Online Marketing Strategy for Small Businesses and Start-ups

If you’re just getting started in the digital marketing world you’re ready to start marketing your brand online, there are a few necessary components you’ll need in order to start strategizing your plan of attack.

1. Define your target audience
Knowing your brand inside and out means that you also know who is most likely to be attracted to it, and ergo, will contribute to a healthy flow of income. If you have no idea who your target audience is, start by researching similar products, services, to see what’s already out there in your industry.

You can also employ a few web analytics tools to help you start collecting data regarding who you’re attracting with your brand. Google analytics is an excellent tool that tracks metrics on your website and helps report data that will allow you to define your target market. Ultimately, depending on what your brand offers, there will be a natural emergence of who your target audience.

2. Start with a home base

All of your online digital marketing efforts should start with creating a home base. A motherboard, if you will. This is going to be your website.

All digital media marketing efforts should lead to your website, which should be set up in a way that inspires or encourages action. This relies heavily on branding, and your brand strategy- which is essentially like imagining that your company or business has a persona all of its own, that’s similar to the persona of its target audience. You’ll want to dress, act, and form similar interests just like your target audience.

Your website should also effectively communicate that your brand has something that your target audience wants. Start by answering these questions:

  1. What problems does my product or services solve?
  2. Why does my target need my solution?
  3. What are the benefits of my product or service?
  4. What feelings does my product or service evoke?
  5. How my target feel if they don’t have my product or service?

Knowing these will help you communicate the great things about your brand, to exactly who should be hearing them.

3. Offer value outside of your products or service

The goal is to create a good relationship with your target, which means you need to gain their trust and make friends with them the same way you would when first meeting someone new. This can be done by providing them with valuable content.

Creating content such as blog posts, videos, recipes, how-tos, articles, etc. etc. helps not only give your brand credibility, but it attracts your target audience to your home base. It can also encourage them to sign up for more of your content via email, which opens a whole another avenue to entice your audience into taking purchasing action. First, you have to create content that your audience is willing to give their email up for. If you own a brick and mortar restaurant and your target audience is people in your geographic location, then offering discounts or specials for locals is a valuable incentive that could make them want to sign up.

Helping make them feel special is always a winner. After all, you’re essentially making friends with people of your targets, and a successful friendship has care, support, and a mutually beneficial relationship.

4. Set up camp where the people are

Your main source of web traffic, and ultimately, your main source of revenue is going to come from SEO, PPC and Google Adwords.

Don’t be frightened, these are all really good things that will help you generate income.

SEO stands for search engine optimization, which essentially means that Google when they’re bots crawl your site, like you better than other guys doing similar things. This can be achieved by having keyword rich content and lots of it, people linking to your site. There’s a whole treasure trove of things that make up SEO that’ll want to have, so I’d check out this article to know exactly how to have good SEO.

PPC means Pay Per Click. This means that you’ve essentially bid on a keyword and put a set budget behind it with a corresponding search ad. Every time someone searches that term, your ad comes up. Money is subtracted from your budget every time someone clicks on your ad after searching that keyword.

For example, let’s say you’re a taco truck in San Francisco. You’d want to bid on the keywords “taco truck” and “food trucks” and so on and so forth. Basically, keywords relevant to your operation. Start by reading this guide on PPC so you can become an expert here, it’ll really help you up your traffic!

5. Email marketing

Ultimately, your digital marketing efforts should have some sort of retention program. This can be done by building an email marketing list.

Building an email marketing list is essentially like artfully placing a certain species of fish that you’re trying to catch into a smaller pond, so that not only do you have a pond full of the fish you’re trying to catch, but it’ll be a hell of a lot easier to catch them next time you go fishing.

Artfully placing that species of fish you’re targeting means trying to get them into your pond from the ocean. What’s the ocean? Google search and social media.

Email marketing continues to be the most effective form of marketing, so building an email list of people within your target has the potential to help you financially expand your business. Grow your list, grow your business. But it’s not quite that easy…

5. Putting it all together

Once you’ve gotten the above elements together, you can begin working on a continual, ever-changing digital marketing strategy. Which basically means you can take the above, artfully piece it all together to form a well-oiled machine and then watch it all become irrelevant in 6 months when everything in society changes and you have to completely redo everything.

Just kidding.

You’ve already set up all the elements necessary to begin to create a steady flow of your target coming in and out, taking an interest, taking purchasing action, etc. Now that things are getting going, you can start to hone in on areas where there are opportunities for improvement. There are smaller areas that come into play here such as email copy, ad design, a/b testing, data analysis, etc. all of which are just some of the few of the many capillaries that make up the many facets of marketing.

Not to be biased, but at this point, it would be in your best interest to start delegating these duties to contractors. I say contractors and not firms because I feel as though a firm, at this point in your small business and startup operation, might be a tad too aggressive. However, there are many contractors on Upwork and similar platforms who you can delegate duties to, such as social media marketing, PPC experts, content marketers, etc.

I can’t possibly explain to you how deep marketing goes. It’s honestly its own world, and as a small business owner or start-up, you simply don’t have enough time to become a marketing expert because it’s so vast. Nor would anyone expect you too, you’re too busy finding happiness and passion in this new empire you’ve carved out for yourself.

If you’re at this point, are in the process of it, or need maintenance on your digital marketing, contact me today and let me take this over for you so you can continue to work on things that you love, and I’ll work on mine- marketing.

Congrats on taking the leap to start your own endeavor, we need more go-getter in the world!

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Author: miracle marketing

We focus on helping small businesses and start-ups because we feel a strong connection to people who have freed themselves from fear and took action to start their own empire within their life purpose. We completely understand that someone who’s just starting something from the ground up, out of thin air, may not have the biggest budget to allocate to online marketing despite how important it is in getting your name out there. We're here to help because we're inspired by you. Contact us today to get a quote on your online marketing service.

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