Small business budget holding back your marketing plans?
Competition is fierce these days in just about every industry.
If only you had more marketing budget, then you could compete with the big guys, right?
The good news — in today’s digital world, even small businesses can compete with the big brands by borrowing a few tips from their marketing playbook.
Even better news? We’ll share a few of their secrets in this article for our small business friends.
Start with a solid marketing strategy
Even though big businesses typically have more budget to play with, it doesn’t mean they just throw money at random marketing activities to see what sticks. Larger spends can result in more expensive mistakes.
So, the number one rule for big businesses is to have a plan. This marketing plan should be based on a solid marketing strategy that aligns each and every marketing activity with the objectives of the business. Without a solid marketing strategy and plan, you’ll end up with a patchwork quilt of activities that are fragmented and costly.
Focus on what works
While a solid strategy is the starting point, you may have to be flexible in your approach until you find the right tactics for your specific business. Because effective marketing is part science and part art, the key is to consistently track and measure all activities to provide data-driven decisions.
By accurately measuring your activities across all channels, you’ll be able to identify the methods that produce the highest ROI and funnel more funds to these activities while eliminating or reducing lower payoff activities.
When it comes to smaller marketing budgets, fewer activities are better. Don’t worry about having every possible tactic in your playbook to start. Too many activities can cause confusion, dilute your resources, and are harder to track. Pick a few key items, measure the results, then add new marketing activities a little at a time.
Know your strengths, and weaknesses
If the speed of change on the business highway is 60mph, the speed of change for marketing technology and trends must be about 120 mph. Geesh—how are you supposed to keep up with all that change? And how do you maintain the right internal talent with exactly the right expertise on a small business budget?
You might be surprised to know big business marketers also face this issue. This is one of the reasons why business process outsourcing (BPO) has become so popular for companies of all sizes.
Outsourcing some or all your marketing efforts can help small business leaders focus on the business instead of getting bogged down in the details. And as many leaders will tell you, this is a major challenge to the success of many small businesses.
For those businesses who are ‘talent-strapped’ or have overwhelmed and under-resourced marketing departments, outsourcing can be a major relief. The ability to rent top talent expertise and state of the art technology allow nimble SMB’s to gain momentum and win market share at a fraction of the cost.
Use the great equalizer
We live in a Google world and it’s up to you to survive…and thrive. Our digital economy is the ultimate equalizer for small businesses that know how to take advantage of digital marketing to attract qualified prospects and convert them into paying customers.
Creating deep profiles of your ideal customer (i.e. personas) is the critical first step. Next, develop a strong content marketing strategy to build awareness and attract these ideal customers to your website. Although this can sometimes seem like a daunting process, nailing it will give your business the edge and generate more profitable business.
Utilize your appropriate social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest to generate awareness and build customer engagement. Take advantage of promo discounts for paid media to expand your reach, and ensure you have a solid digital marketing strategy that focuses on conversion – not just impressions or reach.
In our digital world, it’s not the biggest advertising budget or loudest brand that wins. It’s the smart businesses that know their customer and can deliver meaningful content that attracts and converts, who win.
Let your customers do your marketing
Finally, a simple yet most effective way to get big brand results on small business budgets is to get your customers involved. While not new, referrals are still the most cost effective method for generating new business.
Tap into your social media channels to engage your customers and create advocates for your business. According to HubSpot, 90% of people believe recommendations coming from their friends, and are 71% more likely to buy a product if referred through social media.
Also, consider paid referral programs and implementing a ratings and review program for your product or service to amplify your organic referral program.
In short, even small businesses on a shoestring marketing budget can successfully market like big businesses by utilizing smart strategy and focused efforts that provide measurable results.
How Can DB Marcom Help?
Here at DB Marcom, we are devoted to providing helping our customers make the most of your marketing budget – no matter how big or small! Interested to know how we can stretch your budget and start converting more profitable business? Reach out to us today, and our experts will help you out.