Yes, You Can Handle The Marketing For Your Small Business. Here's How!" - by Dean Burgess
I mentioned in last week's post that we have a guest blog post this week. Entrepreneur Dean Burgess submitted the topic of tonight's blog post. Mr. Burgess started Excitepreneur and believes entrepreneurs will lead us to a more exciting future. As always, your comments are appreciated. Thank you, Dean, for being a guest blogger on my blog and submitting this article. A guest blogger is solely responsible for the accuracy of the content they present. Thank you.
On To The Topic:
You're a small business owner who understands the importance of marketing. You know that if people don't know about your brand, the quality of your product or service will only get you so far. There's just one problem: You can't afford to hire and train an entire marketing department.
So, what do you do? How do you handle the myriad marketing responsibilities when it's just you and maybe a few other people? Below, I will explain small business marketing in more detail and lay out some practical steps to a successful marketing strategy!
Various Marketing Strategies:
First of all, it will help to learn about the many different marketing strategies you can employ throughout your business. Take time to research and brainstorm the various methods you can use across your chosen channels.
For example, you will need to define your marketing goals and regularly redefine them as needed. You will also want to determine how best to describe your product or service and communicate your unique selling proposition (USP).
You will hear a lot about defining your target market as you learn the ropes, and that's because it's a critical step to creating any impactful marketing strategy. But you need to know more than just who you are selling to; you must also understand what your customers need and want.
Common Marketing Terms:
As you look into marketing, a couple of terms you will often see are "channels" and "messaging." So let's dive into a little more detail on these terms:
There are many channels to choose from in your marketing campaigns. Essentially, these include digital and traditional channels, and you may benefit from using a combination of both types. For example, online channels like social media, email, and pay-per-click (PPC) marketing are the most common digital channels used by small businesses today.
And while digital marketing is king, using traditional channels can still help you build your brand and customer base. If you rely on a local market, you can significantly benefit from print and other conventional mediums. Here are a few examples of traditional marketing channels to consider:
● Community bulletin boards
● Flyers and brochures
● Telephone poles
● Word of mouth
Your marketing "message" refers to how you communicate to customers the value your company can offer. This is when, where, and how your brand can solve a problem, meet a need, or improve your customers' lives in other ways. But, of course, any impactful messaging contains a promise, which you must be prepared to deliver.
One of the trickiest parts of strategizing small business marketing is creating messaging around your target customers and selected channels. The ultimate goal is to express a single idea that you want customers to absorb and remember your company.
Your message must resonate with your target audience to the level that they feel like your message matters. Each message should clearly and concisely articulate what your brand stands for, what sets you apart from competitors, and the value your product or service can provide.
While you may need to tweak the details of your message depending on the channel you are using, try to keep the voice, style, and tone consistent across all platforms.
Becoming Your Own Marketing Team:
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of the critical components of a small business marketing strategy. So let's take a look at some practical ways that you can serve as your own marketing team:
Build a Strategy
Your first step will be to develop a strategy that is easy to follow yet comprehensive. You will need to prioritize organization and establish SMART goals for the upcoming year to do this.
Consider where you want your marketing to take your company in the next few months. Then, research industry marketing trends to determine whether you should invest your energy in web development, social media, email marketing, blogging, print advertising, or other mediums.
If you plan to use content marketing to build your brand, you need to plan out your blogs, social media posts, and other content for the year. You will need to make a content calendar to stay organized and hold yourself accountable. This is relatively easy to do through spreadsheet software like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets.
While you're at it, develop a plan for what and when to post on your social media accounts. Creating a social media calendar that details your future posts will keep you organized and give you a bird's-eye view of your strategy.
Automate With Tools
Automation is your best friend if you operate alone or with just a couple of other people. You can automate everything from social media posts to blog posts, from emails to customer service. Take advantage of the many tools on the market to handle all the tasks that can distract you from running your business.
Keep Up to Date With Marketing Trends
Staying current with marketing trends in your specific industry is critical to maintaining effective marketing strategies. Even if it means leaving your regular responsibilities for a day or two to attend a conference or seminar, be intentional about keeping up to date on what companies are doing to engage with ever-evolving consumer behaviors.
Going to local marketing events and joining marketing organizations are excellent ways to find where you need to be in your strategies.
Hire Content Creators
Unless you are an experienced content creator (or have one on your micro-team), consider hiring freelancers to help you boost your marketing efforts. Working with a suitable content writer, videographer, photographer, or social media manager can go a long way in effectively communicating your message to your target customers.
The best creators can incorporate your brand's voice across various channels to convince people of your company's value. While it requires a monetary investment, the stress and time it saves you can make it worthwhile.
Monitor Your Success
Even if you feel good about your marketing strategy panning out, you need to analyze it objectively to get an accurate picture of where you stand. You can accomplish this by using various practices, metrics, and tools to measure your performance.
You will need to establish a clear goal and objective, determine which metrics to use, and set a schedule for monitoring campaign results within your predetermined timeframe. Then, you can research marketing tools to find which ones will best support your goals, benchmark the performance data, and use CRM software to see where your strategy has brought you.
Don't Be Stubborn
Finally, remember that impactful marketing involves many moving parts. Unless you are experienced in various marketing tasks, you can quickly become overwhelmed.
Don't allow your marketing efforts to distract you from running your business. Instead, figure out a way to budget for professional services anytime you need help, whether hiring individual freelancers for specific tasks or buying a marketing package from a reputable agency.
It's challenging to grow a small business without having solid marketing practices in place. So keep learning as much as possible about marketing strategies, channels, and messaging, and remember the above tips for creating impactful campaigns that can boost your brand and build your customer base. In no time, your brand recognition will match the quality of your product or service! Thank you, Dean Burgess.
Once again, thank you, Dean Burgess, for your submission.
Stay safe and be well,
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