It’s hard to argue that marketing, in some way or another, isn’t essential to the growth and success of a business, regardless of the industry. And while there are tactics and methods that are especially useful for some industries, there are a few strategic staples that any company can benefit from.
1. Take advantage of social media opportunities.
For a while, seasoned marketers weren’t sold on the important role social media would come to play in marketing efforts. Originally, it was hard to track return on investment (ROI), and even today, it’s not always easy to follow the relationship between posts and sales. Still, social media (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.) can be a powerful tool for marketing efforts.
From branding to customer service, social media marketing empowers small businesses to create stronger relationships with existing and potential customers. In fact, 71% of customers who had a positive experience via social media will go on to recommend that company to their friends.
When it comes to social media, the number one perk for small business owners, especially if they’re on a budget, is that basic features and functions are free and more than enough to help you make an impression.
2. Work with influencers to build your brand.
With product reviews and ratings at their fingertips, consumers are quick to research a product before they buy it and even quicker to question a sales pitch. Pair that with the abundance of products and services available to them, and it can be hard to tap into the market and engage consumers by simply “selling” to them.
In recent years, many marketers have found that influencers help bridge that gap by bringing a sense of authenticity to the messaging behind the products they endorse. This sentiment is backed by recent statistics from a MuseFind survey that show more than 90% of consumers trust an influencer more than they would a traditional marketing ploy or celebrity endorsement, and many marketers are increasing the money allocated for influencer-based marketing.
Top-notch influencer strategies employed by large companies can end up costing a lot of money, but that doesn’t mean this tactic is out of question. In a recent post on Social Media Explorer, Dakota Shane, co-founder of social media agency Arctiphi, shared an encouraging and creative way to anchor influencer marketing.
Shane discusses his time spent as a Uber driver and recalled the amount of times riders asked about a good place to eat or which night club to go to. For local restaurants, he became an influencer, and as such, suggested that businesses that fit those profiles consider offering the Uber influencers a percentage of sales on a certain night.
The point is, that an influencer can be anyone who could foreseeably recommend your business to their network, and with a little creativity, you can identify and engage them.
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3. Don’t be afraid to create and use video content.
Next to Google, YouTube is the biggest search engine out there. That’s evident in a recent Cisco study that suggests that video content will account for over 80% of all Internet traffic. Video content is highly valued by search engines, lets small businesses relay vital information about their product or service in a fairly limited time frame, and can reach a wide audience of potential customers.
Creating video content can seem a bit daunting, but there are a variety of tools available to those who wish to tap into this marketing strategy, and many of them can fit modest budgets. A quality camera and microphone can go a long way, and editing apps like iMovie can making polishing a breeze.
The key to starting your video content efforts is to keep it simple. Start with products, services, or messages that are easy to relay on camera, and save the more complex stuff for when you or your team have some experience under your belt.
4. Take advantage of Google My Business.
One of the EASIEST and most effective things you can do to increase exposure is to list your company on Google My Business. The benefits are numerous and the price is unbeatable (read as “free”). When listed, your company becomes visible in both search results and on Google maps, helping you stand out.
Listing on Google My Business also is great to increase visibility in local searches, and it puts your contact information and hours at the fingertips of potential customers, meaning they can call you by simply clicking your number.
In addition to just getting your info out there, you can also access customer reviews, which, when positive, can go a long way in increasing sales.
When it comes to getting your brand out there, this method is a must.
5. Don’t limit your efforts.
One of the most dangerous things you can do when building your marketing plan is to focus solely on one specific marketing channel. The reason for this is simple: consumers respond and engage in a variety of ways.
You may find that email blasts are more effective for some consumer, but other are much more likely to respond to a social media post. Still, others may come across your product or service while searching on Google, meaning organic and paid search efforts would be needed.
The key is to continually analyze your efforts, making tweaks as necessary. You may eventually find that one marketing channel simply doesn’t work, and that’s fine, but it’s important to come to that conclusion after trial and error as opposed to assuming it from the get-go.
Marketing your product or service is key to continual growth in both customer base and revenue. While many methods and tactics depend on the industry you’ll find that these five tips can yield results regardless.
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