The 5 essentials of marketing for every Small Business
How much time, money and importance does your business place on your marketing program? And I say program, because it should be something that is running continually rather than just a plan.
As small business owners our main reasons for marketing should be to gain new customers, increase sales to existing customers and maintain branding and awareness for future customers.
If you are not marketing continually, consistently, to the right audiences and using the right mediums, then you are missing out on sales. And very possibly those sales are going to your competitors.
Every business will have a different budget and different activities, however there a few core areas of marketing that you should ensure your marketing person or company is doing for you and doing right.
1. Target Practice
You’ve been running your business for long enough now to know what type of clients you have and who your ideal client is. Identifying who your target markets are is crucial for achieving better results and lower expenditure in your marketing activities.
2. Your Website is the window to the world
When was the last time you checked your website? Websites break – it’s common – with all the updates that go on in the background, things might not be working properly. Do a quick check now. Visit your website and make sure all is in order. While you’re there do a quick check that all of the information is still relevant and up-to-date and that any new products, services or information is available to find.
3. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Did you check your website yet? Ok now its time to check the speed. You could be losing over 30% of visitors to your website due to slow loading times. If you could only do one thing ever in the marketing arena it would be to make sure your website is optimised. You spent all that money and effort getting them there only for them to leave. Go to this link and enter your website address If you encounter a low score or multiple errors, send the report to your marketing person or web company, with a demand for answers. Your SEO is key to appearing higher in online searches.
4. The importance of Social Media for your marketing program
Every business needs to have a presence on Social Media channels. The kind of business you are in will determine which channels you use. Most of my clients use a combination of Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin and Google Plus. We use Hootsuite to manage all of the posting and tracking. As well as talking to your customers and providing updates, the importance of being on Social Media is to assist in improving your SEO ranking. Twitter, Pinterest and Snapchat are the other main social channels, however these are not relevant to the industries that my clients work in. You do not have to be on every channel, but you should be on at least two.
5. Google my Business
The final essential is being listed so you can be found in the online search directories. I have mentioned this before, but for local marketing you need to be a VERIFIED business on Google and BING . This will help you show up in searches and on the map of businesses. If you do not know if you are listed just do a search for your business type and see if you show up in the search engine listing.
How much should I spend on marketing?
As much as you can. Ha. No really, the rule of thumb is between 5% and 10% of your turnover. It’s 5% to maintain your existing level of business and awareness and up to 10% to grow this.
Still not sure? – that’s fine it does actually differ by industry and size of business. Talk to us today at Operite to establish what kind of marketing program would be most effective for your business.