Every business needs to do marketing to attract customers increase sales but a lot of small business owners, especially solopreneurs struggle with this concept. Either because they think they don’t have enough money for fancy marketing strategies or because they don’t have the time.
Here’s a little secret: marketing doesn’t have to be complicated, expensive and it doesn’t even have to be time-consuming.
But here’s a cold hard truth; saying you have a business without selling anything (aka marketing to bring clients to the door) is like saying you’re a fisherman (or woman) without ever going out to fish. If you’re not investing in marketing your business, your business might not survive, and it definitely won’t thrive.
So how much should you be investing?
BDC consultant Jessica Horvath says there’s no one-size-fits-all answer so much depends on the kind of business you have your business objectives and your revenues.
But you can start here BDC says a rule of thumb is that B2B (business to business) companies should spend between 2 and 5% of the revenues on marketing. For B2C (business to consumer) companies, the proportion is often higher between 5 to 10% because those companies typically need to invest in more marketing channels to reach broader customer segments.
Those might look like big numbers but bear with me, I have you covered!
Now, I’m the kind of person that, because I was brought up with no money, I always look for ways to do things with very little investment but that bring big results! And I found that social media marketing and content marketing are low cost, and effective venues to market my business!
Ok, now that we got that covered, let’s look at exactly what kind of marketing you need to do in order to grow your business.
Of course, the organic and natural places to invest your time and money when you’re on a minimal budget are
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- Inbound links to your website
- Social media (chose your platform and participate in groups)
- Email marketing (have an opt-in on your website with a Free gift in exchange for people’s emails)
- Blog articles
- And last but not least – networking (which is another subject)
What the ROI?
ROI is the return on investment that you can expect from any given activity in your business. So, what’s the kind of pay off that you can expect from investing in social media strategies and content marketing? Well, it’s often hard to establish the general pay off of content marketing and social media strategies because it oriented on brand visibility and reputation and that’s hard to quantify.
But know this, publishing content in various locations will expose more people to your brand, your readers (or followers) will also see you as more of an authority which could drive people to your website and increase conversions and sales as well as client retention rate. Personally, I think that’s good marketing, don’t you?
All right then, now that we’ve established how much you should be spending on what, let’s talk about how to get there.
Quality and quantity
How you invest your money hard-earned money is also very important! Often with businesses start out they are tempted to produce as many posts as possible and be present on every single social media platform, just to get eyeballs on their stuff. What happens is that they end up burning out and quitting altogether.
To earn the biggest bang for your buck, choose wisely where you should be present (by knowing who your ideal client is and where they hang out), then produce quality content for those two or three platforms.
Also, note that you theirs a minimal amount of posts that you should be producing to get attention and traction (that’s normally once per day) otherwise you’ll never generate the momentum you need to be seen.
So, let’s talk about quality: you need quality texts, (aka a good storyline to tell) and quality images to go with the copywriting.
Images that you pull from Google Images isn’t going to cut it, plus you’ll probably infringe on someone’s copywrite. Banks of stock images are fine, but you might spend a lot of time finding quality images that work with your business.
Conclusion and solutions
IF you want your business to survive and to thrive, you don’t HAVE to invest in marketing, you NEED to.
I know, I know, it takes time and knowledge and some effort to create all the content you need to be posting to be present consistently – every day, on social media, and producing a blog, and email marketing, etc.
But hey, I’m a girl with solutions, so I have two solutions for you that work hand-in-hand:
- Instead of trying to create content out of thin air and live through the awful what page syndrome, try documenting what you do. People are really into “real people stories”.
- Secondly, I’ve created Zone Inpsiration which is a monthly subscription that provides good quality photos ready to use for your business, as well as personalizable texts and strategies that you can use on every platform and a private group that supports you and where you can ask any question you want without judgment and where you get my expertise on a given subject every week! All that, is available to you for less than a dollar a day, talk about a low cost, time-saving savvy investment, right!
Trust me, this is the marketing toolbox you’ve been waiting for!