Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses and Start-ups

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Whether you’re just starting your own small business or trying out a new venture that has yet to take off, your marketing strategy can be all that’s standing between you and success. A good marketing strategy not only brings your business and brand to the attention of a wider audience but can increase sales and engagement exponentially.

But what if you’re a small business that doesn’t know where to start or doesn’t have the budget for anything too big? Here are some marketing strategies you can try to get your start-up off the ground on a limited budget.

Content marketing

If your business already has a social media presence that you regularly update and promote, you’re already employing a content marketing strategy. Content marketing is a strategy that focuses on creating valuable and relevant content to cater to your target audience. If you’re wondering about the difference between content marketing and regular advertising, content marketing isn’t as overt as just telling your audience to buy your product.

Instead, you slowly but surely convince your audience by giving them content, such as in blogs or social media posts, that’s relevant to their wants and needs. By connecting to the audience that you already have or want to have on a deeper level, you ensure that they keep coming back to your business and slowly build up not only your reputation but your audience’s interest and trust.

Content can come in many forms, from articles, videos, infographics, and more. It’s a slow grind since you’re still starting to build your brand and audience. But if you manage to capture the attention and interest of your target audience with your curated content, it’ll benefit you more in the long term. Plus, it’s cost-effective since you can run your business’s social media accounts on your own phone or PC, as long as you have internet access.

Email marketing

If you have a few people interested in your business, you can gather their email or other contact information to employ an email marketing strategy. In exchange for giving you their email, you can offer potential customers something exclusive, like a discount, a limited-time deal, or even freebies.

Like with content marketing, you can curate your emails for specific demographics, and it’s cost-effective since it costs as much as running your own social media accounts. So long as you can capture their attention with a lead, you can get an increase in sales from email marketing alone.

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Paid advertisements

If you’ve got some cash to spare, it can be good to invest in some paid advertisements. Sites like Facebook and Instagram have billions of users that log on every day and are simply rife with advertising opportunities. It’s an effective way to get your brand noticed by as many people as possible and drive traffic towards your site or social media pages.

Paying for an advertisement on any site might not be as cheap as promoting your own content, but it’s been proven to be highly effective. Moreover, sites like Facebook allow you to target ads towards a specific group of people. This narrows down your audience and gives you a higher chance of getting engagement and sales from people who use or need your product.

Other than paid advertisements on websites, you can also pay influencers and celebrities to endorse your business for you with a paid sponsorship. Many companies form partnerships with online content creators like YouTubers, podcasters, and streamers to plug their business in their videos, podcasts, etc., often offering a code or discount to people who come to your site through the paid sponsorship. It gets you more attention and allows you to build lasting partnerships with other creators and businesses.

Hire a fractional CMO

Having a chief marketing officer for your business delegates the task to someone more well-versed in marketing. You’ll also have a professional in the marketing industry who knows the ins and outs and can analyze which strategy works best.

But if you’re a small business, you might not have enough to hire a CMO. Instead, you can outsource the services of a CMO. A fractional CMO fulfills the same role and duties as a full-time one but is outsourced and works part-time with your team. So you get the benefits of having a CMO around but without having to pay as much.

For a small business, it provides you with an opportunity to slowly grow and expand and can even act as a trial period if you’re unsure about hiring a full-time CMO for your own business or are just looking for short-term solutions. Either way, having an experienced marketing professional on board can help any small business to take off.

Understand what’s best for your business

The key to finding a good marketing strategy is understanding what works for your business and what doesn’t. A marketing professional might be able to tell you at a glance, but experimenting with different strategies can also yield valuable results. Always keep your business’s best interests in mind, and don’t be afraid to make bold marketing choices.

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