A.15 Marketing Strategies: Audience, Value Proposition, Goals, Short-term Plays, Double-down, existing Customers. Website, Blog, Social Media, Email Mktg, CRM, Word-of-Mouth
B. 25 more Marketing Tips for Small Businesses: Topics: Brand, Buyer, Loco (no Logo) Website, Analytics, SEO, Keyword, Mobile, Content, Scale, S/Media, Email Mktg, Coupons, Webinar, Testimonials, Experiment & more.
These strategies are fundamental as you generate awareness and revenue for your organization:
1. Know your Audience.
A key mistake is thinking that “anyone” is your buyer. Larger companies may be able to appeal to a wide market, but they say, “the Riches are in the Niches” for a reason. A niche is where you’ll have the most leverage as a small business. And to develop a niche and appeal to buyers within the niche, you must understand their pains, problems, triggering events, & priorities. What is driving them to make a decision? What does it look like if they succeed? Knowing these things will help you create messaging that resonates with them and makes a compelling case for your solution. Start with your existing customers and create a typical Buyer Profile.
2. Emphasize your Value Proposition.
If there’s no difference between you and your competition, there’s no reason why a Prospect would buy from you. Your VP is what will differentiate you from your Competition and make up your Prospects’ mind that you’re the provider to go with. What do you do better than anyone in the industry? Better, Faster, Cheaper? Conveying this makes a compelling proposition.
3. Stay focused on the most important Goals.
If you’re exploring the world of Marketing, you may have noticed that there are a Google amount of directions you can go in. It’s tempting to do it all at once and create a complicated system in hopes that you covered all your bases, and it’s easy to take on too much. Instead, identify where the biggest impact will be. Where is the biggest blind spot in your marketing that’s prohibiting your growth? Set a performance goal around that one key area and focus your resources on the activities and tactics that will achieve that one goal. You can expand your efforts or pivot to other initiatives when you’ve made significant progress toward that primary goal.
4. Capitalize on short-term Plays.
Start scrappy. As you scale, it’s critical to see ROI sooner. This will give you the momentum and Cash Flow to put toward larger projects, long-term plays, & more sustainable growth models. If you have evidence that people are taking to Google with purchasing intent for your particular solution, you may find that Paid Ads will give you the best short-term ROI.
5. Double-down on what works.
Once you have your initiatives running and you’ve experimented with a few things, capture the data frequently and pay attention to it. This can inform you of what’s working & what’s not. As you Scale, it’s a good idea to double-down on proven methods of generating revenue.
6. Understand the power of existing Customers.
A 1990 study, it was found that it costs, on average, 5x more to acquire a new customer than to expand an existing one. This means you shouldn’t stop marketing once they’ve made their initial buy-in. Identify your opportunities for repeat & expanding purchasing, up-& cross-selling. Because your existing customers have already made a purchase, they already know, like, and trust you. If you’ve provided a good experience, you’ve given them a reason to do business with you again – should the need ever arise. Even if the need doesn’t arise (in cases where it’s a one-&-done purchase with no up-sell opportunities), you should still delight your customers. Word of mouth is a powerful (& free) promotional tool. Ask for Referrals
7. Use “free” Promotional tools.
Speaking of free promotional tools, it’s important to note that since you’ve committed to a limited goal & scope, there’s no need to inflate your overhead. Use free promotional tools where possible, and only commit to paid tools if you know they will extensively improve existing operations or performance. Search internee for a list of marketing tools (free, low-cost & paid).
8. Create a Website to own your Online Presence.
Having a professional-looking Website is one of the most important assets you will create for your startup or small business. This is where you will show who you are, what you offer, where you are, and how a potential customer can get in touch with you. It is a channel you will always own (unlike other platforms which may change policies or go in & out of style), and it has the capability of generating significant Traffic – in addition to being a place to send Traffic from advertising and other marketing initiatives. Your Website isn’t just a simple brochure, either. You have the capability of turning it into a 24-7 Sales-person by understanding how to convert traffic and turn them into leads, then customers). For one of the best Website tools, check out HubSpot’s CMS.
9. Consider Blogging to attract Prospects to your Website.
Blogging is a great way to generate traffic – particularly for those prospects who have not reached a purchasing decision yet. In addition, it can establish credibility in your space and position you as a Thought Leader. To start a Blog, you can use an inexpensive or free Website tool to make a free site and use one of their templates. (ie, Word Press) Even if you only publish once a week, it will improve your Website’s visibility online and help educate your potential Customers on why they should trust your company. Once you start writing, be sure you add a call-to-action on your posts for Visitors to subscribe to your Blog & then receive Emails This is a great way to start collecting leads and offering potential customers a way to get information if they aren’t ready to buy anything from you yet.
10. Promote yourself on Social Media.
SM might seem like it’s just a fun platform for people to socialize & connect, but it’s actually a powerful business tool. SM can help you increase your domain authority, improve your SEO rankings, and engage with potential customers. Why wouldn’t you want to be seen where your potential Customers spend their time?
11. Invest in Advertising when . . .
Organic traffic takes a while to build, and as a startup or small business, you want to invest in short-term plays. Pay-to-play tactics that target buyers with high intent are great for short-term wins to jump-start other objectives. Google Ads are perfect – if you know that your Target audience is searching the web for your product or solution. If they aren’t, you might consider SM Ads instead. Individuals on SM have less buying intent, but with highly targeted ads and enough impressions, you’ll gain the interest of your audience.
12. Make sure you’re capturing Web prospects’ Info.
(Just like a Spider captures the Fly) We’ve been talking a lot about visibility & traffic, but haven’t really covered how these will help drive revenue yet. One simple way to start generating leads or customers from your Website is to implement a Conversion tool.
A simple, free option is HubSpot Marketing Free. By using this tool to add a pop-up widget to your Website, you can start collecting the Email addresses of potential customers. From there, you can send out promotions & offers to convert them into paying customers. You can also implement any of these 24 conversion tools to help you optimize your Website and use it to drive leads.
13. Use Email marketing to nurture leads.
Just because you’ve converted Website traffic into leads, doesn’t mean those leads are ready to buy yet. It’s important to stay in their mind and move them closer to a purchasing decision. Email marketing is a critical part of your Marketing toolkit. In fact, 73 percent of millennials prefer communications from businesses to come via Email. This strategy is an easy, free, & scalable way to communicate with both new and existing customers. Once you have an Email marketing tool in place (many are inexpensive or even free), experiment with Emailing out newsletters (with your sleek new Blog posts), and other promotions to your database. We know small business owners don’t have tons of free time to devote to digital marketing, so consider using marketing automation to make this process even easier for yourself. To get started planning your Email marketing strategy, check out this guide and template from HubSpot.
14. Manage Relationships with a CRM.
Email marketing works best when you’re sending personalized, targeted Emails. This begins with a customer database or Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. Your CRM stores information about your leads, prospects, & customers so that you can keep track of customer inter-actions and identify sales opportunities more effectively. HubSpot has one of the best CRMs (and best of all, it’s totally free).
15. Lean into “word of mouth” as a Promotion Channel.
As mentioned previously, delighting customers can have a big impact on your business – primarily in repeat purchases and word of mouth. If you provide a great experience, your customers will be more inclined to leave reviews, give testimonials, and tell their friends about you. That’s why it’s a good idea to measure Customer satisfaction and encourage customers to spread the word.
B. 25 more Marketing Tips for Small Businesses
- Determine your Brand’s identity.
- Identify your Buyer persona.
- Design a Logo and other assets.
- Build your Website with CMS template.
- Track your site with Analytic tools.
- Consult Agencies & Freelancers for Web design help.
- Boost your Google ranking with SEO.
- Research Keyword opportunities.
- Optimize your Website for mobile devices.
- Write optimized Blog posts.
- Experiment with Photo & Video content.
- Hire an Expert to help you scale your content.
- Launch Biz pages on Facebook & Yelp.
- Build out your Social Media strategy.
- Use Social Media for customer service.
- Build interesting Landing pages.
- Plan an Email marketing strategy.
- Offer Coupons in Newsletters and/or on Landing pages.
- Share your Distribution channels on your Website.
- Offer a free Webinar.
- Consider PPC Advertising.
- Advertise on Social Media.
- Try co-Marketing.
- Draw up a go-to-market strategy.
1. Determine your Brand’s identity.
Having a consistent Brand identity to promote your business will make you look more professional and help you attract new customers. According to a 2020 study, nearly 9 out of 10 people are brand loyal with nearly 25% of them climbing to be more brand loyal in 2020 compared to 2019.
2. Identify your Buyer’s persona.
When you imagine a customer searching for your product or service, what are they like? What are their pain points? What is their job? Creating a Buyer persona that tells a story of your ideal customer can help you make a Website that’s optimized for them. By learning more about your target customer through creating a Buyer persona, you can better figure out what types of things they may be searching for – so you can include those things on your Website.
3. Design a Logo and other assets.
To start getting the creative juices flowing, consider your color scheme and peruse palettes with Adobe Color or Coolors. You can create your own or look through pre-made or customized color palettes.
To create a Logo, I’d recommend checking out Upwork or Freelancer. There are free and less expensive options for designing your own Logo online – although using a freelancer or agency can give you a higher quality product and connect you with a designer who can change and update your brand assets as your company grows.
4. Build your Website with a CMS template.
If you’re a fairly tech-savvy small business owner, you’ll probably want to build your own Website. A CMS (Content Management System) makes the process simple. Most CMSs offer customizable templates for your site that you can get for free or a small fee. There are templates for various skill levels — from beginner all the way to advanced. Once you’ve created your Website, most CMS platforms offer plugins to help you optimize your content for search (look for SEO plugins). This will help you rank better in Google — which we’ll discuss more in-depth later.
5. Track your Site with analytics tools.
If you’ve never made a Website before and aren’t entirely comfortable with the technical elements, there are a variety of free tools & services to help you get started. When you create your Website, make sure you implement Google Analytics or HubSpot Marketing Free (both of which are free products) so you can easily track who’s looking at your site.
6. Consult Agencies or Experts for Web design help.
If you aren’t on the technical side and want a Website built for your small business, you can use a Web Master or an Agency that specializes in Web design & maintenance. This is a great option for businesses that already have a Website, but need it to be updated and enhanced for SEO (search engine optimization) to help improve your Google ranking. To find a Web Master or Web Ageny in your area, you can use Upwork (filtering by design/creative), Codeable (for WordPress experts) or Freelancer.
7. Boost your Google ranking with SEO.
If you already have a business, have you ever searched for yourself or your product/service online? If so, did you think, “Why isn’t my Website showing up on Google?” If so, you probably thought, “How do I rank on Google?” or “How can I improve my Google ranking?” There are a lot of factors that play into why a certain site or page appears in the top spots on the Google (or another search engine) search engine results page (SERP). Backlinko reports some of Google’s top factors, which include having relevant keywords (and their placement on your site), the length of your content, having high-quality content, how fast your page loads, how often you post content, and more. When it all boils down to, Google essentially tries to find the best piece of content to present to the person searching. Google always wants to surface the most relevant, highest-quality piece of content. To rank higher on Google, you can leverage the power of SEO. To start learning everything there is to know about this powerhouse marketing tactic, check out The Ultimate Guide to SEO. HubSpot explains SEO as “techniques that help your Website rank higher in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This makes your Website more visible to people who are looking for solutions that your brand, product, or service can provide via search engines like Google & Yahoo.” In other words, it’s the basic concept of structuring your Website & Blog posts to be in the best shape for appearing first on search engines. SEO strategy usually consists of a few things. These include Buyer Persona Research (BPR), keyword research, and on-page SEO research. These three areas can help you learn how your target market is searching online, and position your business to get discovered by the right people.
8. Research keywords opportunities.
Keyword research is an extension of BPR. You can use the personas you’ve created to search for the best keywords for your brand, then use a tool like KW Finder to find related keywords for your Target audience. Then, you can do some on-page SEO research & optimization. This is where you put those keywords in the correct places on your Website — like in the Meta-description, page Titles, & H1 tags.
9. Optimize your Website for mobile devices.
Most Google searches are done on mobile devices, so it’s important to have a site that is clean and easy to navigate – when someone enters it on their SmartPhone. A mobile site can also be beneficial for SEO, with search engines like Google which rewards you with a higher ranking if you have a mobile site. You don’t have to be a Tech expert to build a site that looks good on mobile. In fact, most CMS platforms like HubSpot already offer mobile-optimized templates.
10. Write optimized Blog posts.
Content & Blogging are extremely important – when it comes to your Search Engine ranking. The more often your desired keywords appear in your high-quality and helpful content, the more likely you are to appear in search results. A great way to become an authority on your topic, product, or service is to Blog. Make sure you’re writing with SEO in mind — use this SEO checklist for bloggers, or a WordPress plugin like Yoast.
11. Experiment with Photo & Video content.
According to HubSpot Research, more than 50% of consumers want to see Videos from brands. Additionally, most SM apps, like Facebook & Instagram are embracing more visual layouts. To keep up with these trends, it’s a good idea to make a few marketing videos. If you use these tips, producing a few can be quite inexpensive.
12. Hire a Web Master to help you scale your content.
If you need some help creating regular Blogs or promotional content, consider hiring a Web Master over investing in a full-timer. Try Upwork for a freelance Web Master + videographer, or photographer, if you want to try for fancy. You could also consider hiring a Marketing agency for a larger project.
13. Launch Business pages on Facebook & Yelp.
If your business is focused on a local area, the most important accounts for you are Facebook, Yelp, & Google’s business content. Having high Yelp reviews improves your authority online and helps your search ranking. You can claim your business on Yelp for free, customize your profile and add pictures, and start asking for reviews. The same thing goes for registering your Google Business page. You can register your business with Google (for free) and add pictures. (If you’ve ever searched for your business in Google Maps and been disappointed not to see it, it’s because you haven’t claimed it yet!) On Facebook, you can create a Facebook business page -so that people can find your location & hours. For any business, having up-to-date Social Media accounts will help you be found and engage with prospects. Create a Twitter account, Facebook page, learn how to use Instagram, create a Pinterest page (if relevant), and use them as a way to discover new clients.
14. Build out your Social Media strategy.
While Facebook & Yelp will be great tools for local searches & reviews, platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, & Twitter will offer you even more opportunities to share your posts, content, and promotions. If your customers can purchase your products or services online, these platforms will also give them another way to find you. Be sure not to spread yourself too thin by joining too many platforms at once. To make strategizing easier, here’s a guide to the five types of social media platforms and the pros and cons of each.
15. Use Social Media for Customer Service.
Once you’re on your chosen platforms, be sure to answer customer or follower questions when they ask them – thru post comments or direct messages. This will make your company look responsive & credible. Here are some great examples of how brands have used Twitter for customer service. If you have the means, consider hiring a Social Media manager (FT or PT) – with Community management experience. On top of posting content on a regular schedule, Commu Mgrs are charged with responding to questions or concerns of followers. Interested? We published a guide on what it takes to be a great S/Media Commu Mgr.
16. Build interesting Landing pages.
A landing page offers your potential customers a free resource in exchange for filling out a short form of contact information. When they receive the resource, they might be even more pleased by your company and more interested in buying the full product. Because Landing pages raise your chances of customer conversion, you want yours to look enticing. To get started, read this landing page guide to learn more about what makes this strategy successful. Then check out these free and professionally designed templates.
17. Plan an Email Marketing strategy.
Once you start creating regular content and building out Landing pages, you’ll want to share them with the prospects who seem most interested in learning more about your product. For this reason, we suggest building an Email marketing strategy.
While you want to be careful not to bombard those who sign up for your Email list with too many Emails, you want to send just enough to keep your prospects informed and engaged. Here’s how our metrics improved when we streamlined our Email marketing strategy. If you’ve never sent regular Newsletters before, you can use HubSpot or a number of other affordable tools to create and send an Email with a professionally designed template. Many Email tools also offer basic analytics that allow you to track open & click rates.
18. Offer Coupons in your Newsletters or on Landing pages.
Placing a coupon in your marketing Emails can engage and delight your audience. After buying a product or service at a discounted rate, they also might be more willing to pay for it in full price. If you have a subscription service, it can also be helpful to offer prospects a code for a free trial so they can test it out.
19. Share your Distribution channels on your Website.
Once you have a few Social Media accounts and can allow people to sign up for your newsletter, highlight this on your Website so your visitors can follow you. One way companies do this is to display all of their linked Social icons and a Newsletter sign-up call to action on all pages of your Website. A good place to include these is on the top right corner or on the footer of each page. This way they are visible but aren’t distracting from any content.
20. Offer a free Webinar.
A webinar allows potential customers to sign up for a short online course hosted by you. These courses are usually between 30 minutes to an hour and allow you to give tips and answer questions related to a topic your brand is familiar with. While this strategy can help you boost your credibility in your field, it can also offer you potential leads and sales opportunities.
21. Consider PPC Advertising.
If you’re working hard on SEO, but are still looking for an extra boost, consider PPC (Pay-per-Click) advertising. With this Search Engine marketing technique, you can use Google AdWords to show up higher – and as an advertised listing – in search results. Before you dive into PPC, you’ll want to make sure your Landing page is as optimized as possible. If you are paying by the click and those who click on the page don’t convert, you will lose advertising dollars. To help you get started, read this Ultimate Guide to PPC. Then, use this PPC planning template to plan an optimized campaign. You can also use a few handy tools and software to edit, track, and report on your campaigns.
22. Advertise on Social Media.
Most of the major S/Media platforms offer affordable advertising options that can help you target your posts to a specific audience. While many small businesses have been advertising on Facebook, Twitter, & LinkedIn for years, Instagram now allows brands to advertise through its Shoppable tool.
23. Experiment with Influencer Marketing.
Is there someone in your area with a high S/Media following who’s considered an expert in a field your company exists in? If you’re able to reach out to them, see if they’d be willing to share an experience they’ve had with your product or service on S/Media. This will alert their follower base of your product. These followers may also trust your product more because an expert is endorsing it. If you can’t find an Influencer to volunteer, you can also consider paying one or two on a freelance basis. To learn more about this strategy, check out our Ultimate Guide to Influencer Marketing.
24. Try Co-Marketing.
Is there a local business in your area that isn’t a direct competitor but offers a product or service to a similar Target audience? Consider working with them on a cobranded campaign where you promote each other on S/Media, via Email, or in your Blog. While you’ll give your partnering company added promotion, it will also allow their fan-base to learn more about you.
25. Draw up a “Go-to-Market” strategy.
Once you’ve activated all the tools you need to promote your product or service, you’ll need to create a Promotional plan that aligns with the customer journey. Consider which content will attract, engage, & delight your prospects and how you will convert them into a customer. To help you plan out this process, use this template.
26. Encourage happy Customers to share their Experiences.
When a happy Customer talks about how great your company is on S/Media or a review site, your product or service looks like a good investment. Even on S/Media, word of mouth is still a huge factor in someone’s purchasing decision. If a prospect sees a friend raving about your business on Facebook or if they post a photo of a meal from your restaurant on Instagram, they could be more likely to go. After all, 71% of consumers are more likely to purchase based on social media referrals. If customers are telling you they love your product, encourage them to share about the experience on Yelp, Google, or other S/Media. If you have a physical business, you might also want to place signs up with your account handles – so customers know – if they post a picture of your product.
27. Try out Marketing experiments.
If there’s a new S/Media platform you’re interested in or a new marketing trend, don’t be afraid to experiment. If an experiment goes well, you could be ahead of the game, and it never hurts to be a thought leader in your industry. When you experiment with a new Marketing strategy, be sure to have a solid hypothesis or question in mind. This will keep you focused on the end goal and reduce the desire to chase the next big thing as it comes along. Also, prepare for what your next steps will be – if you get good or bad results. Here’s a quick guide to leading a successful Marketing experiment.
Comments: Do you have any other Tips or Strategies you’d like to share?
from Hubspot 8/21 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4.biz
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