Here's another great post from resident guest blogger, Jennifer Williams. She can be found and followed on Twitter @JToTheWilliams. A small business can be a real joy and a real headache. One of the biggest problems is often marketing, because agencies cost a great deal of money that the majority of small business owners simply don't have.
Because they can't afford to hire top-dollar agencies to market for them, they can be left feeling like they won't be able to market their business and get the word out to people who will want to buy what they have. That’s pretty much a lie.
There are plentyyyyyy of DIY marketing techniques that a small business owner can use to help his business grow and succeed.
Learn to love analytics
One of the ways to determine how and where you want to market your small business is to implement free analytics trackers like Google Analytics, Statcounter or Activemeter.
These trackers will show you what demographic is coming to your website and from where. When you know where and what your target market is, you can specifically advertise to that market on sites they frequently visit.
It's a great way to make the best of the advertising dollars that you have to spend. It can keep you from losing money on marketing efforts and getting discouraged too easily.
Promotional discounts are another great way to market. You can advertise them on Facebook and Twitter, and on forums you visit.
If you have an email list that you send out to, let those people know, as well. These work by allowing people who visit your Website to get a discount through the use of a special code they can type in when they place an order.
Getting a discount can sway people to try a product that they otherwise would not have been willing to purchase... that’s true marketing.
Make sure people who are interested in what you have to offer can get in touch with you as well. When potential customers have a question but they can't get a hold of you, they might just go to your competitor- disappearing acts or being incognito are not good for business.
Make sure you keep that from happening by being accessible through email, a contact form on your website, and (possibly) a phone number.
Depending on the size and type of your business, you may not need to have a phone number customers can reach you at. To ensure you keep track of your demographics when it comes to people contacting you, use a Google Voice number for your website and have a Contact Form Captcha on your site.
Make your site pretty
Make sure that your website is cohesive and branded nicely. You want to keep your branding the same across all your pages- everything from the logo right down to the coloring.
There are plenty of free themes out there, especially if you’re building on Wordpress, that can help your site look professional when just starting out.
Marketing doesn’t have to be something you hire an agency to do. If you’re looking for extensive marketing services then it’s only natural to contact a company that can handle all of that for you.
In the mean time, start off with these DIY tips. In no time, you'll know exactly who wants your products and you can market specifically to them.
Once again, Jennifer Williams can be followed on Twitter at the handle of @JToTheWilliams.