Small Business Advertising: What You Need to Know

Savannah Babcock

Savannah Babcock About The Author

Mar 24, 2021 8:45:00 AM

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When small businesses are looking to grow, advertising is an essential investment because it builds brand awareness. Consumers are 60% more likely to purchase from a brand they've heard of than from one they're unfamiliar with. This means building trust through awareness is vital to standing out from the competition and increasing sales.

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It's important to start this journey by having a solid marketing plan in place to drive brand awareness. Here are some key components of small business advertising that you need to know. 

Target the Right Audience

Audience targeting is vital to ensuring your reaching the right people with the right message. When you do, you get your products/services in front of consumers who are more likely to be interested in what you have to offer, and therefore, are more likely to take action and make a purchase. Essentially, you cut out the wasted efforts of reaching people who have no interest in your brand and focus more on people who are open to giving you business.

DSIM reports that targeted advertisements are, on average, almost twice as effective as non-targeted ads. If you're concerned about obtaining the necessary data, know that 60% of Millennials would happily share their data for coupons or promotions.

Know Yourself and the Competition

While knowing your target audience is vital to your marketing plan, you also need to know yourself and your competition. Knowing your competition helps you differentiate your brand and stand out in front of buyers while knowing yourself ensures you stay consistent and true to your brand's message, identity, and values. 

This becomes even more important in connection to brand authenticity. Eighty-six percent of consumers say authenticity is important when deciding what brands they like and support, and 81% said they need to trust the brand to buy from them.

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Set Marketing Goals

Setting your marketing goals allows your team to thoroughly understand expectations and assess the most relevant and efficient solutions to meet those expectations. 

SMART goals, in particular, are vital to your strategy because they keep your goals more organized and reachable for better results. This means setting goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. 

To get you started, consider this example from HubSpot:

An example of a SMART goal is: Over the next four months, I will build 40 additional backlinks that direct to www.ourcompany.com. To do so, I will collaborate with Ellie and Andrew from our PR department to connect with publishers and develop an effective outreach strategy.

Track and optimize metrics

Tracking and optimizing metrics allow you to follow your successes and failures to improve future campaigns and tactics. There are a variety of advertising tactics that your small business can use to see results. Among them are: 

  1. Broadcast TV - TV advertising is particularly great for providing more brand awareness through a large-scale reach. 
  2. OTT - It’s a mistake not to give more focus to OTT opportunities, as studies have found that 60% of viewers say that they spend more of their viewing time on an online source over a pay-TV service.
  3. Social media - As of October 2020, the number of social media users worldwide passed the 4 billion mark, and the typical user now spends roughly 15 percent of their waking life using social platforms. This makes social media marketing a vital advertising tactic.
  4. Digital - Digital allows marketers to reach more people for less money. When you know the right digital marketing terms, you set yourself up to increase brand awareness, connect with audiences, increase sales, and improve the overall return on marketing investment.
  5. Lifestyle/Print - Lifestyle/print marketing makes the difference in establishing brand-building relationships with your audience and creating engaging content that resonates with consumers. 
  6. Cause marketing - When for-profit and non-profit businesses collaborate in a meaningful and influential cause marketing strategy, customers notice. According to Business 2 Community, Americans prioritize responsible companies (86%) and those that are caring (85%), advocate for issues (81%), protect the environment (79%), and give back to important causes (73%).

When you're ready to learn more about reaching your target market and growing your business, follow Meredith Nashville's blog for more marketing tips. 

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