Once the Internet has entered the technological landscape, it immediately started changing the way we do a broad spectrum of things. A significant part of this change was the fact that it became a universal equalizer for businesses of any size, by offering everybody the opportunity to be heard.
While larger companies will make themselves heard by using intricate mechanisms of paid advertising, small businesses have other weapons that are pretty much inaccessible to the big fish — valuable content, authenticity, transparency. In this article, we’ve looked into the ways a small business can spread the good news and attract new customers in the current digital ecosystem. Let’s dive right in:
1. Blog Content
While blogs do sound as something outdated, they still a powerhouse of traffic and they do continue to attract very large audiences, for both large and small business. The great part about running a company blog is that it has a multifaceted effect on your online presence.
First off, it is a crucial component of a healthy SEO strategy. Long and informative blog posts provide your users with valuable insight into the industry’s news. Long-form texts frequently contain many long-tail keywords, which favor your website being displayed in the top of the search results. It is also a great idea to look into working with professionals to edit and review your posts. If you’re unfamiliar to the industry, you’ll find them on websites that host editing service reviews.
Moreover, well-written blog entries are responsible for creating authority in your industry. Once you are considered an authority in your niche, you’ll be favored by customers; other websites will be linking references to your content, thus growing your SEO influence even more. In time, this will translate into increased visibility and growing sales.
2. Quora and Medium
A conceptual extension of personal blogs is publishing platforms and question-and-answer websites such as Quora and Medium. The former is a tad more complicated than typical question-and-answer platforms like ask.fm since it favors longer, more detailed answers.
There are vast numbers of business owners that have tapped into these platforms and have gained impressive momentum along with greater traffic just from posting in these sites alone. Both websites have a vast audience, which makes it easier to be heard. Once you’ve posted using a particular tag, a considerable number of people will see your post.
The great part about these platforms is that they favor relevance. People can upvote your answers on Quora and clap to your article on Medium, which acts as a social barometer of relevance.
Relevant content is an essential component of a healthy business promotion strategy online. In the current decade, we no longer just air commercials at our potential customers, hoping that a certain percentage of them will buy a product; instead, we try to speak their language, understand their needs and issues, and try to address them in our content.
While Quora does have a form of advertisement, both platforms don’t allow to promote user-generated content, which means that they try to stay true to the social opinion, and remain user-focused. Do not hesitate to register an account on both of these platforms and engage in conversation with their users, and by doing so gently and nonchalantly promoting your product.
3. Instagram influencers
Instagram influencers are the new big thing in the advertisement. This social media platform has been booming with popularity since its inception, and it continues to amass large audiences. Similarly, the popular representatives on the platform are open for collaboration with products and companies.
Of course, there are tiers of influencers. Their reach and follower count will also define their price per ad post. The great part is that a well-designed influencer campaign will have a fantastic impact on your outreach, and more importantly, it’s a high-return investment. A recently published report states that marketers have generated a $7.65 return off every dollar they’ve invested in influencer marketing.
4. Take care of SEO
SEO is a technicality that needs to be taken care of. It doesn’t infer doing anything creative, like writing or planning an elaborate marketing strategy. However, search engine optimization is one of those things that can’t be ignored. Failing to align to the current technical standards of SEO will cause your site to sink pretty quickly.
Furthermore, a poorly optimized site may render all your marketing attempts useless. Here’s a typical example: a poorly optimized site takes typically fairly long to load. This results in a massive bounce rate. If your site takes 3 seconds to load, around half of the users trying to access it will just stop waiting and close the tab.
5. Leverage the power of email
Humanity is pretty passionate about progress. We’re really into new things, and we try to adopt new technology pretty quickly. The exciting thing is that what is currently considered the most popular medium for lead acquisition is email.
It is considered to be the marketers’ favorite instrument for acquiring new customers, or at least have them enter their funnel.
“Amassing a small following of users that are subscribed to your newsletter is an amazing way to keep a large number of people informed about your products and your company.” — Gene Huntsman, writer at Grab My Essay.
6. Paid promotion with advertising
We’re used to thinking that advertisement is expensive, but things have changed significantly in the last five years, especially when it comes to social media platforms. Even a small amount of money can take you a long way. In order to save some money and not engage in a “spray and pray” approach, it’s essential to research the ecosystem and target your customers correctly. This is a rule with whatever you do in marketing — plan carefully to avoid wasting budget.
“Using advertising efforts used to may feel like a “spray and pray” approach but with all of the data collection and information made available from all of the advertising platforms, it can be very successful when using online advertising. A lot of new companies are only advertising through Google and/or Facebook/Instagram. There is the ability to target such a specific audience and see a high ROI, which is allowing companies to not pay for print or television advertising anymore. Here at Ascend Finance, we utilize different digital marketing strategies to help the individuals in need for debt relief options”. Stated by Ben Tejes, CEO and Co-founder of Ascend Finance.
More importantly, paid advertising is growing in popularity in marketing circles, mostly due to the fact that it’s increasing in efficiency. This is why 92% of small business owners increased their advertising budget in 2018.
There is a myriad of ways a small business can thrive online. Small business owners may not have as big of a budget as corporations do, but that’s a good thing, for a particular perspective. The way people use the internet has changed. Users favor value and authenticity over flashy advertisements.