I am always surprised by the number of business owners who’ve got no marketing strategy in place and purely hope to get business through walk-in customers and word of mouth. What is more shocking is that they’re not even doing the bear minimum marketing! These businesses are always borderline surviving and have a delusion that things will magically get fixed, or keep talking about a grand plan that will make them a million (The same grand plan they did not implement 3 years ago)
Here we have a very brief marketing to do list, that you can tailor to any retail or online service. These are the bear minimums every business should have already implemented. I am sure you can find others who can explain how to do each task much better than me. So let’s get started
The marketing 101 checklist
- Create a Google account if you already don’t have one. You get access to tons of free tools. You can store account detail on Google Spreadsheet, or use Google Forms to capture information, or use Google Docs to write letters etc.
- Find out what your business’s main Keywords are. Search for Keyword Research Tools
- Concentrate on these Keywords on everything you post online. Make sure your content includes a few of these. Would be best if you could concentrate on 1 keyword per online post.
- Create a website / landing page. Make sure you buy the domain separately so you don’t fall victim of high transfer fees on hostage cancellation etc. There are tons of free material online. Just search: How to create a landing page
- Set up Google Analytics and Setup Google Web Master Tools
- Set a budget for Google Ads
- Place your business on Google Places / Google Plus / Google Business Page(This will show your business on Google Maps and enhance search results)
- Create Facebook Page for your business and assign a User ID for your page ASAP
- Crete a Facebook group related to your business and let people share things. E.g. if you run a beauty salon in London, create a Facebook page called: London Health and Beauty Free Tips. This can be very powerful as you are not directly promoting your company but may get access to a large audience if it picks off.
- Create Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, Reddit, YouTube, Quora, Linkedin Page, for your business and learn what they are. Make sure you include relevant Keywords in description and hashtags. (Learn How to use Hashtangs)
- Create discount codes and coupon codes, distribute them on relevant websites
- Write Articles! This is such an important part, as it helps generate lots of traffic for your website. Start a blog or guest blog for others.
- Take professional photos of your business / products. Pay someone to do it! Photos are very powerful.
- If you are a local business that relies on walk-in customers, give out funky nice looking stickers with your business Logo to locals to stick around.
- Publish constant press releases. Almost every business will be able to benefit from Press Releases. Contact newspapers and offer some sort of story
- Publish your business on 10x free business directories
- Partner up and collaborate with others
- Offer discount to local schools, health clubs, restaurants, military, etc
- Have some sort of Loyalty program. E.g. buy 5 coffees, get one free.
- Have a news letter
- Sell your products or services on eBay / Amazon / Local directories if applicable. Use these platforms as an advertising tool
- Get your friends to leave you an honest review on Google places (Make sure not left on the same day and spread them out)
- Spend 1 productive hour a day on marketing.
I don’t believe every business can benefit from every single social marketing tool out there. Usually there would be a few social media networks that work best for your business. Find out which one of these your target audience are more likely to hang out on.
Your business name is your most valuable asset! Make sure you register on as many social networks as possible, using the best available user name ID that matches your business.
Make sure you’ve got good looking Logo, Banners, Facebook, Instagram Banners and Thumbnails.
You can find great cheap services on sites such as Fiverr.com and Freelancer.com
You will need to spend at least an hour a day on marketing! Power Hour, meaning you switch off your phone, do nothing else apart from marketing. Browsing the internet or Instagram is not counted as “marketing”
Make sure you set goals on Google Analytics so you can track your progress. (Conversion goal settings)
I will be publishing more in depth marketing plans for you guys soon.
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