Taking on the competition is easier than ever. Gone are the days when big budget triumphed over small business. Nowadays creativity and consistency trump depth of pockets.
I watched an episode of “Better Call Saul” the other night. He was dragging around a motley crew of film students, his mobile phone glued to his ear, desperately trying to flog television ads to reluctant small business owners.
How things have changed in just over a decade. Back then mobile phones were for making calls, social media didn't exist, and the closest thing to YouTube was public broadcasting. One can only imagine the kinds of campaigns Saul would cook up today; given the arsenal of digital marketing tools we have on hand.
Still, even back then, Saul managed to create a formidable presence on a shoestring budget.
So, what did he do right?
He new his target market... He was creative... He remained consistent.
1. Define your Ideal Customer
Before you do anything, sit back and have a think about your target market. Create an ideal client profile based on your top performing, most profitable clients – the customers you love doing business with.
2: Know their Pain
Something triggered their need for your product or service. What was it? It amazes me how few business owners take the time to understand what problem or challenge trigger their customers purchase, and the path to purchase they followed.
All you need to do is ask them one simple statement: "Take me back to the day your company first decided they needed [your product or service]?"
Then listen and ask probing questions.
Most people love telling their story. You'll learn about the challenges they faced convincing colleagues, the information that would have been helpful and resources that influenced their decision.
It's like having the answers to the exam questions.
3. Create helpful content
Once you understand your ideal customer, it's time to start creating content they will find helpful in their buying journey. Regardless of type of content you are creating - blog posts, eBooks, video, etc. - make sure it is helpful, simple and concise. Avoid buzz words and loading your content with product recommendations. Remember, your prospect is researching a problem or challenge; help them understand it and educate them with your content.
4. Configure your website for conversion
Your website is the linchpin of your online presence. It's the place you drive traffic to and is an integral part of your lead generation strategy. For instance, when a prospect reads a blog post on: 'How Document Management Improves Efficiency in Legal Practices', include a call-to-action in the post to download an eBook entitled: 'The ROI of Document Management'.
In the example above, our blog post is targeted at legal practices grappling with challenges related to operational efficiency. In conversation with an existing client (point 2), their IT Manager mentioned that while searching for a solution she couldn't find any information on the ROI of Document Management. Hence, the company created an eBook to help prospects justify an investment in Document Management to the partners in the practice.
5. Make sure customers can find your business
Over 81% of people turn to search engines when they want to find something. Google has replaced the Yellow Pages, billboards and television advertising, and their search market share hovers at about 90 percent. As part of your online facelift, make sure you have a properly configured Google My Business Page, revisit your keywords and review your Website SEO.
Resource: The Ultimate Website Refresh Template.
6. Tell Your story on Social Media
Social media is a tricky one for most business owners. How much time do you spend on it and which channels? Before deciding, talk to your customers (step 2..., again), and ask them where they spend their time. Once you know which channels your customers and prospects frequent, you can join the party. And it is a party..., a cocktail party. Meaning the same rules apply. Find a group that interests you and start contributing to the conversation.
Remember! Nobody likes a loudmouthed, know-it-all who wants to dominate the conversation.
7. Be smart, use the right tool
If you're like most business owners; strapped for time or you only have a small marketing team. Use a tool that brings everything together in one place. Cobbling together an array of marketing tools may seem cheaper, until you factor in the cost of time and access to unified data. Modern marketing is about data: define a plan, execute the plan, analyse the data, adjust your plan, analyse the data, and repeat. Data is critical to your success and having it in one place saves hours.
ProTip: Use an all in one sales and marketing automation tool such as HubSpot.
Keep evaluating what you are doing. Nowadays, every marketing initiative; every post, video, advert and tweet is measurable in real-time. When you revamp your online presence, make data a central part of your marketing initiatives.
If you need more help getting on revitalising your online presence, download a copy of our Digital Marketing Plan for Small Business.
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I help owners and leaderships teams at growth-oriented companies produce the results they want using simple business tools and a proven business process. If you and your team want to break through to the next level, let's talk.
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