How To Promote Your Small Business With These 10 Marketing Strategies

 Promote Your Small Business
Whether you are writing a business plan for your new small business, or you want to reach your target market, preparing a marketing plan is an essential success ingredient.

A marketing plan outlines the marketing and advertising strategies that a business wants to implement to gain and retain customers.

In this article, we are outlining the 10 top strategies you should include in the marketing plan of your small business.

1. Branding - Who Are You?

Branding is one of the most important strategies of any business. Branding is all about who you are in your prospects’ minds. It is the personality of your business and the more unique and clear it is, the better.

You can communicate who you are, what you do, and what your company stands for, with your branding strategy. Once you get a clear idea of your brand identity yourself, it’s time to communicate it to your prospects and customers.

The execution stage of branding can start with choosing a name, logo, color palette, and tone of voice. Moreover, you should convey it through all your marketing channels and customer service. Your brand should be integrated and expressed into all your business activities.

For instance, you define your brand personality to be a cooperative and assistive one. So, you should express and maintain a sense of assistance through the colors you choose, the UX/UI you design, the content of your blog and social media, the way you reply to social media comments, your sales pitch, and customer support.

2. Buyer Personas - Who Are Your Customers?

The misconception of “anyone can buy from your business” can lead to ineffective marketing efforts, and waste time and money. So, as a small business, you should determine your target market and choose a niche instead of a wide market.

There is no one-size-fits-all marketing strategy, and that’s why you should customize your marketing strategy to your target market. That’s the only way to get results out of implementing marketing strategies.

Study your prospects and customers to define your business's buyer personas. You can customize your marketing strategies to your target audience, only if you know them well.

Describe them for yourself, in terms of their demographic, income level and financial status, and their habits of spending time and purchasing products.

It’s best to clarify your buyer personas as much as possible, to have a better understanding of how you can serve them best.

3. Value Proposition - What Are You Offering to Your Prospects?

The value proposition is a unique and creative statement of what you can offer to your prospects that differentiates you from your competition. If you don’t make a difference with the other businesses that are already in the market, then why should a customer be compelled to buy from you?

Your value proposition should demonstrate your business’ benefits for consumers that convince them to purchase your products or services. Determine your value proposition as a problem-solver to customer challenges. Emphasize the value you offer using your branding activities.

A value proposition shouldn't be written in stone. You can offer your value proposition, for example, on your website’s landing page, and test how your customers react to that. If it’s not as attractive as you thought it would be, then you can change it.

4. Promotional Channels - Where Are Your Customers?

To better reach your intended customers you have to figure out where your customers are and how they interact there.

After understanding who your customers are and what values you can offer to them, it’s time to check where they are. Whether your customers are B2B or B2C, they can be promoted differently. Choosing the right promotional channels to convey your marketing message is of high importance.

To choose the best promotional channels for your business you can benchmark. Research the competitors and their processes of interacting with their customers. Look for the best practices as well as opportunities; things your competitors didn’t cover or take into consideration.

Remember that you are not going to copy what they did. You just want to see how well their customers are reached through different channels.

After benchmarking, consider your objectives, analyze your strengths in each channel, and decide your channel strategy based on the available budget.

You can choose among various channels like Facebook Ads, Google Adwords, content marketing, email marketing, or webinars, depending on your analysis.
 Promote Your Small Business

5. Website - How Professional Is Your Online Presence?

One of the effective touchpoints with your customers is your website. A professionally developed website is an asset to any business, esp. small businesses. Your website is your online presence, it is where you show your prospects your unique selling proposition (USP).

To make an impressive presence online, hire an agency to develop your website professionally from the list of 10 top web design companies. Provide the branding documents to the agency, so they can align your website UX UI design with your branding strategy.

Add your unique informative content inline with your brand’s tone of voice. Then, optimize your website for search engines, as you want your customers to find you through services like Google.

Having a professional, user-friendly website significantly affects your customer’s buying decision.

6. Word of Mouth - Will Your Customers Recommend You?

Word of mouth is one of the most effective ways to promote a business. Whatever your product or service or your industry is, the recommendations of your customers are priceless.

Word of mouth marketing includes both intended and naturally occurred promotion of your business through satisfied consumers. It is highly fruitful as over 90% of people prefer recommendations by their friends and family to any other advertising method.

To implement a WOM strategy, give your customers something to remember you with; an experience, thought, or anything unique.

Collecting and sharing honest testimonials and reviews of your products and services is a powerful way of gaining trust.

Encourage your happy customers to recommend you by implementing a referral program. Many clients may be satisfied with your services, but they don’t take action upon it. A professional referral program nudges them to take further steps for the experience they had with your brand.

7. Social Media - Can Your Prospects Interact With You?

It’s non-negotiable that people spend so much time on social media and use them in their buying decision. 67% of consumers ask for support through businesses’ social media accounts.

Be active on social media and customize your promotional activities based on each platform and type of customer. After having an active presence of social media, interact with your customers. Reply to their comments and answer their direct private messages to keep them engaged.

This way, you present your brand as a responsive one to your prospects. Also, this is a great strategy to encourage other users to interact with you and increase social media engagement.

Choosing the right platforms is crucial, but more importantly, it is to keep your audience posted and engaged.

8. Content Marketing - How Informative Are You?

Creating informative, SEO-friendly, and evergreen content can win the hearts of both your customers and search engines at the same time.

Content marketing is the key to any successful inbound-marketing effort. Unlike paid advertisement, it is a long-term investment that can generate leads for your business in the long run.

Emphasizing your desired keywords using blog and text content is as necessary as creating video and photo content. Photo and video content is vital, as audience habits are changing from text to visual content.

You can hire a freelancer or an agency to outsource your content marketing activities to diminish costs. Though if your business highly relies on content, it’s better to hire a full-time content team.

9. CRM - How To Manage Customer Relationships?

The best way to keep your email marketing effective is by customizing emails for each customer. This is only possible if you have a Customer Relationship Management system in place.

Using a professional CRM system enables you to keep track of your leads, prospects, and customers to better serve them. CRM helps you customize your interactions with customers and boost the productivity of marketing efforts.

Implementing CRM as a marketing strategy, companies can enter all leads and prospects’ information into the system. Then, the sales staff can follow them up to increase sales and profitability.

CRM system is also the prerequisite of any successful customer loyalty plan.

10. Customer Loyalty - Will Your Customers Return To You?

If your whole marketing plan focuses on generating new leads and finding new customers, then we have good news for you. Returning customers are assets to your business, and implementing a customer loyalty strategy is highly recommended.

Return customers are the ones that have bought from you and experienced your service once before. They need the least amount of time and energy compared to that of new customers. Including a customer loyalty strategy in your marketing plan means increasing revenue without the costs of new customer attainment.

The first step to implement a customer retention plan is to ask for feedback from your existing customers. You can use customer satisfaction surveys to encourage them to provide their feedback.

Considering the feedback your customers provide can show how your product or service should be improved to retain your customers.

AUTHOR_NAMEAbout the Author:
Ayla Anderson is an avid reader and an enthusiastic blogger who writes articles on home improvement, business, Family and beauty. She is also an MBA student who spends much of her time giving advice to newly small businesses on how to grow their businesses. You can follow me on Twitter.
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