As your small business grows and evolves, you'll probably find that some of your promotional tactics are no longer as effective as they once were. Your business — and the world around it — is changing all the time, and the occasional marketing makeover could be just what your brand needs to get back in the game.
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"Your marketing needs to keep up with your business," said Hunter Hoffmann, head of U.S. communications for small business insurer Hiscox. "Most small businesses evolve or pivot from their initial focus as they react to what works in the marketplace. You can use this opportunity to put more resources to your most effective tactics, cut some of your less successful initiatives and try something new."
Hiscox recommended these four strategies to refresh your efforts and boost your business growth if your marketing has become stale:
- Get organized with mobile apps. Apps are valuable tools to help small business owners manage their operations on the go and maintain their presence in the market. Think about adding productivity apps that will really help you grow your business. A cloud storage platform like Google Drive lets you edit files across PCs, tablets and smartphones so you can maintain consistency across devices. Need help remembering everything? Apps like Evernote sync your notes, photos and documents across all platforms.
- Increase your LinkedIn activity. LinkedIn has a lot to offer small business owners, if you know where to look. Take advantage of LinkedIn groups, which can help you virtually network and stay on top of industry developments. You can also directly message fellow group members even if you're not connected to them. Syncing your LinkedIn and Twitter accounts can also help you increase your visibility without increasing your workload. But before you become more active, revisit your profile. Make sure it's up-to-date and that you have the right picture and headline to represent your business.
- Send out a company newsletter. It's easy to send out newsletters to customers using email marketing programs like Constant Contact or Mail Chimp. Your newsletters should include content relevant to your customers that helps establish you as a thought leader in your space. In your newsletter, feature articles that are relevant to your field from other sources, and then add some of your own tips. With link tracking and social sharing, you can quickly see which content generates the most interest. Be sure to include a way for customers to get in touch with comments or suggestions, which could provide some good topics for future articles.
- Start building an army of brand ambassadors. Brand ambassadors are people who love your brand and can't stop telling other people about how good it is. First, track discussions about your brand, industry and competitors on social media, to see who's already talking about you. The next step is to create relationships that are beneficial for you and your brand ambassadors, and create measurements that connect their activities with sales. Some tactics for turning a fan into a true brand ambassador include giving friends and family discounts they can share with their network, offering exclusive blogging opportunities and sending targeted shout-outs on social media.
Originally published on Business News Daily.