“Growing isn’t only about having a Vision & achieving your Goals. It’s about using the best Tools to get you there, finding new & better tools to reach your target & your goals, then setting new Goals.” Peter/CXO Wiz4.biz
“The aim of marketing is to get to know & understand the customer so well, that the product or service fits him/her perfectly and sells itself”.
Peter. Drucker, Biz Author
Topics for Growth: Branding, Bite-Sized, , Up 2 Date AI, Facebook, Google, Inter-active Content, Long-Form Blog, Schema Markups, Shop-able Posts, Stories, Social, USG, Conversational, Influencer, Omni-channel, Personalized, Video, Visual & Voice Marketing.
Competitive Environment: Small businesses around the world enter a fiercely competitive field, regardless of their niche or product. Getting your business up & running requires ample resources like time, money, team & an awareness of marketing trends. Digital marketing is forever changing, and what worked last year might not work this year. Meanwhile, some time-honored strategies & principles remain lucrative. How can you wade through the shifting tides to get new sales & customers, then build brand awareness in 2020?
Marketing is Key. In an era of technological innovation, knowing where the next big marketing step is going to go, will place you in the lead position. In other words, small business owners need to focus on new trends, rather than using outdated traditions.
Go with the Flow: To start with, you’ll need to stay up-to-date on emerging small business marketing trends. The sooner you learn what methods are projected to grow your business, the quicker you can implement them. Stay a step ahead of your competition with these 20 small business Marketing trends to follow in 2020.
1. How to Build your Brand
With visuals at the forefront of digital marketing, your brand needs an identity that prospective customers can’t refuse. Your message, products, services & mission all develop your brand identity. How can you create & reinforce your brand identity – to build awareness? With stunning, recognizable & consistent branding !!! The good news is, that you don’t need to have the extensive resources of the big boys memorable branding. To create a brand that stands out, you need to bring all the visual assets to the table: logos, imagery, photos, videos, & social media content.
Value of Visuals: 88% of marketers use visuals to tell their brand’s story – which means – you can’t afford not to, if you want to stay ahead of your competitors. Fortunately, you don’t need to spend a lot of $$$ on expensive graphic designers & content creators, because there are affordable resources at your fingertips. (ie, PosterMyWall is a free design platform that enables small businesses to craft engaging imagery easily.) Once you’ve created your brand identity, it’s time to take your business to market.
2. Bite-Sized, Informational Content
Not everyone is going to sit down and read a 5,000-word post – as epic & insightful as it may be. Sometimes people need – just a quick, bite-sized idea. That’s where digestible educational content enters the small business marketing arena. Prime example? Infographics. Educational content works because it helps your audience. When you provide answers, info, & education in a bite-sized format, it’s easy to share, understand & digest. (ie, Instagram) Every post focuses on a subject and includes a gallery of images with educational & actionable steps. Every small business can use informational content and imagery, regardless of niche or product.
3. Implement Conversational Marketing
The heart of effective marketing is a reciprocal conversation. What makes conversational marketing work? Consumers want an answer, and they want it now. The goal of a small business should center around smooth user engagement, real-time feedback, & customer loyalty. The best way to obtain these goals is to open a dialogue, start a conversation, then never keep a customer waiting. Even with the incorporation of A.I. & Chatbots, you want to create a brand identity with a conversational, approachable persona. When customers reach out, who answers? Use conversational marketing to implement real-time feedback to your customers. In effect, you’ll get better engagement, more sales, & build brand loyalty.
4. Get Up-To-Date on A.I.
Artificial intelligence [A.I.] is no longer a vague, obsolete concept: it’s a living (albeit, not always breathing) machine that you can harness to help manage & grow your business. In 2020, 80% of all companies will employ A.I. to drive digital sales & revenue. How does Netflix make personalized suggestions tailored to your viewing habits? How can you order a Cappuccino with no foam – from Starbucks on your phone? Who responds to your inquiry in a website’s messenger, otherwise known as a Chatbot? The answer to all of these questions is A.I..
How can you humanize A.I. without compromising the integrity of your brand? In E-commerce, A.I. provides the chance to streamline the customer experience. For example, late-night shoppers comprise of 72 % of online customers. Who will answer their question? The question that may make the difference between a sale and an empty cart? A Chatbot hosts a real-time chat with your customer to answer frequently asked questions = land sales. A.I. is strategically designed software bits & components that put in overtime where humans cannot–in the middle of the night, on weekends & even holidays. Hire one today !!!
5. Re-configure Facebook Ads
Despite data & privacy issues in 2019, Facebook continues to provide successful ROI for marketers. While the ground might feel faulty at times, there’s no denying that Facebook should be – an integral part of your 2020 marketing. Why is Facebook still relevant? 2.37 billion users, that’s why. And what’s the primary engagement feature on Facebook? Videos. Your business has an opportunity to capitalize on the fact that more users are flocking to Facebook stories. 2020 is all about Facebook video ads. Here’s what you can do to jump in on the band wagon:
- Post high-quality stories featuring captions as 85% of users watch without the sound on
- Conduct polls to build a relationship with your audience & increase engagement
- Post sponsored stories that are both mobile (phone camera) and studio (professional video recording & editing)
- Create story ads that educate, entertain, and most of all – engage your target buyer
6. push Products to the Google Marketplace
Google is the gatekeeper to organic traffic, and now, also the marketplace. With the availability of Google products, customers can buy anything they need – straight from Google without even visiting your website. Google is fighting to keep up with Amazon, and – while you may feel caught in the middle of this titan war – you have an incredible opportunity to get in and sell your products. Why? A study revealed that 49% of all Google searches result in no-click. Essentially, people looking for products or answers left before they got the goods. What can you do? Play with the big boys and make your products available to purchase from Google. Sure, you may notice a dip in web traffic, but you’ll increase sales and improve your bounce rate along with it.
7. re-think Influencer Marketing
2019 marked the rise of Influencer Marketing, with 33% of marketing campaigns centered around social promotion thru influencers. As quickly as the marketing trend escalated, it’s landed on tumultuous terrain. Yes, brands still hire industry leaders and influencers to promote their products to a broad market via social media. 63% of customers express more trust with Influencers than brands. Furthermore, Influencer Marketing is projected to reach $100 billion in 2020, according to MediaKix. Great news, right? Tread carefully. Engagement rates on social media are at an all-time low (so long, Instagram “likes”). For a small business, low numbers mean low influence. Instead of paying high rates for one influencer, consider fanning out your efforts and hiring a handful of small influencers integral to your niche. Dispatch hundreds of shipments to micro-influencers around the globe. The result? 1.5 million new engagements in 2019.
8. push Inter-active Content
The way we consume information is no longer text-based. Instead, we digest visually dominant info. If you want to engage your customers & target audience, you need to provide content that immerses them into a dynamic setting. Captivate customers with: Quizzes, 360 Virtual Reality videos, Infographics, E-books, Interactive Emails, Polls & Surveys
Example: Imagine sending out a promo Email that says “Train Like A Pro” and ends there. Chances of this Email heading straight to trash are high. Show an inspiring image of athletes training with a “scroll over” feature that pops up product info? (ie, Leave it to Nike to create compelling interactive Email campaigns that produce a sizeable ROI) Interactive content illustrates the literary concept of “Show, don’t Tell.” In other words, “show” your customers what they want, rather than telling them why they want it. You can easily paint a vivid picture of your brand with professionally designed templates for all your brand imagery – including social media graphics, web banners, & promotional assets.
9. create Long-Form Blog content
As a small business, your goal should be to become an “expert” within your niche. One of the best ways to establish credibility is to share relevant, in-depth, comprehensive, & educational content. Long-form content attracts traffic to your website & builds a loyal readership. Ideally, you’ll want to produce Blog posts and articles that are 3,000 words or more. Long-form Blog posts receive 77% more back-links than articles that are under 1,000 words. What else can you expect from long-form content? Better ROI, More traffic, Increased on-page presence, Better SEO ranking, Decreased bounce rate & More social shares
When it comes to Blog posts, your goal is to answer every single question about the topic. If you don’t, readers will find answers elsewhere; they bounce away. You don’t have to be professional writer, to write a good Blog post. Focus on writing helpful content that is insightful, thorough, conversational, & informative. While long-form content does wonders for your SEO, if you hit your readers with too much text, they’re likely to flee. Instead, complement your copy with engaging graphics, personalized headers & relevant imagery – throughout the post. This technique helps to break up long sections of text and reinforce the vital points of your topic in an engaging way.
10 . streamline your Omni-channel Marketing
With so many digital resources available, it’s natural to feel overwhelmed. The concept of working “smarter not harder” is not new, but it’s never been more relevant than it is today. With the rise of digital marketing comes the availability of automated tools to save you time and money. Let’s face it, in 2020, you’ll need to have a strong digital presence across all social & digital mediums. What can Omni-channel Marketing do for your brand? Generate a 14% increase in engagement & a 250% increase in purchases.
How? Okay, now that we’ve established it’s an effective and necessary tactic, realize that consistently posting on multiple platforms requires sufficient time – a resource small businesses often lack. Not to worry, there’s a solution to help you create content and share it without spending hours at the computer: scheduling & auto-publishing, which take the responsibility off your shoulders and hand it over to a platform to do it for you.
90% of Customers value Personalized Marketing
Customers are annoyed at tired old Email Blasts of the past – that aren’t tailored to their preferences. Mass Emails can now retire in the graveyard of all other impersonal marketing ideas. Why did they fail? Because in an era where customers are inundated with ads at every corner of their physical & digital lives, they want to feel seen as an individual. If you strip away the uniqueness of each of your customers, you fail to understand that they are individual people. Now, what can you do about it? If it works for Amazon, it’s probably going to work for you, too. When you order a product on Amazon, you’re greeted with a margin of products they think you’ll also like. Personalized marketing pushes targeted “up-sells” that can significantly improve your sales revenue. How does this impact your customers? 34% of them feel implied to promote your brand – thanks to the relevant content you include based on their interests. Bottom line: when it comes to building a brand, increasing sales & building brand loyalty, it’s time to get personal !!!
12. implement Schema Markups & Rich Snippets
Just when you think you have a solid grasp on SEO, the rules change. Is SEO still crucial to your small business’ success? Yes. Has the landscape changed? Yes. You can no longer rely on headings & keywords to land you in top results on Search engines. Instead, you should draw your attention to Schema Markups & Rich Snippets.
- Schema Markup is a type of micro data that enhances a standard web Snippet into a rich snippet
- Rich Snippet is a page optimized with a title, URL, description, ratings, images, pricing, & pertinent details about the page or product
In simple terms, Schema markups add ”context” to an otherwise unclear webpage. Creating rich snippets of your content enhances your visibility & Click-Through rates. 40% of young people between 13-18 years old buy products thru Rich Snippets. Don’t post any web content without optimizing with Rich Snippets, which you can do in Google webmaster.
13. create Shop-able Posts on all Socials
E-commerce & Social Media make a beautiful couple – especially for small business owners. With your online business happily married to social media, you can take advantage of shoppable posts and even complete transactions from social apps. Why does it work? Instead of losing potential customers in the jumble of new tabs, windows, & sign-in forms, consumers can buy your product directly in the app. (ie, Instagram has a checkout feature now, & Pinterest is an engine built to foster sales) Consumers can create shopping boards, add items to the cart, and buy from your shoppable posts. Of course, you first must ensure your posts are shoppable. In 2020, don’t even think about posting on social media without including products. After all, 90% of Instagram users follow brands, ready to add yours to the list? Just do it !!!
14. Tell Stories, Interesting Stories & More Stories
From Snapchat origins to Instagram’s adaptation, it’s undeniable – that Stories should inhabit your 2020 Marketing plan. Most stories are short. 24-hour videos that brands can use – to generate hype. With the swipe up feature, you can share products with a call to action in one spot. 2020 is no time to be camera shy, because 500 mill Instagram users post Stories every day. The takeaway? When users open an App, the first place they head to is Stories. And you don’t want to miss out on the action. There are plenty of clever ways to use Stories to promote your brand:
- Entice followers into your close friend group by offering exclusive content & discounts
- Use Polls to discover what content users want to see, then capitalize on that data
- Use filters, Geotags, & GIFs to make your stories engaging – to promote return viewers
- Create captivating stories that are on brand with professionally designed Instagram story templates
15. Share with Social Messaging
Social Messaging is generally reserved for sharing videos, GIFs & Emojis with your BFF, which is probably why 1.3 billion people use Facebook Messenger every month. What’s more, 20 billion messages occur between users & businesses every month. What can we deduce from these figures? Consumers are taking about brands. This is an excellent opportunity for your brand to start a conversation, personalize the experience, then enhance your digital presence on social media. Need an icebreaker? When consumers arrive at your site, greet them with a welcome message. Make your presence available in social messaging – so that they easily know exactly where to find you. Once the conversation begins, you can also:
Promote sales, Invite customers to events, Offer technical or customer support & Build a relationship.
16. User-Generated Content (UGC)
If you want to project marketing trends, you have to look to your future buyers. Millennials account for 58% of the buyer market, the largest percentage. Who’s next in line? Generation Z. If the statistics prove anything, it’s that these generations favor User-Generated Content. How does it work? Marketers foster audience engagement by incentivizing them to share content that promotes the brand. When done correctly, UGC can influence 90% of prospective buyers to make a purchase What makes UGC so effective? We’ll look at Teva to help us answer that. Teva uses the hashtag #StrapIntoFreedom to encourage their customers to share photos of themselves wearing their shoes. Then, they share this content on the Teva Instagram account. Not only does this turn customers into brand advocates, but it gives you valuable content without having to create it = minimal resources, maximum results.
17. Engage in Video Marketing
It’s no secret that Video Marketing is everyone’s favorite trend. Rightfully so, as 72% of brands have improved conversion rates with video marketing. The statistics are only projected to increase over the next decade. Fact is, people love getting info from videos, but the future of video marketing is anything but linear. Gone are the days of Youtube dominance, as Facebook & Instagram Live videos continue to grow in popularity. With brands flocking to video marketing, an over-saturation is diminishing reach. Evidently, there is such a thing as too much video content. Here are some tips to help you stay relevant with Vdeo Marketing:
- Post videos on multiple channels, not just YouTube
- Promote your videos with “live” videos on Facebook & Instagram
- Send “personalized” Video messages to your customers to promote specials
Create engaging, high-quality Videos that are personalized for your brand with online video templates, or create content from scratch
18. Think about Visual Searching
2020 is the year of new ways to search. Are the days of typing in search terms long gone? Not necessarily, but it’s impossible to not acknowledge the prevalence of alternative search methods. As a small business, you’ll want to pay attention here because millennials are the group most interested in visual searching.
How does Visual Search work? Let’s say you see someone wearing something at a cafe, and you want one for yourself. Well, entering the term for that item in a search engine is so general that it’s going to produce millions of results. The likelihood of finding that exact item is microscopic. What if you could turn your phone into an instant search engine? With visual search, you can. Customers can snap a pix of an item and upload it to Pinterest’s Lens search tool to find the exact item online, or a list of similar items. This feature isn’t exclusive to Pinterest, either. Google Lens works similarly: it identifies objects through the lens on your camera and pulls up related items & information.
How to Use? You can push your products to Google & Pinterest, so that when potential customers use Visual search, your products appear in the results. Visual searching is in its beginning stages, which is the optimal time for you to jump on board.
19. Let your Voice be heard with Voice Search
Instead of typing questions into a search bar, your prospective customers are flocking to a new method of search: Voice Search. According to ComScore, Voice Searches will account for 50% of all searches in 2020. Now, when people want answers, more & more are just asking. How will you answer? With valuable & relevant responses. You can integrate Vocalized A.I. to put your business on the auditory realm.
Are you listening? Good. So is Nestlé, the international food giant – that not only provides people with recipes, but offers voice guidance to walk apron-clad cooks through each step. (ie, Grow your brand with Jetson, a voice commerce service that transposes your digital content into a vocal identity. Voice searching enables customers to browse Website by vocal command, place an order, & even customize items.
20. Keep pushing “great” Marketing Content
In 2020, a brand’s livelihood depends on high-quality, consistent, & relevant content. If you want to keep up with – then ultimately exceed your competitors – you need to have a thorough content strategy. Most small businesses lack the time, money & resources required to grow. Fortunately, the digital marketing landscape is generous to new companies.
How to Start? Focus on a few social channels or platforms and set up a consistent posting schedule. Marketing a small business requires strategic planning and access to free & affordable resources. PosterMyWall addresses all of your budgetary concerns and enables you to create one piece of content, then re-purpose it across multiple channels. You’ll save precious time customizing graphics from professionally designed templates & distributing the content across all of your digital channels. You can also easily collaborate with your team on design projects to create stunning, engaging & memorable content that enforces your brand identity & stands out from your competition.
Now go get started!
Budgetary restraints are typical for a small business, but intelligent execution of “free” resources makes marketing your small business in 2020 easier than ever. As you go forward into 2020, you’ve got all the resources you need to build to grow a successful small business. Stay ahead of the trends and start creating Marketing Plan.
Comments: Do you know any other techniques to “grow” your Small Business?
fm Manta 2/20 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz for Biz
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