Starting a small business of your own can be a daunting venture, especially when opening a business in a niche that is heavily saturated with large corporations and nationally known businesses that already have a firm hold on a large part of your potential clientele.
Nonetheless, a successfully run small business has every opportunity to not only compete with the big boys but also outperform them. Despite the fact that chain stores and franchises dominate our consumer consciously, the vast majority of the American economy still belongs to small, independently owned and operated family businesses.
There is a soft spot in the American heart for locally owned businesses and people know that with the proper management and business rationale, small businesses can generally offer better service and better products than large corporations.
Below we offer three simple marketing strategies that will help small business owners build their client base, increase their income, and stay on top of the market for the long run.
Spend Money to Make Money
For people just starting a small business of their own, spending thousands of dollars on advertising and publicity might not sound like a smart financial decision. Nonetheless, as with anything in life, you have to pay if you want to play.
Fortunately for small business owners, the rules of the advertising game are beginning to change due to a change in how consumers shop and find products and services they need. While taking out a prime-time TV ad might bankrupt your startup company, there are several less expensive online advertising options that will still get your company´s name into the household of your potential clients.
Dedicating a good part of your startup business budget to paid search ads, display ads, Facebook ads and outreach and other inbound marketing strategies is a wise decision for most small businesses.
Take Advantage of Google
Imagine that you´re flying into a small town for a business conference and are looking for a nice restaurant. Chances are you probably do a Google search and look for restaurants on Google maps that are close to where you are staying.
Google´s Local Offerings is a unique venture by the tech giant to get as many small, locally owned businesses on the web as possible. By registering for a My Business Account on Google, you can locate your restaurant on Google maps and add your hours of operation, location, and contact information. You can even link to your website if you have one, thus increasing your online presence in order to capture more clientele.
Master Search Engine Optimization
If your small business does decide to go online, one of the best marketing strategies that will boost the performance of your business is through mastering search engine optimization or SEO. Explained simply, SEO is simply a way for your business to show up more often in the Google searches that your potential clients do.
For example, if you are opening a small sushi restaurant in Bowling Green, KY, how can you make sure that your restaurant´s website shows up when a potential customer googles “Sushi restaurant, BG, KY.”
The trick here is doing some extensive research on keywords and then improve the content on your website to maximize your SEO. If this seems like a foreign language to you, there are fortunately several freelancers who can help you get started on this path.