Why You Need a Digital Marketing Plan for Your Small Business and What to Include
Digital marketing is no longer a nice-to-have; it’s essential. Think about it: how do you learn about a product or service you’ve never used? Online, right? Maybe you proactively searched and found a website or an online review. Or maybe you got an email or saw an ad in your Facebook stream. Chances are, it involved your smartphone or your laptop.
The same idea applies to your target audience, regardless of your business model. For small or local businesses, having a strong online presence is one of the best ways to create awareness, build a positive brand image and get customers in the door. A digital marketing plan is your path to creating that online presence and exposing your brand to an exponentially larger audience.
Digital marketing, for small business owners, in particular, may seem like a daunting undertaking—or at least one that falls lower on the priority list. But it is essential—and it doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are some simple digital marketing plans for small business ideas to get you started.
What should comprise your digital marketing plan?
- Content Marketing: Consumers want to learn as much as they can before engaging with a brand. By delivering informative, non-promotional content that they can consume online, you establish yourself as a thought leader and build trust. In fact, companies that use content marketing see a 6x-higher conversion rate than those that don’t, according to content marketing maven Neil Patel. Establishing a digital marketing plan for small business could be your first step to expanding your consumer reach.
- Email marketing: One of the earliest forms of digital marketing, email marketing is the cornerstone of any digital marketing plan. While email marketing may have a negative connotation, if you do it intelligently, it works. That is, target warm leads by way of a lead magnet. This goes back to the point above; create a series of valuable resources (e.g., checklists, guides, webinars or infographics), post it on your site and give it away in exchange for users’ contact info. Then follow up with an email (or three). They’ve already expressed an interest in something you have to say, which means they’ll be more receptive to your outbound email message.
- Facebook ads: Advertising on Facebook is not only inexpensive, it’s a highly effective way to market to pretty much any audience. Plus, you can get super precise; target your audience by location, demographics, online behavior, interests and more. Just be sure you have a good headline, descriptive copy that’s to-the-point, an image to grab their attention and, of course, a link. Ads could be a simple and effective addition to your digital marketing plan for small businesses.
- Social media engagement: Your digital marketing plan wouldn’t be complete without a robust social media component. Paid social media ads have a place, and they work, but they are no replacement for organic social media engagement. Post often, offer a variety of content, be creative and respond to comments. The fact is 86% of consumers are looking for an authentic and honest brand personality on social networks. Satiate that need for your audience.
- Google My Business: An easy-to-use tool that helps you manage your online presence across Google, Google My Business is one of the most effective ways to promote your small business. In fact, when it comes to digital marketing for a local business, this free resource makes it easy for you to connect with your local customers and see how they interact with your business on Google.
Creating a digital marketing plan for your small business is one of the best things you can do to propel your brand. The truth is, the degree to which you incorporate digital marketing into your marketing strategy can have a tremendous impact on how your audience perceives and interacts with you.
Create a Digital Marketing Plan for You Small Business: Next Steps
The good news is you don’t have to go it alone. With so many online marketing services for small businesses out there today, you have an infinite pool of resources that can guide you through it. If you are looking for a digital marketing agency for your small business, we can help. At Paradigm Marketing and Design, our digital marketing strategy and consulting services team can help you create a digital marketing strategy framework with cohesive plans and campaigns that drive customer awareness. Get started with a digital marketing plan for your small business today!