As a marketing small business supporting other small to medium size companies we know and understand the time pressure and budget constraints of how best to make marketing work as smart and as hard as it can for you.
So we’ve done the research for you to review the latest thinking in the industry, and to try and help you focus and dedicate some time and budget to 5 key marketing tools that will provide your business with the biggest impact.
It can seem like a tool that only big businesses can really get to grips with and afford to utilise, but there are lots of easy ways that you can improve how easy it is for potential customers to find out about your company. A great place to start is Google My Business https://www.google.com/business. Once you’re up and running people will be able to find out your contact details, opening hours and rate your business. If you want to extend this across Yahoo and Bing with time, then this will also increase traffic to your website.
We both have backgrounds in Marketing but even so getting started with a blog can seem tricky – you may feel you’re not a ‘writer’, how do you decide what to write about and will anyone be interested? But from the work we’ve done with clients and our own experience one person’s standard day at work can often be fascinating to someone not in that industry, and often shared and honest insights allow others, including potential customers to get a real feel for what you’re like as a person, and therefore the values your business has. Start with topics you know most about and don’t worry about how long or short the blog is. A well written piece can be shared over a number of social media platforms, go on your website and even provide some good old fashioned PR for a local paper. The time spent initially is well worth it.
Some people don’t always see Networking as marketing but the power of talking to people either face to face or through virtual networks is still a very direct and powerful tool. Most surveys show that people are still swayed in purchasing decisions by having liked or connected with the individual they are buying from, and networking is a platform where the small to medium size enterprise can actually come off better than big business. The key is to be strategic; really think about your customer base, but also how the extended network might help you. Make the most of community networks too if your business is aimed at the local area, sponsorship of locals sports clubs or talking at local events can really help in building your brand.
Old School Marketing
Whilst social media and digital marketing are a key part to any marketing plan don’t underestimate the power of leaflet drops, posters or handing out business cards. Having contacts at the local paper that you can send press releases to is also a cost effective option for getting press coverage for your business.
Don’t be afraid to get help
Help can come in many different forms, from getting tips from your business network to looking at what your competitors are doing. Speak to your customers and clients – how have they heard about you? What influences them when making buying decisions? There are also lots of free seminars and briefings covering topics such as SEO and Social Media. And finally………..if you decide your time is better placed focussed on your business think about using companies such as Admin Lab to support you on an ad hoc or ongoing basis!!
If you have anything that has made your short list or something that your business has seen a real return from please do share it with us.