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Market Strategies

Part One: Four ways to market your small business. Part Two in two weeks.

by Emily Kowalenko

Marketing your small business may sound tough and expensive, but technology allows small businesses to efficiently budget, advertise, create awareness, and network at a low cost. Here are the first four of eight easy and low-cost ways to market your business online and locally.

SEO your company’s website: Many small businesses underutilize Search Engine Optimization (SEO) due to its complex nature. SEO happens in many different ways, but the base definition is a tactic to improve traffic to a website from a search engine. However, if you take the time to learn by searching tutorials online, your efforts will surely pay off.

SEO aids your company by making the company brand known when people look up keywords in search engines. For example, if your company sells mattresses, you would use SEO keywords in your posts or blogs such as comfortable mattress, great back support mattress, or firm mattress. The goal is to include keywords your customer will search for in a mattress to ensure your information ends up on the first page of the search engine. Nevertheless, SEO can be overwhelming. Hiring a company can aid your small business in gaining more web traffic by implementing proper SEO usage.

Use social media to your advantage: Creating social media accounts on powerful platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are must-have marketing tactics for your small business to reach a broad target audience at a low cost. Having a solid copywriter on your team will aid you in creating engaging copy that keeps your audience coming back and attracts new potential clients.

Be sure to use hashtags. Make sure it is relevant to your company and the post. If you post a photo of a burger for your restaurant, keep the hashtag simple like #burgermondays or #burgerday. Different social media sites follow different hashtag rules. If your company does not currently have a copywriter, you can still engage the audience in several innovative marketing ways.

On Facebook or Twitter, you can ask the audience to take a poll about your company. For example, if you are a restaurant business, you can ask the audience which is better, your signature burger or your classic chicken sandwich? Encouraging consumers to leave reviews or positive stories about their experiences at your business helps others recognize your company through word-of-mouth marketing.

Use guerilla marketing: Guerilla marketing is the perfect chance for small businesses to make their advertisements pop with fun, unique, and imaginative designs. Guerilla marketing is an innovative marketing idea where small businesses can use unconventional methods for creating an advertisement. For example, if you own a pet store, you can create a bird-shaped business card where the tail fans out with your business’s information.

Hold a contest: Another idea is to create a contest. The prizes could be money, company merchandise, or a gift card to use at your business. Nevertheless, you must make sure your contests are straightforward and have strict guidelines and policies posted clearly for all to see, and ensure that you are following all local, state, federal, and platform guidelines.

Marketing ideas for your small business are achievable through technology allowing small businesses to efficiently budget, advertise, create awareness, and network at a low cost. Be sure to visit part two to see our other tips for innovative marketing ideas for small businesses. n

This week’s blog was written by Clearbridge Branding Agency’s Rowan University intern, Emily Kowalenko.