DIY Marketing: 5 Tips To Help You Promote Your Business
Are you looking to give DIY marketing a go?
You’re not alone. About 50 percent of small business owners do marketing on their own and it’s easy to see why.
With so many small businesses running on shoestring budgets, most owners cannot afford to hire an in-house marketing team or even outsource to an agency. Plus, what’s so difficult about marketing that anyone cannot do it?
Well, marketing isn’t a layman’s errand. It does require specialized knowledge, but it’s something any determined business owner can do.
To help you run effective marketing campaigns, we’re sharing a handful of tips and best practices.
Let’s dive in.
1. Learn, Learn, Learn
Marketing is offered as a degree program in several colleges. This tells you that there’s a lot of professional training that goes into becoming a professional marketer.
As an entrepreneur, though, you’re not really interested in going to college to study marketing. You have a business to run. Yet, at the same time, you need to spread awareness of your products and services among your target consumers, and marketing is the most effective way to do so.
The good news is you don’t need to complete a degree program in marketing to become good at marketing. There are short courses you can pursue.
For example, this page has more information on a PPC advertising course. You’ll learn about how to design and implement a successful PPC marketing campaign.
After you’re done with it, take other courses in search engine optimization, social media marketing, email marketing, and online reputation management.
Never stop learning even when you feel you’ve covered every marketing topic. New marketing trends are emerging every year and new techniques are being designed. You must stay abreast of the latest developments.
2. Understand Your Customer
Every marketing campaign has a target customer. As such, your campaigns must be designed with your customer in mind. But do you know who your customer is?
Some small business owners don’t have much information about their customers beyond their location. If you’re an ecommerce business selling to people in the U.S., for example, it’s a no-brainer that your customers live in the country.
But location alone doesn’t tell you everything you need to know about your customer. You also need to know their age, gender, race, lifestyle interests, marital status, household income, and even political leanings.
With this information, you’re in a great position to design a marketing campaign that’s targeted to the customer. For example, if your business targets boomers, knowing how seniors consume content will inform your choice of marketing strategy. Since Facebook is their preferred social media platform, you’ll focus most of your social media marketing efforts on the platform.
That being said, just like marketing trends change, consumer preferences are also always changing. Keeping tabs on your customers habits, such as their social media use, will help you ensure your marketing campaigns are evolving along with consumers’ preferences.
3. Create a Marketing Schedule
The average small business owner wears multiple hats. You’re probably in charge of everything from bookkeeping, recruiting, customer service, and, of course, marketing.
With so many tasks on your plate, it can be difficult to juggle them all. But while some functions can be more forgiving if you neglect them for some time, marketing isn’t. Every day, you need to monitor the progress of your active campaigns and make adjustments as necessary.
This is why a crucial strategy for successful DIY small business marketing is to keep a daily schedule and follow it. For example, you can set aside two hours every day for marketing activities.
With a regular schedule, you’ll easily stay on top of all your marketing initiatives. You’ll be able to detect a slow or ineffective campaign long before it causes a big dent in your marketing budget.
4. Keep an Eye on What Your Competitors Are Doing
Gathering competitive intelligence is a common practice in business. However, while it’s incredibly important to know what new product your competitors are working on, it’s also essential to gain some insight into their marketing methods.
If your competitor’s business website outranks yours on Google, for example, there’s something they’re doing better than you. Maybe they’re publishing a couple more posts on their blog every week. Or their website is getting a lot more backlinks while yours is struggling to get any.
Either way, staying abreast of your competitors’ marketing strategies gives you insights you can use to improve your own strategy. For instance, you can also start blogging more often and find ways to get more backlinks.
Marketing intelligence isn’t just for copying your competitors. It can also help you tighten your grip in the marketplace. If you learn that a competitor is planning to launch an aggressive advertising campaign on TV, you can quickly put together your own campaign to counter it.
5. Combine DIY Marketing with Outsourcing
You’ve your own reasons for taking the DIY approach to marketing. An undeniable thing, though, is you can only keep at it for so long. As the business expands, there will be so much on your plate that you won’t have enough time to do marketing.
It’s time to get some help. However, if your business isn’t yet ready to hire a full-time marketing specialist, it’s advisable to outsource some marketing functions. You can outsource digital marketing, for instance, and keep traditional marketing on your plate.
Outsourcing is typically cheaper than hiring an in-house pro, and you’ll get more value. As long as you find an agency that’s well-staffed, your business will reap several benefits from outsourcing.
Grow Your Business with DIY Marketing
In a perfect world, business owners would leave the marketing to professionals. But this world is far from perfect. Money is scarce, which leaves business owners like you with no choice but to do DIY marketing.
Make no mistake, though. Just because you aren’t a professional marketer doesn’t mean you can’t successfully market your business. With a little bit of learning, customer research, and the right tools, you can run effective marketing campaigns.
Browse our blog for more marketing tips and business advice.