Running a successful business requires building a solid customer base. Doing so comes down to three important factors: know, like, and trust. Digital marketing is one of the most efficient ways to get your target audience to know, like, and trust your business.
An excellent digital marketing strategy:
Uses storytelling to help consumers understand who and what your brand is (Know)
Helps consumers connect with your brand’s mission, values, and “why” (Like)
Gives your business credibility and makes customers feel safe and respected (Trust)
As a small business, you may feel like you can’t compete with larger brands with big marketing budgets. The good news is, digital marketing doesn’t have to be a costly endeavor. You can utilize free digital marketing channels and still get great results.
Use the tips below to develop a smart digital marketing strategy for your business.
1. Have a Goal in Mind
Optimizing your digital marketing strategy can be time-consuming. To ensure your time isn’t being wasted, start by establishing your goals. Knowing the intended outcomes will help you create a plan geared toward the results you want to achieve. For example, your goals may include:
Converting leads to buyers
Boosting website traffic
Generating more revenue
Increasing brand and customer engagement
Producing new leads
Understanding your audience is essential when setting digital marketing goals. It helps you determine where to focus your efforts and what kind of content to share. Creating audience personas can help identify your target audience’s key traits, such as their motivations, needs, and preferences.
2. Create a Google My Business Listing
With more than 7,000 queries happening per second, Google is by far the most popular search engine in the world. The platform also offers many free tools and products, making it a gold mine for those looking to build an online presence.
From Google Search Console to Google Analytics, Google makes it possible for business owners to create and understand digital marketing strategies. One of the most beneficial (and often underutilized) products is Google My Business.
Setting up a free Google My Business account makes it easy for businesses to manage their online presence across Google products and help customers find their business. While these are definitely perks, customer reviews are one of the most valuable things Google My Business offers.
Testimonials and reviews provide social proof, which is critical to building trust with your target customer. Google reviews populate every time your business shows up in search results and have the power to drive more traffic to your business, both online and in person. Positive reviews can also increase revenue by 62% per customer transaction.
For more tips, check out this blog on how small businesses can leverage Google My Business and customer reviews.
3. Utilize Social Media
When it comes to digital marketing, social media is often the first thing that comes to mind — and it’s easy to see why. Social media gives business owners a free platform for engaging with their target audience, creating brand awareness, and targeting new customers. It’s also a great place to share customer testimonials and Google reviews.
A digital marketing mistake many small business owners make is trying to be on every single platform. Managing too many social media platforms at once can be ineffective, especially if you have limited resources. Figure out what platform your audience spends the most time on and start there.
4. Start a Blog
Content marketing goes hand-in-hand with a small business’s digital marketing efforts. The most powerful type of content marketing is blogging. Starting a blog is advantageous because it can yield long-term results. Unlike social media, which typically has a short lifespan, blogging continues to add value over time by:
Driving organic traffic to your business website
Positioning your business as an industry authority
The key is to produce high-quality content that follows search engine optimization (SEO) best practices.
5. Leverage Email Marketing
Building an email list is one of the best things you can do for your business. Email marketing offers a huge advantage over social media because there are no pesky algorithms to contend with. Showing up directly in your audience’s inbox gives you control over what they see and when they see it. Get customers to sign up for your email list with a special offer or discount. Then keep them engaged by sending regular emails with the latest news and offers.
Find a Digital Marketing Strategy that Works for Your Business
Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results right away. Creating an effective digital marketing strategy doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time.
It’s also important to remember that what works for one business may not work for another. You can see how your digital marketing is performing by analyzing your website and social media analytics regularly. If you notice a particular platform is outperforming another, you can tweak your strategy or focus your efforts elsewhere. Keep at it, and eventually, your hard work will pay off.