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FEATURE


COMMUNICATIONS & MARKETING


Digital marketing for small businesses


As a small business, adopting a digital marketing strategy is a vital tool for building a brand, increasing customer engagement and extending your reach. But what are the steps you need to take to developing a winning digital marketing campaign?


TARGET AUDIENCE, TARGET CONTENT When considering your digital marketing strategy, it’s important to know your audience. Who are they, what do they do, and how can your product or service help them? To help you understand your audience, create a buyer persona. This could include details such as their age, gender and income, allowing you to determine the kind of content you should create and what kind of social media platforms you should target. Once you know your audience, you will find it much easier to create targeted and relevant content.


Another key factor is reaching your audience on a


personal level, which means it’s important to show that you value their needs and appreciate their custom. Tactics such as giveaways, surprise and delight campaigns and rewards schemes will help foster loyal relationships with customers.


SHOW, DON’T TELL Visual content is on the rise. Video content platforms, such as YouTube, Instagram Stories and Facebook Live, have become an increasingly popular way to connect with thousands of potential customers. Best of all, you don’t necessarily need a big budget or expensive equipment to create content, as many smartphones cameras have high-quality video capabilities perfect for shooting short videos and soundbites. Interviews, product demonstrations and advertisements are all good examples of video content. When making video content, remember that consistency


is key. A posting schedule will encourage your audience to tune in regularly and anticipate new videos, while consistency in style and voice will help you connect on a much more personal level with your customers.


72 business network November 2019


FOCUS YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA EFFORTS There’s no denying the power of social media, but there are a multitude of available platforms, and they are all constantly evolving. Therefore it’s important to focus your efforts on the platforms that are most relevant and where your customers are the most active, rather than wasting time on the ones that won’t bring you any new business. B2B businesses may find such platforms as LinkedIn and Twitter the most helpful, whereas Facebook and Instagram might better suit a B2C business model. Whichever platforms you decide to focus on, remember that it is important to retain a consistent voice across social media (and also your website) to help build a connection with your customers. A scheduling tool, such as Hootesuite or Buffer, can help


you schedule your posts to go live at times that would give you the highest traffic and social media engagement.


PUT YOUR WEBSITE TO WORK As well as making sure your website is easy to use and navigate, make sure it is also mobile-friendly and views correctly on small screens. Page speed is also an important factor, as slow load times can deter potential customers. Your website content is incredibly important, but an easy


way to fill your website with useful and entertaining content is to maintain a regular blog. If something interesting is happening in your industry, a blog or ‘vlog’ (video blog) is a great way of capitalising on trending topics and inserting your brand into the narrative. Your website is your opportunity to improve your SEO


skills, because if search engines can’t find you, you might as well have not bothered investing in a website at all. Create content around the key words and phrases that will put your website directly in front of your target audience.


‘It’s important to focus your efforts on the platforms that are most relevant and where your customers are the most active’


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