5 Ways Your Current Marketing Strategy May be Getting it Wrong
...and How The Right Partner Can Help You Fix Your Approach
Running a small business means wearing a lot of different hats, and marketing often falls under that umbrella.
When it comes to generating marketing ideas or managing day-to-day campaigns, you may assume that you aren't able to afford - or can't justify paying for - more than DIY efforts. But that's far from the truth, and far from an ideal situation for your business. According to a Capital One Spark Business survey, 76 percent of small business owners struggle to fulfill marketing objectives, and 39 percent say they haven't completed a marketing initiative within the past six months.
It's unrealistic to expect a small business leader to also executive professional marketing strategies that drive ROI for the business. Which is where a local partner like Cox Media can step in and help out. There are better, more effective ways to approach small business marketing that don't involve the myths and inevitable marketing mistakes that result from doing everything on your own. Here's a look at some of the most common misconceptions small business owners have about their local marketing strategy:
Misconception #1: Google Ads and a Facebook Page are All You Need
Tens of millions of businesses have created Facebook Business Pages and rely on it as a cornerstone of their marketing strategies. The same goes for Google Ads, which offers keyword-targeted advertising that can help you reach a local audience. But given the competitive state of business marketing today, these strategies are far from enough to effectively market your brand to customers, especially with Facebook's decision, as reported by Forbes, to reduce the visibility of Business Page posts in user News Feeds.
Facebook organic reach is shrinking, and while Google Ads still has value, it's one of many ways businesses should try to reach their audience. The reality is that, even for small businesses, a number of marketing channels is required. According to a report from Nielsen, a number of channels were widely cited by chief marketing officers as either very important or extremely important to a company's marketing efforts. Social media, search, online video, email, mobile video, online display and linear TV all were deemed important by more than 50 percent of executives surveyed. (Want to understand more about diversifying your advertising methods? Click here.)
Small businesses should be committed to generating local business marketing ideas for most of these channels, if not others, as well as other marketing channels that may serve their business interests.
Misconception #2: Blogging is Too Competitive for Small Businesses To Get Results
If you've published a company blog only to see minimal traffic and no apparent uptick in business, you might be led to think that blogging doesn't work on the small scale most small businesses can afford. But making that assumption is a huge mistake, because research continues to show the value of operating a company blog. According to IMPACT, having a company blog improves a small business' lead generation by 126 percent.
Maintaining a blog is important for your brand, even if you only update it every now and then. It helps establish your authority and build trust with an audience, in addition to creating a channel to bring traffic to your site. While blogging can indeed attract organic search traffic, small businesses should invest their efforts into building a distribution strategy they can control.
Search is a part of that. But social media is another great tool for using your content to generate engagement with an audience. Email newsletters is a channel where you can promote new blog posts, and guest bloggers or other partnerships may offer other ways to push your content to a relevant audience.
Misconception #3: TV Advertising is Too Expensive
The cost of creating video is lower than it's ever been, and for businesses marketing to a local audience, TV ad spots are often more affordable than small business leaders may realize. Couple that affordable price-point with the marketing impact TV continues to offer: According a report from Global Web Index, traditional TV ad spots remain the most effective channel for exposing new consumers to your brand.
The cost of TV advertising can be brought under control by working with partners who already have the equipment and the experience to create this content quickly and professionally. With the right experts guiding you along, TV ads could be in your company's near future. In fact, here's a real example of true TV advertising pricing.
Misconception #4: TV Ads Can't Offer the Same Value as Digital Campaigns
While TV advertising is often categorized as traditional advertising, it still offers collaborative value when TV campaigns run alongside a digital marketing strategy, and by taking advantage of digital aspects of current-state Television (like TV Everywhere). Small business owners don't have to make an "either/or" decision when deciding whether to market their company through traditional or digital means. Rather, doing both allows the campaigns to support one another and ultimately drive greater ROI.
For example, while TV ads can raise brand awareness and build trust with consumers, inbound marketing assets like business blogs, websites, social accounts and other channels can help attract some of the consumers who are interested in your brand and go online to learn more. TV ads can even promote Facebook pages or company websites to create a referral source for digital channels. The best local business marketing ideas are the ones that consider how marketing channels can support one another and maximize the results of your limited marketing dollars.
Misconception #5: Your Business is "Too Small" to Work With a Media Partner
Some business owners might be led to believe that working with media partners and marketing agencies are only interested in working with larger companies. But for local businesses wanting to connect with the consumers in their communities, media partners are the perfect solution: For a fraction of the cost of hiring full-time marketing staff, you can get all of the services and expertise you'd want from full-time employees, and then some. Media partners can leverage their broad range of staff specialties to give small businesses smart, innovative, customized marketing strategies that directly serve their marketing goals.
Don't let preconceived notions stand in the way of your company's marketing success. If you lack the time and resources to executive a professional marketing strategy on your own, find a media partner that can help your brand make the most of its marketing budget and opportunities - especially as the advertising world continues to (rapidly) evolve.