Congratulations! You’ve just started your new local business, and made the first step in becoming a successful small business owner. But the next step can be a bit more difficult: how do you market your new business so that people will find you?
Here are a few simple tips on how to market your new business in the digital landscape.
1. Who is Your Market?
First things first, you have to define who your market is. This is the only way you’ll be able to attract the right people to come to your business. Answer the following questions: who are your products or services for? What is the competition like? How do you reach for these people?
You should first know who your market is: what their language is, how they think, and how they purchase. Consider the following variables: age, gender, location, financial capability, etc.
2. What is Your Brand?
Finding out what kind of brand you want your business to have is important, so your business is easily recognizable. It helps when customers remember you, so that they’ll return.
While a widespread brand recognition is the long-term goal, start with a small logo. Your logo should be clear and readable on screen and on print, in any size (especially mobile).
Also come up with a tagline, which summarizes your company values, and the value of the products or services that you provide. Your tagline should resonate with your customers.
Take note that your “brand” is not just your logo or tagline. It’s also the entire experience of doing business with you, from your marketing materials such as packaging, to how your business interacts with your customers.
3. Create a Website
Creating your online presence is the key to developing your online brand. This is often where your customers and prospects will get their first impression of your business.
Your website should be search engine optimized, mobile friendly, intuitive and easy to use, and should tell your visitors what they want to know: what your business is, what does your business do, how to reach your business, and what makes your business stand out from the competition.
4. Promote Your Website
Your business website acts as your “digital storefront”, but how will your prospects and customers know that you exist? You need to market your business.
To market your business, you need to take advantage of different mediums that lead to your website: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, online directories, email marketing, and also “traditional” marketing materials like flyers, brochures, business cards, and other print advertising materials.
Of course, not all channels are right for every business, so figure out your strategy in which one to use that suits the nature of your business.
Also take note that creating social media accounts ALONE is not enough for your business to stand out and have a competitive edge. Your social media should, in fact, point to your website, which should be the primary point of your online presence. This is a common mistake among Filipino small business owners, as they see that having a website is just an additional cost, when in fact, they are wasting an opportunity to legitimize their business and convert prospects to customers.