Running a small business can be incredibly fulfilling, but it can also be overwhelming. It means that marketing your business and building your brand falls on your shoulders. Regardless of what product or service you provide, every small business needs to implement a strategy to help attract more customers. For just about everyone, this includes internet marketing.
In today’s digital landscape, internet marketing is one of the most effective, yet affordable, ways to expand your customer base.
If executed correctly, your small business will be able to increase brand awareness, drive sales, and go up against bigger businesses who have a bigger marketing budget than you do. Not sure where to start? Here are three internet marketing ideas you can start using right now.
3 internet marketing ideas you can use right now
You don’t have to spend a lot of money to put the internet to work for you. Pick one of these ideas to get started.
Websites for the win.
The magic of blogging.
Be seen on social media.
Ready to take your small business marketing game up a notch? Let’s go!
1. Websites for the win
Your website is your business’s digital calling card, so if you don’t already have one, you should probably think about creating one. You don’t have to spend a huge amount of money to create a fancy website with all the bells and whistles. You can create your own or hire an affordable designer if you need a bit of help.
It’s important to make sure your website is easy to navigate and provides an accurate reflection of your business’s style and brand personality.
Pay attention to search engine optimisation (SEO) so search engines pay attention to your website. This is one way to bring customers to your site (and your business).
When a potential customer visits your website, they should instantly be able to find out what product or service you are offering and how to obtain it, as well as details on how they can contact you if necessary.
It’s important to include reviews from current or previous customers so that new customers can get better insight into your business. Better yet, create your own Google My Business listing and ask your customers to leave a review.
2. The magic of blogging
Don’t underestimate the power of maintaining a blog for your small business. While whipping up regular blog posts might take time and commitment, it can boost your business in a few different ways.
Creating well-written, useful content shows your customers that you are knowledgeable in your field, adding a sense of validity to your brand.
For instance, a freelance graphic designer who regularly blogs about graphic design trends, recent design events and/or art styles that influence their work is conveying to customers that he/she is committed to keeping up with design trends and wants to be an influencer in their field.
On a more technical level, creating regular blog posts and including relevant SEO keywords will improve your search rankings, therefore making it easier for customers to find you. Google (and most other search engines) look favourably on websites that are always being updated with fresh, new content (as opposed to static websites). Check out our handy checklist on how to improve your Google rankings.
3. Be seen on social media
Having a rock-solid social media strategy is a surefire way to create a network of customers.
The key to social media success is to make sure you’re active on the social media platforms that are best-suited to your business.
So before you start pressing ‘publish,’ you need to pinpoint which social platforms you need to be on. Trying to be active on every single platform will take up a huge amount of time and isn’t necessary.
The general rule of thumb is to determine which platforms your customer base is most active on. If your target audience is skewed mostly towards men, then Pinterest probably wouldn’t be ideal. If your products or services are suited to a 50-year-old demographic, then Snapchat might be a waste of time.
Before you sign up to any social media accounts, make sure you do the relevant research so that you can use your time and resources as efficiently as possible.
Internet marketing — it works
Website marketing, blogging and social media are three effective internet marketing strategies that will help your small business thrive. And the best part is that, if done the right way, they can all help you achieve impressive results without blowing your marketing budget.
To help your business reach its full potential, make sure you convey a consistent theme across your website, blog and social media accounts so that your brand is easily recognisable. This includes (but isn’t limited to) design, writing style, font and the type of video and image content you use across different marketing platforms.