Does a small business need a marketing strategy?
Yes, It Does.
It is essential for small businesses to have a marketing strategy in place because without one your entire sales strategy is based on word of mouth.
How do you get started with a marketing strategy in your small business?
The 1st thing is to define your desired audience. Make the list of the various groups of people and/or businesses who will benefit from whatever it is that you sell.
Once you have your list, the next step is to think about where they hang out. Where they’re likely to find you, both online and offline.
What about online?
Inbound marketing is all about helping your prospects solve their problems, ideally by building a relationship with you.
Most small businesses work on a limited budget. If you are one of these, there are plenty of online marketing for very little cost.
Blogging: Update your business website with new and fresh content frequently. Write for people, format for search engines. People love blogs that provide real answers. This is where you start. Your blog is the hub of all your online marketing activities.
Social media: Everyone is online these days. Take a look at the various social media networks and pick those that match your business locate leads.
SEO, search engine optimization helps your business pops up in search engine results for specific terms. Above I said “write for people, format for search engines”. SEO is formatting for search engines. There is quite a bit to it, but it’s not rocket science. Anyone can learn it.
Video marketing: Simple videos shots will do the trick. It can be shot on a smart phone and edited with MS-Movie Maker 2.6. Just make sure they say something real, or contain kittens. Everyone loves kittens.
Email: Email is the most effective communication method that businesses use. Use emails to send weekly or monthly newsletters that customers opt in to receive. Ensure you don’t send spam as people don’t want to receive them, they’ll report you, and your email marketing efforts will become less effective.
All of the above is built around who you’re talking to. In your blog posts, in your social media updates, in your videos. Don’t just define your target audience as a demographic. Create a fictional character or two and write for them. It may sound strange, but it works.