Small businesses that are not using digital marketing need to understand the importance of it. Because small business digital marketing helps your business thrive in today’s competitive landscape and lets you make your mark.
However, for many, small business digital marketing may seem confusing or intimidating, especially when it comes to using the right tactics. Questions pop up such as:
- How can you be sure of what methods to apply so that you get real-world results?
- What small business digital marketing tactics will help you get the most exposure?
- How do you achieve your marketing goals without wasting valuable time and money?
- Where should you start to ensure you’re reaching the right audience?
Being a small business owner, you need to have some clarity before you jump into the digital marketing arena. The good thing is, gaining the right level of clarity is not rocket science. The proof lies in the fact that a large percentage of regular entrepreneurs are experimenting with small business digital marketing and with great success.
Having said that, let’s now look into 8 effective small business digital marketing tactics that will fetch you positive results:
Tactic #1: Create Shareable Content
Producing the right kind of content is an important part of effective small business digital marketing. Your content can make or your break your digital marketing strategy.
On one hand, bad and low quality content that is not relevant can hurt your brand. And on the other hand, high quality content can help you build a strong relationship with your target audience, improve your brand image and boost your business revenue.
However, even good content will fail to give results if it isn’t seen and shared by the right people. The idea is to create content that:
- Helps your business reach its marketing goals and grow its reach.
- Helps your audience with the needed answers and encourages them to share it.
So how do you find this middle ground and create content that is highly relevant? How do you get more of your audience to share your content?
- Aim at producing content that brings out an emotional reaction from your audience, because many times people share content for emotional reasons.
- Look into what your competition is creating in terms of content that is getting shares and produce something on the same lines.
- Make your content super-useful and practical so that it offers real value to your prospects/customers because people like sharing content that can help others.
- Create content that tells a story so that it’s more engaging and relatable to your audience’s current situation.
Every single step that you take towards making your content valuable for your readers, you are one step closer to making it more shareable.
Tactic #2: Optimize for Both Mobile & Desktop Marketing
For many small business owners, the difference between desktop marketing and mobile marketing may not seem too obvious. After all, they both work on similar lines. However, if you want to get the most out of your small business digital marketing efforts, you need to achieve a better understanding of how both work. And more importantly, how people are going to engage with your brand on them.
As a small business, the most important thing to figure out is how you can get more prospects to convert into customers. Which means you cannot ignore neither desktop marketing nor mobile marketing. Both are equally important to help you reach your marketing goals.
Talking about desktop, you need to focus on delivering a great user experience to your visitors so that they not only stay longer, but also take the desired action. How easy your website is in terms of usability ultimately determines how connected and engaged your target audience feels. Keep track of how people are using your website and what pages are most popular so that you can improve the user experience one step at a time.
Now, when it comes to mobile, you need to ensure that your site is efficient in every way. When people access it from their mobile devices, they should get what they are looking for without any confusion.
A mobile-friendly website is not just about the design, but about the overall experience and how well it can convert. So see to it that your site is mobile-responsive and loads at warp speed. And yes, don’t forget to optimize it for the search engines.
Tactic #3: Focus on Organic Social Media
When it comes to effective small business digital marketing, how can we ignore the importance of social media? Investing in social media marketing is a no-brainer for any small business that wants to extend its reach.
If you look at the stats you’ll see that almost 70% of consumers like to use social media for customer support. And 33% prefer social media over the telephone.
The fact is, social media is being used by every brand that cares about its audience and wants to be a part of healthy competition. If your prospective customers don’t find your presence of social media, it’ll not only create a poor impression but they may also choose to reach out to your competitors who are using social media.
If you truly want to leverage social media marketing and get the most out of it, then you need to actively use the popular social media channels where your audience is likely to be. You cannot use social media as a mere promotional tool to find success with it. While promoting your product/service is okay, you need to keep it at the minimum and focus on organic growth.
By producing content that lets you create unpaid or organic growth, you create long term stability and increase trust with your social media followers. Working on increasing your organic engagement rate can help your social media marketing in more than one way as it:
- Slowly and steadily improves your organic reach at no cost. Later on you can invest into your chosen platform’s paid options to amplify your reach.
- Brings down the overall cost that you can accrue when you spend on promoting your social media content.
- Helps create strong social proof so that you can win more followers and convert them into customers. Because having a higher number of followers/likes/shares on your social accounts will make people trust your brand more easily.
- Lets you tap into the immediate network of your followers when their friends/followers see them engage with your content.
Organic social media may not seem like a big deal, especially when everybody’s using it. However, the difference between successful organic social media campaigns and not-so-successful ones is consistency. While your competitors may not be consistent in their efforts, you can be. We practice organic growth and consistency with all of our clients. Check out our social media advertising or social media management servicesto see which would be best for your small business.
Tactic #4: Host Value-Packed Webinars
If you’re active in the digital marketing circles, you should already know what a webinar is. A webinar is nothing but an online seminar that can be one of the following:
The best thing about webinars is that they are more engaging and workable when compared to basic video content. Since webinars start and end at a designated time, they automatically have a scarcity element to them. And usually follow with a Q&A session. Which increases their perceived value even if the information presented is no different than a video.
The fact of the matter is, webinar marketing is an underutilized small business digital marketing tactic. You could call it the next big thing in marketing because:
A properly done webinar lets you:
- Connect and interact with your audience in real-time.
- Answer the burning questions your audience might have.
- Give away real value that your audience loves to receive.
- Position yourself or your brand as a credible industry expert that people can turn to.
- Make targeted sales without a hard sales pitch.
- Generate high quality, targeted leads that convert.
- Qualify your leads and build valuable relationships with them.
- Improve and enhance your sales process and get a better return on investment, quicker.
It doesn’t matter what kind of products or services you sell, webinars can help you gain more exposure, get more leads, and make more sales.
Tactic #5: Run A/B Split Tests Regularly
Without the right level of testing, running a successful small business digital marketing campaign is not easy. But still we find that testing is often put on the back burner, especially by people new to the digital marketing scene.
A small business that regularly tests everything, right from the smallest elements to the biggest variables, can and will have a definite competitive advantage over other businesses that go with their guesswork. Your business needs to develop the habit of testing right from the beginning so that you can achieve a higher return on investment in the long run.
For example, simple tweaks to headlines and the color of call to action buttons can result in a higher conversion rate. But you won’t know what changes to make unless and until you test one element against another. Effective testing is a step by step process, and it cannot be done overnight. Which is why it’s crucial to take your time and isolate each variable and test it.
Tactic #6: Have a Conversion-Focused Web Design
If you’re using small business digital marketing to get more leads or sales, then you need to understand the importance of having a favorable conversion rate. Every business, regardless of its size, should focus creating a strong foundation for growth by focusing on increasing the conversion rate. Which means any marketing or design related decision you take should keep conversion in the forefront.
You not only want your ads and email copy to convert, but also your website where all the action happens. Your site should be created in a way that it helps you convert more visitors into leads that can turn into customers. You want people to give you repeat business, which means your site should be sticky enough to bring them back.
The definition of a perfect, workable business website is simple: one that is specifically designed to fetch you a high conversion rate. While the aesthetic appeal of your site is important, it shouldn’t be done at the cost of losing customers. So if the design of your website is not conversion-centric, you’re leaving money on the table. If you’re no website design guru, then leave the designing to our experts who can fix your site or create you a new one that converts.
Let’s face it; the Internet is no longer the new kid on the block that only the nerds know about. It’s become a huge part of our lives, which means it’s getting more crowded day after day.
Having said that, it’s important to stand out of the crowd with a conversion-focused design so that you get your prospective customers to buy from you, rather than your competitors.
Given below are a few tips to help you with it:
- Know beforehand where you want to place your call-to-action button/link. Do a bit of testing to see if it works on the bottom of the page or above the fold.
- Work on making your website as user-friendly as possible so that your visitors are able to access all elements.
- Aim to have a simple design that doesn’t overwhelm your visitors. A crammed-up design will only make people want to leave your site, leave alone buy from you. Which leads to a higher bounce rate and a lower conversion rate.
- Do not ignore the importance of color selection because color psychology plays a key role in branding and improving conversions. Spend time choosing the right colors so that they don’t hurt the eyes and are inviting.
No matter what type of small business digital marketing tactic you want to apply, make sure your website is fully ready to convert prospects into customers.
Tactic #7: Leverage the Power of Social Proof
When it comes to finding success with small business digital marketing, many companies think that having a great product or service is enough. However, with competition growing day by day, it’s getting increasingly difficult to grab the attention of your prospective customers and convert them.
Having a quality product and along with a professionally designed website may help you attract the right people. But when it comes to winning their trust and turning them into loyal customers, you need more than that. You need social proof.
People these days seek validation before they commit to a product or a service. They want to spend money on something only after they are sure it works as it says. Which is why they want to know if other people have experience with you or your product. If they find a good percentage of existing customers/clients speaking good of you, it’ll be easier for them to make a buying decision.
The reason why you find major retailers like Amazon and Walmart gunning for product reviews on their site is because social proof works. Even many smaller businesses are leveraging the power of social proof to show their audience how existing customers are liking their product. In short, buyers are being influenced by what others around them think and do.
However, if you look around you’ll find that many who are using small business digital marketing have zero testimonials listed on their website. Are they missing out an opportunity to convert more people into customers? Of course yes. Is it too late to use social proof for them? Absolutely not.
If you’re still not convinced about the power of social proof, check out the following reasons as to why you need it more than anything:
- Text, audio and video testimonials make your product/service look more credible and trustworthy.
- People like doing their homework before investing in a product/service. No wonder they trust online reviews/recommendations more than sales pitches.
- Real social proof can help enhance your SEO efforts. Your brand looks more viable and worthy when search users see ratings displayed right in the search results.
- When you ask for feedback from your existing customers you indirectly show them that they are valued. They see that you care about them, which helps improve the relationship between you and your customer base.
The right kind of social proof can and will make a difference to your business and to its bottomline. All you need to do is focus on consistently generating more of it.
Tactic #8: Build a Targeted Email List
Ask any experienced small business digital marketing expert, and he or she will tell you to build an email list right from the start. Still, we find many small businesses actively avoiding email list building.
If you want to have a trusted channel to drive repeat sales and build a solid relationship with your audience, then you need to have your own email list. A responsive email list is even more valuable than an active social media following.
A large percentage of marketers who have tasted success with email marketing see it as the topmost channel for generating high quality business leads that convert into sales.
Also, according to a study conducted by McKinsey, email is a staggering 40 times more effective in helping you get more customers when compared to social media giants Facebook and Twitter combined.
If you’ve been running your business for a while, you should already have an audience that you connect with. You may already be getting traffic to your website and you could already be making sales.
However, effective small business digital marketing is not just about getting new customers. No, it’s also about building a relationship with your existing customers so that you can generate more sales. Since the cost of gaining new customers is much higher, this relationship can prove to be crucial to your business.
By leveraging email marketing, you’ll be able to stay connected to your customers, give them value over time and send them targeted offers they are interested in.
Here are a five solid reasons as to why email marketing should be an integral part of your small business digital marketing strategy:
- Grow Credibility:People tend to trust credible sources more than non-credible ones. Which means people who are familiar with your brand and like you are more likely to do business with you. Using email you can consistently give value to your audience in the form of useful/informative content and in the process grow your credibility.
- Nurture Relationships: It doesn’t matter what products you sell or how big/small your business is, you need to build and nurture relationships with your customers. The stronger your customer relationships, the more stable your business. Email lets you stay connected with your customers and engage with on a regular basis throughout the year. Customers who have a relationship with you will sit up and take notice every time you email them.
- Enhance Communication: Every business needs to communicate with customers from time
to time for different reasons. It could be an important news update or a product announcement or
anything that matters to your business. You will find that email is a channel you can count on because
it allows for easy communication. You can email your customers right away with the smallest of the
updates, which will make them feel more valued.
- Build Brand: Want more of your prospects and customers to identify with your brand and share information about it with others? Email marketing is a great way to get more brand recognition and improve your reach overtime.
- Generate Traffic: Create a blog post that you want more people to read? Launched a product that you want more exposure to? Updated your pricing structure with a limited time discount? Your email campaigns can help you drive traffic to any page, any offer, any time of the day. All it takes is one well-constructed email pitch to drive back laser targeted traffic to your site.