Practical tips to help your business grow and thrive – Spend Marketing £s Wisely

The internet has had a massive impact on SME marketing opportunities. Social media, Google keywords, and viral videos provide low cost, high return techniques that allow smaller companies to grab as much attention as the big boys.

However, knowing your pandas from your penguins and investing wisely, can still be a bit hit and miss.

Online marketing is a must when growing your business. However, it’s also possible to make bad investments and end up with a poor performing website. So we’re here to lend a hand on where smart marketing money will drive the best returns.

1. Be mobile friendly

This should be the number one priority of all small businesses. According to Google, 93% of people use their smartphones and tablets to get online every day.

Smart businesses know that their websites must work well on smaller screens or they’ll lose business.

Check your website on your phone. Is it hard to navigate? Are there too many parts missing? If the answer to either question is ‘yes’, your marketing spend should be devoted to revising your website.

No other promotional activity is as important as this.

2. Social networking, not social selling

All kinds of companies, from sole traders to global businesses, are on Facebook and Twitter. Those who fare best understand the community concept behind these sites and spend time building a following rather than a customer base. Nobody will be interested in daily feeds on how your products will transform their lives.

However, you can engage people by posting photos, links and stories that are relevant to your audience. Tips, advice and humour go down well.

Anyone can pay for likes – it takes more time and effort to get the likes/followers which will make a difference for your business.

So think quality, not vanity when it comes to your numbers. And make sure you builds presence in the right areas i.e. LinkedIn is great for B2B while Twitter is excellent for sectors where there is constant change.

The cost lies in the amount of time that you need to devote to build a loyal following and integrate it with your website. Smart businesses will establish a promotional plan so that their social media activities remain effective and efficient.

3. Understanding ever-changing SEO

A small business doesn’t need to employ a tech guru to get to grips with search engine optimisation. SEO is used to help propel websites up the rankings (usually Google) so they are more likely to be found by potential visitors and customers. The rules, though, can change quite quickly so your business needs to keep on top of latest developments.

It used to be easy for a website owner to get the attention of search engines by cramming their site content full of keywords, known as ‘spamming’. It didn’t matter if the text made sense or not; it was the frequency of the keywords that counted.

Thankfully, that has changed now. Search engines will respond to keywords but they will also look for the quality and length of content, how often it is updated and the quality of links from authoritative websites.

Some quick ways to improve your SEO are:

  • Write a blog and keep it updated.
  • Write guest posts for popular (and relevant) blogs.
  • Post authoritative articles, with links to your site, on article directories. For example, an accountancy firm could do well with articles on the best deals on business loans or how to apply for small business grants.
  • Comment on forums on good quality blogs, including a link to your site.

4. The impact of content sharing

The fundamental principle of social media is the sharing of content. However, smart businesses know that Google is using it to influence the search results that it produces.

The more often your content is shared, the more Google will think that you are creating high quality content and the more it will reward you in search results.

The smart move, then, is not only to write relevant copy but to make it useful or engaging enough for people to share within their social networks.

The most effective content:

Tells people how to do things. If you can save them money or improve their skills, they’ll love you for it. If you’re in the B2B sector, anything on small business financing or making savings that’s relevant to your services will serve you well.

Makes people laugh. A photo of a promotional board that offered customers a discount if they ordered in a Dalek voice or a free meal if they turned up in a Tardis was a hit on Facebook, constantly being shared.

Gives people the chance to win something.

Niche marketing isn’t a new concept but applying it to social networking is. Targeting your content so that it’s more likely to be shared is part and parcel of operating a smart marketing strategy.

 

 

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Liberis is a responsible financial provider. Liberis does not offer 'short-term loans'. The minimum expected duration of a Business Cash Advance is 120 days / 4 months and typical expected durations are 6-12 months. These business financing products are not consumer loans.