In the wake of 2023, it seems that running a business is more daunting than ever. People are getting more and more invested in running their independent businesses, and the agenda of supporting local businesses is getting stronger by the day.
Newer competitors will only be entering your market, so the question for you is how will you be able to out-market them in the coming year. Especially considering that your number of competitors will not be the only thing on the rise, but prices are also steadily becoming more and more of a concern.
This gives you less space for financial freedom and taking financial risks, especially if you are running a small to mid-sized business, will have you on and your business at the tip-end of that cliff.
So, you will want to know how to maximize your marketing budget – the guide that you will be needing to help you navigate just how you can work out a workable business plan whilst making sure your finances are stable.
Tips and Tricks for SMBs in 2023
Tip #1 Set your goals straight.
Before you get into anything drastic, you must first set your goals. Identifying what you want to achieve in the coming year will be vital in the marketing choices that you will have to make, as well as the direction your brand identity will be taking.
Take as much time as you need with this as without this step then the entire process might as well be futile. ask for some advice, and gather your current team to curate a perfect marketing strategy. Identify weaknesses, possible opportunities, and doors of improvement while you do so.
Tip #2 Create a strict and reasonable budget plan
A surefire way to make sure that your business will go down in flames is to not have a plan on how to handle your finances. Without a proper budgeting plan, you will be spending beyond your reach and on operations that may not even contribute profit.
Before the year starts, create a smart budgeting plan that lays out all the necessary spending plans, when to spend it, and how much to spend. Set benchmarks to measure the effectiveness of your plan, and hire a tertiary source if you need to such as a financial consultant or accountant.
Tip #3 Make sure that your business is reachable
Marketing is a people’s craft, and there will be expenses included in trying to reach people, customers, potential partners, and even your colleagues. So, it is best to go about communication smartly.
An aspect that many business owners seem to overlook, when it comes to a business’s survival Communication is vital if you want to make yourself available to partners, customers, and other entities that may be in the interest of inquiry.
From your phone number to your address, this needs to be ready and consistent across the board. Create business cards if you have to, and make sure that it is written everywhere from the menu, pamphlet, Facebook page, and especially your website. This will not only save you a ton of effort and expenses but will do some effective self-marketing.
Tip #4 Nail your advertising
In today’s era, getting yourself out there is perhaps the easiest thing a person could do. Going viral can happen practically given the opportunity, timing, and ongoing trend. This is not to say that simply going viral will attain success for your business, but there are multiple ways to get word of your business out there.
Social media advertising is one of the best things to happen to the business landscape in the last few decades. With it, you can drive so much more traffic to your website, increase brand awareness, and visibility, and enlarge your audience.
You will have to post smartly, regularly, and in a relevant manner to your customers. Adding humor to your captions is key to the attention of the masses, but make sure that you bring to the table something that people will want to read or look further into.
It may seem old-fashioned, but good old advertising can still do the work for getting word of your business around. Display Ads can still be an effective way of getting your business to be seen. An image, piece of text, or well-made animation is enough to catch the attention of someone scrolling on their phone, and if you have a good website waiting for them, it may just drive enough traffic.
Overall, the one thing to remember here is that not all marketing techniques can just fit into your business model. Different models will need specific techniques to truly gain traction. For example, if you are selling shopping bags and baskets, it is best to do your advertising near food courts or areas where your locals buy groceries. This will also apply to digital marketing, as being linked up to sites and pages that involve shopping will greatly increase your chance of being noticed by possible buyers.
Tip #5 Get in the mind of your customer
It’s 2023, there is no excuse why you can not single out who your precise market will be. Optimizing your marketing strategy requires that you know your customer inside and
out, and this will almost guarantee that your business prospects will be brighter in the coming year.
Singling out the group that you want to will make things much easier, as it will adjust the marketing tools at your disposal, as the demographics presented to you by different platforms will help you find out more about your customers.
There are various demographics that you can look into once everything is in place, and to give you an idea, here are some that you should be at the top of your list:
- Buying habits
- Family size
- Marital status
- Job title
- Buyer behavior
Statistics are not the only thing that will allow you to get in the shoes of your customers though. You will need to go the extra mile and directly interact with them, trying to piece what the psychology behind your customer’s buyer behavior looks like. To do so, there will be things you need to keep tabs on.
- What are their habits on the internet?
- What social media platforms do they most frequent?
- What are your customer’s pain points?
- What makes them sad/happy?
- How will my product/service improve their lives?
- Are they social or anti-social?
- What trends are they into?
Tip #6 Build a community for your audience
Now that you have gathered all the demographics for your target audience, the next step you should be taking is to connect with them. Regardless of the type of audience you have researched and marked, we are pretty sure that you can only create firm customer relationships if you make them feel like they are part of a community.
This is true for any business, and perhaps for any human-to-human interaction. However, this is not that deep, and building a strong relationship with your customers will be easy if you do it right.
Taking feedback will be the most basic thing you have to do, but this is not enough to keep customers loyal to your business. Building a healthy community of customers will require long-term planning. Here are a few tips on how to do it:
- Find a passionate group. Most of the time, the heart of your customer community will be up to your team, who will also be the ones who will spread the culture, vibe, and identity that your business is trying to emanate.
- Interacting with them on social media. If there’s one place to meet and know your customers, it’s social media. With close, witty, and cleverly-timed customer interactions on social media, you will be showing customers how down-to-earth your business is and knows how to have a little fun, not just some corporate machine there to market products and call it a day.
- Encourage creativity from your customers. Whether it is through creative advertising, specialized events, or allowing them to have suggestions on your products/brand, it is mutually advantageous to have your customers know that they can somehow influence how your business operates, as well as let out a little bit of their artsy side.
- Reward them for their contributions and interactions. A little something for your customers to smile about and look forward to, giving out freebies or gifts here and there will make your customers feel that this is very much a giving and welcome community, one that they can stay in for the long term.
If you want to maximize what you do with your money, then it is best to get to know your customer like the back of your hand, because having that knowledge will allow you to invest in the right resources, operations, and products.
Tip #7 Get yourself a business grant or tax credit program.
Gearing up for 2023, it will be hard to do it alone, and pure wit and knowledge of the business world will not guarantee your success. You will be needing sources of support and financing to keep your business up and running and perhaps reach many milestones. One way to do that is to secure yourself a business grant or a government tax relief program.
A business grant is financial aid provided by government agencies and other entities that are usually in the hope of securing a common goal. This goal can be for science, development, research, or for merely trying to assist a specific sector of that area.
There are also governments offering huge tax cuts for SMBs. For example, in Canada, if you are an SMB owner, you can apply to the Scientific Research and Experimental Development or SRED. SRED is a tax incentive program for businesses that are into research and innovation.
Wherever you may be located, we are pretty sure that there are available grants that you can apply to. Some grants will be a very niche in their applicants, so you will need to do prior research before you invest the time in preparing the documents and requirements, as grant applications take very long.
In 2023, SMBs have multiple foundations on which they can build their brand from the ground up through crafty and resourceful marketing. It has never been easier to get exposure, influence, and connection in such a digital area, you will only be needing a good team to help you manage all of the things.
With having access to all these outlets of reaching out to new markets, customers, and partners, it is all up to smart decision-making and keen consideration of your cards on hand to make sure that your business can make it through the year with a new breath life.