As a small business owner, it’s hard to get yourself noticed above the crowd. Not only is the marketplace crowded, but attention spans are short and your time – and finances – are more limited than your larger competitors.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t succeed. In fact, you have a lot of advantages as a small business – it’s easier to implement marketing initiatives because you don’t have as much hierarchy. You are more nimble in your approach, and it’s easier to get buy-in.
As you approach this year and look at your marketing strategies, here are four marketing trends you can’t afford to ignore.
The Rise of Video:
The average person watches more than an hour and a half of video content every day, and 15% watch three hours or more. People love video content, and your business cannot afford to miss out on the opportunity to connect in this way.
Fortunately, video marketing doesn’t have to be expensive. You can get started on Facebook Live with nothing more than a cell phone. You can also invest in a nicer camera and some editing software to create videos for YouTube. However, until you’re getting a great financial return, there’s no reason to spend tens of thousands on a video.
People will buy from those they know, like, and trust. Video gives potential customers a chance to get to know you more personally. When they can see your non-verbal communication, a deeper bond is formed.
Be sure to take advantage of marketing trends!
The Importance of Local Search:
Local search refers to online searches that include local terms, such as “near me,” or the name of a city, town, street, or neighborhood. These searches – especially from mobile devices – are a strong buying signal. In fact, 50% of local searches from a mobile device result in a visit to a physical store within 24 hours.
When you’re a small business, you can’t afford to miss out on local search results. Google will give special precedence to local businesses in these types of searches by highlighting them on Google maps alongside the regular search results.
To take full advantage of local search engine optimization (SEO), be sure to claim your Google My Business page and fill it out completely. Build your online reputation using reviews. Ensure your website is mobile optimized and loads quickly.
If local SEO sounds like a lot to handle yourself, consider working with a company that provides SEO services in Toronto for help.
It’s said that there is nothing people like more than the sound of their own name, and there’s a version of that in marketing as well. There is nothing people like more than feeling like you completely understand their needs and struggles. They want to feel like an individual, not part of a marketing target demographic.
Personalized marketing allows you to focus your messages so that they meet each customer exactly where they are. From segmenting your email list to specifically targeting your social media ads, you can use micro-targeting to deliver a specifically tailored message to each potential customer.
Don’t offer a sale on your whole website to your whole customer base. Instead, target sales on specific items to the customers who are most likely to buy them. A good customer relationship manager (CRM) system can allow you to collect the data you need for highly targeted marketing.
The Power of Social Media Marketing:
Social media is a crowded space, but it’s still one of the best marketing locations available. Facebook serves more than 1.8 billion active monthly users spread across various age groups and demographics. However, the largest percentage is in the coveted 25 – 34 age group.
Social media – especially Facebook – also makes it easy to target audiences very specifically through paid marketing. By building both your organic social media audience and using paid advertising to reach additional people, you can take advantage of these platforms to build your business.
You can also work with people who already have large followings of your target audience. These social media influencers often have the admiration and trust of your audience in a way you don’t (yet), so they can help you grow your business more quickly.
Social media gives you access to the entire world, literally. Don’t miss out on the opportunity!
Great Marketing is Great Business:
Marketing great Dan Kennedy is known for asking people what business they’re in. They will say, “auto repair,” or “hospitality.” No, he’ll say, that’s wrong. So they try again. “Customer service.
In the end, he points out that everyone is in the marketing business. You can provide any product or service you like, but in the end, if you don’t market it you won’t succeed.
The real reason you can’t afford to overlook these marketing trends is that to have a great business you’ve got to have great marketing. Don’t wait – get started today!