Marketing – An Overview
The American Marketing Association defines marketing as “the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.” Marketing is also used to create, keep and satisfy the customer.
For an entrepreneur or small business owner, marketing can be a huge challenge. In fact, one of my associates who is a writer remarked to me that she wished that she could just write and not have to be bothered with marketing.
Marketing has always been an exciting part of being in business because there’s something thrilling about getting the word out about your unique business, product, or service. Even if there are thousands of persons who offer a service or products similar to yours, because you’re responsible for delivering that service, and you do it as only you can, it makes your business unique to you. Your customers know and appreciate that.
The flip side of marketing small business online is what makes it intimidating. How can you fully capture exactly what your business or product is and does? How, exactly should you market your business in a way that will really resonate with your audience and show just how different your business is from everything else out there?
Regardless of what products and services you offer, you can market your business online.
Benefits to Marketing Small Business Online
The benefits to marketing online are many. Here are just a few:
- You increase your visibility and have many opportunities to increase your credibility.
- Marketing your business online means you have greater control over your marketing. The con to that if that if you do not market your business online correctly and effectively, you can get lost in the shuffle.
- Your marketing budget can see a significant reduction as there are many free options to marketing. However, many of these take longer to yield results. The good news is that even paid advertising opportunities that allow you to target your audience cost a lot less than traditional methods.
- Using effecting strategies when marketing online, will allow your message to reach a much larger audience.
Marketing Small Business Online with Your Website
While it may be obvious that marketing online starts with your website, it may surprise you to know that many business owners who want to market their business online do not have a well-optimized website That’s a mistake.
“Your website should be your calling card, or your business front door.”
– James Schramko
There is no question that there are lots of different ways to market your business online. But you need a central hub where your customers can find you and learn more about you and what you have to offer. That hub will be your blog or website, and from the beginning it should reflect who you are and what you stand for. This means that your website should be a reflection of your Personal Brand.
Your website is where you’ll write about your company and products. You’ll post helpful articles, videos, and/or audio. You’ll interact with your customers and readers via a blog. They’ll get excited about your projects and get to know you on a more personal level.
In addition, you’ll have opt-in forms on your website so people can join your list. This is the heart of online marketing—owning a list of people whom you can write to, promote to, and build relationships.
Marketing small business online includes many forms of marketing that together have the power to raise your visibility. These include social media marketing, email marketing, content marketing, among others.When all of these marketing strategies are implemented, your message, products, and services have the opportunity to reach a much larger or even a global market, thus increasing your visibility and the impact you can make on more people.