The landscape of online marketing continues to constantly shift and evolve. What once was commonly accepted as the best marketing practices today may become less effective tomorrow.
So, what can small business owners do to create an effective online marketing strategy for the New Year? Here are a few tips that every small business owner should consider as they develop their 2016 marketing goals.
Create Content For Platforms Other Than Your Blog
Blogs offer a great tool for relaying your business’ message to its intended target audience. While blogs will continue to excel as a content platform for your business and should remain part of your overall marketing strategy, every business today has a blog. To help your business stand out, consider creating content for multiple platforms.
Try engaging your target audience through live streaming events or create your own YouTube channel where you can develop videos that highlight your brand. As people’s time becomes increasingly short and their desire to read even short blog posts lessens, video content becomes an even more compelling way to engage your audience. Best of all, smartphones have made creating compelling video content incredibly cheap and easy.
Market To Mobile
Business of every size can no longer afford to ignore the impact of mobile marketing. A comScore study from early 2015 found that for the first time the number of mobile-only adult Internet users exceeded the number of desktop-only Internet users. The results of this study helps to underscore the importance of having a mobile friendly website – meaning your content is easily readable on screens of all sizes and that your call to action is clear, concise and easy to understand.
Have A Strong Voice
Consumers today want to feel a connection with their companies they do business with that extends beyond monetary transactions. With the rise of social media, businesses need a public face and a message that consumers can identify with. Small business owners should consider telling their own stories about why they founded their companies, what being an entrepreneur means to them and what role they play in helping to improve their communities.
Behind the scenes videos of your store or factory, interviews with long-time employees and examples of how you give back to the community make for compelling social media posts that provide consumers a look at the core values of your business.
A business’ website acts as its public face to the world. Consumers now demand an enjoyable user experience whenever they interact with a business’ website, which includes both speed and functionality. You need to ensure that visitors to your website can effortlessly access features and information on your website regardless of the type of device they are using, and you need to make sure your website loads quickly, as well.
Consumers won’t wait to bail on a website that features slow load times or nonfunctioning buttons. eCommerce websites simply cannot afford to suffer an increase in bounce rates due to a glitchy or poorly designed interface. For feedback on how users view your website, consider using tools like SurveyMonkey to poll consumers for feedback about their experience.
Market To Influencers
One of the biggest marketing lessons learned in 2015 was the power of influencers in social marketing. The concept is fairly simple – find individuals with significant influence on social media and arrange for them to highlight, review or recommend your products or services to their audience of followers.
The benefit of working with influencers is the level of trust they have already established with their audience. This allows marketers to bypass the traditional barricades that exist when it comes to building trust with consumers. Additionally, studies have shown that consumers are far more likely to make a purchase when a product is recommended to them by someone they know and trust.