Getting your side hustle off the ground and need to make more sales, book more appointments or generate more leads?
Well, simply put you need a low cost, effective and easy to execute marketing strategy.
There are now so many other businesses and content creators that it can be hard to get your posts in front of your audience, your product in your customers hands or your foot in the door of potential clients.
After over 10 years studying social media and its impact on buying decisions, I've picked out 7 key steps to build and perfect your small business marketing strategy for the many years to come.
1. Choosing the right objectives
The first step is outlining your overall goals for your business. Where you want the business or side hustle to go in the next 6-12 months or even 5-10 years!
Set yourself SMART goals that will help inform your marketing decisions to come.
SMART Goals should be:
It's all very well to say that your business wants to increase sales or widen brand awareness but they need to have all the above elements.
An example of a poor goal
- To Increase brand awareness for our business on social media.
An example of a great goal
- To increase website page views of our XX product by 20% in the next 3 months.
2. Finding your audience
The next step is outlining your ideal audience. This can be one or a handful of "personas" that your potential customers fit into.
Understanding and learning what makes your audience tick, what their pain points are and what solutions they are already invested in is a great way to help you position your product or service in the market.
You should be able to see:
Where your audience is likely to consume content (Social media channels, news sites, websites etc)
Where your audience is likely to spend their money (Amazon, Brand websites, Social media shops, In person)
What content your audience is likely to enjoy and engage with
What problems or pain points your audience is having that you can solve with your product or service
What the ages, demographics, genders, interests of your audience
Not only that but knowing where they consume their content, what content they enjoy and where they prefer to buy will help you get their attention and convert their activity into action.
3. Selecting the best platform
Now if you know your audience well then this point should be easy. You select the platform where you know your audience will interact with and buy your products.
Once you have outlined that your audience prefers to consume their content on TikTok but prefer's to buy from your website then that's where you set up those selling or content channels to capture your audience.
This can be one or many channels depending on your audience and what they prefer. Don't forget to check out their demographics and interests and really do your research! Take a look at potential competitors and spot gaps or mistakes that you think you can do better!
4. Creating sparkling content
Now it is time for one of the most difficult and time consuming points in the marketing strategy, creating great content.
Your content should resonate with your audience and doesn't always have to be completely about your product or service. It's content that your audience enjoys remember.
This content can of course be videos, images or posts on social media but also can be your website pages, blogs, press releases, flyers or emails too.
You need to make sure your content:
Interests your audience
Invites engagement - likes, comments, shares all count!
Is posted or updated on a regular basis
Has different messaging so you're not regurgitating the same posts every day
Evokes emotions - whether it's funny, shocking, inspirational, sad, happy - You want to strike a chord with your audience
Overall, have a clear call to action i.e. purchasing your product or service
Increasing engagement through your social media posts can be easy too, check out my guide on increasing social media engagement here.
5. Turning activity into action
Once you have created content that your audience enjoys, you want to turn that activity into action. You want to turn likes into sales.
Having crystal clear call to actions (i.e. a message for each post that invites your audience to do a specific thing) to buy your product or service is the way to have more sales!
Not only that, but making your sales process really easy and quick is also a good way to increase conversion rates. The more clicks your customers have to go through to buy a product, the more likely they are to abandon their buying journey. This is why some social media stores (where you can purchase in-app) have become so popular with businesses nowadays. Especially TikTok and Instagram stores recently.
6. Reconverting - It's the most cost effective way!
Once you have your customer base, a list of 1,000's of people who have bought from you and love your products or services, they are much more likely to buy from you again, as opposed to someone who doesn't know who you are and is a new customer.
It is therefore a much more cost effective way of marketing new products. Instead of putting a load of effort into getting new customers, finding an effective way to retarget your current customers is a guaranteed way to boost your sales quickly.
This can be a super smart email campaign or a Retargeting Paid Ads campaign.
7. Adapt and Analyse
Don't forget to check out your analytics and insights. Don't spend unnecessary time on posts or content that doesn't work. Focus on the stuff that does work.
Keep checking your analytics and change and update your content plan, your content types and your timings to keep everything super efficient and cost effective.
Use tools like Google Analytics, your Instagram Insights and all the other tracking tools available to make some super engaging, time efficient and cost effective marketing campaigns that can turn your side hustle into a main hustle!