Are you a small business owner looking to make a big impact in the world of marketing? With all the experts telling you what to adopt, effective methods often get lost in translation. 

There are multiple avenues you can take to build your online presence, yet they take dedication and know-how to get off the ground. From writing blog posts and composing email lists, to working with influencers and embracing the big bad world of social media — the payoff is huge, but you have to work for it. 

Read on to discover some of our favourite marketing channels and how your small business can make the most out of them. 

Content Marketing

Whether you’re a small startup or corporate titan, content marketing is the engine room of any effective marketing campaign. Without it, your business has nowhere to go, left dangling in a search engine purgatory. 

An established blog is one of the best ways a small business can become a reputable online brand. Experts are still trying to crack the ever-evolving secrets of search engine algorithms. However, one thing we know for sure is that they love to see fresh relevant content bulking up your website. 

Blogs play a key role in search engine optimisation (SEO) because they help you rank for keywords and search queries around your industry. Figuring this out in the early days of your business means that your service will be appearing front and centre of consumer searches. 

However, ranking well with your blog posts doesn’t condone keyword stuffing — a formerly popular tactic that search engines like Google actively punish. This is because Google has grown with the user and is on the lookout for blogs that answer their questions. 

Content marketing is like playing the long game in a ‘will they, won’t they’ relationship. It takes quality work, dedication, and patience. If you want to benefit from this channel then focus on providing consistently valuable and relevant content to your target market. 

Our top tip: Use keyword explorer tools like Moz or Ubersuggest (which is free) to perform research into popular search terms in your industry. Make a list of the most relevant to your business and create title ideas around them. This ensures you are targeting the right audience and providing answers to the questions they care about. 

Social media marketing

With billions of people congregating and sharing their life on social media, finding ways to make your brand stand out above the crowd is more important than ever. 

Social media marketing is a great place to build brand awareness, boost inbound traffic, and reach higher conversion rates with a budget even the smallest of business can cover.  Although it is a tricky task, cultivating an audience on social media is a rewarding venture. 

On social media, less is more — and a picture is worth a thousand words. It’s a fast-paced world made for bitesize content, not for arduous technical essays on backlinking for SEO. As interesting as this topic may be to some, the vast majority don’t want to see chunky paragraphs clogging up their feed. 

Instead, people love visuals on social media. Posts that feature an image attract 94% more views than those without. But, in an era where everyone has a smartphone, you need to find a way to make your pictures stand out above everyone else. 

With this mind, getting the right shot is important and free photo editors (like Canva or Pixlr) are a great way to enhance your visuals to make your socials pop on a small business budget. This quick solution offers optimized templates for Instagram stories along with many other platforms such as Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter. Meaning you can edit with minimal hassle and be assured people are more likely to engage with your content. 

Influencer Marketing 

Influencer marketing is wrongly pigeonholed as the playground for big hitters like PrettyLittleThing, GymShark, and Boohoo. When really this channel has the traction and scope to incorporate all businesses, big and small.

With every six-figure deal that comes to Molly-Mae Hague, another opportunity passes by for other businesses to interact with smaller online influencers. No matter how minimal their following may seem, be it a few thousand or scraping a couple hundred thousand, these users have spent time cultivating a loyal fan base to tap into. 

Despite what parents say, being an online celebrity is a full-time job. And small businesses can develop professional relationships with micro-influencers to benefit each other’s growth (at a more affordable rate). 

Micro influencer marketing follows the same principles as working with the likes of Kim Kardashian or Joe Sugg. But one favourable advantage being a smaller audience allows you to target a specific niche than a more bloated counterpart. 

Small influencers have a solid following within their niche and tend to have more sway, even if it is on a diminished scale. Regardless, their authority makes it far more likely their followers hold similar values and interests. 

Marketing with business cards

Business cards can seem a little old fashioned in the face of recent digital advancements. But, there is still a tonne of value to be found in age-old marketing methods.

Even with the popularity of email outreach, techy solutions don’t quite provide the same professional charm. Designing a quality business card remains a top priority for small businesses looking to establish their brand and navigate around the industry. 

Why? First off, they provide a personal touch to supersede the isolating nature of websites and search engine ranking. Not everyone will be blown away by snazzy web tools and repetitive email chains. 

With a card, you can engineer a memorable face-to-face encounter and strike up a conversation with potential customers. This way you get to know what drives them on a deeper level, beyond data on a screen. 

Also by using a printing service, small businesses can make great first impressions with a small budget, Professionally printed cards present your company in a favourable light and tell the customer that you’re trustworthy. This is a big step for something which will cost a fraction of building an entire online campaign. 

Recommended reading: 3 Marketing Mistakes For Small Businesses To Avoid

There are many ways your small business can make an impact online, but dedication and know-how are where it counts the most. The most foolproof technique can slip into irrelevance if you don’t take the right steps. 

Take these tips on board and apply them to your own small business. Soon enough you’ll be a marketing professional.