We live in a world where small businesses are popping up wherever you go. Enterprising minds across the globe put everything at stake for their one big idea and battle the world to turn that idea into a successful business.
Once that business is in place, through a long, arduous process, it’s then time to let the world know you have arrived and rope in the customers. Herein lies a big question.
They say there’s no such thing as a new idea, just new ways of approaching old ones. Assuming this is true, and every business does has tough competition. Here’s the question: how does a small business stand a chance when it goes up against a much larger company that has five times the resources and has been around long enough to establish themselves in the market? This is the same consumer that the small business wishes to steal away from its mammoth counterpart, aka competition.
The simple answer is – digital marketing.
Small businesses enter the big bad world of business, ready to take on every colossus that stands in their way. They come, however, armed with tiny marketing budgets and almost complete anonymity. This is not the best combination when your competition has budgets you can only dream of and loyal customers. Having said this, the battle must go on. So, the only way for small businesses to stand tall in this highly competitive environment is to use their budgets wisely and concentrate all their efforts on digital marketing.
When you’re marketing your product or service online, the biggest benefit you have is that the internet is a level playing field. If you find a way to reach your core audience, through highly accurate targeting, you stand as much of a chance to convert that member of your audience into a paying customer, as the big national chains would. The benefit of this is, you have the change to reach out to exactly who you need to, in a much more cost-effective way than traditional marketing methods.
The second big plus about digital marketing is that it’s completely tangible. Every insight, every statistic gives you more and more information to help you optimize your marketing strategy better. You know exactly how many people have clicked on your link, how long they stayed and what their preferences are. On the other hand, you’d never know how many people actually saw your billboard or sat through your TVC. So while traditional marketing is still relevant to larger companies, digital is the way to go for SMEs.
When it comes to digital marketing, lead generated is a customer who is actually interested. They have seen your product, most likely done their research online and if they’re still interested, there’s a much higher chance of that consumer leading to a sale. There are two major components to generating leads online. The first is SEO. According to Guy Sheetrit, CEO at Over The Top SEO, “optimizing your search rankings ensures that when you have a potential customer searching for topics related to your field of business, you’re always going to appear first and make an impact”. The second is social media marketing and advertising. This refers to creating strong content, on the right platforms and then advertising that content to all the right people. Lastly, email marketing. In today’s day and age, email marketing is becoming more and more relevant to marketing plans for small businesses.
In today’s highly mobile world, people’s entire lives fit in the palm of their hand, in the most inseparable element of their entire world – their smart phone. A recent study showed that on an average a person spends up to five hours a day on their phones. Digital marketing is a phone-first medium. It’s the most effective way of building a connection with people, in a world where screen-time has taken precedence over face to face time. If they’re on their phones, that’s where you need to catch them and market to them.
Another major reason why digital marketing is a massive boon for small businesses is because it gives a brand the chance to truly connect with their customers and build a relationship with them. It’s intimate, and more importantly, it’s two-way. If you’re doing it right, your customers wait to hear what you have to say and really appreciate it when you listen and pay attention to what they have to say too. Also, digital is social. It’s where your brand gains traction. It’s where your posts are shared, your praise gains momentum, where your brand it truly built. Social media reviews are the new word-of-mouth and it has never been more effective in driving traffic and sales. It makes you relatable, approachable and trustworthy. And for today’s aware, connected audience, that’s a winning combination.
So it doesn’t really matter if you’re a giant, multinational company, or a small home business, with the right tools under your belt, there’s no stopping your success.
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