Marketing is critical to connecting your business’s brand and solutions with target customers. Every business, no matter how big, has to invest in marketing to grow. However, the reality is that small businesses struggle to be consistent and understand the value of spending on marketing.
Marketing a business is not easy.
It takes time, talent and money to be effective. It takes a lot of knowledge. Knowledge to develop a solid marketing strategy and execute across various platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Email, Google, Print, and other forms of media. It takes skills in writing content and graphic design to create unique, relevant and interesting content.
Trends are constantly evolving.
What worked two years ago may not work today. Digital platforms such as Facebook are changing the way they display and rank content. New tools and technologies are introduced every year. Tools that improve marketing efforts but also add complexity.
Many small businesses don’t have a marketing team.
Many small businesses, especially those with under 20 employees, struggle to handle marketing. In many cases, the time-strapped owner is actually the one in charge of marketing. As a result, social media accounts are left inactive and websites are left outdated. Furthermore, the sales team could get left without the support it needs to secure new customers.
The good news…
In just four hours a week, small businesses can begin to address their marketing challenges. Small businesses can get their marketing back on track by tackling these tactics over a four week period.
Week 1: Build and promote evergreen content for Facebook.
Evergreen posts are content pieces that will always stay relevant. The great thing about evergreen content is you can maintain consistent activity on Facebook. You can start doing this by reposting content without having to continually create unique content. You can start by creating these four posts:
- A client testimonial post that takes people to your website’s home page
- A company branding post that takes visitors to your website’s About Us page
- A solutions post that highlights a key product or service and links to your website’s Solutions page
- A blog post that highlights a key content piece and links back to your website’s Blog page
Once you create these posts, you can then schedule them to go out on Facebook. For example, you can alternate the posts above so that each style of post is published monthly.
Week 2: Send out a monthly email to your client or prospect list.
The key here is to keep it simple and actionable. Building an email newsletter with fresh content each time can be very time-consuming. Instead, use tools such as MailChimp to build an email template. Your template should contain links that lead to important pages of your website. Keep it clean and simple. Leading with a featured story that changes each month will help you be consistent in your blog publishing schedule. You could feature an employee, for instance. Similarly, you could feature recent client project or a link to an article in an industry publication that relates well to your business.
By being consistent, using a template, and limiting the fresh content to one feature per email newsletter, you can save a lot of time and stay in front of your customers and prospects.
Week 3: Manage and update your Google My Business Listing.
Google My Business is a free, easy-to-use tool that helps businesses manage their online presence and appearance in Google Search and Google Maps. Maintaining your listing creates more visibility online, provides valuable information to those seeking your solutions, and ultimately drives more traffic to your website. In about four hours, you can upload new images, post content, respond to reviews and make any other updates to make sure your information is accurate.
Week 4: Evaluate and Plan.
In week four, take the time to evaluate the previous month’s efforts. Building goals and consistent activities for the upcoming month will help you see if your efforts are working. In addition, review your website traffic through Google Analytics to help you make decisions based on data. Review open and click rates on your email marketing and assess your engagement on Facebook. With a little bit of analytics and planning, you will be more efficient, more focused, and have better results with your marketing efforts.
One caveat. Keep in mind that you’ll want to build a custom approach based on your business’s specific goals and resources. There are additional marketing tactics that may make sense for your business. There is no one-size-fits-all marketing approach.