1. Quality Content is King
2. Eye-catching Infographics Gain Traction
3. Market Research and Data Matter
4. Optimization is Key
A lot of business owners say word-of-mouth marketing brings them the most business, but that doesn't mean you should ignore your search engine optimization. It's worth it to pop up on people's radar who are researching their purchases beforehand. Even if they heard of you from someone they know, having excellent search engine presence will give your business that extra dose of validity and professionalism. You can hire help to get your site up to speed, or if you're web-savvy, you can do it yourself by researching SEO best practices.
5. Be Strategic with Social Media
Social media isn't as free as it used to be when it comes to businesses. Now you can sponsor posts on Facebook and LinkedIn and run ads on Pinterest, so there's a thought to think about in terms of social media investing. The key here is to realize that not every business benefits from social media advertising, so start slow and track your progress. You can even put $10 in for a little extra boost. If you feel that your exposure isn't worth the money you're putting into it, it might be best to put that money elsewhere. Also, try to automate your social media using sites like Hootsuite and Buffer to keep your posts consistent.
6. Community Counts
You don't have to try for global exposure right off the bat, or ever. For many small businesses, a significant percentage of support comes from the local community. Try sponsoring sports team, events or charity runs to get involved and get your name out there. Be present at town celebrations and meetings. Getting to know your community will make you better equipped to offer the local market what it needs.
7. Referrals Matter
Your best marketing strategy may be leveraging the happy customers you have already. Don't be afraid to ask for referrals - most people would do it when prompted if they're happy with your service. You can also request online and social media reviews to give potential customers a better idea of what you have to offer. Your clients' voices are one of the most powerful tools you have to show others why they should work with you.