You’ve worked hard building up your small business and now you’re ready to start marketing… so what do you do?
Before you overwhelm yourself with the endless marketing tactics out there, you need to stop and strategize. With more than 20 years of experience helping small business owners navigate the world of marketing, we know a thing or two about which marketing solutions are best for local businesses and how you can reach more potential customers.
Around two million small- and medium-sized businesses advertise through Facebook. As an inexpensive and effective way to reach almost any target audience, you can market your product or service to your customer base through specific demographics.
Facebooks ads are relatively simple to create, don’t require a lot of writing and are easy to test and manage through Facebook Ads manager. If your business is visually centered, you can also try out Instagram Ads. They use the same demographics and customizable targeting options as Facebook.
Google My Business
One of the best local online marketing solutions is listing your company on Google My Business (GMB). Like Facebook Ads, getting your GMB profile ranked only requires you to create your profile and collect reviews.
When someone conducts a local search for a company like yours, your GMB listing will only rank if it’s been captured and completed. GMB gives your local business credibility and visibility right away, which is very important when competing with other companies for market share.
Organic Social Media
Almost every single business is on social media these days — and for good reasons. If your target audience can’t find you on social media, they’ll look for your competitors who have a social media account instead. Social media marketing is an incredibly powerful tool that can help you build brand awareness and improve your online presence.
This doesn’t mean that you need to create an account on every channel out there; you need to identify where your customers are and reach them through the platforms they spend the most time on. Joining groups on Facebook are also a great way to advertise your small business to people in your area. And don’t forget to add relevant hashtags to expand your search!
Creating and consistently sharing content that is valuable and relevant to your audience will help you gain more online visitors, generate more leads and boost your business. From blog posts and videos to podcasts and webinars, the opportunities within the world of content marketing are virtually endless.
Too many businesses waste time and resources creating content with no value or payoff. Content marketing is not the easiest tactic out there, so you need to make sure you have the time and talent necessary to get started and keep it going.
One of the most powerful local digital marketing solutions is email marketing. Email is still the highest converting channel for interacting with leads and is one of the best ways to grow your business. Email marketing is relatively low cost and easy to set up, segment, automate, track and optimize. With the right message and compelling layout, you can effectively reach almost anyone.
Direct Mail Marketing
Online marketing is quickly becoming saturated with content, leaving opportunities for small businesses to take advantage of traditional tactics like direct mailer marketing. The direct mail tactic is typically done in conjunction with other digital tactics as a supplemental tool. A tastefully designed mailer with compelling content, or maybe even a handwritten note, can grab the attention your local audience.
Did you know that Google’s algorithm favors local businesses in its search results? As a small business owner, you cannot afford to ignore search engine optimization (SEO). Almost everyone searches for a product, service or business online before they make a transactional decision. If you don’t show up in a search, it’s almost as if you don’t exist.
A well planned and executed SEO strategy will help your small business gain more organic traffic and place you higher on search engine results so you get the traffic you need to capture qualified leads. Want to learn more about SEO? Here’s a helpful blog with everything you need to know.
Does the saying “Teamwork makes the dream work” ring a bell? Building partnerships with other small businesses is a great way to achieve mutual growth. For example, if you own a plumbing business, you could work with a local coffee shop to give a free drink voucher to new customers. Both companies gain new business at virtually no cost. Combining resources with other local companies can save you money and time, expand your customer base and even help you solve businesses problems!
Referrals are an easy way to find new customers. Setting up a reward-based referral program with current customers and employees can help you get more business. From vouchers and gift cards to time off work, there are plenty of incentives out there that will motivate your people to take action. You could also turn your referral program into a time-based competition; reward those who bring in the most referral customers with a bigger, more attractive prize.
Not sure where to start?
With so many options out there, it can be difficult to know what’s best for your business. At Collective Alternative, we Make Business Personal® by creating a customized marketing strategy with a unique combination of the tactics above, and maybe a few others, that drive ROI. We truly care about you and your business, and we want to see you succeed. Our local marketing strategies are assessed and adjusted over time to ensure your business is making a continued impact on your industry, customers and community.