Brand awareness = Business growth
Where are you in your business plan right now? Are you just starting out or have you been going for some time?
Everyone has their own journey and go about this at different rates, it’s not a competition, it’s about what’s right for you at this moment in time.
It takes time to build a brand, but the best bit of advice we can give is to let people know what you’re doing. If you’re shy or quiet about what you do, how do you expect people to know what you’re about! There might be someone right there who is your perfect customer, but if you’re not telling people what you do, they’ll never know you exist.
How do you build your brand?
There are a few vital things you need to do to grow your reputation and become established and these few tips will help:
Whatever you do, document it. Take notes, take pictures, write it down, detail what motivates you, where your inspiration comes from, what people give you the nudge to get going. Create your own story and make it possible to share that journey later down the line. When the time comes, you might be the person who will inspire someone else to start their business – telling your brand story and having the proof of what you have been through and achieved will help others.
Put yourself out there
Don’t be afraid to talk to the people around you. Many people starting out in business are shy about telling their friends or family, but actually these are the people who you need to tell first. Why? Because these are the people who know you and will believe in you. They know your abilities and your strengths, and they have the desire to want to see you succeed.
A reputation grows when people start talking about you, word of mouth is a great marketing strategy, the more people hear about you, the more chance there is for someone to discover you. If you’re passionate what you do, why wouldn’t you want to talk about it!
What situations can you put yourself in that will help boost your brand awareness? Are there places you can go, people you can meet, networks you can utilise, advice you can give… put yourself out there to make the most of every opportunity that comes your way.
Use social media to share your stories
Everyone is online. The pandemic has driven more businesses to use online marketing to grow their brand. You need to be there too. If you’re not yet using social media for marketing, you’re missing a treat! It takes more than a few Facebook posts here and there. It takes more than posting a few posts on your personal profiles in the hope that ‘someone’ will notice you.
Create branded social media profiles, across various channels, post regularly, engage with your with your audience, give value through all your content.
If time is an issue for social media, don’t be afraid to outsource. This can seem like an expense that you don’t need in your small business, but in reality, this is such an important part of business growth that when you spent time focussing on what you are good at and utilising your skills to do the things you love – you can budget in for someone else to carry your marketing, so you don’t have to.
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Sidenote: if marketing is not your forte, there seems little point to wasting time doing it to a ‘half-standard’. The more your marketing works for you, the more clients you can bring on, or services/products you can sell. Make the most of this to your advantage and work as a team to build the brand and see the results.
When your business starts to build, you will have more opportunities to do bigger and better things. Scale and grow, and look at different strategies as you go through each stage. Take hold of the things that cross your path which will help you grow your brand. Don’t hide away, speak out where possible and let people see the passion you have – let them catch the enthusiasm with you!
If you’re looking to scale and grow your small business, we’d love to chat with you about your online marketing and how we can help you achieve your goals. Step out today and contact us – and let’s start the conversation.
In the meantime, download our free “Social media checklist – don’t forget the basics”, to get you tracking the basic social media ideals.
Does your marketing have PURPOSE? 🏆
What drives you in your business, what impact do you want to achieve, what results do you want to see come to fruition? Is your business PURPOSE-DRIVEN?
There needs to be some passion behind the face of your social media channels – you’ve got a chance to make a difference and to get your business in front of a such a wide potential of customers, the impact you can achieve (when done right) is never-ending, but you’ve got to have the drive and ambition to get there and to make STUFF happen.
Have you got the passion?
If you’re not enthusiastic about your brand, who will be? Your marketing is the face of your business and your passion needs to be visible. Think of creative ways to showcase your passion – video, vlogs, behind the scenes stories – try to do something that’s different from the normal pattern you’d use in order for it to stand out.
SHOUT about what you’re doing, what makes you do what you do and why you love it so much. Get people to be passionate with you, embracing your values and pushing the awareness of your brand.
Back to basics
Let’s go back to the basics from when you first put a marketing strategy together, and also considering that we are coming through a pandemic and everything is looking a lot different than it was two years ago… think about your business plan and goals; can you answer these questions:
- Where do you see your business at the end of this year?
- Where do you see your business in 5 years from now?
- What people do you want to influence or affect?
- Who can benefit the most from what you have to offer?
- What makes you unique?
Now, using each of these points, map out what marketing methods would be best to get these points in front of your audience, and how you can create engaging content that reiterates the message you want to get across.
- Can you stick to organic posting?
- Could you be doing more?
- Can you use stories or another channel to reach a different type of audience?
- How about paid advertising?
Your purpose is what keeps the business going – it gives it a mission and direction to reach the people you want to help.
Make sure you have a clear goal in marketing, that way you can measure if it happens or not. If one of your aims is to see an increase of 5% to your website traffic, for example, you would need to put in place steps to drive the extra traffic. What can you do to send more people there? Would this include more call to actions on your organic posts? Could you implement some paid advertising to target specific interested parties?
If you want to increase your engagement by 20% on your social channels, you could look at content that encourages engagement, i.e., polls, asking questions, asking for feedback etc.
If you look at the bigger picture, when you increase social media activity, this will build trust and authenticity. When followers start to trust and like your content, they are more likely to head over to your website when you direct them. Once they’re on your site, what can you do to keep them there? Have a goal in mind for when they are browsing your website and ensure that navigation is easy. With this approach, and taking one step at a time, you are aiming to hit both your targets with one sweep.
From here, it’s a case of measuring the activity on your channels and determining if you are gaining an increase. If not, can you do more?
Be a risk taker in marketing
Don’t be afraid to try new things – risk takers are more likely to get results because they’re not afraid to try something that ‘may not’ work – but if it does… winner!
“The biggest risk is not taking any risk… In a world that is changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.” – Mark Zuckerberg
What’s your purpose and how can you use social media marketing to get there?
We love working with purpose-driven organisations who have a clear mission and goal – and we love helping these people achieve their goals through social media. So, if you’re looking to get ahead and make your mission fly, let’s talk about a strategy and action plan. Get in touch today 🤙
While you’re here, checkout our FREE gift to you: our Social Media Checklist – don’t forget the basics! 👇🏻
Are you struggling to create engagement on your social media channels?
Here’s a secret… you don’t have to dance, sing or point to word bubbles on Reels or TikTok to create engagement on your social media channels. Of course, if you want to then that’s absolutely fine! But for those less comfortable with jigging in front of a camera, there are other ways to make the magic happen. Yes, videos do help build on engagement, but they don’t have to be cheesy – always stay on brand.
If you’re looking to grow your following on social media, create content that is worthy of all the hard work you put in, whilst staying professional and in line with your brand’s mission and identity – it all comes down to strategy. A marketing strategy gives you clear guidance, a path to follow and a goal to work towards. So, how do you put together a social media strategy?
Here are our 8 tips for creating engagement that goes way beyond a 60 second Reels jingle and will keep your professionalism still intact!
It can be hard to create content that is 100% unique, yes? There is so much competition out there that you’re bound to cross paths with someone. However, the way to get around this is to be original. Put your own spin on a topic, create content from your point of view, with your personality – as if you’re talking to the reader. Make it completely original content, written from your perspective.
Tell a story.
We all have a story to tell, you might not think that yours is very interesting – but it’s YOUR story. Business is built on trust, people buy from people they trust, people like to understand and see behind the scenes and what happens behind the face and voice of a brand. This is your chance to shine and to tell everyone about what you are doing, why you are doing it and the mission that you have.
Always show up when you’re expected. If you create daily content, create daily content. Don’t try it for a week and give up the next. Always find a balance to what you can do and what works, and still to it. This is where content planning comes in handy.
This goes without saying. Everything you produce, say or do, should add value to the recipient. Try not to think about what you might be giving away for free – the more you give, the more you will get in return. If someone thinks they are getting value, they will keep coming back and more importantly, they will tell others what they have discovered. Always give without doubt, offer advice, guidance, even things that will give them a step-up, the more they like what they see, the more you will see them back for more.
Keep on brand.
Your brand is your identity, it makes you unique and stand out in a crowded room. Create content that is easily recognisable and true to your mission. Think about your tone of voice, image and type of content, logos and personas, frequency… all things that make your brand recognisable and unique.
People are searching and seeking for answers. Here’s your chance to help someone. Understand your audience and give them answers to the solutions they are seeking. Be there in their times of need or pain points – show up when you say you’re going to, and give them something they can take away right there and then, which will make them feel like they’ve achieved what they need to.
Create eye-catching content.
There’s no point in creating content that no one is going to see. It’s a waste of your valuable time and it benefits no one. What would you want to see if you were on the other side? What would make you stop and look? Start there. Create content that touches on an emotion, or tells a story, or that speaks directly to a circumstance – images need to make the audience stop scrolling and read what you have to say.
Absolutely! If you don’t love what you’re doing, why should anyone else? This is your chance to share your passions, your ambitions, your desires, your visions, your goals… and to make a difference. Love your social channels, the followers, the people who interact – and give them a reason to love your brand too.
When and if you start to implement a strategy into your marketing and follow these basic rules about how to find relevant and interested parties – then you will see results happen. And if you’re not sure where to start or how to do any of these things… ask!
Are you ready? 🚀
Get in touch and let’s have a conversation on how your business can benefit from high engaging content.
Be sure to grab our FREE 2021 Social Media Awareness days calendar while you’re here to help discover more ways of engaging with your audience…
Many people strive for success and this can come in various forms depending on what success means for you. Financial freedom, a good work-life balance, owning a business – each and every person has their own thoughts on what success means for them.
If you’re not completely satisfied with how your career or work life is going or heading, and you’re not feeling the joy of success, perhaps it’s time to take a step back and re-evaluate.
Setting up a business and working for yourself can have huge implications to your life, especially if you’re seeking a better work-life balance, and can be the answer that you’re looking for in order to be a more happier, independent and passionate person.
Many people dream about having their own business but get stuck on the ‘how to’ of getting started, often causing a stumbling block and even an excuse not to get started. But if you’re looking for encouragement in getting started and help along the way – we’re here to offer that and to give you as much guidance as we can to help you on your way. Don’t let barriers get in your way, hurdles and obstacles can be overcome – but you need to be in the right mindset to get there.
What are the main benefits to owning a business and working for yourself?
1) Financial freedom
Working for yourself means that you have the opportunity to work the hours you want or need in order to obtain the financial income that you want, or need. Depending on the industry that you head into, and the other commitments you may have, the world is your oyster in how much you can benefit financially when becoming your own boss.
However be aware that it is harder to motivate yourself and stay on track when you’re running your own business! There’s no one there to push you forward, telling you to get the work finished or making you stay 9-5 … you have to do this yourself. Not having a time-sheet or accountability can be hard at first, but when you are in a routine and have the motivation to want to earn, you’re on the right track. It may not happen overnight, but you will get there if you persevere.
Set goals of what income you need in order to see financial freedom – and what does financial freedom actually mean for you as this is different for everyone. Little by little you can reach your financial goals until you hit the place where you need to be. Once you’re there, make a plan in order to sustain that income.
2) Work-life balance
Yes it’s hard work being a business owner, especially when you first start out but if you can start out with the mindset that this is going to work around your other commitments and personal life, you’ll have a better chance that your work-life balance is going to be successful. Start as you mean to go on!
On the flip side of that, you still need to give 100%. This may mean working in a way that you are not used to, or working different hours to accommodate, it’s about balance and finding a routine that works for you personally.
What does a work-life balance mean for you?
Do you have family responsibilities, volunteer commitments, regular things that you need to do? However you balance your workload is completely up to you when you’re a business owner – find a pattern that is sustainable, try not to commit to things that are out of reach or make life harder, and enjoy the benefits of both a happy lifestyle and business that is passionate for you.
When you own your business, you can set your own goals and see them achieved.
When you’re working for someone else you can often feel trapped into achieving someone else’s goals. This is your chance to find your feet, set your own targets and head directly for your own success.
- What do you want to achieve?
- What have you always wanted to do that could be brought into the goals of your new business?
The best way to see success and achieve your goals is to set out a business and marketing plan aligned with where you want to be and how you’re going to get there. Follow the plan and if necessary find someone that you can be accountable to in order to stay on track of your plan.
4) Organisation & Efficiency
If you’re not one for being efficient and simply doing ‘what you need when you need to’, running your own business (should) shape you into being effective in all that you do. Productivity is a must if you want to be successful – start with this mindset when you begin your business and stay in this habit in order for it to continue long-term.
- How do you plan your day?
- What steps do you do in order to see something accomplished?
How about starting with a physical planner where you write down your goals, create step by step targets to achieve them and work out a plan of action in order to see the results? Much better than playing it by ear and hoping for the best! Efficiency and productivity are great tools but ones that need to be worked at and adhered to. However when you get into the routine of following them, you’ll see a more positive outcome and better results.
5) Positive Attitude
When you’re doing something you love, you’ll have the motivation to do it. Unlike a 9-5 where you go because you have to, watching the time tick by, you’ll be positive in what you’re doing. When you’re positive and happy in what you’re doing, you’ll see better results.
“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” ~ Zig Ziglar
Success and achievement have an effect not just on the physical aspect of what you’re doing but in your personal attitude and lifestyle too.
Everyone dreams, everyone has goals that they’d love to see come to fruition. If you can put that desire into your own business and see dreams achieved, how much more confident and passionate will you become?
When it comes to starting a business, ensure that you find something that you are passionate about. Once you’ve found that passion, create a plan of action and a timeline of how you’re going to get started and what you need to move forward. Set SMART goals – be realistic in achievements and plan out your marketing to reach those goals.
Get creative, find inspiration, be motivated by passion.
Are you thinking about starting a business? Once you’re ready to get started, give us a call to talk about an online marketing strategy – we’d love to hear your story, see what you’re looking to do and help you get there. Speak soon!
The holiday season may be the best time of year to look forward to but as a business owner do you find that your social media activity spikes just at the same time as you’re heading away from the office? It’s a typical scenario and often the busiest time of year when other team members are requesting time off too, you’re looking forward to spending time with the family – and you’re wondering how you’re going to keep up with your online marketing.
We know that social media doesn’t take a vacation, so how do you manage both sides of the coin and enjoy your holidays whilst knowing that your social channels are all up to date? Often when businesses are looking at what they can cut back on during the holiday season, marketing is one of the things that gets dropped. However your marketing is still a vital and essential part of any business and helps to keep the business sustained all year through. Dropping it can have bigger implications later on in the year.
Here’s our 7 tips on preparing for the holiday season
Get ready with a social media calendar, now!
This time of year means that there’s much more to juggle, so planning ahead makes perfect sense. Using a calendar will help to see what content needs to be created (it can be harder to visualise when it’s not written down or laid out in front of you).
We love our own Social Media Planner, it gives us the perfect space to plan ahead, to write in notes as we think of them and to organise and plan goals and targets. All of these come together to form part of your online marketing plan.
A calendar is also good for dates that you know are coming up, national awareness days, events that are important to your business and anything that you know is imminent. Put it on the calandar and once it’s all there, you can think about how it’s going to look and feel on your social channels.
Work with local businesses
It doesn’t have to all be about you and your business, if you know you’re stepping away from the office for a while, why not tap into someone else’s resources? You can promote or share stories from local businesses, charities & worthy causes, friends or family businesses. It’s a great way to involve your local community and for people to know that you care about what’s happening around you. It also helps with raising your profile in the community.
As we (should) know, social media marketing should not be all about self-promotion. People will get very bored very quickly and switch off – resulting in your audience diminishing. There is a way to keep content pumping through and keeping your audience engaged – with curated content. This means that you are sourcing relevant content that you can use on your channels that will give your followers extra resources to read, learn from, engage with and much more. Headline: You are not the only expert in your field! And there is no point in wasting time trying to compete all the time. Use industry experts to help your cause, to provide value to your customers and to give even more inspiration to the people engaging with your channels. You only have to go online to find relevant articles or images – plan and add these into your content calendar.
Here’s a great read from Buffer: How to Schedule Social Media Content for Next Week, Next Month, and Next Year
Get others involved
When you create content on the hoof and quickly, you’re doing all the work; the content, the image creation, the thought-process. However, if you get others involved, you may gain a different perspective, ideas and initiatives that could have great results for your marketing and for your business long-term. If you’ve got a team, ask them for ideas and thoughts on what they think your audience would like to see and hear. If you’re a solo business owner and do create all your own content, why not ask people that are interacting with your business what they would like to hear about. Alternatively, you could ask a friend or family member to take a look over your social profiles and to give you an idea or suggestion on what they think may be a good read.
Create a theme
A nice way to show that things may be a little different for a season is to create a theme and have everything during that time fall into that theme. Not only does it give a refreshed look and feel to your content, but it shows that you’re trying something new and changing your plan for that season. The summer can be the perfect time for a theme change: think sun / sea / sand and how you can brand your content around a summer emphasis.
This can be applied throughout the year at different holiday seasons, like Christmas or new year: a branded theme can run straight through all that you produce.
Run a competition or promotion
The last thing you want to happen is for your content to flop while you’re away and this is where a competition or promotion could be the perfect tool. Set up a promotion that will last through your time away, with the winner being announced after your return.
Competitions always generate engagement, so while your promotion is getting interaction, your page is also gaining in momentum and engagement. To take it one step further you could promote User Generated Content, this is of course free advertising and will help with generating content throughout your holiday season – Ask them to tag or share your content, if someone loves what they see, they will share it.
Schedule ahead for paid advertising
Paid advertising needs to have just as much care and attention that organic social media posts. If you’re looking at continuing in paid advertising during your time away from the office, ensure that you have your ads pre-approved prior to you going away. This means planning in advance and setting up Facebook Ads for example in plenty of time for them to go through the system. If tweaks need to be made, have you given yourself enough time to make the adjustments? If this is something that you’re not sure on, make sure you gain expert advice. You could waste a lot of money if you leave your paid advertising running without setting it up correctly to start with.
A holiday season needs to be enjoyed and looked forward to. It can be quite stressful to put everything in place to cover this time, but utilise all resources around you, tap into colleagues or friends and always do as much in advance as possible. Of course you will still need to engage with those who are interacting with your page but this is much easier to do from your mobile if everything else is set up and running automatically. (Or hire a VA to cover your engagements during this time)
What scheduling tool do we recommend? There are so many to choose from but for ease of use and costs effectiveness, we love Hootsuite. You can have up to three profiles with the free account and it’s very simple to use. If you’ve got any other scheduling tool suggestions, we’d love to hear them!
It’s also worth thinking about outsourcing your online marketing during busy seasons. Using a digital agency means that you can completely let go and know that your marketing is in good hands while you’re putting your feet up and taking some well-earned relaxation time. The time and energy it takes to plan and schedule everything in advance, being active on the channels while you’re away and ensuring that everything is working properly, can be balanced out by outsourcing to a reputable agency to cover it all for you. If you’d like to know more about working with an online marketing agency, we’d love to chat with you and discuss your options. Your business success is our success – and we’re here to make your marketing as smooth and effective as possible. Get in touch and let’s talk strategy.
In the meantime, why not download our Awareness Days calendar to put some of those engaging dates in your diary. It’s free to download 😊