Starting and running a business in the overly crowded marketplace is one of the key challenges many entrepreneurs face today. Although setting up a business online is relatively easier and much more affordable, getting an audience base which you can convert into potential and loyal customers is a challenge on its own. Adopting an efficient online marketing campaign can however help boost the business’ visibility online, generate leads, and even convert more audiences into loyal customers. Outlined below are the top 10 marketing campaigns and strategies for promoting small businesses online.

1. Content Marketing

Content plays a pivotal role in online marketing. Before you can start pushing adverts or promotions, it would be advisable to ensure content published on your site and pages is 100% unique, informative, and engaging. Publishing informative and engaging content on the site not only gives target audiences the information they need but also boosts its performance on search engines. In addition to this, you can create additional content to be published in article directories and blogs for improved exposure.

2. Blogging

Creating a blog about your business and products available also does help improve visibility online. Content posted on the blog needs to be accurate and in relation to the business, niche to have an impact online. How-to and explainer blogs play a huge role in wooing audiences into trying your products. You therefore need to be an active blogger touching everything about your business for better indexing and conversions. Be sure to add some pictures and other interesting stuff on the blog as well. Allowing audiences to post comments, and responding to them (positive and negative) can also help build a following and potential customer base in the long run.

3. Create A Mobile-Responsive Site

Although not exactly a marketing strategy, having your business site optimised for mobile access can help boost traffic and even sales remarkably. With almost everyone using his/her phone to research and even transact online, creating a mobile responsive website makes it easy for shoppers to navigate through your site. Most shoppers will hit the back button the instance they access a non-mobile optimised site. Optimising yours should attract more audiences and contribute to higher ranks by search engines.

4. SMS Marketing

SMS marketing is yet another effective strategy you can use to promote and market your business as an entrepreneur. Acquiring contacts for SMS marketing can however be a challenge for many people. Nevertheless, asking potential customers to leave their contact information can help you build a mailing list for this strategy. You also need a well-created, precise, and informative content for the marketing campaign. You however shouldn’t be enticed into buying a contact list – this could get your business marked for spamming.

5. E-Mail Marketing

Email marketing uses an almost similar approach as SMS marketing and considered one of the most efficient ways to attract more customers to your business. You however need a reliable mailing list to make the most out of an email marketing campaign. Although creating a mailing list can be quite a challenge, allowing audiences to subscribe to newsletters, coupons, and even free samples can help generate a big enough list. How well you craft each email, and personalising the same can contribute to improving chances of target audiences trying out your products, or even becoming loyal customers. Be sure to take note of the small things such as birthdays and anniversaries to offer discounts via the email campaign too.

6. Search Engine Optimisation & Marketing

Gone are the days when SEO and SEM only targeted search engines for rankings. Most of the search engine optimisation techniques in use today target both search engines for visibility and audiences for conversions. Some of the essentials of search engine optimisation include keyword research, unique content creation, use of meta descriptions, as well as creating a mobile responsive website. While adopting an efficient search engine optimisation and marketing campaign does contribute to higher ranks by search engines, target audiences benefit more from these practices. SEO and SEM can therefore be used for lead creation as well as ensure your pages show up on the top page of a search result.

7. Social Media Marketing

Billions of people log on to social networking sites and platforms to meet new people, friends and seek insight on the latest and trending products online. You too can use the power of the social media to reach out to the target audience. A good plan is however needed to optimise this marketing strategy. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram provide an easy way to target potential customers with ease. You can either use a paid program for customer targeting or just create a page to promote your business. You’ll need to invest enough time to make the most out of a social media marketing campaign.

8. Video Content Marketing

Creating a promotional video is considerably much cheaper as compared to a few decades ago. With just a smartphone, you can shoot promotional videos to upload them online. If you aren’t sure where to start, why not begin with an explainer or a how-to video. Most people prefer watching explainer videos first before trying a product. Make sure the video clip has a decent quality, and just to the point. Video hosting sites such as YouTube provide an excellent platform to upload these videos. Be sure to add captions and meta tags on the videos before uploading them to boost exposure online.

9. Give Out Coupons & Free Samples

Giving out coupon codes that can be redeemed on your site, and samples in exchange for contact information is another excellent way to promote your business online. The free samples and coupons should attract more people to try your products, which could see an increase in sales.

10. Forum Posting

Although not exactly a marketing strategy, taking part in online forums can help build your business name and brand. Sites such as Reddit allow entrepreneurs and small business owners participate in online discussions by giving insight, advice, and tricks on many things. The more people you help in these forums, the more your business name will start getting some attention. You could also ask other forum members to feature your business on their blogs and sites as well. This should see increased visibility, lead generation, and eventually higher returns on investment.

The online marketing strategies outlined above require little to no monetary investment to implement. You can either choose to do it yourself or simply hire someone well acquainted with the task. Careful planning and execution is however needed for each of these strategies and marketing campaigns to be effective.