Essential Skills for Effective 21st Century Marketing
The first advert in the world was broadcast on July 1, 1941 over WNBT. It was for the watchmaker Bulova and was aired before a baseball game in the US. The cost of airing the advert was less than $ 9! Imagine that. Advertisement and marketing has come a long way from there. Intense competition, advancements in technology, creative genius and much more demands much more of businesses. To give you a leg up in the game, the Small Business Advisory Group has put together some Effective Marketing Tips for the 21st Century.
Top of the list on our marketing tips is storytelling. If you are to be engaging, you need to be able to tell a good story. Storytelling puts your product or service into context and humanizes your brand. It helps your potential customers form an emotional connection with your brand. Here are some pointers gleaned from the book The Power of Visual Storytelling
- Creative Design:
Captivating imagery tied in with your branding colors or elements are a great way to graphically portray your brand story. Include illustrations, drawings, videos and photos.
Though the narrative is to be consistent, make sure you customize it to each platform. Small things like the size of the image on different social media can make a huge difference.
Your audience needs to understand just why your product/ service is of value to them. Address the problem your product can solve and highlight the difference that it can make in their lives.
Give your brand personality. Solid and reliable, trendy and fun, chic and luxurious – think of the personality you want to give your brand and how it will connect with the audience. If your brand was a person how would you describe its personality? Your storytelling must reflect this in the tone, imagery and the way it connects.
Think about the conversation you want to have with your audience. Make sure all your marketing messages fit into that conversation.
Is your story worth sharing? That’s the question that will make all the difference in its reach. There is no better marketing technique than word of mouth, so make sure your audience will want to spread the word.
Email is still a powerful communication channel to help keep your business top on the minds of customers and prospects. Use it to promote special offers and events, thank loyal customers with private discounts and deals, or promote news about your company. You might even want to consider sending out a regular newsletter. How do you ensure that your email gets opened, read and clicked? Here are some good email marketing tips:
- Write in a conversational, friendly yet respectful voice instead of an impersonal generic one.
- Be relevant and useful by giving your audience information and tips that they will benefit from. They should see that your emails are more than a marketing gimmick and sales talk.
- Pay more than usual attention to the subject line of your email. It must capture their attention and get your email opened. Here is a useful article on The Three Key Elements of Irresistible Email Subject Lines.
- When you do send sales messages that are direct, make sure they are still personalized. Use storytelling to get to your sales message in an engaging way.
Basic SEO and Analytics
You don’t want your business to be a best-kept secret – you want to be found. Search engine optimization (SEO) designed for your business can help ensure you’re found in Google searches.
It’s also important to understand that the data needed to analyze the effectiveness of your web and social media-based marketing is out there. Pick the tools that work best for you. Learn to use Google Analytics effectively and adjust monthly.
Social Media Marketing
Don’t ignore it. Pick a couple of mediums and topics to focus on and encourage your customers to be active on those networks. Social media is a two-way channel so take advantage and engage with your customers. Social media marketing is a complete chapter in itself and we have a blog coming up very soon so stay tuned!
No matter what kind of business you have, marketing is a critical component of your sales and growth strategy. Unfortunately, it’s a very crowded market out there – you want to get noticed. Hope these marketing tips help you beat that competition and become visible. Give us a shout out if they did. If there is anything that we can help with in your small business, give us a call.