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Ask Doris - Marketing a Small Business

Ask Doris - Marketing a small business - Marketing Doris

“I run a small business and have, up until now, relied on word of mouth referrals. I’m thinking of other ways to market my business to reach a wider audience but have a limited budget. Are there any steps I could take initially to begin this process?” NC

Dear NC

For small businesses with limited budgets there are many marketing activities you can adopt to help communicate your products and services to your target audiences. For example:

Website

  • Keep it up to date - if you already have a website then do keep it up to date with regular fresh new content. This could be with examples of your work, testimonials from your customers, industry news or top tips. This will not only be interesting to your returning website visitors but also to new ones.
  • Use SEO plug ins – Many websites with a Content Managed System (CMS) facility will have the ability for you to include additional information that can help with organic Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). For example, with websites build in Wordpress there is a plug-in called Yoast, this appears as an additional section on each page or post within the administration section. It’s easy to complete and Yoast provides guidance for improving posts using a traffic light system.

PR

  • Successes – communicate your good news stories; new contracts, milestones, events, new products and services with the local press (online and printed).

Social Media

  • Channel – choose the most appropriate social media tool for your business and your target market.
  • Regular activity – use it regularly as a signpost to your website and to interact with your audience(s).

Networking

  • There are many networking groups and meetings held regularly and it’s worth investigating which one would work for you and your business. Some of the meetings can be paid individually as and when you attend, and others are on a membership basis. Regular attendance can aid with building relationships with businesses in the area and can potentially lead to opportunities to work together. Many people also find that networking can help identify new suppliers and can aid personally with their own development.

As your business grows, other marketing activities requiring some budget can be employed. The type of activity would depend on your industry or market.

To discuss further or for assistance, contact Helen Stott of Marketing Doris on 0790 3727750 or email helen@marketingdoris.co.uk

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