As a small business owner, you have a lot on your plate, and marketing and promotion can often fall by the wayside. But don’t let that happen to you: smart marketing is crucial to every business. Here are twelve ideas to promote your business online and offline, all with a unique spin.
1. Use Facebook RIGHT
Most small businesses will be keen enough to start a facebook page for their business, but you can set yourself apart from the competition by using the platform the RIGHT way. Make sure that your page looks good, with pictures and every field filled out, and look into running Facebook ads.
2. Post OFTEN on Other Social Media Platforms (Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and more)
Think there’s nothing unique about social media? While it’s true that most businesses will have some presences on Twitter, Instagram, and the rest, you’ll look unique if you post on those sites often. Don’t get too spammy of course, but maintaining a presence on these platforms will make you stand out.
3. Build a Blog
One of the smartest way to market your product and business online is to build a blog, yet many small business owners skip this marketing opportunity, or pursue it only half heartedly. Start up a blog portion on your website, and make sure to contribute regularly, and lots more new leads and potential customers will land on your pages.
4. Try a PPC (Pay-per-click) Advertising Campaign
With a pay-per-click advertising campaign, your business will get some big exposure over some of the biggest sites on the internet. Look into Google’s AdWords as a good place to start, and think about how much you can budget for direct outbound marketing efforts like running PPC ads.
In a world of social media, advertising campaigns, and other cutting edge online marketing practices, email marketing can feel passe or obsolete. But don’t make this mistake. By maintaining a mailing list, and strategically leveraging it when you have big events or updates about your business, you will set yourself apart from competitors who forget about the power of email marketing.
6. Contribute to a Trade Specific Blog or Site
There is a blog out there for every industry and trade, and often even the biggest and most trafficked blogs are happy to have guest contributors write about specific interest areas. Think about a niche topic that you can write about well, and contact a trade blog with a pitch. When your post is published, your name and your business will get a lot of valuable exposure.
1. Write a Press Release
In the days before the internet, press releases were the way that news was made. And while lots of publications rely on press releases less and less, your local paper and some of the smaller periodicals in your industry will probably still respond to a press release favorably. Make sure you have a newsworthy topic to introduce, and then research how to format your press release.
2. Leverage “Freebies” and Coupons
If there’s one thing that everybody loves, it’s free stuff. And by cleverly leveraging free gifts and coupons that promote your product, you can spark some online viral marketing, as word will spread about the great deals and generous gifts you have handed out. Don’t go overboard with gifts, but consider leveraging them on occasion.
3. Start Public Speaking
Just like there’s a blog for every industry, there’s probably a trade conference or event in your area at some point during the year. Do some research into what kind of events are held in your area, and then contact event organizers to put yourself forward as a potential speaker. Speaking at trade events will give you big exposure in your industry, and could win your business some new fans.
4. Join Networking Groups
Networking groups may not lead to huge sales, but what they will do is let you learn more about your business and industry, and get to know other people working in the same field. Plus, you never know what connection will lead to huge exposure for your business in the future.
Long before email marketing, businesses sent their information to customers directly through good ol fashioned stamp and envelope mailing campaigns. Getting a targeted and effective mailing campaign up and running can be hard, but when you do it right, direct mail marketing can be unbeatable for promotion.
6. Print Paper Take-aways
Business cards. Flyers. Informational pamphlets. There are a ton of different paper take-aways that you can easily print on your own time, or contract out to a printer if you have the budget. Take-away reminders can be great promotion, just make sure you get creative and make your material stand out.