Marketing is a necessary business activity for your business's survival. We have all experienced challenges during 2020.
For example, social networking, often not mentioned as a marketing avenue. We have all been in social interactions and heard or been asked – "do you know so and so", or "I'm looking for someone to". Social networking provides hot spots for sharing who you know and making referrals. Many business owners, such as trades rely on this traditional marketing style and cannot resume until it becomes safe to do so.
Business owners have had to adapt, fast, to marketing online. Unfortunately, some businesses owners are still lagging, but there are plenty of opportunities to develop other avenues. 2020 was a year that many small businesses had to buckle up and paddle like mad to get their businesses seen, and ramp up their sales. Every business owner markets based on their know-how and what they have time for and tend to stick to what they know best. Throw in a global pandemic, and suddenly many are floundering because they have not enhanced their marketing skills for 2021. Fear not there are marketing channels that you can explore and develop to gain some visibility.
Here in France, many Facebook users connect through a diverse range of open and closed groups, and I have seen a vast increase for recommendations. The downside to this is that not everyone is on Facebook when those requests are made and can quite often business owners miss out.
Alas, Facebook alone is not enough. In the same way as relying solely on social networking is not enough. Having an advert running in your local magazine is not enough. Having just a website is not enough. Business owners need to look at several marketing channels and integrate those that will work well for their business.
What other Marketing channels can you explore?
Google My Business
Word of Mouth
The start of a New Year is always a good time to revisit and review your business and marketing activity. As you take your business forward, now would be a good time to look at what worked last year. Did last year’s marketing work for or against you?
Your business success in 2021 will require marketing more than ever. If you have only adopted one or two marketing methods, what new channels do you need to explore? If social networking and word of mouth referrals were your main inquiry drivers, think about creating a Facebook Page or a website. If you have a website, consider setting up a Google My Business account and social media profiles. How are you retaining your existing customers? Potential customers are now more than ever flocking to the internet for information and services, and if you are not showing up, you stand to lose out to a competitor who is. 2021 should be about selecting relevant activities that you gear to not only new growth but customer retention.
And when we can resume with social interactions and word of mouth recommendations over a cheeky apero our future customers will have plenty to refer to rather than just taking someone's word for it.
If you are not sure that your marketing is ready for 2021 please get in touch.
I am a business owner, just like you and my advice and article comes from experience and knowledge having run my own business in the UK and here in France. I have mentored dozens and dozens of small business owners. Sharing knowledge and experience as we all experience similar concerns and issues along our self employed journey. I am passionate about helping fellow business owners create valuable presence in their business, online and off.