Overcoming Some of Those Pesky Small Business Marketing Challenges
Let’s be honest, owning a small business comes with more than its fair share of challenges. If you’re a small business owner, you know what we’re talking about. You’re dealing with a lot. And unless you’re super lucky, you probably have a minimal budget and limited (or no) help with promoting your business so it can grow. Not only do you want (and need) to grow your business, but you know your success depends on your ability to stay up-to-date with the latest trends in marketing. Because let’s face it, marketing is crucial to success. And in order to succeed in marketing, you absolutely need a plan.
We’ll admit, it’s not easy to go at it alone. Sometimes, you need is a little shove in a right direction. Here’s a few of the common marketing challenges facing small business owners—and how you can overcome them:
Set a Clear Focus
Trying to figure out how and where to promote your business can be overwhelming. Let’s think about all the options: There’s social media, your website, SEO, PPC, online advertising, offline marketing, etc… Identifying where you should invest your resources right off the bat is important. Start by asking yourself: “where are my customers spending their time?” Meaning: where are your customers looking for products or services like yours? Once you find the answer to this question, you’ll have a much better grasp on how you should be investing your time and money to promote your business.
Stand out from the Crowd
With so many choices these days, it’s important to find a unique voice that connects emotionally with your targeted customers. Avoid looking to your competitors for guidance on branding and marketing. Find ways to stand out in the marketplace and give people a unique reason to come to you. Your brand evolves in the minds (and hearts) of your potential clients–and cultivates emotions and ideas they’ll associate with your business.
Once your brand is established, apply it to everything having to do with your business. You’ll want to project the same image wherever people see your name or logo—from your website and business cards to your social media pages and paid ads. Consistency is key to making a lasting impression.
Find Ways to Afford it
Many small business owners with relatively modest marketing budgets can sometimes feel their money is better spent elsewhere. We get that, but businesses need marketing to draw attention in order to gain an audience. If you’re low on funding, you can start with free or low-cost methods like creating a presence on social media platforms, blogs and email.
However, small businesses can definitely make smaller budgets work. If you’ve got the cash, we suggest investing a little in paid marketing tactics. You can go the old fashioned route with ads in local print publications, or try social media advertising. You can even invest minimal amounts of money in sponsored posts on Facebook or LinkedIn–putting your brand, products or services in front members of your target audience. Like we said before, it’s always best to start where your target market is looking for services or products like yours.
Finding the right marketing strategy takes time, so don’t get discouraged. Don’t rely on trendy advertising or promotional tactics, or you can end up wasting time and money. Do your research and make sure you’re using effective ways to target your customers. And finally, stay true to yourself, your vision and your brand–and your business will reap the benefits.