Running a small business is a challenge that brings many rewards—especialy when you start to see the results of your marketing efforts in the form of new customers coming in. Getting to that point requires knowing how to get your business name out there, out to the places that will start bringing in customers. Read on to learn how to spread the word about your business, deliver your messaging to the right people, and attract new and loyal customers to your business.
Related: 6 Sample Marketing Plans
If you’re like most business owners, you want to get your name out there, but may not be exactly sure what that even entails. Given today’s digital landscape and marketing trends, here’s what it looks like:
So what does it take to reach this level of awareness?
Your efforts to “get your name out there” aren’t going to have much of an impact if you don’t first determine to whom you’re getting that name out. You have to know who is receiving your message in order to cater it appropriately. You have to identify your target audience.
For example, a preschool target audience is parents of children at preschool age; the secondary audience is family members and friends of parents who may recommend the preschool. Understanding your audience will help to optimize your products, services, and marketing content into a form that effectively gets your name out there.
Having a website is essential in today’s markets as consumers use websites to learn more about and contact businesses, and also because a search engine-optimized website allows your business to get discovered by those who don’t yet know about it.
Social Media is accessible to everyone and is a no-brainer in getting your business out there—but that’s because social media is busy and chaotic. Focus on your target audience and identify which social platforms they use and for what. Finding the right social media platform for your audience will mean the difference between becoming known and getting lost in the shuffle.
For example, a preschool parent may spend a lot of time on Instagram sharing photos of their children or following influencers who give parenting tips. It would make sense to start growing your following on Instagram to get your name out there.
On the other hand, an older parent of, say, a college student, might spend more time on Facebook as this platform is more familiar to them. Focus on using Facebook for your business and engaging users that way if that’s the case.
To get your business out there, an effective content strategy is a must. You don’t need a big budget or fancy animation to spread your message. Valuable and digestible information is all you need to get the attention of your potential customers. Create content that your target audience will like and ideally share.
Getting your business out there isn’t a one-and-done effort. You need to try a few different channels and then analyze. Where are you gaining exposure? Which channels seem to get your business out and in front of the most qualified leads? What types of content seem to amplify your presence through sharing and audience engagement?
Great marketing doesn’t have to break the bank, there are lots of low-cost marketing strategies that are very effective in getting the word out about your business.
Blogging offers businesses many advantages. It keeps your website up to date with new and fresh content, which is good for SEO as Google likes updated content. In addition to getting your business out there, it positions your business as an active company that knows what it’s talking about.
Blogs can be shared through social media and can attract backlinks which are also good for SEO. Choose content that your target audience will enjoy, something they will hopefully share and possibly link to.
If you are a new business in town, reach out to your local press to see if they can help with getting your name out. Show them your value and express why you are unique. You may be able to get them to write a piece on you, raising your profile significantly in the local area. Even if your business is national or international, local exposure is still good, and links to your website from press sites will help your SEO.
Guerrilla marketing is all the rage with savvy marketers. The cost is low, the creativity is high and so is the return. Something as simple as a clever chalk drawing may do the trick. Guerrilla marketing relies heavily on word of mouth or social sharing and if done well can attract a lot of attention.
What is a quirky way you can promote your brand messaging that will be received and re-distributed by your target audience? For example, preschools could use funny pronunciation errors by 3-year-olds.
Running a giveaway or contest is another creative way to get your business out there. The simpler, the better. Choose something that would appeal to your target audience to help you get quality entries. For example, for a preschool, a set of preschool books by a popular author will cost less and get a better more targeted response than an iPad.
There are lots of ways a new business can launch a great marketing campaign without spending too much, just get in front of the right target audience, get creative and analyze your results!