Whether you are about to launch your small business or you have reached maturity in your business’ life cycle, with the ever-changing world of technology, it’s important to stay up to date with the latest and greatest. With digital marketing dominating the marketing realm with only signs of it reigning supreme in future, we are reviewing marketing platforms and technologies that all small businesses should invest in this year, without breaking the bank.
Social Media Scheduling Platforms
Content is king when it comes to promoting your business. Being consistent on social media, connecting with your audience and showcasing your offerings are a fantastic and low-cost way to grow your revenues. With the time it takes to create high-quality content, it’s important to streamline your creative and strategic processes, with practices like content creation batching, so you are motivated to continue.
A productive way to ensure your consistency and visibility on social media is to schedule your content. Social Media Scheduling Platforms like Buffer and Loomly have features including planning and publishing, customer engagement, social media analytics, post ideas, optimization tips, ads manager, and more all in one place. Compared to their larger competitors like Hootsuite and HubSpot, Buffer and Loomly have affordable monthly or yearly plans and offer free trials.
Email Marketing Platforms
Owned media is incredibly important for a small business, particularly if you don’t have the budget to run paid social media or Google ads. By incentivizing your audience and customers to join your mailing list with discount codes or free downloads with valuable information, you can reach them directly via their inbox.
If you are looking to begin building and nurturing your email list, there are many email marketing platforms that offer free subscriptions for the first few thousand subscribers. Platforms like Mailchimp and Mailerlite are budget-friendly for small businesses and provide useful tools including automation, insights and integration with the other apps you use for your business. If you have a small business on Shopify, I recommend an email marketing platform like Klaviyo as it provides better customer journey mapping and integration.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Analytics Platforms
As an online business with a website, you can obtain valuable data and information from analyzing your performance. Whether you are currently running Google Ads or not, Google Analytics is an essential tool to gain an understanding of your website visitors, potential customers and those that have converted into customers. Analyzing your data will help you ascertain whether your website’s content is effective at conversion, and your navigation is user and mobile-friendly. Google Analytics will also show you how your website visitors are coming across your page, whether that be via organic web searches, your social media platforms, other websites or your promotions and advertisements. From this data and information, you can then make any necessary changes to improve your website’s performance. If you are looking to run paid Google Ads, having the right keywords for your business is imperative. Tools like KWFinder and MOZ offer free trials to assist with more in-depth keyword research.
It can be challenging to stand out in the world of marketing, particularly in the online space, with a sea of competitors. To ensure your business is seen by your target audience, create content that is authentic and on-brand. This doesn’t mean that all your content must look like a piece of art, rather the more customized and engaging it is to your target customer, the more it will appeal to them. In saying this, it is important that your imagery is crisp and high-quality as the online space is visual after all.
Imagery platforms and technologies that are valuable and affordable for small businesses include Canva and Photoshop. Depending on your expertise when it comes to photography and graphic design, photoshop is better suited to those with more advanced knowledge, while Canva is a great alternative for beginners. The benefit of technology like Canva is the templates that help you to develop your business’ branding without having to subscribe to any packages, although they do offer a premium package for upgrades and teams.
Implementing these marketing platforms and technologies into your small business in 2022 will help you not only improve your performance and outcomes, but will also save you time, money, and effort. As always, if you have any questions or recommendations for your favourite marketing platforms, please feel free to share below.