The Small Business Marketing Guide
Small business is the lifeblood of the North American economy, making up approximately 60% of Canadian workers and even more in the U.S. But it’s widely known that the failure rate for small businesses getting started is exceedingly high, the ability to market to enough consumers typically being a prominent obstacle. And even for those small businesses that have managed to make it to five years or more, the struggle to continue reaching new audiences remains a challenge.
Guidelines to help small businesses market more effectively exist. Once they’re stringently put into action, success rates can improve and doubting your business’s survival can begin to dissipate.
Get Your Small Business Booming with These Essential Steps
Though many factors must be considered when marketing your small business, these are the essential steps to get you on the right track.
Clearly Distinguish Your Goals
There’s absolutely no use putting together any kind of marketing campaign if you don’t have an end goal in mind. Know before going in what you hope to get out of it and then create a strategy around those goals. Setting distinct goals also ensures everyone is working towards the same objectives and can define whether the campaign has been successful.
This follows the necessity of setting goals. Incorporating milestones allows you to gauge where you are at each stage of the marketing campaign. Having an end goal is crucial, but it will take small successes to get there. These successes should be measured and included in your campaign prior to launch. Once your campaign is active, these milestones then act as reports, letting you make adjustments to the campaign along the way.
If you expect audiences to buy into your brand, you need to define what that brand represents. One of the most powerful ways of establishing a brand is through consistent messaging. Consistency doesn’t only refer to frequency; it means sticking to subject matter that is in line with your industry and geared towards your current and potential consumers. With the vast amount of content out there now, consumers need to know they can refer to your brand for the specific material they are looking for.
Understand Your Consumer
You need to understand that you can’t be everything to everyone. Identify what your ideal consumer looks like, the spaces they frequent, and how they consume information. Once you’ve done that, you can target your marketing efforts strictly to that demographic. Everyone else will catch up soon enough.
Try Different Mediums to Get Your Message Out
Yes, social media is important and should probably be included in some way within your marketing campaign. But don’t include it at the exclusion of other platforms. Direct mail may be how your target prefers to receive information. Or they could be primarily located at trade shows. The key is to know who your targets are. Then you can formulate strategies and execute them accordingly.
The days of generic messaging are over. Consumers now want to be spoken to in a manner they understand, in a tone that speaks directly to their needs. Offering consumers something they’ve had absolutely no need for before, especially before building a level of trust, can push the consumer away and over to your competitors. And you don’t want that.
When done properly, marketing for small businesses can mean the difference between prospering as a startup, and gasping for air as a small business on a monthly basis. Macromark can orchestrate these campaigns through multiple direct marketing avenues, all geared to help improve your brand’s presence and visibility. For more information, visit www.macromark.com or contact us today.
“The Economic Impact of the Canada Small Business Finance Program,” Industry Canada web site, April 4, 2012; http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/061.nsf/eng/02196.html.