always track return.
Improve you website – along with the obvious of making your site as user friendly as possible, add branding and features you would want to see if you were a customer to give them an enjoyable experience without you even being there!
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) – you can teach yourself the basics or outsource to an agency. Pushing yourself up those Google search results is a must. Search your company name or service using an incognito tab to see where you’re coming up for customers that haven’t engaged with you before.
A/B testing – if something is not working in your digital marketing, compare it with something else. Keep track, be guided by the result but always keep perspective and be true to your brand.
Social media – creating storytelling content for your brand will help bring sales in. You can get extra help by engaging in paid advertising on social platforms but, be warned, it can be a money pit. Work with an agency you trust, set a budget (stick to it!) and take expert advice.
Figure Out Your Brand
We went through the basics of setting up your brand here. Much of this will inform how you market your product, the content you create and your business strategy as a whole. Depending on the nature of your business and your personal opinion of branding it may play a smaller role in your company, it’s still good to have the basics down though.
Tagged as: Advertising, Brand, Competitor research, Customer research, Email marketing, Marketing, Marketing channels, Paid advertising, Research, SEO, Social media, Social media advertising, Website UX
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