Right Time for Small Biz Digital Marketing

Are you one of the small business owners who waits until the economy looks very good before they commit to improving their marketing? Looks like you might get your wish.

The Ontario economy is expected to grow over the next 6 months. In the GTA region the growth could potentially exceed 3%. The conditions look very good.

growing-economy

The low dollar and low price of oil could translate to billions in extra consumer spending and a re-ignition of Ontario’s manufacturing sector which is currently at record lows. Nowhere to go but up and the recent hiring of 1000 workers in Oakville will only help.

Canadian US Dollar 2014

If the Market is Positive, it’s Time to Invest in Digital Marketing

Here are 5 good reasons why digital marketing will be good for you:

1.   Improve service with current customers

2.   Improve reach to new prospects

3.   Improve revenue

4.   Lower marketing/advertising costs

5.   Avoid going out of business

Some of the above might surprise you. For instance, if you’re not spending much now, how could you save on advertising costs?  Well, without promotion, your business will spiral downward and you’ll need to advertise desperately at the last minute to pull it out of that tailspin.

You’ll Commit to it When You Understand It

Small business owners report that digital marketing is important to them but marketing expenditures don’t corroborate those claims.  This stat reported on Searchengineland.com reflects the dismal state of SMB marketing. Most don’t even spend $500 a month.

Google Think Insights

Figure 1 Screen Capture courtesy of Google Think Insights

Business Marketing Budget

Figure 2 Graphic courtesy of Searchengineland.com. When you consider how much revenue some small businesses generate, it’s shocking to see that only 3% spend more than $2k per month.

Word of mouth is the primary source of new business. If marketing expenditure is a matter of knowhow and confidence, then perhaps we can help prop up your belief in local digital marketing.

Local Digital Marketing is made up of:

1.   Local search engine visibility, namely Google

2.   Local social media interaction

3.   Local maps

4.   Mobile web design

5.   Local directory submissions

A Local Digital Marketing strategy will help you develop a realistic plan with tactics to reach prospects and build your brand image via each of these channels.

With advertising, the prospect may need to see your ad ten times before responding. With digital marketing it’s about persistence too. You must keep the promotion going month to month and inevitably you come out as the clear top of mind choice for the customer.

Whatever point the customer is at in the purchase cycle, your web and social pages will help convert that lead. They’re ready 24 hours a day, via laptop or smartphone. I’m not going to solve all your digital marketing concerns in one article. The point here is to remind you to make a commitment to your company promotion.

Half of Mobile Searches are About Finding Local Businesses

Increasingly, local marketing is highly focused on getting in front of those with smartphones. 50% of mobile searches have local intent. Customers spend 15% of their time on mobile now and customers want the retailer to be within 8 kilometres of where they are currently. And conversion rates are very high. This is why having a presence on Google maps is so important.

Stats show only 6% of SMB’s see SEO as effective. Local search is big and stats show this is how local purchases happen. They don’t buy online often enough, but instead they visit your store or call you.

Success can be had through the right type of content marketing strategy (which includes social media interaction). See the Google Mobile Path to Purchase study for yourself for more detail.

Take time now to account for where you are and where you want to be. If competition is growing in your sector, how will you maintain your customer base? What are the risks of not doing a digital marketing campaign? What is the cost of lost opportunity?

What about proof of ROI you say? Well, that’s a tough one given that few want to brag about it. We know from working with our small biz clients that they are doing well in the absence of offline marketing. Each are doing well and believe they are getting positive ROI.

Your SMB campaign, especially your social media campaign isn’t something you can just pawn off to a web design firm. It will take some involvement on your part and you’ll find this to be a great learning experience. You’ll be better for it.

Digital Marketing With Ravenshoe Group

Find out more about web design, content strategy, SEO, landing page conversion, blogging, mobile marketing, and social media. What marks digital marketing is the diversity of channels and different content and strategies needed for each.  If you can’t manage the effort or challenge of it, then getting our help may be the right decision.

 

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