As a marketeer I am dealing with a wide variety of people and businesses on a daily basis. But so often, despite the differences, the questions about how to market are often very similar. Here are the top 3 marketing questions that I was asked in 2020. You’ll see not only are they easy to answer but the solutions are also straightforward to implement.
1. Do I need to be on Social Media?
Before I answer this I usually ask back “Where does your audience get their information?” The response usually includes Facebook, Linkedin, Google and so forth. The answer is obvious. 100% yes. All businesses need to be on social media. This is where people are spending their time. Even without the pandemic-driven shift to online, social media had grown exponentially over the previous 3 years.
Social media really is the new word of mouth. It allows you to be in front of your target audience 24/7 365 days of the year. Think about it, even if someone recommends a business or product to you, you usually look them up, don’t you? An outdated website or infrequent or irrelevant social media posts give a bad first impression. It’s like a shop never changing their window display.
Remember though that you don’t need to be on all social media. That’s a common mistake a lot of companies make. They set up accounts on 4 or more different platforms and then have trouble maintaining them all. The starting point is to develop a persona for your audience, then find out where that persona is hanging out. Then post good quality, relevant content on a consistent basis.
2. How do I know my marketing is working?
Measure it! When I started in marketing this was much harder to answer. You could tell how many eyes or ears should see or hear a TV or print ad, but it was difficult to gauge the number that did. Correlations could obviously be made to uplifts in sales and surveys on brand awareness carried out, but it was more difficult to gauge the impact of marketing on sales activity.
Digital marketing has made that so much simpler. You can instantly see what impact a post or an online ad is having. For each goal, set out a measure to check on its success. Then if it’s not working, change your approach. Every social media has a wide variety of measurements. Decide which are right to measure your objectives.
In addition, Google Analytics is the most valuable tool you can have on your website. And it’s free! A lot of small businesses haven’t set it up or don’t use it. That basically means they have no idea who is visiting their site, what they are looking at or where they have come from.
3. What kind of budget do I need?
There is a common misconception that marketing is expensive. Well, it’s all relative. The cost of a TV ad would be prohibitive to a small or medium sized company but then, to meet their goals, it also wouldn’t be necessary. A small company can easily grow without an overweight investment in marketing. The investment here will be time rather than money.
Social media provides an easy way to stay visible and relevant in front of your target audience. You need to produce engaging content on topics of interest on a regular basis. Content can be produced in different formats e.g., text, photos, video. It’s also important to know what time of day is best to post your content to reach your maximum audience. A properly set up and maintained content calendar is your bible here.
Obviously having budget will help. You can get bespoke photography taken, videos made, engage with SEO experts and so forth. Paid ads can also be a great way to boost your profile, especially in key sales periods. The Local Enterprise Office Trading Online Voucher (TOV) scheme has been extended for 2021 with a grant of up to €2,500 available (with 50% matching by the recipient). This funding can be used for much more than just website development including digital marketing strategy and online advertising.
But for now start by growing organically as much as possible and then as the business grows so too can your marketing.
Is there something on your mind to ask? Just contact us and we’ll be happy to help.