A strategic mix of digital marketing strategies is important for any business looking to grow its customer base and increase brand awareness. Whether or not your business is based online or from a brick-and-mortar storefront, audiences today prefer to start their decision-making journeys online. Data from Salesforce shows that at least 87% of customers start their search for a new product online. Fortunately, reaching them on their phones and computers can be more affordable and more measurable than any other marketing strategy. Below are a few proven digital marketing strategies for small business.
1. Create a Google My Business Listing
Have you ever used Google to search for “local” products or services, or searched for something “near me” with the hope of finding a convenient place to buy? Well, your potential customers are, too. And according to Google, 76% of people who search on their mobile devices for something nearby make a visit to a business within one day.
Unlock the power of local marketing by creating a Google My Business Listing. With a listing, you’ll appear on Google Search and Google Maps as a local option. Your audiences can also view photos of your business, view your hours, and even leave a review.
2. Encourage Online Customer Reviews
One of the most powerful features of a Google My Business Listing is the ability for your customers to leave a review. Reviews from previous customers are one of the most influential factors for potential customers who may be comparing their options. But Google isn’t the only important place to have reviews—Yelp or Angi (formerly Angie’s List) are also great options.
If you struggle to convince customers to leave a review, get creative! Offer a contest where those who leave an honest review get entered into a drawing for a prize. Or, if you deal with primarily online sales where you ship products to your customers, offer free shipping on their next order if they leave a review.
In addition to helping win over new customers with stellar feedback, online reviews across different websites will help your business rank higher in search engines and become even more findable.
3. Try Marketing Automation
The best way to retain customers is to keep them engaged and let them know that you care about their experience with your brand. But as you grow, reaching out to your customers individually with personal messages can seem impossibly time-consuming. This is where marketing automation comes in.
Marketing automation platforms like HubSpot, ActiveCampaign, Marketo, and SharpSpring take routine marketing tasks off your plate and automate them based on your customer’s actions and behaviors. For example, ever notice that your customers are adding items to their cart and then leaving without making an online purchase? Use marketing automation to create a series of personalized emails or text messages that can be triggered to send automatically. The right message at the right time can bring customers back and help keep your brand top of mind.
4. Say It With Video
Recent studies show that 69% of people prefer video over text when learning about a product or service. And videos make your marketing budget more effective due to a 95% information retention rate compared to 10% for normal text.
In the past, creating videos could be extremely expensive, especially for smaller businesses with low marketing budgets. Fortunately, online tools like Animoto or Promo make it easy to create impactful video content in a much more affordable way. Develop a product walk-through or a promo video to post on social media and start engaging your audiences in a new way.
5. Reach Customers Searching on Google
Unlike most forms of marketing that focus on outreach, search engine marketing is designed to bring customers directly to you by making your business more findable. With Google PPC ads (pay-per-click), you can set a flexible budget to reach people searching for keywords related to your brand, products, or services.
Whether you want to spend $40 a day or $400 a day, you can set the budget and keywords that work for you. You only get charged when someone clicks your ad.