22 Jul Small Business Marketing
How To Nail Your Small Business’ Marketing
Small businesses have to approach their marketing in a very different way to large corporations, conglomerates or franchises. Budgetary constraints, amongst other things, means that a smarter use of resources is essential; smaller businesses can’t throw endless piles of money at their marketing in the way that their larger counterparts can. The team here at VerriBerri, who offer small business marketing services; had a look at some of the best ways in which smaller-sized businesses can go about their marketing.
Planning Makes Perfect
Have you heard that phrase practice makes perfect? Of course, you have, but consider now a variation on the theme; planning makes perfect. As marketing goes, a well-planned out marketing strategy is essential in yielding successful results. By putting foundations in place early, you free up time elsewhere, enabling you to either deal with any unforeseen circumstances (which should be few and far between if the planning has been good) and for you to focus on future growth. With your marketing, you should always be thinking one step ahead. The longer you give yourself to plan, the more time you give yourself to refine your strategy.
The best plans rarely come fully-formed; by giving yourself extra preparation time, what you’re in fact doing is giving you time to tweak, fine tune and improve. Whenever any client comes to us for small business marketing advice, this, above anything else, is what we tell them. Think of your marketing plans as a marathon runner would their training and subsequent race.
When the winner of the London Marathon crosses the finish line, arms aloft, ready to be crowned the new champion; they didn’t get there by chance. Their success lay in their dedication, but more than that, their preparedness. That moment of glory was forged months before, years even, when they first set out their training plan and painstakingly planned it out. This isn’t flogging a dead horse, this is vital.
Go Local, Go Large
Smaller businesses tend to benefit more from locally-targeted marketing. Because the larger competitors are tending to target their marketing, nationally, this leaves the field a little bit more open at the regional and local level. A locally-oriented marketing strategy lends itself to all the major marketing techniques; SEO, PR and social media. The effects of these separate strands are then compounded further when used in tandem with one another in a multi-disciplined approach.
Simply put, it’s easier for a brand to achieve success locally, than it is on a national or international scale. Many people then take this as meaning that these successes are somehow lesser, or diminished. To this we say: the more successes your brand is getting the better, and smaller businesses (and their correspondingly smaller budgets) can’t always afford to be choosy. Let’s think about it another way for a moment. As a brand, would you rather put all your eggs in one basket for a national-level success that may (or may not) come off, or have several smaller level successes that are much more obtainable. From a small business’ perspective, it makes more astute business sense to obtain comprehensive successes on a local level, than inconsistent successes (if any at all) on a larger level.
How Does Local Work In Practice?
It’s one thing saying you want to tackle local marketing, but you need to then put it into practice. With SEO, local marketing involves optimising your content with a longer-tail focus. Feel like I’ve just answered a question with a question? Wondering what longer-tail keywords are? An example would be ‘best bakery in Essex’ rather than ‘best bakery’. When it comes to how targeted you want to go, the world’s your oyster. If you want to really corner the Colchester market, for instance, then ‘best bakery in Colchester’ would be your focus. Penning blogs around this phrase and placing it into your website’s pages will see your website rise through the rankings for that keyword.
In terms of PR, local publications have a greater impact than you might have initially imagined. Appearing in trusted, local newspapers is a great way of attracting solid local business opportunities. These local magazines or newspapers have a more established history and reputation than some of their contemporaneous upstarts, and as such people still highly value them.
Finally, there’s social media. In much the same way that you can focus on longer-tail keywords, you can do the same with hashtags on social media accounts. By targeting hashtags with place names within them, you’re guaranteeing yourself an audience who are more likely to take an interest in what you’ve got to offer.
Any Other Tips For Small Business Marketing
Don’t be afraid to experiment a little bit. Utilise other forms of content marketing in the form of graphic design or infographics! If that’s too expensive, however, then don’t worry. There are plenty of cheaper alternatives to showing off your business’ expertise. Starting up a podcast is one such option. Some top tips for podcasting, though, because every man and his dog seems to have one nowadays! Make sure every episode is targeted (and actually revolving around a subject on which you’re knowledgeable) and, crucially, not too long. If you’ve got business connections who would make an interesting interview, then try to get them on board!
Google has a set of guidelines for their SEO called EAT – Expertise, Authority, Trustworthiness. But this might as well apply to any form of marketing. So, whatever it is that you do, make sure the content you’re writing is worthwhile. As a rule of thumb, if you’re posting something, ask yourself whether you’d want to read it? If the answer is no, change it until it’s something more interesting, or start afresh on another piece of content, entirely.
SMEs may be small, but they’re most definitely mighty. So, if you’d like to find out more about our work, including our small business marketing, then get in touch! Contact VerriBerri today on 01376 386 850. We started out as a small business ourselves, so we know the importance of getting your marketing spot on to make the most of your investment Give us a call now! Whether you’re after a one-off campaign, or something continuous, we’ll be able to help you out.