If there’s one thing we all know as owners of local businesses, it’s that there is never enough time in the day. As marketers who work with local business owners, we know that marketing is one of the last things on your list to get done.
We get it. So we’ve put together a list of 10 marketing tasks you can do to grow your local business while you drink your morning coffee, and then you can get on with the rest of your day.
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #1: Send an Email
Email marketing, or writing newsletters, might seem daunting, but the truth is that many business owners overthink this task. Open your email marketing software, and write an email (pretend it’s to a friend) letting them know what you and your business have been up to lately. It’s a good idea to leave a link where they can book a time to chat with you more, or maybe purchase a product or service you mentioned. Send it to your subscribers, and repeat next week.
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #2: Sign up for HARO
Help a Reporter Out, or HARO, is an online marketplace connecting reporters with thought leaders for source material in their news articles. Anyone can sign up, and it takes just 5 minutes! There are several membership levels, but the most basic is free. Then you can sit back and watch your inbox for requests that match your area of expertise. Who doesn’t want more publicity?
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #3: Create a Customer Appreciation Program
It’s easier to get repeat business from a customer than to get a new customer, so why not create a customer appreciation program? It can be anything from a percentage off their next purchase/service to a “Buy 3 get 1 Free” style incentive. Brainstorm over coffee, and ask your web developer to put it on your website later today.
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #4: Get Involved
Not only is volunteer work great for brand visibility, but it’s also a great cause and a great way to meet other local business owners. Browse Google for local charities looking for volunteers, and send off an email asking how to get involved.
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #5: Plan a Week of Social Media Posts
Another idea that is often overlooked and overthought! Here are five quick content ideas you can post about on social media:
- Share an old blog post
- Introduce yourself as the business owner
- Answer a question customers often ask you
- Share an industry “secret”
- Remind people to sign up for your newsletter
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #6: Cross-promote or Collaborate
One of the easiest ways to grow your audience and grow your business is to collaborate with another business owner with a similar ideal client. Do you own a pizza shop? Send an email or Instagram DM to a sandwich shop and suggest going Live to discuss how the pandemic has affected the local food industry. Doing so can increase exposure for both of you! Nervous about going live on social media? Suggest a space on each other’s websites or social media platforms where you can promote each other.
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #7: Create a Viral Graphic
Have something witty, relatable, or controversial to say? Software programs like Canva allow non-graphic designers to quickly and easily create shareable social media content. Whether it’s a quote, a meme, or a graph, Canva’s templates will enable you to slide in your ideas and branding easily. You can then and download a high-res design in a matter of minutes. And it’s free, too!
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #8: Do a Website Audit
Browse your website page by page, and do an audit to see what needs to be updated. Have your service offerings changed? COVID-19 changed your appointment booking process? Is your about page still up to date? You don’t always have to do a complete rebrand to make sure your website is up-to-date and working for you. Jot down which pages need fixing and update them later.
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #9: Post to Google My Business
Your Google My Business listing is a powerful search tool that allows new clients to discover you and keep current ones up to date on everything from events to new products and updated store hours or policies. But for Google to give your listing preference, it needs to be an active listing. Share a new post to your account at least once a week. It’s fast, easy, and has a significant impact on your business’ search engine readiness.
Easy Small Business Marketing Task #10: Nurture the Audience You Already Have
There is much talk about growing your social media following. Still, not as much emphasis on nurturing the audience you already have, even though this is arguably the most critical piece of a successful social media marketing strategy. While you’re sipping your coffee, take 30 minutes to respond to comments, engage with your followers, and essentially “be social.” It will go a long way to building their trust with you and turning them from followers to leads.
Try one of these tips tomorrow over your morning cup of joe, and let us know which you tried and how it went! As always, if you have any questions about marketing for your local business, book a free consultation and let’s chat.