If you run a small business, you will likely wear many hats, from sales to operations, marketing, and finance. You need to be able to do a bit of everything.
8 Marketing Tips For Starting Businesses
When your budget is low, which as a small business it likely is, marketing can often seem like something unavailable to you.
Many people think that marketing is reserved for larger companies with more time and resources.
With a simple plan and the right tactics, though, this is not true. We have created a roadmap to help you get started marketing your small business in a way that will not take up too much time or cost the earth.
Understand your audience.
Before you throw yourself into marketing, buy ads, and create a social media profile, the first thing you need to do is figure out who your buyer is.
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Common mistake business owners make is thinking that everyone is a potential buyer, but even a product that everyone uses will have some segmentation.
Ideally, you want to reach the most specific group of people possible who are likely to be seeking your products and services.
Then, you can create laser-focused strategies to reach them, rather than trying to get in front of everyone at the same time. An excellent place to start is with your existing customers.
Identify their age, gender, location, and any other defining characteristics. You may find that you have 2-3 different personas to target in various ways as you go through this process.
To understand and reach more audience, you can consider seeking growth services such as Home Service Direct and start growing your business.
Identify your USP.
In any market, you will have competition, so you need to work out your unique selling point or value proposition to convince people to use your business over others.
Differentiators may include cost and location but often go deeper with customer service or quick turnaround times being good examples of USPs that you can promote.
Look for easy wins.
As a small business, being scrappy and bootstrapping to start with is an excellent way to get a return on your investment to invest in more expensive techniques. Marketing tactics like search engine optimization (SEO) take time, so they probably are not the best place to start.
Using this example, spending a few hundred dollars on paid ads to get you to the top of Google immediately may be a more effective strategy.
Figure out what works.
The first few months of marketing is often a case of throwing a few things on the wall and seeing what sticks.
Experiment with a small budget on a few options, and then if you find something that works, stop the rest and focus on that to maximize the return you get with minimal effort.
Get your brand in order.
Before you commit to spending hundreds or thousands on a marketing campaign, start with ensuring that your brand is clear and recognizable.
For many people, a brand is simply a logo, but it is much more than that. A brand is the color palette you use, your tone of voice, and the messages that you are trying to get across.
With a strong brand, your message will be communicated consistently across all marketing channels.
You can then start printing out your assets, getting flyers made, and wall decals put up. An excellent option for decals is https://www.craftsmenind.com which we recommend checking out.
Try free tools before you buy.
There are loads of tools available for you to use to help with your website, tracking orders, and finances, but once you start using a few, the price can add up.
Take advantage of any free trials that tools and software companies offer you and use as many of the features as possible to ensure that the investment is worth is before you buy.
Create a website.
A website is equivalent to your shop window in the digital space, so having a professional and up-to-date website is a must. If your website looks like it is from 2007, people will likely see your business as old and out of date.
Many options are available to create a website that reflects your business, from doing it yourself, drag and drops builders like Squarespace, to hiring a local freelancer to build a website for you.
Set up social media accounts.
Most people spend at least some of their day browsing social media, so having a presence on these platforms is very important. As a small business, social media is a valuable tool as it is free to set up and allows you to attract new customers while engaging with those that are already loyal.
Before setting up on every social media platform, you can think of, go back to your audience, and use this to decide which they are most likely to be spending time on. No point in spending hours is working on TikTok videos if you are trying to get in front of middle-aged professionals.
Each social media platform will also have the option to pay for boosted or sponsored posts, which is a great way to increase your posts’ reach. Take the time to create an audience that is as specific as possible, meaning you are giving yourself the best chance of your ads converting.
Another useful strategy is to post on your social media channels regularly with a variety of content if one post is particularly well-received from sponsoring it to increase the performance even more.
Other advertising options
When thinking of advertising, our minds often go straight to adverts on TV or print ads in magazines, but many other options are available.
Advertising on social media, as mentioned above, is cheaper and more targeted than many traditional options. Advertising digitally also means that you are in complete control of your ads and can start and stop them as you please.
Advertising on Google with pay-per-click ads is another good option for small businesses, and you can focus on targeting keywords that your customers will be searching for. Doing this ensures that you are only advertising to people with ‘buyer intent,’ who are much more likely to be interested in your offering.
Again, you can set a budget of only a few hundred dollars and edit the campaign quickly depending on how it performs to maximize your return on investment and minimize losing money.