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Digital marketing is a vital factor for small business success, and it can be a challenge for organisations that have a lot of ground to cover with only two to five employees. Fortunately, there are ways to navigate tactical issues and help your company expand its online presence.
Keep reading to discover and learn more about the most common digital marketing challenges that small businesses face as well as how you can overcome them. Then, later we discuss quality digital marketing options, i.e. DIY, hiring a consultant, learning the ropes and more.
The 5 Challenges of Small Business Digital Marketing
You may have seen this one coming, but smaller businesses cannot afford to through their annual budget around haphazardly. For most small businesses, the marketing budget will be humble and won’t handle supporting huge digital marketing programs.
However, there are ways to develop strong digital marketing strategies without an uncapped budget. Good SEO and word of mouth, for instance, cost nothing. Whether you decide to make your own strategy, hire a professional or invest in marketing training for you or your workforce, there are ways to market your small business digitally without breaking the bank.
2. The Right Social Media
With many social media platforms performing well right now, which are you to choose? Instead of spreading your resources too thinly across them all, instead start with the big names like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Google as these have the most users.
Then, the key to finding the right social media platform for you and where you’ll find your ideal customer, consider your social media goals. Is your company looking to build brand recognition and loyalty or wanting to stay current with quick updates and advertising? For the latter, Twitter is best suited while the former matches Facebook’s purpose more. Have a look through each of these platforms and choose the ones that best suit your marketing goals.
3. Content Creation
This is where a lack of human resources can be a hindrance. Creating and maintaining a consistent stream of content can be challenging. As a small business, you can hire someone dedicated to managing your online presence from social posts to blogs and more.
Alternatively, you could outsource your content creation needs to a digital agency or an independent freelancer. Prices may vary, but these two options can be more cost-effective than a full- or part-time employee.
Content has become a critical factor in digital marketing success, making it a worthwhile area to place a portion of your budget.
4. Updated Technology
It can be a challenge for small businesses to remain on top of current technology, but it is a must in this modern age to keep up with competitors in the market as well as remain in your customers’ sight. As a business owner, you can get lost in the day-to-day running of your business operations. However, by simply staying current on new tech, many of which are often free, you can provide powerful advertising, marketing and promotional campaigns.
In order to remain current and have the potential to boost your company’s digital marketing, try to take a moment each week to read up on industry leaders or trends by looking through Twitter hashtags or following influential marketing blogs. Having your finger on the pulse will keep you in the know and remain competitive.
5. Increase Visibility & Gain Quality Leads
Did you know that LinkedIn is 277% more effective at lead generation than other social platforms? And it’s free! If you see that your company is struggling to gain quality sales leads, or not getting enough traction online, place a little extra marketing effort into LinkedIn, you won’t regret it. Here is what you can do:
Most of these solutions are free and simple to do but trust us; they can be a saving grace for your bottom line.
Your Digital Marketing Options
Now that you know a little more about the challenges that small businesses face when it comes to digital marketing as well as a few solutions, it’s time to consider your options for the creation, execution and maintenance of your digital marketing efforts.
Mastering the art and science of digital marketing for your business.
Learning digital marketing can be a fun and rewarding process. As a business owner you will need to, at minimum, have a basic understanding of digital marketing. Even if you outsource to an agency or a consultant you must know how it fits into your strategy and what metrics you should look at to know if it is providing a positive ROI.
Owning the digital marketing function.
Hiring the right person can be difficult, and you may not get it right the first time. Especially if you are a small business this can be way to expensive as well as time consuming when you consider things like training and benefits that you will have to provide.
A done for you digital marketing service.
Hiring an agency may be the right for your business, depending on your revenue as well as the budget your for digital marketing. When choosing an agency be sure to check if they are practicing what they preach (i.e using digital marketing themselves to aquire customers). Also be involved in the process and check metrics regularly.
A done with you digital marketing service.
This option is perfect for a business with 2 - 5 employees that has a marketintg budget but cannot afford to hire an agency or to hire an empolyee to specialize in digital marketing. A Digital Marketing consultant will fill that role, they are flexible, cost way less and can be hired on a per project bases with no longterm contracts.
If you’ve made it this far, you should know your options pretty well by now. And as you can see from the various pros and cons listed above, there is a lot to think about. Besides the common challenges that small businesses face regarding digital marketing, you also need to decide the best way to create, execute and maintain your digital marketing efforts whether this is doing it yourself, in-house or hiring a freelancer/consultant or a marketing agency.
If you need some help deciding on the best move for your small business’s growth and success, get in touch with Quality Marketing Solutions.
Contact us now for a free 30-minute consultation to see where you’re at.