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14 Low Budget Digital Marketing Tips For Small Business

11 Low Budget Digital Marketing Tips For Small Businesses

When it comes to digital marketing, most small business owners do not know how to leverage its channels. A good digital marketing strategy should not neglect the importance of other marketing strategies of a business. Good tips must be combined with various local advertising methods.

 

HOW DO I GET STARTED WITH DIGITAL MARKETING FOR MY SMALL BUSINESS?

It doesn’t matter the type of business you run, your end goal will surely be attracting new customers and retaining existing ones without spending a fortune. This is the dream of small business owners.

The impact of effective digital marketing on small businesses is growth.

Most people shy away from it because they believe it is quite complex. But is this the case or they are just doing it wrong.

No lies, it requires a bit of trial and error. You also have to be ready to put in the time.

When it comes to small business marketing, one of the most important strategies to consider is taking things in steps. Focusing on a couple of marketing strategies at a time and perfecting them might just be the best approach.

Small businesses don’t have large budgets as big companies and corporations do. So it is normal practice that most work with small teams, if at all.

In fact, studies have shown that 47% of small business owners do their marketing themselves.

We have carefully compiled 14 low-budget digital marketing tips for small business owners that will help you take advantage of the digital space.

FOCUS ON BRANDING.

Branding is the public face of your business. Branding strategy plays an important part in how your business is perceived by people.

Branding should not only be left to the big companies that have the budget to go over the top. There are plenty of ways to help your business stand out and make your business memorable without a large budget.

In branding and identity, the following are important:

  • Memorable business name
  • Beautiful logo
  • Colour pallets
  • Professional and responsive website
  • Brand tone
  • Imagery
  • Tag line

With all these in place, you are already on the right part.

Understand your buyer persona

UNDERSTAND ONLINE BUYER PERSONA

When people approach us about their digital marketing needs and we engage them on their existing strategies, we can’t help but deduce that most small business owner’s just freestyle without a concrete plan or research.

Before embarking on any offline, online or internet marketing endeavour, you must first have a clear understanding of who your potential audience is.

This is called a buyer persona.

What then is a buyer persona? A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer.

This is important because having a clear picture of your potential buyer makes it easier to develop effective and targeted strategies.

It makes it easy to create effective strategies for promoting a small business.

You can find more on creating a well-detailed buyer persona on Hubspot.

KNOW YOUR APPROPRIATE SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNEL

KNOW YOUR APPROPRIATE SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNEL

To be fair, small business owners are avid users of social media platforms, especially Facebook and Instagram.

But therein lies the problem. Every small business owner wants to be on Facebook and Instagram so they can leverage their huge audience.

While that isn’t necessarily a bad thing, you must understand that not all businesses can grow on such platforms. At least where revenue is concerned.

Social media marketing as a form of digital marketing is almost as important as content marketing for small businesses.

Small business marketing statistics reports have shown that 74% of customers rely on social media to make purchasing decisions.

Another report also showed that 41% of local businesses rely on social media to boost revenue.

However, for any type of online marketing to be successful, you need to understand your buyer persona.

This way you have a better knowledge of where to get your potential customers from.

Here is a low-cost digital marketing tip for you: Find out the social media platform best suited for your business and where your potential customers are most active.

This answers the question most small business owners ask, which social media platform should I focus on?

Let’s break down the most popular platforms.

Facebook

  • Worldwide Daily Users: 79 billion
  • Audience: Gen X and Millennials
  • Target Industry: B2C
  • Best for: Brand awareness; advertising

Twitter

  • Worldwide Daily Users: 186 million
  • Audience: Primarily millennials
  • Target Industry: B2B and B2C
  • Best for: Public relations; customer service

Instagram

  • Worldwide Monthly Users: 1 billion
  • Audience: Primarily millennials
  • Target Industry: B2C
  • Best for: Natural-looking media, behind-the-scenes, and user-generated content; advertising

LinkedIn

  • Worldwide Monthly Users: 675 million
  • Audience: Baby boomers, Generation X, and millennials
  • Target Industry: B2B
  • Best for: B2B relationships, business development, and employment marketing

YouTube

  • Worldwide Monthly Users: Over 2 billion
  • Audience: Millennials, closely followed by Generation Z
  • Target Industry: B2C
  • Best for: Brand awareness; entertainment, and how-to videos

Snapchat

  • Worldwide Daily Users: 249 million
  • Audience: Primarily Generation Z
  • Target Industry: B2C
  • Best for: Brand awareness; advertising

Pinterest

  • Worldwide Monthly Users:: 416 million
  • Audience: Primarily older millennials and younger baby boomers
  • Target Industry: B2C
  • Best for: Visual advertising; inspiration

You can read up more on identifying the appropriate social media channels for your business.

grow a email list for email marketing(1)

BUILD AND ENGAGE AN EMAIL LIST.

Building an email list is a much underrated digital marketing tip by small businesses and entrepreneurs. It is surprising given the cost-effectiveness and success level of email marketing.

Various statistics have shown that marketers understand the importance of growing an email list as a channel for lead generation.

A report by HubSpot suggested that about 80% of industry leaders are of the opinion that email marketing strengthens customer retention.

One of the advantages of email marketing is personalization. You have direct contact with your customers so you can really pass your message across.

Perhaps one of the reasons why most entrepreneurs don’t value email marketing is its long term approach.

While engaging your email list can turn potential customers into active customers and help keep existing ones, it is important to note that it doesn’t just happen overnight.

Even growing an email list can take time.

Editor’s Pick

CREATE EDUCATIVE CONTENT.

Do you know why business websites have a blog page? It is so they can use educative content and information to sell themselves.

Creating educative content is one of the best tips on how to market your business online.

Creating educative posts is a strategy that can help you stand out from your competition. While others focus on just selling their products and services, you can mix your content with information related to your business that people might find useful.

For example, let’s say you run a skincare company. It will be easy and tempting to always market your products. But how about you curate content around the active ingredients of your products? That is what makes you stand out, isn’t it? You can even choose to talk about various skin problems and the likes.

Showing you care and giving value is an easy and proven way to draw traffic to your business.

CREATE GOOGLE MY BUSINESS LISTING AND WORK ON CUSTOMER REVIEWS

Google My Business listing is one of the best free digital marketing channels out there for local businesses. Within a few minutes, you can put your business on the map and have it come up in search queries.

A reason why it is important is that Google Business Listings is one of the first search queries you will see when doing location-specific searches. It appears even before the search results.

The top 3 listings should be your goal as they can vastly increase your traffic.

Blvck Hair's Google My Business listing for crochet hair companies in Nigeria

Blvck Hair’s Google My Business listing for crochet hair companies in Nigeria

Working on getting positive reviews for your listing will also play a part in how your business is perceived. Customer reviews are often overlooked by small businesses but it is really important in building brand trust.

A report showed that 30% of people rely on reviews when judging local businesses. Having a Google My Business listing is an essential digital marketing strategy you must try.

OPTIMIZE YOUR WEBSITE FOR MOBILE.

Did you know that 35% of small business owners feel their business is too small to need a website?

While your doubt about having a website for your new business is well placed, you also prevent opening up new borders for your business.

There are 63,000 search queries every second on Google. Nearly 60% of these searches are made from mobile devices.

Thanks to the growth of social media platforms over the years, mobile marketing has become more essential than ever.

There are various facets of mobile-specific marketing but having a mobile-optimized website is a good first step.

Whether you build your website yourself or pay a professional to do it, there is one important factor that you must consider.

Many people don’t pay attention to website speed. But it can be the difference between having a successful website or not.

Slow websites can ruin your chances of converting new visitors into customers. We live in a fast-paced world and people’s attention span is becoming shorter by the day. No one wants to wait all day for your website to finish loading.

Having a fast loading website is a minimum requirement.

Bounce rate is the % of website visitors who exit a page without taking any action on the page.

You can use Google Page Speed Insights to check your website’s load time and how to decrease it.

DON’T FORGET YOUR BLOG

Content marketing is one aspect of digital marketing that small businesses don’t really pay attention to. Especially blogging. Again, this could be a result of the tight budget that most owners work with.

But that doesn’t remove the fact that creating a blog on your business website is the easiest way to get free and organic traffic.

To put this in perspective, ask yourself this question. When you go on a search engine like Google, what do you search for? A business or question-related query.

I probably won’t go on Google to search for Jumia or Amazon. What I will probably search for is something like “where can I get iPhone 13 charger online?”

Imagine you’re running a travel agency and the holiday season is fast approaching. Travel enthusiasts won’t go on Google to simply search for Morocco or Dubai. What they will probably search for is “best holiday destinations in Dubai” or “best places to visit in Morocco.”

This is where your blog section comes in. Imagine if you have well-curated blog posts on those search queries, it will open your business to free traffic and potential customers.

This website’s traffic doubled after we published a marketing article on the Squid Game series.

Creating high-quality blog posts might not be your strength but you can hire a professional like us or pay freelancers to do it for you.

Nellie Akalp, CEO of CorpNet.com said their company’s digital marketing efforts took a turn for the best after they implemented strong content marketing efforts through blogging.

 

customer reviews for digital marketing

ENCOURAGE ONLINE REVIEWS

Reviews are one the best and free digital marketing strategies available to you. They are one of the best ways to build client trust in your business.

You should always encourage your customers to leave online reviews for your business. You can make use of the business listing on Google or review sites like Yelp, TrustPilot, Clutch and others.

To make it easy for your clients, you can share a link to encourage them to write reviews about your business.

You should know that not all reviews will be positive or pleasant. Some will even review just to troll your business. This is why it is important to monitor your reviews and respond quickly. Negative reviews can be a great way to show your customer service skills.

Reports have shown that only about 43% of customers will go use a business with less than 4 stars.

SETUP A REFERRAL AND AFFILIATE PROGRAM.

Studies have shown that customers gotten through referrals have a 37% higher retention rate. 16% more profits can also be expected from referred customers.

Creating a referral program for your business, in the long run, is a no brainer. A report from referral marketing stats showed that growth is experienced by 86% of companies with a referral program.

We like to call affiliate marketing the faux-free marketing strategy. This is because people do your marketing for you so they can get paid by you.

Reports have shown that about 61% of customers give one referral. 34% give between 2-10 referrals. While 5% give 11 or more.

This is one of the advantages of having a website for your business. Referrals can easily be tracked with tracking tools this way. It is important to track referrals so you have a better knowledge of where your referrals come from and what brings them to you.

small businesses must spend money wisely

 

 

SPEND WISELY.

This is going to be a short digital marketing tip. When planning your digital marketing strategies, it is important to plan according to your budget.

You’ve probably asked yourself this question before: how much should a small business spend on digital marketing?

The answer depends on your budget and plan.

When you’re first starting out, you can invest in low-cost and free digital marketing channels. But you will want to improve on that as your business grows.

It is important to focus on a few marketing strategies at a time as the cost and manpower needed can quickly pile up.

It is even possible that you won’t get the desired results because you are doing too much at once.

IN CONCLUSION

You don’t have to spend a fortune on digital marketing if you don’t have the budget to. We have discussed several practical low-budget digital marketing tips that you can consider as a small business. Also, do not forget to focus on only a few strategies at a time.

Not sure how to go about your business’ Digital Marketing? Contact us for your free Marketing Strategy Session. 

 

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Mallami Adekunle

Mallami Adekunle

Kunle Mallami is a digital entrepreneur with expertise in website design, digital marketing, brand strategy and digital content writing. When he's not doing any of these, he will probably be on YouTube learning.

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