Ensure 2018 is the best year yet for your business!
What better way to start off the new year than overhauling your marketing strategy? To give you a little inspiration we have listed our top marketing tips to help you to drive enquiries and make 2018 a more profitable year. Require some further guidance and assistance? We are perfectly placed to assist you in growing your business – why not contact us for a free 1 hour consultation where we can help you put in place and execute a marketing strategy tailored perfectly for your business.
1. Have A Plan
Take the time to step back and focus on where your business is going. Your objectives for future growth and how you are going to get your business there is so important. A strong strategic marketing plan forms the essential part of the backbone to any successful business.
2. Get Social But Be Selective
Take advantage of the vast number of platforms available to engage and interact with current and potential customers whilst boosting your brand awareness at the same time. Often completely free to use, social media is instant, effective and widespread. To maintain customer loyalty and brand recognition, update your social media accounts frequently – never leave them idle for too long. However, choose your social media channels carefully based upon your business offering and your target market. The number of platforms available is ever increasing, but just because they are available does not mean that they are the right platform for you - be selective.
3. Ensure Your Website Is User Friendly
Web responsiveness isn't an option: Mobile device usage continues to grow, especially when it comes to accessing websites. This means that it has never been more important to ensure your website is mobile-friendly.
Navigation: A well navigated website allows users to take action and move around your website without confusion. Some tactics for effective navigation include a logical page hierarchy, the use of bread crumbs, designing clickable buttons, and following the ‘three click rule’ which means users will be able to find the information they are looking for within a maximum of three clicks.
Speed: Internet connections may have become quicker but there is always more data, more content and more images to download. Therefore, you need to ensure your web pages are fast loading or visitors will go elsewhere.
4. Know Thy Customer
We all know that the customer comes first. But who is your customer? Have you ever done a customer profiling exercise? It’s hard to sell to people if you don’t know who they are. By understanding your typical customer and target markets you will understand exactly what they need and not what you think they need.
5. Strike A Balance
If your business has a website then a digital marketing strategy is essential, however, achieving a balance between online versus offline is still important so that potential customers are aware of your company through various forms of marketing channels. In the digital world in which we live it is easy to forget that there are many effective marketing communication tools that don't involve the use of a screen!
6. Communicate With Your Customer Base
Whether it is through newsletters, social media, HTML emails or direct mail, make sure you shout about the positive work you are doing! Keep your customer base informed of new developments, services and products, this easily allows you to upsell to existing customers and maintain a relationship.
7. Maximise Your Word Of Mouth And Referral Marketing
With the power of the internet, more people consider purchasing a product based on its reviews. Websites like Amazon are hugely successful because of this. You can politely request your customers to leave reviews and testimonials, even if it is at a small price such as a voucher or 10% discount, it will be worth it! Word of mouth is one of the strongest business leads you can receive and it is practically free if you do it right, so ensure that your marketing strategy considers this.
8. Don’t Be A Sheep
Find inspirational work to enhance your creativity. This will help identify trends but following the crowd will only take you so far. Being innovative, creative and original with your marketing is what will make you stand out from the competition.
9. Less Is More
Use easy to read fonts for simple and effective graphic design when selecting a typeface or font for headings, subtitles and body text. The eye finds it hard to scan multiple typefaces, so stick to a simple collection of fonts. It's also worth keeping in mind that different fonts vary over different browsers and platforms, so make sure that you choose a font that is suitable for all devices and browsers.
10. Choose The Right Location For Your Exhibition Stand
When you organise your attendance at an exhibition, make sure you register nice and early so you can strategically choose your stand location as this will play a big part in the amount of traffic passing by. That doesn't mean you need the largest, most expensive stand at the enterance of the show. Think strategically about the location by choosing popular areas, such as by the coffees and snacks!
11. Don’t Be Afraid Of SEO
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a vital tool to ensure that your website is competing and performing in Google. You cannot ignore this factor when creating and managing a website - an on-going SEO plan is essential for your search engine ranking and the success of your website.
12. Never Forget To Network
Attend and present at as many networking events possible. Your contribution to each meeting will encourage people to think of you when looking for an expert in your field. This will build brand awareness and attract potential customers. You can network effectively online aswell as in person using professional networking websites such as LinkedIn.
13. Utilise Email Marketing
This method of marketing is exceptionally cost effective and one of the simplest forms available as it delivers measurable results and isn’t expensive to use. Unlike other social media networks, mailing platforms, such as MailChimp, allow you to build your database and keep it, because you own the data. Facebook, for example, owns your network which means its advertising rules are much stricter, more expensive and gives you less control.
14. Keep It Simple
Don’t over complicate your marketing material, it is all too common for people to feel that because they are paying for it they must cram as much content into a small space as possible. Don’t be afraid to embrace space and let the design speak for itself.
15. Consistency Is Key
Whether you communicate with your audience on social media, blogs, news stories, email campaigns or direct mail, you should communicate on a regular basis so your company will come to mind when they need your services. To go that step further, communicate through a variety of channels to make sure you are reaching the widest audience possible. These different channels can also compliment each other very well, for example, post on social media with a link to your blog on your website. Having a consistent communication path over different channels can easily build up a trusting relationship between a company and customers, creating a valuable long term relationship.
16. Web Responsiveness Is A Necessity
With over half of the British public now opting to carry out a task digitally (if they have the option) over other mediums, it is crucial that your digital marketing is compatible and responsive for a multiple platforms. This is also another reason why you need to ensure your website will respond to all devices.
17. Be Bold With Your Backlinks
Strong backlinks contribute towards your search engine optimisation (SEO) which enables websites to rank on Google. Don’t be afraid to see where your competitors are mentioned on other websites and enquire if you can also be mentioned.
18. Make Use Of The 404
The 404 page is the page shown when a user is looking for a page on your site that doesn’t exist or mistypes a URL or follows a broken link. So create one that links back into your site to improve user experience.
19. Free Giveaways At Your Tradeshow
One of the most popular ways to attract visitors to your exhibition stand is to have freebies! Whether it is branded items to attract foot traffic or some tasty cakes, this is an easy way to start a conversation! Just make sure you don't have everything out on display and only give out to those that seem like a worthwhile lead, or you'll be out of freebies before the end of the day!
20. Content Is King
Create content that is going to blow the competition out of the water. This is perhaps the most difficult part, but it's the most important. Creating interesting, engaging and even useful content, this will create value for your customer and keep them coming back for more!
21. Understand Your Keywords
If you have ever ran a Pay Per Click (PPC) campaign on Google AdWords, then you will know you need quality keywords to get results. Researching your keywords is key to writing excellent content that will engage with your audience. However, with recent technological advancements, more people are now using voice control to search online. This means the future of content writing will need to adapt to these growing trends providing content that directly answers questions, whilst still utilising with researched keywords for the optimum balance.
22. Consider Your Community
Local marketing is important to your marketing activity demonstrating you are considering the local community and the environment in which you operate and are giving something back! Consider things like your corporate social responsibility strategy - can you support a local charity? How can you become more environmentally friendly? Don't forget to check out the local competition and see what works for them too.
23. Keep Your Website Clean & Balanced
Use grid based layouts: Placing content randomly on your web page can end up with a haphazard appearance that is messy. Grid based layouts arrange content into sections, columns and boxes that line up and feel balanced, which leads to a better looking website design and a more viewer friendly experience.
Keep it clean: Keep your website clean and clutter-free. The world around us has become quite cluttered and the web is no exception.
24. Measure And Respond
Don’t forget to measure your activity. It is important to understand how your marketing activity is working for you to help you to re-evaluate and prioritise as you move forwards to create that perfect mix of tools that provides the optimum results for your individual business.
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