The Most Modern Ways to Market Your Small Business
The world of marketing is constantly shifting and shaking up. New technology, adjusted algorithms, emerging competitors and hundreds of other factors can change your marketing landscape. While some tried-and-true tactics stick around for the long haul, other tools and strategies nose dive towards an early retirement.
If your business is trying to optimize your return on investment, it’s best to stay informed or find a team of professionals who can do that for you.
Wondering what strategies are out of style and what is here to stay for 2024? Find out what juice is worth the squeeze as you set your marketing strategy for the new year. The digital marketing team at Emerge has seen the following five marketing topics ramping up in popularity for 2024:
Artificial Intelligence (AI) Marketing
Artificial Intelligence has skyrocketed in popularity. Entering the New Year, using AI to aid in your marketing is often the rule and no longer the exception.
It has been a hot-button topic at Emerge and other marketing agencies across the country.
Wondering why AI is trending in marketing? Well, according to Google’s AI tool, Bard:
“Overall, AI is transforming the marketing landscape by offering powerful tools for data analysis, personalization, and automation. This trend is likely to continue, making it crucial for marketers to understand and embrace AI to stay ahead of the curve.”
You can utilize AI tools as inspiration for writing website pages and social media posts, use them to better interpret your data, put them to work as research tools and help make everyday tasks more efficient.
While AI often falls short when it comes to fully capturing the human touch that small business customers crave, understanding the time and place to use it can help you transform your marketing or automate internal processes.
Take a task like responding to Google reviews for example, AI tools like ChaptGPT or Bard can help you create a template for responding to positive reviews. However, if a bad review rolls around, your personal knowledge of the situation and sincerity are priceless. Always be sure to consider if your time or the task is more important.
Another way AI helps you reach your audience more effectively is through chatbots. When examining marketing trends for 2023, Emerge explored how small business owners can save time and capture users’ attention by adding an AI chatbot to their website.
Video Marketing Services
Video marketing, particularly short-form content, is a powerful marketing trend that just won’t stop. TikTok’s popularity, particularly among young demographics, has shifted the consumption of content across social media and websites alike. Now as you scan through the digital scene, there are TikTok videos, Instagram and Facebook Reels, YouTube Shorts and even videos scattered throughout websites.
Not only do users love videos, but the algorithm is rewarding them too. Anything to keep you on their platform as long as they can is considered a win.
The same can be said for the Google algorithm, the search engine giant isn’t just looking at the text on your website pages. Videos embedded into your site can be seen as a positive way to offer information and a strong variety of content.
You don’t even have to stop at short-form content. Creating promotional videos, drone footage of worksites, informative how-to videos and more can help expand your digital footprint and increase the value you’re providing to users.
But the thing that small business owners need to keep top of mind is return on investment (ROI). Even a viral video can fall short of pulling in leads. Think about a video that reaches thousands, even millions of viewers, if you’re a local plumber or roofer none of those views matter unless they’re in your area, owning property and specifically looking for your services at that time.
Use your videos to attract the attention of a warmer lead by implementing videos into your website or creating content that serves your local audience on social media platforms like YouTube.
Pricey promo videos have a time and place, but if you’re looking to kickstart your video marketing try free and easy-to-use tools that allow you to string together photos, video clips and music to create straightforward video content.
PRO-TIP: Emerge can help you develop a simple video to get the message out. Let us know if you need help.
Creating Quality Content
When Google determines how well your website pages are going to rank online, one of their key factors is the quality of the content.
Throughout 2022 and 2023, the search engine released multiple “helpful content updates.” These updates adjusted how Google evaluated content based on quality and usefulness.
Diving into Google algorithms can be complex but you can take a simple approach. Focus on writing content that answers your users’ questions, provides them with valuable context about your services and even photo evidence.
Keep your content accurate and up to date on your site and Google Business Profile. This not only helps out potential clients and customers, but it also provides Google with the proof it needs to determine if your content is trustworthy and helpful.
- Confusing pages written entirely by AI
- Keyword stuffing
- Outdated information
- Pages with no value to users
- Pages bogged down with code
- Slow-loading media
- Duplicated or plagiarized content
Once you have this quality content it’s the marketing gift that keeps on giving! Rework the same copy, photos and videos for social media, Google Business Profile posts, brochures, leave-behinds and more.
Improving Existing Content
When you launch a website, you’re testing out new content that has never cycled through Google before. Google uses hundreds of factors to determine where a site should rank and each search result is tailored towards unique users, geography and more.
Optimizing content for search is not an exact science. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) experts use best practices when creating new content, but it’s not a guaranteed success.
Luckily, once you’ve published content, it’s out there gathering heaps of helpful data for you.
Once you can see how your content consistently compares to competitors, you’re able to start making adjustments. By improving existing content, you’re able to get a higher value out of work you’ve already done, extend the longevity of your hard work and edit it based on the latest data.
Many marketers specializing in SEO sing the praises of the tried-and-true SEO audit. A process involving the review of your competition and your website content in order to pinpoint room for improvement. From there you make changes, resubmit your content to Google and wait (typically 90 days) to see how your revised page or post performs.
Why is improving existing content so advantageous in 2024? It protects your investment. By keeping up with your website, monitoring your rankings on Google and making adjustments as algorithms change you’re able to stay ahead of the competition without starting from scratch.
Some key steps to an SEO audit can include:
- Checking if your page is indexed
- Ensuring there are no errors when accessing your page
- Reviewing redirects to or from the page
- Checking headings to see if they’re optimized
- Ensuring your metadata is unique and well-written
- Reviewing your content for user experience and keyword use
- Optimizing or re-optimizing images
- Checking page speed
- Checking or adding schema markup to your website
- Reviewing pages that link to your page
Marketing Your Company Culture
Consumers are realizing the power of their dollar, have you recognized the power of your culture? More than ever, people are considering their personal values while shopping for goods or paying for services.
For large enterprises, you’ll often see them promoting their efforts to be more sustainable or charitable.
At the small business level, it’s more about presenting yourself as a positive member of the community, a good employer and an approachable business. This not only appeals to consumers but also helps you land prospective hires.
No one wants to work for or hire the shady contractor that’s on blast in Nextdoor or for the restaurant whose staff walked out of work due to bad conditions.
They want to call the business with great reviews, social media photos from company events, and a record of giving back to the community and their workers. Think of cultivating a positive culture as good karma for your business.
If you take good care of clients, community and coworkers – they’re going to bring that value right back to you in the form of a great reputation and steady flow of referrals.
Your small business might not be able to donate millions each year to charity, but you can make a positive impression by showing off your company’s excellent services, good deeds and happy employees.
Need Help Keeping Up With the Latest Marketing Trends?
Small business owners are often overwhelmed trying to keep up with all the tasks associated with running a business. It can be easy to let marketing slip by the wayside, especially if you’re trying to do it all yourself.
Emerge has fractionalized marketing, monthly SEO and website design services that are perfectly tailored to small businesses. Looking for someone to keep up with the marketing trends while you keep operations running smoothly?
Give the experts at Emerge a call to get your marketing up-to-date and ready to go in 2024.