Advertising is not a luxury, but an urgent necessity for a beginning entrepreneur.
- The role of a competent advertising strategy
- How to make effective advertising
- Features of small business advertising campaigns
- Advertising in the banking sector
- Specific methods of increasing sales
- How to choose the type of advertising for a small company?
- Types of budget advertising for small businesses
- Tips for entrepreneurs
- How to evaluate advertising effectiveness
It allows you to increase recognition in the market, build a good reputation, and attract paying customers. Neglecting this component of the work leads to a sad outcome. For small business marketing campaigns to be successful, you need to build them taking into account the existing specifics and listen to the advice of experts.
The role of a competent advertising strategy
At the first stages of development, a novice entrepreneur faces serious difficulties. While the target audience and suppliers know nothing about the goods and services, the company is perceived with caution and distrust.
An important impetus for the further development of small businesses is the creation of a good business reputation, which will help to declare the following qualities of the company:
An indispensable assistant in building a reputation is competent marketing. It will help create a positive image of the company, emphasize its advantages, form a loyal attitude towards goods and services, and outline advantages over competitors’ products.
Advertising helps small businesses attract the attention of potential customers to the products they sell and announce the appearance of new products on the market. It performs two important functions: it informs about the advantages and features of the product, it allows you to increase sales, and with them, revenue.
A small business should not refuse advertising due to a lack of available funds. Modern marketing offers tools and methods that produce a significant effect at minimal cost.
How to make effective advertising
Effective promotion is not a spontaneous action aimed at nowhere. He has a clear goal, audience, strategy. To make advertising work for you and not become a waste of money, use five key points:
This is what attracts attention to the message and allows you to “find” the target audience. Often the public is more likely to be attracted to negative-sounding issues. So, the inscription “Tired of constant stress?” will allow you to “select” people who are interested in the product.
Ways to solve the problem
When you have captured the attention of potential consumers, offer them a way out of the current situation. For example, spa treatments will help you cope with stress and completely relax.
Uniqueness of the offer
Tell the target audience what the “zest” of the product or service is, why it is worth choosing the promoted product. At this point it is recommended to give free rein to your imagination.
People tend to put off making important decisions. To overcome procrastination, let the consumer know that there is no time to think. Indicate that the offer is valid for a limited time.
Call to Action
Clearly indicate to potential consumers how to take advantage of the offer: call the phone number indicated in the ad, book a spa treatment time on the website.
Specific methods of effective advertising for small businesses vary depending on the characteristics of the company and product, but the basic principles of construction remain the same.
Features of small business advertising campaigns
A key feature of promotion for small businesses is a shift in emphasis from the company itself to the uniqueness of the product offered. An entrepreneur who owns a small grocery store is unable to compete with international giants – Coca-Cola, Adidas and others. Its task is not to increase brand awareness, but to increase sales.
Juicy slogans and memorable logos are bad helpers in increasing the profitability of a small company. The purpose of advertising is to tell consumers about specific offers of goods and services, attract new customers, and retain old ones.
The answer to the question of how to make effective advertising for a small company lies in the rejection of general words and lengthy formulations: “cheap”, “a lot”, “the most”, etc. The “abstract” approach worked 15-20 years ago, but today it is useless. No one will go to a store that offers “the cheapest sofas in town,” but a retail outlet that sells a sofa for $200 is sure to attract visitors.
Advertising in the banking sector
Under the influence of the development of digital technologies, the advertising market has undergone fundamental changes. Today, most companies receive a tangible effect not from traditional channels in the classical model, such as television, advertising, radio, outdoor advertising, but from the use of incentives and cross-promotions based on issuing coupons for payment. This direction is the most progressive.
The direction of creating ecosystems and marketplaces that revolutionize the understanding of the banking services market has also become widespread. Development towards affiliate programs built on the placement of affiliate offers on the bank’s terminal network is the most effective and not only ensures incoming traffic to the partner’s website, increased sales, increased presence in the media field, but also dynamic development in various areas.
Specific methods of increasing sales
There are three effective tools that can increase sales for a small company:
These are special offers that last for a limited time. This way, the company does not leave the potential buyer time to think and minimizes the risk of him leaving for competitors.
When a person sees an advertising poster “All pants are $10,” he simply takes note of this information. If he doesn’t feel the need for a new pair now, he will postpone the purchase indefinitely.
If you indicate in the ad that the promotion is valid for one day (week, month), the target audience will look at the offer differently. She will think: trousers are not needed today, but then they will tear and wear out. There is no point in overpaying tomorrow if the price tag is so attractive today.
This method has been used for a long time, but remains effective and relevant. Indicate on the label the new “favorable” price and the “old” price, which is 30-50% higher. The greater the difference between the two values, the stronger the “limited supply” effect. Seeing the benefits that the purchase promises, the client will part with his money faster.
If you are opening a small business (dry cleaning, laundry, bakery, pharmacy, etc.), announce the opening before starting work. Hang up a sign, a sign, and distribute leaflets to nearby residents. This way you will arouse interest in the new product in potential buyers, allowing them to get used to the idea that company “N” will be located here.
How to choose the type of advertising for a small company?
According to business rules, the amounts spent on advertising campaigns depend on the level of profit of the enterprise. Small business budgets are usually limited, but as they develop and scale up, they grow.
There is no panacea for which advertising is most effective for small businesses. Choosing its type is a serious decision that requires a thoughtful, unhurried approach. The decision depends on:
- cost of placement;
- features of the promoted goods (services);
- place, time of placement;
- number of contacts with the target audience, etc.
Marketing tools depend on the goals of the small business. It may be interested in:
- informing potential clients about the existence of the company;
- forming a positive opinion of the target audience about yourself;
- attracting attention to new products;
- informing the population about ongoing events;
- increasing the influx of customers.
When the goals and objectives are clear, all that remains is to decide on the budget. It can be calculated in two ways. The first is based on business goals, as a percentage of desired indicators. For example, if you want to increase your revenue by $2,000 and are willing to “sacrifice” 20% of your income, you can spend $100 on promotion.
The second method is to calculate a budget that “repeats” the costs of competitors. If you know how much a car wash in another area spends, you can plan costs of a similar structure. It is logical to assume that this will allow you to achieve the same level of revenue.
If promotion is carried out on your own, you should start with inexpensive, easy-to-implement methods. As sales increase, the budget should be increased.
Types of budget advertising for small businesses
The modern market offers a variety of promotion tools. There are many methods that do not require significant financial investments. They meet three important criteria: simplicity, accessibility and efficiency.
These are “cold” calls to potential clients – legal entities and individuals. The manager’s goal during the conversation is to briefly talk about the advantages of the product or service and persuade the person to make a purchase decision. This type of promotion requires minimal costs, but is not highly effective: people on the other end of the phone may not be interested in the offer or may not take the time to listen to you. Experts recommend using telephone marketing at the initial stages of business development in conjunction with other activities.
Distribution of leaflets
Bright, stylish, laconic leaflets printed on high-quality paper are a recognized marketing tool that is effective at the start of sales. They can be distributed on crowded streets or thrown into the mailboxes of apartment buildings.
Inscriptions on asphalt
This is a type of advertising that is sold almost free of charge. Witty, laconic inscriptions painted in crowded places will not go unnoticed and will help attract customers. The disadvantage of this method is that drawings on asphalt are prohibited in some places, and the target audience often does not take them lightly.
The main method is to create your own company website. It will become an effective promotion tool for many years to come. On the pages of the resource you can place information about goods and services, a description of the benefits of the product, and contact information.
Another way to promote online is to post information about your business on reputable resources that attract a large number of visitors. For example, articles, banners and advertisements on an information portal will help you draw the attention of your target audience to your product. This is the most effective advertising of services, an investment in your own reputation and a boost to sales development.
Word of mouth
Posts on forums or social networks can help promote new products. Ask satisfied customers to write reviews or take the time to write useful and interesting messages for potential customers. You can turn to the services of professionals, but such a step will require significant expenses.
Tips for entrepreneurs
Start with yourself
The most effective source of free advertising is yourself. The first thing you can do is to announce the brand on your personal page on social networks and on your own business cards. Participate in events where people you are interested in are present and prepare to communicate with different categories of interlocutors: potential partners, suppliers, clients, investors, employees, and so on.
Each category of people expects a different brand presentation from you. Perhaps your business card will be enough for someone to get comprehensive information about the brand, but for others it is worth preparing a high-quality oral presentation.
Remember that at the very beginning of the journey (and possibly further) you are the main carrier and face of the brand.
Get your sales area in order
Whether it’s a website or a store, a sheet with a commercial offer or an office – the place of sales should contribute to these same sales as much as possible. The product must be shown in person, there must be a sign on the facade of the store, the commercial offer must be motivating, and consultants must have all the necessary information. For some reason, some entrepreneurs, especially beginners, do not think about this, paying more attention to promotion and losing their first (and such strategically important) clients.
The point of sale is the main sales channel. Despite the most expensive advertising, a client may change his mind about working with you, looking at an untidy online store.
Occupy a strategically advantageous position
As your business grows, moving becomes more difficult, so from the very beginning you should choose a convenient office location, a memorable phone number, a beautiful domain name, an advantageous point of sale in shopping centers, convenient website functionality, and so on.
This simple and obvious technique will automatically promote promotion. Don’t think that you can start “on your knees” and later “move” to another address, engine, social network or production base. Later you will have a flood of orders and growth crises.
The components of a successful brand are not only a logo and slogan. Sometimes the most significant thing is the location of the office or the presence of a memorable account on social networks.
Effective advertising platforms. Here are a few more simple and inexpensive advertising platforms where you can stand out perfectly if you approach your work creatively:
- Signboard and external facade of your building;
- Favicon of the online store;
- Ads. Newspaper or online platforms;
- Memes and viral advertising.
All the tips are very simple. But the path from the center to the edge, from working on oneself to conquering the world, is the most correct and most effective. Especially for budding entrepreneurs.
How to evaluate advertising effectiveness
Assessing the effectiveness and appropriateness of advertising depends on the specific market situation. For example, in a small village there is only one auto repair shop that all residents go to. There is no need for marketing expenses: the company is a monopolist, the costs will increase the cost of services without bringing an influx of new customers or revenue growth.
The situation is the opposite if there are several auto repair shops in the city, between which there is fierce competition. In these conditions, a well-structured advertising campaign will become a significant advantage of the company in the eyes of the consumer. You cannot invest in it recklessly: every ruble spent must be returned by an influx of new paying clients.
Experts recommend that small businesses build advertising campaigns based on the principle of direct response. This means that the result of each banner placed and post on social networks must be measurable. Based on the measurements taken, the profitability of each investment in promotion is calculated.