Owning a small business is anything but simple. There are so many activities that you have to coordinate, people who need your authority and guidance, and all of your work has to be based on your target audience, trying to achieve maximum profit. However, in order for any of your activities to get their chance of proving themselves, people need to know who you are, and they need to start buying your products and/or services. In order for that to be achieved, you need good marketing, and that’s where you’ll encounter certain challenges. Rest assured that once you get to know the issues in advance, you’ll have a much easier time solving them when you face them.
Know your resources
One of the first issues you’ll have to deal with is resource planning, since balancing your budget, time and your human resources will never be an easy task. The next thing you need to think about is generating leads as well as choosing the most effective social media in order to generate those leads. After that, it’s pretty natural to expect that you need to maintain everything you’re doing, while keeping the highest possible quality of your activities, including content generation. No matter what you’re dealing with at the moment, make sure to follow the trends or the time will run you over. Last but definitely not least, be careful about outsourcing your activities.
Make sure your brand identity is rock-solid
Your brand identity goes much farther than simply your logo. It is way more than mere marketing materials, color palettes or style guides. As this contemporary bachelor’s degree in visual design underscores, this discipline offers an ideal model that teaches us how things both great and small are bound together by invisible threads. With this in mind, you should think of your brand as the culmination of how your business feels, looks and speaks to current and potential customers. It considerably influences the overall customer experience and affects how others see your business credibility. Don’t expect that your brand identity won’t magically reveal itself overnight. It requires plenty of time, deep thinking and thorough research, but you can rest assured that the results are well worth it.
Always keep in mind what’s trending at the moment
As the days go on, following the trends and understanding new needs is getting harder and harder. Unfortunately, it’s not up to you to judge the environmental changes, but it is your job to adapt and conquer. Always keep in mind that you’re there for your customers, and they represent your target audience. Keeping an eye out on the market is another thing you need to do, at the same time, since your competition can both give you inspiration and take your customers. In the end, don’t forget that new technologies are being invented almost every day, feel free to experiment and see if some of the new tools can help out your business.
Come up with a marketing plan
Almost every serious activity needs planning and marketing is no exception. Whether you’re going to a store or starting out a business, you need a plan. Making a good plan is not easy, but the consequences of rushing into something without having a proper plan are too big in order to risk it all. Creating a marketing plan should allow you to have all of your activities in one place so that you can take a good look at them, while having every process thoroughly planned, including the resources you’ll need for the execution.
Make an action plan
The only thing that’s missing in your initial marketing plan is the so-called action plan, which focuses on determining the exact dates of certain activity executions. Once your action plan is done, you’ll need the editorial calendar in order for your content to be produced and delivered most efficiently. Make sure to be consistent when publishing content, as well as original and persuasive.
Feel free to outsource activities
Running a small business means that you don’t have a team of specialists for every group of activities that needs to be executed. This is not a problem because, as long as you are considered as a small-business owner, it means that you should be able to handle the amount of work. However, you shouldn’t feel bad “asking for help”, i.e. you shouldn’t be afraid of outsourcing some of your activities. This is a great way to form a partnership that could bring great benefits for both sides, and it also allows you to focus on the rest of the activities.
Pay attention to who’s helping you with outsourcing
Almost everyone can help you out, but not everyone should be your option. You’re literally trusting someone with a part of your hard work and time invested, you don’t want someone just wasting that within a moment. When opting for a partner, you should ask around and see how good they are in their profession. Talk to their previous customers, talk to their managers and be as detailed as you can. Another thing is, if they don’t “exist” on the internet, it means they aren’t reliable yet.
Running a small business means operating plenty of different activities while chasing the goal that everyone’s seeking for. The recipe is “simple” – make sure that you’re delivering high-quality stuff and make sure that the right audience knows about you. Marketing is obviously one of the unavoidable stops on your road to success, and now that you’ve seen the most common challenges that dealing with marketing will make you encounter, you should be well prepared for almost anything.
Author’s bio: Jennifer Hahn Masterson is the Lead Content Strategist at Spread the Word Solutions, holding an MA degree in business communication. She is always doing her best to help her clients find their place in the ever-so-competitive business arena, insisting on long-term sustainability rather than on some questionable get-rich-fast scheme.