Small businesses always have it tougher than well-established businesses when it comes to marketing. Just starting a small business is a challenge in and of itself. Whether you are a large or a small company, numerous challenges will be hurled your way. But if you are a small business, then those challenges are magnified. Shortages in budget, time, or manpower are a few examples of those hurdles. Whether a business is built as a B2B (business to business) or B2C (business to consumer), challenges are present right from the get-go. There are some ways that small businesses can utilize to help with dealing with the competition, such as finding someone who has become a merchant services agent, and save money on their processing fees etc.
Medium-sized businesses do not have it any easier. Sure, they might have a little more when it comes to resources, but not that much. Whatever the struggles that they go through, small-to-medium sized businesses or SMB’s are gaining in prominence. They make up a whopping 99.7% of all businesses in the United States, after all.
Businesses with 0–999 employees qualify as small to midsized businesses. Due to fewer employees and smaller budgets, marketing methods will look different for SMBs than corporations that have more people and larger budgets. Often SMB owners find that their marketing strategies are not giving them the results they want. Typically, they lament that they’ve placed some ads, but they just don’t seem to be doing anything. Their efforts are not bringing them the customers, clients, or sales they desire. That’s where a marketing strategy comes in. And for the budget conscious, there are businesses like Flocksy that deliver unlimited creative and design projects by a professionally vetted creative team for a flat monthly rate. This enables small and mid-sized businesses to compete organically, grow, and reach out to the markets they want to target.
The design, content and support work provided by Flocksy enables businesses to grow while being conscious of their bottom-line. Here are some areas to think about when putting together your marketing plans post COVID-19.
Set a goal and budget for your SMB marketing strategy. Goals direct your strategy, while budgets provide you the resources to accomplish your goals. Identify what you want to accomplish and how much you want to spend doing. A clearly identifiable, realistic, and measurable goal and a budget will help keep your SMB marketing strategy on target. Use design and custom content to hit your stride.
To communicate what your company is, does and stands for, you need to have a clear identity. Once you know what your company represents, you need a suitable name, a logo, colors, and imagery that convey this to your customers. There are several different options for how to do this, including hiring a freelancer or collaborating with an established agency. This kind of work can be costly when done indid, but it’s money well spent. Think about how huge companies like Starbucks or McDonald’s are defined by their brands, logos and colors.
Social media can be stressful and irritating. Especially when you are trying to juggle Facebook and LinkedIn and Instagram and Pinterest, and Twitter. Having a presence across channels is great, but it can be more effective to choose one channel that your customers are most present on to pursue. For example, if your customers are constantly tagging your location or handle in Instagram posts but rarely retweeting you on Twitter, invest more time in Instagram. Then provide your custom content through those channels to enhance your outreach.
Email has many advantages as a marketing channel. It is easy to do, easy to automate, allows instantaneous communication, costs very little and can reach a large number of potential customers. Once you add somebody’s address to your mailing list, make sure you provide interesting, valuable and relevant content that people will actually open rather than deleting immediately or sending to the “spam” box – otherwise, you are just wasting your time. The main idea is to get people to come back to your website at a later date when they are likely to buy your product. Email leads still have one of the highest conversion rates of all sources. Your response rate is typically attached to your design work and your content. Remember: that is a major key to success!
As an SMB, the first thing you need to do to implement a good marketing strategy is to have a well-designed website. Your website is the main place you’ll post information on your products and services. Your website is also the place that most of your marketing should lead, whether from your emails, your social media accounts, or your blog. Your website is your platform to convert people. It’s your face on the web, and it’s where you all your calls-to-action (CTAs) stem from. In the digital world, it’s the front door of your business.
Content marketing is useful for getting long-term results. So, if you have a long-term vision for your business, then this is the perfect SMB marketing strategy for you. You need to understand that it is a process in which you have to create content that is valuable, relevant, and consistent. Once you have created great content, you need to distribute it to your target audience with the intention of it leading to sales. Please note that content marketing is not limited to written content or blog posts. It can include several different types of content, such as videos, podcasts, case studies, white papers, reports, and more. Allocating money to cover professional graphic designers etc. can help you avoid wasting time and budget. You don’t want to end up with poor content because that will only drive customers away instead of attracting them.
Whether you just started your business, or you’ve been around for some time and are looking for growth, SMB marketing is your path to success. Doing this marketing through a retainer-based agreement with a team you can personally select will save you time and money. Flocksy, as one of the first companies of its kind, has been helping small and mid-size businesses grow for years. You can increase conversions through automated emails and ramp up your brand awareness through social media. And once you’ve got the basics down, invest in other SMB marketing tools that will further drive growth and revenue.