Marketing can feel like an uphill battle for small businesses.
On top of the obvious discoverability problems you face, you’re also dealing with the reality of a much smaller marketing budget than your larger competitors. That means it’s essential for a small business to nail its marketing strategy.
The stakes are high but don’t panic. Here’s how to design a strong marketing strategy for a small business.
Establish Your Goals
Countless businesses have fallen at the first hurdle thanks to diffuse goals.
If your aims are too diffuse, you’ll pull your business in many directions at once, but never reach your goals in any of them. With a tight focus on a core of distinct and well-defined goals, you have clear objectives and measurable targets.
Your goals can start small and expand as your marketing budget grows. Keep the principle of SMART goals in mind. Goals should be:
- Specific: Set fixed goals, like increasing referrals from Twitter by a percentage
- Measurable: Specific goals lead to measurable targets—in this case, the percentage
- Attainable: Goals should be realistic for your business
- Relevant: Keep laser-focused on your larger goals, such as driving sales growth
- Time-Bound: Used a fixed period to monitor the results. Use this to track success and failure.
Focus Your Energies
For a small business, focusing your energies is crucial. You can only do so much.
To keep your marketing focused, decide which channels will provide the highest yield for the lowest cost in terms of active expenditure and working hours. For small businesses, that usually means social media marketing is the way to go—it offers a huge audience at low overheads.
Understand Your Customers
As a small business, it’s vital that you understand your customer base. A small business will live or die by its small core of early customers, which it will only retain if it understands how to connect with them.
Social media strategies likewise depend on a good understanding of your customers.
Luckily, social media also provides an excellent platform for digital marketing research. You can build a near-complete picture of your target audience before you ever deploy your campaign.
Modern marketing is reactive. Thanks to the real-time feedback of social media, your marketing should be in a state of constant development as you draw on previous experiences to inform future campaigns.
For each stage of your marketing cycle, take a look at what worked and what didn’t. Build on customer feedback and engagement to create an outline for where you can take your marketing next. In theory, this should make every marketing campaign stronger than the last.
Marketing Strategy for Small Businesses Made Simple
The trick to designing a marketing strategy for small businesses is to keep things simple. With these tips, you can streamline your marketing strategy to focus on what matters—which will give you the most marketing bang for your buck.
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