June 11, 2020
SMBs or Small-to-Medium businesses represent most of the businesses in the US. This means that there are also a lot of SMB marketing opportunities. But SMB marketing isn’t as easy as marketing for a huge company. A good percentage (30%) of SMBs fail within two years.
But what is an SMB?
The Small Business Administration defines SMBs as businesses with less than 500 employees. Going by this definition, they also state that the number of SMBs is over 30 million in the US alone. SMBs account for 99.9% of all businesses in the US.
What is SMB marketing?
Because these companies are small, the same rules of marketing don’t apply to them. SMBs need to operate with small budgets, lower manpower and often less time. This is why they’re always looking for innovative ways to market their products and reach a higher profit with a smaller budget.
Why is it so tough for SMBs?
Any business, whether small, large or massive will have its challenges. But for a small business, the problems are much harder to solve.
SMBs have smaller budgets, a smaller number of employees, a shortage of time and other things that aren’t a bother for larger companies.
Even though it’s hard to get off the ground, countless businesses are formed each year and a lot of them don’t even survive the first year.
Since so many businesses start each year, it’s obvious there’s a lot to gain if they succeed. Here are 6 SMB marketing tips to elevate your business.
1. Set goals and create a budget
If there’s one thing you need to do in marketing, it’s set a goal. This is usually accomplished when the company is being built, along with deciding the products you’re gonna sell. But it can happen afterward as well.
There are three types of goals you should plan:
It’s not required to set a goal right now for each of these terms, but it’s generally a good idea to put it all out as a plan and work from there.
A short-term goal for a starting company could be to just get enough clients to survive. While a long-term goal could be to strengthen the brand and build trust with clients.
Setting goals is one thing, but accomplishing them is hard.
Without creating a reasonable budget for all your goals, you can’t efficiently complete them. SMBs are mostly limited by budget, so stretching a huge part of your budget to a long-term goal might not be a good idea.
It’s very likely that you can’t decide on just one goal, and that’s fine and normal. But as you increase the number of goals, it becomes harder to efficiently distribute the budget between the goals.
It’s a good idea to find the most important goal right now and focus most of your budget on that goal.
2. Build a website
We live in a digital age and having a website is paramount to the success of any business. A lot of businesses today think a Facebook page is enough, but it isn’t. About 64% of SMBs don’t have a website, but not having a website is detrimental to your success.
A website could also help you reach your targeted SMB markets, engage with your customers, receive feedback, sell online and a lot more.
Building a website isn’t as easy as it sounds. There are many things you need to plan for when building your website, such as:
- Target audience
- Design language
- Type of website(informational or sales)
- Target keywords
But some things, such as website hosting don’t need much thought. It’s basically the home of your website, and by choosing good website hosting you’re establishing a safe future for your website. Even on a budget, a good hosting provider will still provide a great hosting experience. On the other hand, you can always jump for a flexible and quality website builder as Strikingly and make all processes a lot more easier.
3. Utilize Google’s services
By now you probably know that Google is the most used search engine in the world. But that’s not all Google is. They provide many free services that can be useful to you.
If you’re a small business with a physical location, one of those services that can be useful to you is Google My Business.
In its simplest form, it’s a service that allows you to create a business profile on Google. The end result is an easy appearance on Google Search and some of their other services like Maps.
With a Google My Business account, you’re in charge of information about your business. You can form a better connection with potential customers through Google My Business.
4. Do content marketing
Content marketing is a strategy chosen by many. It’s viable for both B2B and B2C, but it’s a long-term strategy. Fact is, 91% of B2B marketers use this strategy and 86% of B2C marketers think content marketing is a great strategy, says the Content Marketing Institute.
Although most businesses do content marketing in the form of blog posts, it doesn’t have to be blog posts. Content marketing can be many things such as videos, podcasts or other things.
But this isn’t easy. There are a few things to keep in mind when creating content:
- Make it valuable
- Make sure it’s relevant
- Be consistent
After you’ve created the content, you then need to distribute it to your targeted audience.
5. Choose the right social platforms
It isn’t always a mistake to pursue all social media platforms. But when it comes to SMB marketing, your budget and time might not allow you to do that.
Even if you have the budget for all the platforms, your target market might not exist or be too small on a certain platform.
A generally good idea is to start with Facebook since it has the widest audience and will most likely have your target audience as well.
But don’t stop there, two or three social media platforms shouldn’t be a problem for you.
A good SMB marketing tip is to analyze your competitors. That way, you can find out which social platforms have the most potential without spending a lot of money or time.
6. Email marketing
Email marketing might be the best SMB marketing strategy. The average ROI for email marketing is 42:1. That means you earn $42 for every dollar you spend. Sound too good to be true?
But it is true. The research was performed by Litmus and the numbers don’t lie. And that’s just the baseline reading, every other element that marketers include in the process adds more dollars to the ROI. These elements include double-opt-in, A/B testing, dynamic content, gifs, and more.
The best part about email marketing? Most people check their emails on their mobile phones, which means you could be the first thing they read about when they wake up.
Email marketing is also the main way to connect with your customers. Just the fact that they allow you to send them emails should be reason enough for you to craft amazing emails.
But you still need to follow some rules to make sure you don’t go wrong here:
In order for your emails to be successful, you need to follow the CAN-SPAM act guidelines:
- Make sure your headers aren’t false or misleading. These are: “From”, “To”, “Reply-To” and routing information.
- Don’t use false or misleading subject lines.
- Always include a physical address in your emails.
- Include an unsubscribe button.
SMBs do have more challenges and problems to face. But if you choose a good SMB marketing strategy, you’ll be growing your business in no time.
One of the main reasons businesses fail is lack of planning. You’ve probably heard the phrase “think before you act” – it wasn’t said in vain.
Planning is an important part of any business and the main tip to elevate your business. It won’t always be easy, in fact, it’ll be hard most of the time. But you didn’t get into business to have it easy.