Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell.” said Seth Godin, a bestselling author and blogger. This is the reality we live in today.
I know many artists and craftsmen, just to give an example, are thinking of how amazing their creations are and why other people should buy them, but in this decade we are going to witness a transformation taking place. We can already see many of the big well-known brands creating stories, but I believe that this trend is going to be replicated more and more by small businesses.
Everything has a story. Your product has a story – the process your product has been through from the idea to the design, manufacturing and packaging is the story people need to hear. You have a story, your business has a story, the company name and your logo have a story. People want to hear stories.
How to share your story online?
1. Start with a website or an online store
In 2020 there are still many businesses without a website. Hard to believe but they are. I found this very common with local businesses because they believe they don’t need a website because their clients are in their town. This is half-way true. However, did you know that even your local clients will search online for local businesses?
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes – How do you look for a hair salon or a gift shop near you? Right, you use Google search. With a Google My Business Account, you get more than a business listing. Your free Business Profile lets you easily connect with customers across Google Search and Maps.
In order to get this right, you need to make sure you have the right content for your audience and you use the right platform for this. If you need a website to promote your business, I suggest a WordPress website. I suggest hosting it with a different web hosting company – I use Siteground to host my WordPress websites, mainly because I have lots of extra features that I can use without paying extra – like encrypting, emails etc.
If you sell products, I recommend having your own online store. I recommend using a well-known eCommerce platform instead of using small bespoke platforms not fully developed. I’ve tried a few and EKM is my favourite. The shops are well indexed by Google and their customer service is fantastic.
Once you had a website or online store developed (I can help you with this), make sure it’s optimised for Google, using relevant keywords, meta titles, descriptions, alt text, and links between pages. SEO is very important to make sure your audience will find your website when they search for keywords relating to their needs.
Focus on SEO but don’t neglect paid advertising. If you are a brand new business there are more chances to get in front of your customer using pay per click. The advantage is that they will find out about you now, while SEO will pay off in a few weeks or months. For SEO I recommend a tool called SEMrush.
2. Stand out on social media
I’ve heard people saying that social media is a waste of time and that the less the better. I completely disagree with this and I will explain to you why. Whenever you post something on social media there will be people that will see your post and engage with it. If you post more often there will be more chances for your name to be noticed.
When it comes to social media, there are rules you should respect – don’t post more than once a day on Facebook and LinkedIn, but you can post more on Twitter (especially if you have over 5k followers), Instagram and Pinterest.
When to post on Social Media?
Look what Buffer says:
- Mornings and evenings during commute time
- Lunch and tea break
- Weekdays for B2B brands and weekends for B2C brands
Do you for a week and review the stats. From my experience, LinkedIn performs great in the morning, while others do well at lunchtime. I’ve checked my Google Analytics recently and noticed that most of my views are between 12 and 2pm so I assume most of my readers are professionals and entrepreneurs.
If you are not using video to promote your business, consider doing it. They tell a story better than any written words.
Social media requires more than posting. You have to be actively engaging with your audience appreciating and commenting on their posts. Most of the time this will determine them do the same for you.
3. Email Marketing Funnel
Don’t neglect email marketing! Growing your network is a must in 2020. If you look at some of the most successful high price ticket businesses, they all use something called a funnel.
In 1898, E. St. Elmo Lewis developed a model which mapped a theoretical customer journey from the moment a brand or product attracted consumer attention to the point of action or purchase. St. Elmo Lewis’ idea is often referred to as the AIDA-model, an acronym which stands for Awareness, Interest, Desire, and Action. This staged process is summarized below:
- Awareness – the customer is aware of the existence of a product or service
- Interest – actively expressing an interest in a product group
- Desire – aspiring to a particular brand or product
- Action – taking the next step towards purchasing the chosen product
An email marketing funnel is a sequence of emails sent on a predefined schedule to leads for converting them into customers. This can be created using pretty much any platform – I’ve been using Mailchimp, MailerLite and Campain Monitor.
If you need help with any of the digital marketing services mentioned in this post, get in touch.