If you are a small business owner, advertising and marketing your business online can be a minefield. This blog will explain why marketing your business online is so essential and includes 5 marketing tips on how to advertise online for small businesses.
How to advertise online: Why advertise your business online
Marketing your business online allows potential customers to see your products and services 24 hours a day.
From your own personal experience, how often does your search for a new product or service start with:
- An online search on Google
- Going directly to a supplier’s website
- Looking for recommendations on review sites
- Asking for recommendations on social media?
These are the most common ways in which any consumer, whether B2C or B2B, start their purchasing journey.
The goals of online marketing are to build brand awareness of your business, show that you are a trusted and reputable service, and encourage and convert prospects to buy from you. Online marketing is scalable, targetted and often highly measurable.
Online advertising for SMEs are a fundamental tenant of a great marketing strategy. But it can be a scary-looking world with lots of options, lots of technical features and a lot of jargon! So let Growth by Design de-jargon how to advertise online for you and give you some simple steps to follow to get you started and see the return from your online marketing investment.
How to advertise online: Tip 1 – create a marketing strategy
No matter what stage you are at with building an online presence, you should, first of all, create a marketing strategy. A digital marketing agency for small businesses, such as ours, will be able to assist you with this.
This will include your overall business goal and how you plan to achieve this, how you will stand out from your competitors and why prospects should buy from you.
Within the marketing strategy, it is also important to determine what your overall message is for each of your target audiences. As well as what the business’s tone of voice will be, such as friendly, authoritative, professional, jovial etc.
This may seem unimportant but by defining this, you will ensure that your message remains consistent and recognisable throughout all channels.
Within the marketing strategy, defining your target audience is also key. You can then focus on ways and channels to reach them. This will involve considering demographics such as age, gender, location, interests, religion, education and sometimes even income.
How to advertise online: Tip 2 – create a social media presence
According to Smart Insights in January 2022 there were over 4.62 billion users on social media worldwide. You may in comparison have a relatively small target area or audience. But with so many people online there is a high chance that your audience is on these social media platforms ready for you to target.
But which social networks should you focus on? The trick here is to determine which your target audience are using. A marketing agency will be able to advise on this but we would highly recommend that to begin with you only focus on one or two platforms. Do a few things really well!
With regards to what to post, ensure you have a content marketing strategy in place. So you have a plan every week on what you will be sharing. This could include a mixture of blog content from your website, company news as well as industry news your audience will be interested in.
Just consider what you want your target audience to feel and do when seeing your social posts.
Of course it would be lovely if they simply brought straight away from you. But that isn’t the role social media often plays, so ensure your intended outcomes are realistic and measurable.
How to advertise online: Tip 3 – optimise your website
If you do not have a website yet, don’t worry we can help with this!
But if you have a website already that you either do not know how it’s performing or is not performing very well it’s time to take control and make a change.
Your website ought to be your hardest working sales-person. In order to be, it needs to be optimised in two ways: in search engines so prospects can find you and secondly the site itself to generate a conversion (whether that is a sale or a lead enquiry).
Your website needs to be highly visible to search engines so that potential customers can easily find you. Blogs can be a great way to achieve this.
The content on your site should be clear and concise. Should motivate visitors to take the desired action, whether that is contacting you for more information or making a purchase from your online store. This needs to be easy to do.
Agencies will often offer SEO packages for small businesses. The key is to make sure it’s tailored to your business needs and not just the standard package whether you need it or not. Instead at Growth By Design, we offer units and will tailor it all to your business’s requirements.
How to advertise online: Tip 4 – perform paid advertising
Pay advertising such as Pay per Click (PPC), as well as social media advertising, can be a great way to get discovered and seen by your target audience. The key here is to understand your target audience, so as long as you haven’t skipped step 1 you’re all set!
A Google Ads agency or a marketing agency will be able to manage this. Just ensure they understand your business, your goals, your overall message and your target audience. They can deliver an effective consistent message that will generate results. PPC advertising for small businesses do need to be proactively managed. This will ensure there is no wasted spend on Google (you pay per click, so you want every click to count!) and new opportunities can be taken advantage of.
How to advertise online: Tip 5 – encourage online reviews and referrals
Reviews and referrals are powerful marketing methods that can encourage increased revenue. They show potential customers that you are a reputable company and can be trusted to deliver a great service.
Google reviews, as well as trusted vetted review sites such as Checkatrade, are the best way to achieve this when looking at how to advertise online. So if you have not done so already we would highly recommend setting these up and regularly encouraging customers to leave their reviews.
Small business marketing agency near me
If you are a small business and would like assistance from a marketing agency that will take the time to get to know you as a business, and your business needs, and will tailor the package based on this, then please get in touch with us today by calling 01444 810530 or emailing email@example.com. We would love to help you.
We can deliver:
- Development of your marketing strategy
- Content marketing services
- Local online marketing support
- Website creation and adaptation
- SEO support
- Paid advertising
- Social media management
- Email marketing
- Design and print of marketing collateral.
To find out more information about us, how to advertise online, and our approach to supporting small businesses click here.