With Covid-19 controlling every aspect of personal and business life, small companies are looking for different ways to adapt.

At the beginning of 2020, it was reported that small businesses would spend approximately $1.3 trillion on digital marketing. The coronavirus made this spending impossible due to companies cutting expenses.

During these unpredictable times, small businesses have the opportunity to decide what works for their digital marketing strategy. Even though these circumstances bring challenges, it is a good time for leaders to take a look at their marketing methods, campaigns, and plans.

Use this post to learn how to create a digital marketing strategy and how to position your small business to be more efficient and profitable.

Small Business Marketing Strategies

Here are a few of the top digital marketing strategies for small businesses, along with tips on how to use them to expand your company.

Social Media Marketing

Social media should be a part of any small businesses’ marketing plan. In the U.S., more than 80% of small businesses invest in social media marketing.

Today, using social media to reach and engage your customers is no longer an option—it is a necessity. The first step in creating a social media strategy is choosing the channels. You want to select platforms your potential customers often use so you can reach more people.

Here are some of the most popular channels:

  • Facebook – A central hub for small businesses to share pictures, important information, and upcoming events. Facebook offers an easy way for businesses to engage with users through likes and comments.
  • Instagram – A popular mobile photo-sharing app that allows users to post photos and videos. It is one of the most-used apps on the market, and for a good reason. It offers numerous ways to communicate and engage with your audience.
  • LinkedIn – A professional network allowing users to connect with brands, top industry influencers, and potential partners.
  • Twitter – A microblogging platform that lets users send short updates, news, and information. It is perfect for addressing customer questions and sharing news regarding new products or services.
  • YouTube – The go-to platform for sharing videos online.

Once you decide which platform you’ll incorporate in your social media marketing strategy, consider the content you will share with your audience.

Content Marketing

Content marketing is at the core of most digital marketing strategies for small businesses. It revolves around giving potential customers information about your offerings, upcoming sales and promotions, future events, and more. The key to creating an efficient digital content marketing strategy is knowing what your audience wants.

Unlike some paid advertising campaigns, this is a long-term strategy. Investing in quality content can generate leads, boost traffic, and improve your SEO. Case studies show it is also beneficial for building trust with your target group, increasing brand awareness, and fostering relationships with potential customers.

An efficient content marketing strategy provides a high return on investment for any business. Before you start your digital marketing campaign, you will need to define your audience and gather information about their needs, problems, interests, and desires. Creating buyer personas is an excellent way to ensure your audience is at the core of your content efforts.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

No digital marketing strategy is complete without SEO. Search Engine Optimization is one of the most important strategies for businesses of all sizes, especially small ones. SEO defines the process of optimizing the website structure to make it easier for search engines to detect, read, and position your website higher in the search rankings.

By making small adjustments to your website and investing in relevant content, you can rank higher on the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). The higher you rank, the more traffic your website will receive. The more traffic, the more people will click on your pages, resulting in leads and sales.

SEO is essential for small businesses because potential buyers searching for a place to shop often use smartphones to find nearby locations. By focusing on local SEO and optimizing your website, you can increase your chances of coming up in local mobile searches and reaching more customers.

Blogging and article writing are also excellent SEO strategies to bring new, qualified traffic to your website. It’s always best to write as much as possible, but you should typically aim for about 1000 words per article. There are also more advanced SEO writing strategies that you can try as you become more comfortable like using TF-IDF to optimize your content.

Your website must be mobile-friendly and easy to navigate, so customers can access it quickly and find what they are looking for in a few clicks. You can use GMB (Google My Business) to increase brand awareness in your area.

Email Marketing

Some people say that email marketing is an outdated digital marketing strategy, but they are wrong.

Email marketing is one of the best strategies for small business owners to reach their target audience and promote products and services. Most people aren’t going to buy the first time they visit your website, but having a way to keep in touch and remind them to come back is essential for growing your business. Once you capture the visitor’s information, you can nurture a relationship by email.

Before you start planning your email marketing strategy, you need to find a way to convince visitors to share their contact information. One method for doing this is through a call to action (CTA). At the bottom of your landing page or blog post, you can instruct the reader to leave an email where they will receive additional information regarding product sales, new arrivals, promotional deals, and more.

Another way is through “lead magnet.” In exchange for a visitor’s email address, you will offer a special, such as a webinar invitation, a free eBook, or a discount. Once you have a list of emails, you can start planning targeted email campaigns. For best outcomes, segment the email list so you can send more focused content and offers to your loyal subscribers.

While you can send different types of messages, most people prefer to get sales and promotions details in their inbox.

PPC Advertising

Pay-Per-Click is a digital strategy that allows businesses to create and display paid ads to people looking for relevant products or services.

The model is quite simple: You pay each time someone clicks on your ad. Although social media channels also use the PPC model, we will focus on paid Google ads.

Marketers have to bid on specific keywords that are somehow relevant to their business, products, or services. Google uses an algorithm to decide which ads will show on the results pages based on relevance and quality.

Google Ads is the most popular advertising platform for paid ads. Since most buyers use Google to search for information, Google Ads is an excellent place to start your online marketing campaign and can provide smart insights into how your customers search and behave online. The first step is conducting thorough keyword research. It is time consuming but is an essential process as the entire method revolves around the keywords you use.

A good PPC campaign should be comprehensive and relevant. As trends and algorithms often change, it is essential to adjust your keywords to ensure you are getting the best outcome.

In addition to Google Ads, you should utilize tools like Google Analytics to measure conversion rate, traffic, number of visitors, potential leads, and more.

Partner With Other Small Businesses

Establishing a stable partnership with other small businesses is another effective strategy. Combining knowledge and resources with another similar business can help you grow your company and audience and accomplish your goals.

While there is no strict pattern, it is usually best to target businesses near you. The goal is to work out an arrangement that provides benefits for both parties.

For example, a marketing company could partner with an accounting agency, a coffee shop could partner with a book company, or a beauty therapist could partner with a hair salon. You could also create dropshipping partnerships with brands, manufacturers, and suppliers where you are responsible for marketing and sales and they’re responsible for shipping and inventory.  Dropshipping can be a very effective way to build a business with very low overhead.

There is no limit to what you can do when it comes to digital marketing planning and partnering with other businesses.

Use Free Promotional Tools

When you have a restricted budget, there is no need to increase your overhead with unnecessary tools when you have free ones to help you build brand awareness and attract attention. Where possible, use promotional tools to improve existing performance operations.

In the content creation world, there are tons of tools you can use to create content. Adobe Suite is one of the many tools available on the market and allows marketers to create interesting videos, stunning websites, and eye-catching graphics.

To boost your email marketing strategy, you can use HubSpot’s free tool. You can create emails, personalize messages, and view your email activity.

Explore the free tools and see which one matches your businesses’ needs and requirements.

Look Forward to the Future

While some small business owners turn to Digital Marketing Strategy: An integrated approach to online marketing by Simon Kingsnorth to discover the secrets of search marketing and planning, others turn to common digital marketing strategy example cases to grow their company. There are no rules in the digital marketing world.

Whether you use one method, combine all popular digital channels, or develop a unique approach to attract new leads and turn them into customers, the important thing is to keep trying until you find what works best for your small business. There is no digital marketing strategy template that will help you implement all methods and techniques and accomplish your goals overnight.

Small businesses need to build a solid digital marketing strategy framework to improve the company’s overall reputation and market position.

It is time to try something new. Explore your opportunities and curate new business collaborations. By understanding your audience and using the right channels to reach your customers, you are one step closer to success.