Smaller businesses tend not to have the huge budget that multinational corporations have at their disposal when it comes to letting customers know that they exist. But the problem is that if customers do not know that you even exist how are they supposed to access and use your business? When trying to get your business in front of a new audience to build up customers or even retain and build existing customer loyalty for a smaller business there are methods that can be used and executed on a budget that is more suitable for businesses that are smaller in size.
Create a Social Presence
A recent study done by the Pew Research Center on social media usage found that roughly two-thirds of all adults use a form of social media, meaning there has been a rise in social media usage of roughly ten fold in the past decade. That two-thirds of adults, most likely contains a large chunk of not only your target audience, but the target audience of a lot of businesses. This huge rise means there has been a big change in the waycompanies are marketing their business, making it increasingly important for you to ensure that you have a strong social presence.
Social media not only promotes your business but also allows customers to see the personality of your brand. There are so many different social media options available (twitter, facebook, instagram, pinterest) with different methods of engagement with target audiences that it is very easy to pick and choose different platforms that will combine together to aid you to market your business more successfully.
Utilize your Website
Alongside utilizing social media, it is very important to have a good website. When done in the correct manner a website should be the most powerful tool for a business to generate customers and sales. A good website should always include links to your social media page, perhaps a link to sign up to an email newsletter and be mobile enabled so it can be viewed from any device. Another good method to use in order to make your website stand out is a regularly updated blog about current topics or news related to your business.
When creating your website it is important to make it look inviting and professional. If website creation is not your strong point, then it may be worthwhile outsourcing it to a company or freelancer depending on your budget. It is very important that you keep it organized, easy to read and easy to navigate, so keep this in mind during the website creation process.
Create Ways for your Customers to Save Money
Customers stay loyal to a business due to customer service, product quality and professionalism. In order to showcase these things it is important to draw customers in first, and the best way to do this is to offer your customers a lower price in comparison to your competitors. There are so many ways to reach customers and let them know about one-off or even longer-term discounts. A great way to do this is via customer discovery tools like Groupon or Scoutmob. These platforms allow you to post deals, which in turn reaches a whole new audience base many of whom may be retained for future sales, which will make up for the slight dip in profits.
Coupons and money off deals can also be promoted via social media platforms as well as free online giveaways. Often companies will give the chance to win free items if a post is shared or people are tagged in comments on social media, allowing more people to see the business allowing for a form of lower cost advertising. This is a common trick used by even the bigger companies when they are launching new products.
Marketing does not only have to be done in traditional methods like flyers and adverts. You want to show your customers that you are an expert in your field of business. Workshops and webinars are great ways to interact with your customers. This way you are not only helping customer solve the problems they are facing, but also showing them that you can be the best solution possible for these problems.
Another way to help customers build trust in your expertise is by answering questions on online forums like Quora with a link to your website for further information on the subject matter and ways to solve it. Make sure when you are replying to people online you engage them in a manner that is not only sympathetic but memorable making them feel at ease and leave them wanting to engage with you further.
While successfully marketing a small business may seem like staring into an abyss and not knowing where to start, it is very possible if you think creatively.