Marketing is critical to the survival of a small business. What matters most for successful marketing is creativity. A campaign should be neither expensive nor pompous. It needs to hit the intended targets, and it has to have a special X-factor to win the attention of the public. A few good approaches are analyzed in this piece.
Social Media Witticisms
Social media remains a great way to attract users to your business. There are two main conditions for achieving this goal: having useful products and knowing how to present them in your posts. First, make your breakthrough via Facebook. Second, use short but witty promotional remarks. In a nutshell: think in a Twitterish way when using Facebook. Short but expressive witticisms will sweep your prospects off of their feet, seducing them to become your loyal customers.
No matter what your target audience is, video messages are always a handy promotional too. Younger generations are more video-centered than their parents and grandparents. Therefore, if you are aiming at people aged 14-25, make publish Snapchat videos to increase your brand recognition.
Sending an e-mail newsletter represents a perfect way of presenting special discounts and new products to your loyal customers. On the other hand, this method might be a waste of time if you try to reach out to new customers by sending them commercial emails. They will most likely end up in the spam folder, aka the trash (your e-mails, not the customers). To avoid any legal inconvenience, find out more about the legal aspects of email marketing here.
Infographics are probably the most effective way of informing people about your business in a concise and clever way. The benefit of are three-fold. First, it doesn’t take a long time to create them. Second, infographics can be used in different media – from social media promotion to website pages, to the aforementioned e-mail newsletters. Finally, they convey your promotional message in both words and colors, which immediately wins people’s attention. And the best of it all, there are many DIY infographic tools, so you can create them on your own.
Prizes and Contests
This way of getting people to learn more about your small business is a two-lane road. You should both participate in various contests in your field of work and organize competitions. For instance, if you produce cheese, you should apply for cheese competitions and trade fairs. Winning a prize at such an event will make you a household name in your region. On the other hand, organizing a contest will show your rivals that you’re on a winning streak, as well as spread the word about your brand.
Attending Trade Fairs
Visiting trade fairs should provide you with a fair share of contacts and clients. You can attend such events as a mere visitor or as a participant exhibiting your products. Either way will bring some benefits. Moreover, if you combine the aforementioned prize-awarding contest and participation in a trade show, you will score a double promotion for your small business.
Freebies for Fastest Users
Giveaways are one of the oldest ways of arousing public interest in one’s small business, and they’re still effective. Moreover, as a result of the ubiquitous nature of the Internet, nowadays you can send your promotional items to people living in different parts of the world. What’s more, they don’t have to be tangible things but can be useful services. For instance, if you want to share your knowledge on the web and get paid for it through tutorials (read a Forbes piece on that here), launch a YouTube channel and treat the first few lucky subscribers to a free membership. This can become your business policy – let every potential student have a free class and only then decide if they want to pay for your online tutorials. It will undoubtedly add to your relevance.
Since you will eventually need some money to promote your brand if you are a startup, think in advance how to form your marketing budget. Going to a bank to get a loan is an option but a long-term and excruciating one. The Web has changed the way people collect money for their business efforts. This means that today you can launch an online crowdfunding campaign. You’ll be surprised how many people are willing to help ambitious new entrepreneurs. Established small businesses sometimes also need additional funds for their marketing ideas, which is why adding invoice funding to your marketing plan is a clever and proactive thing to do. You’ll obtain the money you need fast, and the other party will make a profit, too.
The easiest way to popularize your small business for free on the local level is to connect with other small businesses. In this case, it would be perfect if you could reach deals for mutual promotion with enterprises that are linked to your field but that aren’t your direct competition. For instance, if you run a printing business, make an agreement with a private language school. They can use your printing services and promote your brand, while you can give them discounts if you’re their only printing provider – everybody wins.
Last but not the least, are good old traditional promotional techniques. Newspaper ads, as well as commercials on local TV and radio stations, still play an important role in attracting a new audience to your small business. A great example of such an approach are radio commercials that aim at drivers, since a study shows that drivers are among the most avid listeners to radio stations. This opens a wide range of multi-channel marketing options that can blend traditional and modern media.
The essence of creative marketing hasn’t changed in the Internet era. What is different are its forms and the number of options you can use. The most convenient way for addressing as many people as possible is to combine free marketing with investments. Trying different strategies and methods will generate new original ideas and increase the chances of success for your small business.
Stacey Cooper is a contributor to BusinessTown.com