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Advertising, Digital Marketing

Marketing your small business in 2017

 

Small business marketing is tricky these days. There have never been more options available. Most of which you can do yourself. But, of course it’s not that simple!

With endless new marketing opportunities available, how do you choose the right ones?

What’s the most cost-effective way to find new customers?
How do you convince them to visit your website?
And, how do you get them to buy your product or service?

Fear not! We’re here to help you through the modern marketing maze.

 

Facebook Lead ads

Small business marketing on Facebook

In our experience, it’s crucial for small business owners to be active on Facebook.

Having recently hit 2 Billion users, it’s likely your potential customers are using Facebook. Right?

A couple of posts per week should be enough, your followers don’t need hourly updates. But keep posts relevant and fun. And link to your website or products often. Don’t forget you’re using Facebook to drive traffic to your site.

Video content is especially popular.

Hanapin Marketing wrote a great article on this topic, stating some have even suggested that Facebook will be all video in 5 years!

 

Facebook ads

The real way to drive traffic though is by using Facebook’s ever-growing ad platform.

The targeting and value for money are second to none.

Again video content works well. But other mechanics for driving traffic to your site are:

1. Competitions
2. Prize draws
3. Article links
4. Downloads
5. Infographics
6. Games & quizzes

Bear in mind, the majority of your Facebook traffic will be from mobile. So a mobile optimised or responsive website is a must.

Marketing your business with SEO

SEO or Search engine optimisation, is often misunderstood.

But actually it’s simple. SEO is the process of getting a website to appear (rank) in search engine results.

Most businesses want to rank well for keywords relevant to their product or service.

Examples might be:

A company selling aluminium front doors would want to rank for “Aluminium front doors”.

An agency in Macclesfield wanting to rank for “creative agency Macclesfield”.

The art of SEO is optimising the website & content to rank for these words.

There are two parts to this.

1. Onsite SEO
2. Offsite SEO

Onsite SEO is things you can do to the website such as:
Page titles
Headings
Meta descriptions
Image names and alt text
Site structure
Internal links etc

Offsite SEO is the process of promoting the content you create on the website.

This could be:
Backlinks (other websites linking to your site)
Social media
Press releases
Reviews
Business listings
Google my business etc

The older and more trusted your domain (in Googles view), the easier it is to rank content for keywords.

New domains and brand new sites will always struggle to rank in the early days.

We help clients build their brand naturally adding useful content for their audience. Eventually your site will become trusted and your organic rankings will come.

You have to stick at it, but the benefits of organic traffic will be your reward.

 

Marketing with Reviews

Review sites such as Reevoo, Trust Pilot and Feefo are a great way for potential customers to see how good you are.

These platforms often come at a cost though.

So if you’re on a budget, Google reviews and Facebook reviews are offer similar services and are free to use.

If you find that you are getting bad reviews that you feel are unfair, always respond.

Your response should be professional and honest.

Resist the temptation to respond emotionally or lash out at the reviewer. Remain positive and try to address their issue.

It’s normal for things to go wrong sometimes. No one is perfect, and customers may even be suspicious if you have only 5star reviews.

The important thing is to learn from reviews where you can and not to take things to heart.

Reviews are an invaluable way for customers to get a feel for your product or service. Most consumers look for ‘Social proof’ before buying. Look at an Amazon product page for an example of this.

 

Email marketing

Email marketing is still one of the best ways to market to customers. Building a list and sending relevant offers can be very effective.

For many of our clients, email is their top converting channel.

But how is it done?

Collecting email addresses by asking customers on your site is a good place to start.

This is usually in the form of a pop up or bar. It’s best to explain why the customer should give their email address.

I.e. We’ll send you special offers, and the latest hints and tips.

Facebook lead ads are also a great way to collect emails.
Emails are collected within the platform. Facebook already has their details so in most cases signing up is quick and simple for customers.

You can set up lead ads in Facebook, select “lead ads” from the ad type when creating your ad.

Once you have a list, its tempting to send out an offer to the entire list. This might work, but its not a great long term strategy.

Email works best when targeted offers are sent to relevant customers.

You can segment your customers by:

Customer type (Beginner, expert, professional student etc)

Product interest (customers who have expressed interest in a particular product or service)

Location (this works well for stores with many locations or events)

Behaviour (Browsed products, products added to basket, previous purchases etc)

Segmenting your list is the best way to ensure you send relevant email and reduce unsubscribes.

But, remember that people will unsubscribe eventually. So it’s important to keep gathering new email prospects to replace them.

Email is also a great way of grabbing customers who are not quite ready to buy. Rather than lose them, ask for their email address and a few months down the line they may be ready to buy from you.

 

Remarketing

Remarketing is the (slightly) creepy method of following your customers around the web with ads. Once a customer has browsed your site, you can create ads to remind them of your brand while they browse around. Sweet hey?

It does work well and can be set up in Google Display, Facebook and even in Google adwords. Adwords can retarget traffic that has already browsed your site. Promoting your ads above your competitors.

 

Conclusion

We hope this article has helped to de-mystify some successful marketing methods. If you need help with your marketing or brand, we’d love to talk.