By Bob Milliken
You are reading this, so I presume that you are a small business owner. Just because you’re small doesn’t mean you won’t benefit from a digital marketing strategy. I have worked with owners of small businesses who make the mistake of thinking they don’t need a digital strategy.
In my experience this approach will guarantee to leave money on the table. And nobody wants that.
In this post I am going to introduce you to some basic ideas you could use today to lay the foundation of an effective digital marketing strategy. And, I will reveal the #1 mistake most small business owners make with their digital marketing plan.
Your #1 Priority – Build a Marketing Plan
Without a plan you don’t have a strategy and are essentially going nowhere. It doesn’t have to be a 2” binder gathering dust on a shelf somewhere in your office. A simple 1 or 2 page plan should be all you need.
Be sure that your plan includes goals, targets, and milestones. By measuring these you can quickly determine if your plan is working or not and take steps to fix what’s not working. Clearly defined goals are vital for your strategy’s success. By outlining what you want to achieve with your strategy, you can set milestones you need to reach each day, week, and month. These key metrics will help you produce laser-targeted campaigns designed to make your prospects take action.
In my opinion, without a plan and a tracking system you are flying blind.
If your pocket bock can tolerate it, hire a marketing team. With the sophisticated tools and years of expertise these skilled professionals bring to the table, this investment in your business will quickly pay dividends. They will reduce your learning curve, bring traffic to your site, drive lead generation for your business, make you sales where none existed before, and all in a fraction of the time it would take if you were to do it yourself.
The result is a boost in your income that pays for the marketing efforts, allowing you to expand your business, and giving you back time you didn’t know you had lost.
For Certain – Use Local SEO and Search
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a critical component of any digital marketing campaign. SEO helps you optimize your website, making it visible to the search engines and thereby boosting your online credibility. And we all want that – right?
If your business serves a local community, you absolutely must use SEO and a local marketing strategy. Implement Google My Business (claim your business at Google.com/business) and create an SEO plan with keywords that are focused your local area. Implement these two suggestions and the search bots will love you.
A mistake I see often is small business owners thinking they don’t need to be social.
The internet is a complex, dynamic space with billions of daily users going about their business on various platforms. It’s barely been 15-years since Facebook was a fringe site used by college kids. Today social media – Facebook and the likes of Twitter and Instagram – form a large part of our society’s everyday communications.
Advertising your small business on social media is a simple and highly effective way to target consumers in your community. Social media Platforms allow you to run dedicated ad campaigns to targeted prospects. You can use the Facebook ad manager to set customer profiles and then market to them with your ad campaigns.
If you think your business won’t benefit from running social marketing campaigns – you’re sadly mistaken. Social media marketing presents an amazing opportunity to reach targeted audiences, driving very qualified traffic to your landing page or website.
COVID and Consumer Changes
As I write this, the pandemic continues to swirl around us and change consumer behavior.
The result? More people going online to shop for what they need.
Traditional retail models are dying as the world moves online (to stay – I wonder?) during this unprecedented time. Smart business is embracing this shift and realigning their marketing and retail strategies to online.
It’s becoming obvious that traditional advertising models are no longer viable as business realizes there is more value in their marketing budget from digital marketing tactics than conventional models.
Create an Email Marketing Campaign
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways to capture new customers and prospects. To build your list, use email to drive prospects to your lead magnets where you can capture their information. As your list expands, combine the incredible reach of email with the power of automation and send your prospects through automated sales funnels designed to convert them into customers.
Drive More Traffic to Your Landing Pages
The purpose of digital marketing is to drive more qualified traffic to your site or landing pages. Online marketing makes your site visible to people searching for keywords relating to your industry. It also builds brand awareness by using tactics like CTAs (Call to Action) to pull people to your offers. When more traffic starts visiting your site, you’ll see a steady uptick in conversion, increasing your sales revenue and filling your pipeline.
The #1 Mistake I see Over and over and over …
SEO is the heartbeat of your business. Once setup, SEO will deliver leads and customers to your site 24X7 – non-stop.
The best place to hide a dead body is on page 2 of Google search results.
A website, eCommerce store, or landing page is an asset to any organization, but it’s not doing much for your business if no-one knows you exist. One of my pet sayings is “the best place to hide a dead body is on page 2 of Google search results”. Spending a lot of money on a fully functional website is pointless if it’s not visible to the search engines.
While it may be possible to run a business in 2021 without SEO, in my opinion not doing SEO drives your potential prospects right into the welcoming arms of your competitors.
The Take Away
The challenges of managing a business and running a digital marketing strategy are numerous. Hiring a team might seem expensive, but you’ll get results fast.
If you are serious about implementing a digital marketing strategy for your business, simply book a free 30-minute consultation with Bob Milliken or Aradhna at Bit.ly/SimplifyYourMarketing and we can talk about it.