It might not take much to go from B to C in the English alphabet – but in the business world, getting your products and services from B2C is a long road that requires a lot of technical expertise. This includes everything from link building and website optimization to content marketing and a lot more.
While executing such a strategy is easy for big businesses that have extensive teams working behind them, it’s quite difficult for small businesses. Small businesses are responsible for most of their marketing: from social media to SEO optimization and even branding, pricing, and strategizing.
But that doesn’t mean they can’t excel at what they do.
In the United States alone, there are around 30 million small businesses. The people behind these businesses – mostly entrepreneurs and ambitious enthusiasts – often find themselves at a crossroads with respect to managing their business and focusing on how it is marketed.
Needless to say, no small or medium business can do without some form of marketing, branding, field studies, and pricing strategy. Effectively reaching out to customers is what a B2C business is all about.
Small Businesses and How They’ll Fare in 2019
As many as 60% of small businesses believe that the year is going to be productive and that they’ll see an increase in revenue and sales. However, the year is not going to be without its challenges. According to The Telegraph, small businesses will have to face and overcome a hoard of challenges in 2019, which include varying factors like a shrinking talent pool to supply chain management. What’s important though is that the news outlet sees branding and productivity as key issues, which brings us back to how a B2C small business needs to be represented and handled.
Our suggestion is to come up with a three-pronged effort in order to excel in the market in the long-term as a small business. While short-term, temporary gains might seem enticing, we’d strongly suggest against them, since they’re less effective in terms of long-term success. Here’s what we suggest you do:
Marketing is a Commitment – Make it
Many times, it’s not that small businesses can’t come up with good marketing strategies; it’s that they can’t commit to these strategies. This is tantamount to coming up with an inventive design but never actually bringing it to fruition.
You’ll have to carve out considerable time every week to spend on online campaigns and email marketing, because these channels allow you to directly communicate and connect with customers. Remember that it’s only through making your customers feel valued that you can make true headway. Additionally, making proper time for your marketing efforts is also conducive to creating the most effective content. And, as they say, Content is King.
We suggest you start out by setting clear-cut goals and creating a timeline to achieve them: so for instance, devote 3 to 5 hours every week to creating blog posts or interactive articles that can be posted on your website in the course of the week. Remember that nothing happens overnight, not even marketing. You’ll have to give it time.
Focus on Quality Rather than Quantity
Every day, the competition to catch user attention online increases – significantly. Changes to Google’s algorithms, like the Penguin update, only make it harder to get your content seen.
Reach, in today’s world, has become a great problem.
According to the Harvard Business Review, it’s the company’s attitude towards adopting new technology that is central to its success. With a first mover advantage, HBR claims, businesses don’t have to battle for the attention of audiences and can make considerable headway in the market.
However, success lies not only in new technologies and techniques. It also comes from striving for quality rather than quantity.
Instead of churning out multiple blog posts every month, create just a few high quality posts that cover topics that really interest your potential customers. Instead of promoting one ad to a huge audience, create a few focused ads and use advanced targeting tools to promote them to specific audiences. Instead of advertising on all social media platforms, focus on the ones that get you the best results, and try out other channels, like native advertising, to see what kind of results you get.
By focusing your efforts and using advanced analytics to evaluate your marketing performance, you will:
(a) be able to determine which channels bring the most traction your way, and
(b) focus on these specific channels to hook the fish with far greater strength.
We suggest against being a jack of all trades – be the master of a few. Think quality, rather than quantity.
Make Your Presence Felt – with Video
According to Hubspot, 78% of people watch videos online every week, and 55% watch videos online every day. As these numbers grow, the attention span of audiences diminishes.
As businesses compete to engage users’ limited attention, more are incorporating video into their marketing plans. And this isn’t a new phenomenon – even as far back as 2015, some 85% of companies claimed to have found success through video marketing. In addition to integrating video as a viable part of your marketing plan, you can also benefit from advanced targeting of video ads to reach high quality audiences. In short, make sure to invest your video marketing efforts in the right place. And finally, create content that is sure to “hook” your audience – there’s no use posting a video if it doesn’t capture the interest of your potential customers. Not sure where to start? Check out these top video creation tools.
Which brings us to the final – and golden – point of digital marketing for B2C SMBs: know your customers. When you understand their needs, pain points and desires, you can give them the content that will make them convert.