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Small Investments, Big Marketing Results

You can have effective marketing with a small budget. Here are five great – and inexpensive – marketing options you want to try.

Offer Great Content

The best marketing happens with great content. That means providing information that your target audience needs on your website, on social media and everywhere you are online.

Content can come in the form of videos, blog posts, social media posts, white papers, etc. The best content is about helping your customers and not selling. Share useful information that’s relevant to your customers and you’ll earn their trust and create a positive impression of your brand.

Use the customer service queries that you’ve received in the past as a way to get some content ideas. Pay attention to metrics to determine what content works best. Do more of that!

Optimize for Search Engine Visibility

You can spend a lot for SEO. In fact, many businesses do. However, search engine optimization doesn’t have to cost you anything except time. Optimize your website for search engines by researching which keywords customers use when they’re looking for products or services like yours. Once you determine your keywords, use them in your website content. Use your selected keywords in headlines, content, alt tags on images and meta descriptions.

Use Social Media

Social media platforms are great for getting attention for your content. Your business pages on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter etc. are a great place to share your content. They should reflect your branding and always link to your website.

Make connections with your customers and target customers. Interact with them to learn what they care about and where you fit in.

List Yourself in Local and Industry Directories

Local search directories are typically free or low cost. Create business pages in search engines like Google and Bing! Claim your business listing in local search directories, such as Google My Business, Yelp and Bing Places for Business. Also pay attention to local community websites that feature business listings. Most industry professional associations also have directories. Get listed!

Get Reviews

More than eight in 10 American adults say they read reviews at least some of the time before making a purchase. Make sure your business is listed on important review sites for your industry and that your profile on these sites is complete and detailed.

Encourage your customers to review your business by including links to your review sites on your website and in your social media. Be sure to acknowledge all reviews that you receive.

Online Audience Is Stable But Demanding

The percentage of Americans who go online, use social media, or own key devices has remained stable the past two years, according to Pew Research Center data.

  • The shares of U.S. adults who say they use the internet, use social media, own a smartphone or own a tablet computer are all nearly identical to the shares who said so in 2016.
  • The share who say they have broadband internet service at home currently stands at 65% – nearly identical to the 67% who said this in a survey conducted in summer 2015.
  • There has actually been a small dip in the overall numbers of computer owners over the last two years – from 78% in 2016 to 73% today.

For marketers, the online audience has arrived. Growth will not come from increased volume of potential connections, it will come from strategic efforts to engage with people who are already online.

What do they want? Authentic, personalized engagement with you. According to recent research from Slackla, audiences crave authenticity online. They are also looking for personalized experiences.

Brands that are able to tap into these needs will succeed in capturing the attention of people who are online and waiting.

Social Media Marketing Quick Tips

 

How do you feel about your social media marketing? Are you feeling on top of it all or way behind? Here’s an overview of what you need to do. Cover these basics and you are in a good position to accomplish your marketing goals on social.

Be on the “Right” Social Channels

The right places to be are the places where your target customer or audience hangs out. There’s no need to be on Pinterest, for example, if the people you want to reach don’t spend any time there.

How do you decide? Pew Internet does great research into who is where on a national basis. Their social media research will give you a good sense of where your target audience is likely to be.

Do some local fact checking. Ask the people you want to engage with. Where are they on social? How often do they use it? What do they like and not like to see?

Bottom line is the right place(s) to be are the platforms that make the most sense based on your industry and audience.

Provide Accurate Profile Information

Once you pick your places to be, you may immediately start thinking about what you will post. That’s not the next step. Completing your profile is the next most important step.

Fill out your profile completely. Add images. Complete all the information fields. Not only does this make your profile look more professional and credible, but this step makes your business easier to find.

Make sure to revisit your profile regularly to make sure it is still complete and accurate. Business details change. And, all of the social channels add options to the basic profile all the time.

Always use all the options to link to your website and other social channels from each profile. The more interconnected you make your online presence, the better.

Post Interesting Content

You need to post content on a regular basis to have any impact on social media. The frequency depends on your type of business and the expectations of the people you want to reach. The content should be a mix of what you want to say and what your audience cares about.

All of your content should support your business goals and reflect your subject matter expertise. Write your content in a conversational way. Social media is a social place – write like you would speak in a face-to-face conversation.

Make Connections

You need to be seen to be effective. Follow fellow businesses, brands and prospects.

Following others shows that you’re an active participant in the social space. Social is all about creating connections and relationships. If you just want to share your latest sales pitch and don’t want to interact, that’s what ads are for.

Follow competitors, industry leaders, customers, and prospects, to see how others operate on social media. Most networks offer follower suggestions to get you started and keep your network growing.

Know Who Is Talking About You and Get Involved

Have a way to monitor for mentions of you and your brand. Timeliness is very important, especially when it comes to customer service.

Most platforms have a search function. You can also use tools like Hootsuite, Mention and Sprout Social to find mentions.

Respond to both positive and negative mentions. It is important to not let inaccurate information go uncorrected. Fans and detractors alike will appreciate knowing you take the time to react to their postings.

Promote your Social Channels

Help people find you on social. The more connections you have, the more impact your efforts there will have.

Some places you can hype up your profiles include:

  • Signage in your store
  • Website links
  • Email signature
  • Email newsletter
  • Business cards
  • Paid ads