Small business owners and entrepreneurs face many challenges, from day-to-day problems to the challenge of sticking to a long-term vision. Yet out of all the issues entrepreneurs face are faced with, attracting new customers and clients and generating repeat business can be one of the most challenging and time-consuming. As an entrepreneur and small business owner, what can you do to help generate quality business leads and attract new clients or customers?
Gain A Competitive Edge
In order to gain a competitive edge, you must make it clear to your potential customers and clients that you are the best choice out of everyone in your industry. How can you propel your business to the top? You must offer a unique product or service, whether it’s an all-new product or service or an interesting and unique way of developing and providing an existing product or service. You may consider yourself better than your competition in at least one unique way, and that the products or services you offer are therefore superior, but how do you get that message across to your target market?
Questions To Ask Yourself
In order to stay competitive and relevant, you must answer these questions on a regular basis. Industries and markets can change quickly, and if you aren’t aware of those changes and adjust your strategy accordingly, then you will be left behind.
The five most important questions a small business owner must answer are:
- Who are your main competitors?
- What do THEY do better than YOU?
- What do YOU do better than THEM?
- What is the most important aspect of your business to your target market?
- How can you improve on your existing products or services to better serve your target market?
Digital Marketing Tips To Elevate Your Business
Answering the previous list of questions and developing a strategy is vitally important, but if you are not properly utilizing all of the digital marketing tools at your disposal, your strategy is likely doomed to fail, simply because your target market may not even be aware of your message or your business. What are some ways you can further develop your digital brand and online presence?
- Design For the Future. Utilize a mobile-friendly web design (responsive themes are a great option) and stay on top of current design trends. Google now ranks mobile-friendly websites higher in the search results.
- Get Listed. Utilize online directories appropriate for your industry, especially the ones that don’t require an upfront fee (examples are Google, Bing, Angie’s List, Manta).
- Register to Be Found. Register your website with online webmaster tools – Google+ and Bing are a great place to start.
- Linked to Build Community. Link your social media profiles to your website, and make sure your social media profiles link back to your website. Also, you should only use the social media channels that make sense for your industry. Too many channels, if not maintained on a regular basis, can actually do more harm than good.
- You’re the Expert. Establish your online voice and position yourself as an expert in your field.
- Strategize. Have a solid blog and social media strategy that focuses on topics your clients want and need to read about. Post your blog posts on a regular, consistent schedule.
- What Your Clients Say. Collect positive online reviews and testimonials, and positively and proactively address negative or challenging reviews that you discover online.
- Trust and Credibility. Showcase your awards, credentials, and industry certifications on your website, blog and social media accounts. It is common for people to prefer to do business with people that they know, like and trust.
- Analyze and Improve. Periodically check your website analytics to identify ways to improve.