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The New Normal: Small Business Marketing and Generating Leads Online

           

August 4, 2020 / fbcadmin

Stacie Chalmers
The Inbound Marketing Company
1300 SML BIZ

Small Business Marketing In The New Normal

The New Normal: Innovative Ways Small Business Can Generate Leads Online

It’s the question everyone’s asking: when will things finally return to normal? How do I do Small Business Marketing in the new normal?

The current pandemic has certainly thrown a spanner into the works, and many things about the way we live and do business are still so uncertain. The good news is with time, some things will go back to normal.

In most Australian states, things have already started to revert back to how they used to be. We can go out to cafes and pubs, partake in group fitness classes and more. However, some things will take longer to go back to normal – like a boogie on a dance floor, or visiting elderly loved ones.

And other things?  Well, some things simply won’t go back to normal and what we’re experiencing is now “the new normal”. But don’t panic!

As they say, the only certainty in life is death and taxes, and change isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Uncertain times like the ones we’re now living in help accelerate innovation and growth, especially for small businesses.

Small Business Marketing in the new normal

Adapting to the new normal is vital for the survival of your business, and with a little innovation, the right tools, learning to live and do business in a new way doesn’t have to be difficult.

Take lead generation for example. Perhaps prior to this year, many of your leads came from social events or networking. These days, in-person mingling is increasingly harder, which is why the businesses which are surviving are those that have gone digital and moved everything online.

“Marketing and Innovation produce results; all the rest are costs” – Peter Drucker

So, how can you continue to grow your business and earn leads online? Let’s take a look at some Innovative Ways Small Business Can Generate Leads Online.

1. Make Sure Your Messaging is Right

One of the first steps to lead generation is making sure your messaging is on the money.

This is where buyer personas come in. A buyer persona is a semi-fictional depiction of your business’ ideal customer. They are based on market research and real data about your existing customers. Buyer personas provide an in depth insight that will make sure your marketing efforts are aligned with what buyers are actually looking for.

Why is this important? It’s important because it means your marketing will attract the people likely to buy from you with no precious time wasted on either end. A well-researched and documented buyer persona will make sure your marketing is on point and aligns with the needs of your ideal customer.

2. Create Helpful Content

People do business with brands they know, like and trust.  Perhaps the most important thing you can do to generate leads online is to create content that is helpful for your buyers at each stage of the buyer’s journey.

There’s a lot of pressure for small businesses to increase revenue, but if your content doesn’t offer something of value (i.e. if you appear to be self-serving) – people will quickly tune out and this can be damaging for your brand.

Publishing helpful content that your buyers are looking for will help to build trust and credibility with your brand and give you a competitive advantage as you’ll get to engage with potential customers early in the buying process.

3. Put Your Customers First

Effective lead generation online is all about putting your customers first. Shifting your message and content to build a story around your prospects is vital, while empathy and understanding is crucial for your brand messaging.

Instead of pushing your customers into a box and forcing them to fit into your brand narrative, start building your narrative around them, and create content that serves them. Once you’ve put your customers first, it’s practical to begin thinking about where you’re going to reach these potential customers.

“Approach each customer with the idea of helping him or her solve a problem or achieve a goal, not of selling a product or service” – Brian Tracey

4. Go Where Your Customers Are

With the right messaging and helpful content in tow, to earn leads online you now need to go where your customers are. That might have changed over the last 6 months, so get innovative. Most likely, they’ll be hanging out on social media or online somewhere, which is even more likely amid COVID.

Facebook recently reported messaging was up by more than 50% on its platform, across Instagram and Facebook messenger combined. People are spending 70% more time across all these apps, while group calls are up 1,000% during last month alone. And, the more you engage and use your social channels, the more opportunity there is for potential consumers to connect with you.

As a small business owner, it’s important to think of people who engage with your brand online as potential sales, and act accordingly.

5. Adapt to the new normal

As the world continues to change, be prepared for your customers’ needs to change. When trying to acquire new leads in an online world, remember that life as we know is changing at lightning speed, and the needs of your customers are not going to be stagnant.

What won’t change, however, is that people want to feel valued and feel like you understand them. As a small business marketing yourself all of your lead generation efforts need to focus on that.

During this time of change is the perfect time to revisit and update your marketing strategy.

If you’d like to learn how to create a marketing strategy for your small business Foundational Business Consulting and The Inbound Marketing Company have teamed up to offer an on-demand course designed for small business owners.

Learn more and register here.

Photo by Matt Ridley on Unsplash

Call us to find out more today!

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