Starting your own business from scratch is a task that requires a lot of work (and nerves), but it can also be fulfilling and gratifying.
You are the one who gets to set all the rules!
Once you covered all the initial stages of establishing a new business it is time to think about promotion and future growth and the optimal marketing strategies that will help you accomplish that.
Marketing strategies are always evolving, following the rapid changes in the already highly-competitive business world (especially after big events such as a global epidemic).
And the trick for creating a successful plan is keeping track of any new trends and being prepared to adapt and change when necessary.
Sounds challenging and overwhelming, doesn’t it?
Well, that doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. With these suggestions, you will form a sense of where and how to start implementing various marketing strategies that could grow and improve your business exponentially.
Know your audience
First and foremost, it is of paramount significance to establish a carefully thought out, analyzed, and selected target demographic.
Your target audience will greatly determine the trajectory, pace, and form of your marketing strategies. That way, you will know which approaches to favor, platforms to use, and what sort of messages to convey.
Starting your own business is already a tiring and costly process, particularly if you are a small company with limited funds.
So, it is important to prevent your resources from being dispersed and wasted on an audience that is unlikely to respond well (or at all) to your brand as a whole.
You can save a lot of time, money, and effort by focussing on the right demographic.
Whether you are just starting your own company, or you are an experienced veteran in running a company, you are certainly aware of the role social media has in today’s business world.
For the past several years it has become an unavoidable part of any marketing strategy.
The choice of those channels will depend partially on your brand but mostly on your target demographic and their preference on social media platforms.
Full transparency – Bear in mind that juggling multiple platforms at all times can be an almost impossible job. Luckily, with proper social media management tools, you will not miss a thing.
Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube
It is known that people tend to respond well to visual forms of presentation and that the majority of people (or at least your targeted audience) are active on one or multiple social media platforms.
By combining those two facts you are gaining a highly-compelling, powerful, and successful marketing strategy.
It definitely sounds like a great deal, right? And it is! However, it is a bit more complex than that. You have to know how to handle your social media accounts the right way in order to accomplish a positive outcome.Image Courtesy of Pexels.com
One of the main things to consider is, of course, the overall esthetics that corresponds to your brand. Some of the main platforms to create your visual identity are Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube.
It should be visually strong and memorable, recognizable and attention-grabbing.
The most important task at this point is stopping potential customers from scrolling endlessly through their social media and making them intrigued and interested in your company.
Once you capture their attention you need to maintain it with regular and quality content.
Increased reach generated on social media reflects on your sales numbers which, of course, provides you with an opportunity to expand and grow your business.
Among different social media platforms, Linkedin is the one that is the most business-oriented. It also gives you a perfect opportunity to connect with other business owners, sharing tips, advice, and experiences.
In today’s ruthless and hectic marketplace, mutual support is important. Instead of seeing others as (strictly), competitors think of other companies as potential partners and allies.
If you are new to this platform as a business owner, there are certain integrations to improve your Linkedin outreach and to make the whole experience a whole lot easier.
Influencers and other companies
It is a fairly new aspect and it is tightly associated with social media marketing strategies.
Connecting to others and building a strong online community is a great way to boost your reach. Whether it is an individual or a brand in a similar niche, getting someone else to support and promote your brand through affiliate marketing campaigns is mutually beneficial.
However, be sure to choose carefully with whom you do business.
For example, some analyses have shown that people tend to be skeptical towards influencers or brands that do too many paid ads and collaborations. It creates an appearance of someone that would promote anything for money, regardless of the quality of the product or service.
Needless to say, that would reflect poorly on your company’s reputation.
For the past year, we all had to adjust to a new way of conducting things due to new rules brought by the coronavirus. Restrictive measures and full lockdown changed the marketing game as well, making online platforms a necessity rather than a preference.
Channels such as Zoom, Skype, Instagram, or Facebook live are a perfect opportunity to reach your customers in a very direct way. And in case you are not sure how to organize it properly, there is a webinar software especially tailored for all your business needs.
The fact it is going live (rather than being a scripted, pre-recorded video) makes it more spontaneous and honest, and by that notion, more believable and trustworthy.
That is something your customers are surely going to appreciate.
This type of marketing method has shown to be highly-compelling so far, and the audience has received it in a very positive manner.
An SEO campaign might be an unfamiliar term for a new business owner, and maybe even an intimidating one. But in all honesty, it is quite a straight-forward and efficient marketing strategy used by every company, big or small
The main things to keep in mind are well-thought-out keywords (more precisely, a combination of words) designed in a way that would manipulate the search engine algorithms, increase your traffic, and boost your rankings.
The ranking is quite important because by constructing the right keywords, the selected search engine offers your page as an optimal answer to customers’ inquiries.
And every person that clicks on your website is a potential buyer.
Again, reach only generates more reach. When choosing your keywords don’t overdo it, too many keywords can achieve an opposite effect. In this particular case, it is definitely quality over quantity.
Even though it is slowly being replaced as the preferred method of marketing by some more direct and seemingly personal ones, email marketing is still a viable way of reaching customers (both new and recurring).
The key is to always aim to upgrade your email game. The old way that includes generic, automated emails just won’t cut it in today’s competitive world.
In order to improve this marketing approach, it is essential to gather certain type of information:
- interests and hobbies
- purchasing history and spending habits, etc.
Based on the collected data, you can customize every outgoing email. Customers respond well to a message that is tailored to them and their specific needs and wishes.
By creating a feeling that the brand understands them will make them more likely to continue to choose exactly your company.
Additional note: Be aware of the number of emails you send on a regular basis. Try to find a balance between delivering all the important information without spamming. Emails that are too frequent can provoke the customers to cancel the subscription.
It should go without saying that every solid and productive marketing strategy is tightly associated with good customer service. Not only do people like to feel heard, but every feedback you receive is a valuable one as it can help you navigate and adjust future strategies.
On the other hand, poorly organized customer service can undoubtedly reflect on your sales.
It could cost you your customers, which is something no business can really afford.
Numerous research has proven that having a bad experience with customer service will discourage the customers from coming back and doing business with the same company.
To make sure that doesn’t happen (or rather to minimize the risks) there is software such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) designed to enhance customer’s experience, accelerate the process, increase visibility and insight, etc.
Always remember, a satisfied customer is a repeating customer.
Additional note: Even though customers tend to prefer to handle their inquiries mostly via email or DM (direct messages on social media), call centers’ customer service is not completely out of the picture just yet. But they did update their form to be more efficient. That means call center software can be implemented to make the job easier for your customer service team.
Since some customers like to text and others to call, it is a smart idea to accommodate those needs on multiple channels.
Around the clock availability
The fact is that mobile phones are replacing bulkier devices such as computers, laptops, and even tablets.
What does this mean for your business and marketing strategies? It is quite simple, your customers have everything in the palm of their hand, so they tend to expect their favorite brand/company/service to be able to keep up.
Let’s put it this way, physical stores and businesses have strictly determined work hours. However, online services are available 24/7, making purchases possible at any time of day or night. This leaves the customers with the impression everything is accessible at all times.
Since it is not possible for one person (or even a team of people) to accomplish this task, there are tools created to help you stay on top of things.
Tools to make everything easier
For starters, Chrome Kiosk Mode will allow you to access all the necessary data on your mobile device and equip you with everything work-related (although it could be suitable for personal use as well). This app runs in fullscreen, making sure that the device is used for one purpose (for example, exclusively for work).
It is not just about maintaining a strong relationship with your customers but also nurturing productive and efficient connections within the company. Happy and satisfied employees are the ones that make your company a well-oiled machine. To do just that and to keep the communication channels open, there are employee apps to help you out.
Blogging is a marketing strategy that might appear a bit dated today. And yes, over the past several years it has definitely lost some of its importance, impact, and significance.
In the world of instant culture, saturated with a visual stimulus such as pictures, photos, or videos, people’s attention span for reading is drastically shortened. That being said, it is about knowing how to grab the reader’s attention with memorable headlines and make them want to read more by writing persuasive paragraphs and using strong power words.
Don’t limit yourself with the subject, provide them with quality content rich in creative ideas, business suggestions, details about your company and products, etc.
However, don’t forget that blogging as a marketing strategy is a great additional method that works best combined with other, more direct, and straightforward ones.
The podcast is another marketing strategy that at first glance might seem a bit outdated and less efficient than some other methods.
However, it has great potential as a good podcast gather large numbers of listeners. And the reason for that is – there is nothing more persuasive than quality storytelling.
In addition to that, it is easy and relatively affordable to produce and distribute which makes it highly accessible.
It is true that it works best for a few specific niches of business and, by that notion, for a certain type of audience. So starting a podcast on your own or being a guest of someone else’s can be a great and effective idea especially if you have the type of targeted demographic that would respond to this form of presentation and delivery of information.
A locally-oriented marketing strategy is not by any means a novelty approach and a more narrowly focused strategy might be just what your business needs.
It is, without a doubt, a good place to start or even to return to.
It offers you an opportunity to dedicate all your efforts to imagining and developing a strong and detailed strategy aimed at a small group of people that are the most likely to spend money on your product or service.
Reaching out to your local community
Yes, the year 2020 and the global COVID-19 epidemic shifted everything to a completely online-based way of conducting business and made it essentially impossible to connect to your community in person.
But that won’t always be the case, and with a vaccine starting to circulate, there seems to be a flicker of light at the end of the tunnel.
That means there is hope that (at least) some aspects of what we knew as a normal way of life (and business) will return in the near future. Image Courtesy of Pexels.com
So, keep in mind the potential benefits of participating in a local market, fair, or event once the circumstances allow it.
Don’t underestimate the word of mouth recommendations. Even though it has a smaller reach than online methods, people still tend to believe it more than anything they might read on the internet.
Adjust and adapt along the way
As previously mentioned, marketing strategies are constantly evolving and changing in order to accommodate the demand and the needs of customers.
That means you have to be prepared to tweak your marketing methods over time, or even change them completely based on thorough analysis and user behavior.Image Courtesy of Pexels.com
Implementing the same marketing plan over and over again will stop giving the positive results you want. After longer periods of time, it tends to lose some of its potency and impact.
By redefining your marketing strategy periodically, you are keeping it fresh and new, maintaining the attention of your customers, and attracting new ones.
At the first glance, a detailed and calculated marketing strategy might seem like a lot of work. However, it is a smart investment of your time and money.
A proper marketing plan is a crucial part of any successful and profitable business venture. Not to mention that some of its aspects can be rather fun and enjoyable.
There is no exact formula or combination of marketing strategies that you should develop.
It mostly depends on the business goals you have set for your company, as well as the resources you have at your disposal.
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