When it comes to small business marketing, you may be stumped. How do you get the word out about your business? Of course the type of business advertising and marketing ideas that will work best for you will vary according to the type of business you have.
But one thing is for certain: you need a complete small business marketing strategy. Just one idea won’t be enough.
If your small business is geographically-based, then the first thing you’ve got to do is advertise locally. Direct mail campaigns are a great place to start. You can also hand out flyers at major events, but make sure that you get permission to do so first.
Also don’t downplay the importance of word of mouth testimonials. There is nothing like the recommendation of a friend to boost your business.
No matter what kind of business you have, you should have a website. Today most people go to the internet to find information about various products and services, even if the business they want to learn more about is located right in their neighborhood.
You must have a web presence because it not only legitimizes your business, but it also gives potential customers a reason to actually come and visit your physical location. Some people are less likely to visit a business if it doesn’t have a website.
All small business online marketing strategies should include a plan for organic search engine optimization, also known as SEO. This involves using keywords on your website in a way that causes your site to rank high in the search engines.
This means that when people are looking for the type of goods or services you offer, your page should rank in the first page of results if you’ve done your SEO plan correctly.
Determining which keywords to use requires some research, not just on the words people are using when referring to your niche, but also which words will make it easy for your site to rank high on the search engines.
Tools like Market Samurai offer an excellent way to figure out which keywords your site should target in order to bring in quality website traffic to your site. You may also consider hiring an SEO firm to handle this aspect of it for you.
Finally, no small business can afford to overlook social media, which is the new way many word of mouth referrals come about (although traditional word of mouth is important too).
Make sure that you’ve not only got a Facebook page and Twitter account for your business, but also that you’re using them regularly. Interact with your customers and potential customers by giving them something of value, such as great information and solutions to problems or issues they’re inquiring about. You can also show off your expertise in ways that would be of benefit to them.
Perhaps it’s through your blog, where you can offer tips and tricks on various topics related to your business. You can then post the links to your articles on your social media accounts. This will make potential customers more likely to turn to you when they have an issue you can help with because they’ll not only see your company name, but also be able to watch you demonstrate your knowledge.
In short, there is no quick and easy small business marketing solution. Your best chance at success is to consider each tip above and look for ways to integrate some if not all of them into your business plan.