As the owner of a small business, the thought of advertising online can be quite intimidating. You certainly know that online marketing is an extremely powerful tool, but how do you know where to start? There are many different options available, some of them quite expensive while others are very affordable, and you don’t want to waste your time on something that will turn into a dead end. Unfortunately, some small business owners just throw up their hands and stick with ‘traditional’ marketing as opposed to venturing into the online world.
You don’t need to give up on your online marketing goals just because it’s a bit intimidating at first. Yes, there is a learning curve, but there are plenty of people and tools available to help you get on track. Let’s take a look at some of the best platforms for your small business to use when getting started with an online marketing initiative.
This one might be a no-brainer, but it needs to lead off our list anyway. There is a lot to like about promoting your business on social media. For one thing, platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have enormous reach, making it nearly certain that a large portion of your target market is present and waiting to be found. Also, there are plenty of ways to use these social media platforms for free – at least at first – meaning you can invest nothing but your time when getting started. If you begin to see positive results, you may want to move into paid forms of social media marketing to (hopefully) accelerate your growth.
For a simple, but potentially powerful, step, consider adding your business to a number of business listings sites that are available on the web. If someone visits a listing site looking for businesses who do exactly what you do, it would be a shame to not be present. This is a step which should not take much in the way of time or effort, but it just may help you land additional clients or customers moving forward.
When you decide to take the step to enter the paid marketing arena, this is likely where you are going to start. Google Ads (long known as Google AdWords) is a huge platform which provides the marketer with an incredible degree of precision. Don’t be put off if you don’t have a big budget at the moment – you can carefully control how much you spend, making it possible to test out various ads and other factors without breaking the bank.