Marketing for small business must overcome three crucial challenges:
1. Budgetary restrictions and considerations.
2. Lack of proven marketing know-how on the part of the small business owner and/or staff.
3. Having too few staff or resources to execute and/or never delegating the marketing and sales functions to be performed on a consistent basis.
Let me delve into these three primary barriers further, as well as detail how they are best overcome for the small business owner who know he or she needs to engage with effective marketing. Moreover, I will cover my top small business marketing ideas that I have seen generate positive results without breaking the bank.
Marketing for Small Business Requires a Budget
Without a budget, small or large, you cannot fuel your marketing for small business growth. Even if one only handed out fliers and business cards on a routine basis, this would still require a marketing budget of some amount.
My suggested budget is a minimum of 14% of net earnings. Startups should allocate as much as 20% to gain recognition in a highly competitive field. This budgetary allowance sets aside necessary funds to market your small business, regardless of your revenue level. Moreover, as your earnings grow so will your ability to fund larger and larger marketing initiatives. If this formula is followed as revenue is generated, then any brand can expand their marketing efforts exponentially.
Marketing for Small Business Requires Proven Know-How
Once the budget is in place, we now need to fund the proven programs implemented by knowledgeable individuals. This may be your in-house staff or by hiring outside contractors and marketing firms. I have always made it point to stress that all small business owners should be learning the basics of branding and marketing. This is why I wrote Power Branding Secrets. While a small business owner should not be required to know everything about branding and marketing his or her small business, they should be somewhat familiar with these bodies of know-how. This will ensure that they are never fooled by smooth-talking charlatans who talk a big game, but rarely deliver.
Marketing for Small Business Requires a Dedicated Team Who Executes Processes & Campaigns
Sales and marketing processes are full time activities for any small business who wants to grow. If the small business owner does not have the financial resources to hire an employee to conduct their most fundamental branding, marketing and sales processes, then these must be delegated to an outside firm for continual execution. Why?
- Branding must be supported with an ongoing campaign of branded content (blogs, videos, podcasts, white papers, infographics, photos, etc.).
- SEO is not a one time action, but a continual activity. Local SEO opportunities are best seized with hyper-local blog posts and optimized YouTube videos. Any small business has dozens of local SEO marketing opportunities by creating 50 pieces of “localized” content. As a result, any small business now has almost a years worth of fresh content to distribute to their audiences on a weekly basis.
- Social media marketing activities must be executed on a daily basis with fresh content, as mentioned above, or by sharing curated content that is germane to your brand.
- Sales leads must be followed up with, nurtured and closed. This can be accomplished with email campaigns, phone calls, texting and social media posts. Email is a vital branding and marketing activity that should be leveraged at least once a week to ensure that your brand stays “top of mind” with your existing clients, as well as with your sales leads.
Marketing For Small Business is a Contact Sport
To win with small business marketing, you have to contact more individuals. Moreover, you have to contact them more often with better content. Small business marketing truly is a contact sport.
Contact me today for a free discovery call to see how I can help with my marketing for small business solutions.