As a small business owner, you likely don’t have a big marketing and advertising budget, but you can implement a marketing strategy that connects with your customers and is right for your pocketbook.
Research Your Market
Researching your market will not cost you more than your time. Identify not only your target markets, but also the characteristics of what your ideal customer types would be. Once you understand your market, you can then focus your marketing messages to attract and engage customers.
Create Local Awareness
Host an event, take an ad out in the local paper, or even just talk to your neighbors. Connecting with your local community is a great way to increase awareness of your business within the community.
Expand to the Internet
Creating an online presence for your product or business can help boost your revenues and grow your customer base. From small businesses to large ones, an up-to-date website and eCommerce site can be used for anything from selling products or booking consultations or appointments.
If you want to build an online presence, there are a few key steps that will get you on your way:
- Register a domain name for your website: a domain name is your internet address and allows you to have an email with your business name.
- Design and launch your website: designing a website can be as easy as choosing a pre-built template, or if you prefer a custom solution, hiring a web designer.
- Make your site searchable: make it easy for your site to be found through search engines like Google. If you choose to use a pre-built template, you can often select an option to allow search engines to index the site.
- Add a shopping cart and start processing transactions online: There are many shopping cart features and payment processors available that you can build into your site. Do you research to understand the different products and fees that they charge.
Social Media Marketing
Marketing through social media can be a low-cost way to raise awareness and provide information about your business or products to customers you don’t already know or have access to. Commonly used platforms include:
Even if you don't have time to be active on social medial platforms, you might consider registering and providing basic information about your business, like your location, phone number and business hours.
Note: The City of Encinitas does not endorse any commercial products or services.
Business-to-Business (B2B) Marketing
B2B marketing differs from other marketing strategies as the target is not a single consumer, but rather another business. Successful B2B marketing matches the product or service you are selling to the business needs of the client. B2B marketing practices include, but not are limited to:
- Promotional Videos
- Trade Shows
- Advertising in trade magazines
Business-to-Consumer (B2C) Marketing
B2C marketing involves social media, but also includes more traditional forms of advertising such as television commercials and door-to-door solicitation. There are many ways to market direct to consumers, but popular forms are:
- Direct Mail
- Street signage
- Television commercials
- Magazine or Newspaper Advertising