Anyone who follows our posts regularly will be aware that a common theme often appears. That being that effective marketing doesn’t need to be complicated. In fact, the simpler the better – especially for SME businesses. We believe in this approach whole heartedly, quite simply because we know that it works.
We also know how easy it can be to get bogged down in details to the point where a strategy becomes overly complicated, with the result being messaging that is messy and unclear.
The world is complicated and cluttered enough as it is, so the messaging that is going to resonate with an audience needs to be easy to understand, clear and easy to digest. I.e simple.
So, to continue with this theme, we’ve come up with our top 6 simple digital marketing ideas for small businesses.
- Mobile optimise your website.
With something like 75% of all business searches conducted on a mobile device, it’s a no brainer that your website should be clear, uncluttered and easy to navigate from both a phone and a tablet. Have a good look at your site. Attention spans are getting ever shorter, so customers need to be able to find what they want quickly and easily. Otherwise, they’ll go elsewhere. Having said all this, it still surprises us just how many sites may look great on a laptop, but are extremely clunky to navigate from a mobile device. Don’t let yours be one of them.
- Take advantage of keywords.
Keyword research should be a mandatory part of every small business digital marketing strategy.
It’s a great way to find out exactly what terms people are using to search for your business’s products and services.
There are plenty of tools available such as Google AdWords Keyword Planner, Google Trends, etc, and even look at search recommendations. This is when Google tries to complete the search for you. Also look at the “People also search for” box at the bottom of the page, and take note of exactly what is coming up.
Then, insert those keywords into the pages of your website. Just make sure you do it naturally within your content. Google’s algorithm is getting smarter and has learnt to ignore sites that are overly stuffed with keywords.
- Ask customers for their email address.
Here’s a really simple one to start building a contact list. Ask your customers for their email address. The worst they can do is say no.
Once you have their email address, you can send them emails that let them know about new promotions, specials and products. You can also use those emails to ask them for some online reviews.
Since online reviews can help you show up in local search results and could even make customers spend more money at your business, you really can’t afford to skip this simple step. Collecting email addresses may well be an effective step in giving your business the boost it needs to stand out from the competition. Just make sure you use them effectively and courteously. Do not turn into a spammer!
- Monitor your online reputation.
Digital marketing is in no way a set and forget method. It is not just about posting and hoping for the best. It is about listening to what is going on out there. Are your customers talking about you? And if so, what are they saying? How are you rating with them in comparison to your competitors?
Reputation management isn’t just for the biggest brands. Small businesses need to know what their customers are saying about them too.
An easy way is to set up a Google alert for your business, so you know when new articles that mention you are posted.
If you are aware of the chatter, you can become part of the conversation, fix problems that arise and keep your business’s reputation as positive as possible.
You should also be aware of the reasons customers complain about businesses so that you can try and protect your business from public backlash.
- Make the most of online networking sites.
LinkedIn and Facebook are great ways to connect with local consumers as well as other small business owners. Not only can you network on a personal level, but you can build more awareness for your business by creating and managing a business page. A business page on both Facebook and LinkedIn was the first thing we did when we started Optune.
You can also join groups on LinkedIn and Facebook to boost your local presence.
- Create a social media strategy.
Everyone uses social media, and at the very least, your small business should have a Facebook page that you keep up-to-date with business information and hours. You should also be posting regularly (at least a couple of times a week) to keep your business fresh in the minds of consumers.
But, success on social media isn’t just about regular posting on your business pages.
You should also consider Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest, depending on your industry and target audience.
Then, make sure to tailor your social media messages to each social platform because consumers, especially younger ones, want to see custom messages for the social media platform that they’re using.
There are so many options available now including Facebook ads, video, events, etc, etc. An effective social media strategy needs to look at which platforms and which tools on these platforms are the most effective in linking your target audience with your business.
Author: Cameron McIver