First off I will start with what probably should be placed at the end of this story. My Story
As a small business owner setting up a business has been both very challenging and rewarding at the same time.
Below are some tips that may be useful to you in the process of setting up and running a business.
Use every tool, trick, and idea you can learn. Sounds Easy? As a rule, If it’s easy it’s probably only a tiny bit good, maybe. The trick is don’t just jump in and start.
One of the biggest challenges a small business owner faces is keeping up with big businesses. These larger companies with their big marketing budgets and bulk purchasing power can easily overshadow small businesses, both physically and in the digital world. While it may seem like you’re fighting an uphill battle, there are plenty of advantages that small businesses have over their larger competitors.
When you own a small business, you don’t always have the budget to spend on the non-essentials. But many are free.
Plan it into your Business Plan.
Carry through, results take time.
Never take the short cut
Think 🤔 about today tomorrow, next week, month, year, and beyond.
This is the big one. After you add everything like social media, marketing, tools, sites, and apply what you learned to your business and you’ve added it all. Guess what, you're ready to start. What? Yes, this is the trick. Create new ways to combine or change what is available to everyone, Tools etc…, into new methods or different visuals or designs anything that makes it better! Then do that again always adding value to your sites and buyers.
Whenever you’re trying to attract new customers, you have to give them a really good reason to choose your business over your competitors.
If you’re struggling to get people through the door, make sure you’re projecting the right image. Does your storefront, website or branding need a revamp? Is your packaging too fussy or too bland? Does your brand match your products? Does your corporate look convey the right expectations, like good value, quality, trustworthiness, professionalism, reliability? Customers often judge on the image, so pay attention to the messages you convey through your brand.
Could you simply lower your prices to undercut your competitor? You’ll probably manage to steal a few of their customers and boost your sales in the short term. However, you need to think about this carefully: what would you do if your competitor simply undercut you in return? Could you survive vanishing profit margins in a race to the bottom? Would you be destroying the perceived value of your product or service by making it too cheap? Think about all of the consequences of slashing your prices.
Could you throw in free home delivery, a longer warranty, a no-quibble returns policy, a free gift or a voucher? What about easier payment options like mobile payment? You need to give your competitors’ customers a reason to switch their allegiance, and free extras are a great, visible way to make your business stand out without changing your products or prices.
Customer service is so important, with many people saying they’d pay extra for it. Treating your existing customers well, dealing with inquiries and complaints efficiently, and making their experience an enjoyable one, is an excellent strategy for customer retention. It can also be surprisingly effective in attracting your competitors’ customers. If you go that extra mile to make your customers feel special, they’ll tell their friends, family and even mention you on social media. When a new customer does walk through your door for the first time, make it an easy and enjoyable experience for them and they may well choose to stay. This is perhaps the most important way your business can stand out from the larger competition. As a small business owner, you have the ability to develop a deeper, stronger, more personal relationship with your customers. Customer service has just as much value as any product or service you offer. Customers appreciate and pursue relationships and experiences, not just end results. If your customers know you provide a relationship they can’t get at that big business, they’ll come to you first even if it costs them a little extra.
A few benefits of a killer social media strategy:
Increased brand awareness
Grow a larger audience
Connect with your audience better
Increased website traffic
Generate more leads
Make more sales and money
There’s no doubt about it – social media should be a vital component of your overall marketing efforts.
DECIDE ON THE FOLLOWING:
1) Decide WHO your target audience is – Who are you trying to reach?
2) What social media networks are you going to be using? (Hint, you want to be where your audience hangs out)
Write down your monthly goals and create a list of things you need to share this month. What is super important for you to accomplish this month? Here are a few examples…
Are you launching a new program or product?
Are you hosting an event?
Do you want to sell of your products?
Are you trying to add 1,000 new subscribers?
Do you want to reach 3,000 Facebook fans?
This is helpful because it determines the type of content you should focus on sharing. Plus, you can pre-schedule out your promotional content as you need it.
Share compelling visuals whenever you can
People have come to expect social posts to include a visual component.Twitter’s internal data, for example, shows that people are three times more likely to engage with Tweets that have visual elements like avideo, photo, infographic, or GIF.
Socialimagesdrive real-world action, too.More than half of millennialshave made travel plans or visited a restaurant based on an image orvideoa friend shared on social.
Instagram, Pinterest, andSnapchat, in particular, are visual-first networks. If your content doesn’t look good, no one will stop scrolling to read what you have to say.
You’ll need to create graphics for:
Coverphotosfor each social media platform you have
Imagesfor your opt-in freebies (you’ll want to post these on Facebook sometimes)
Facebook and Twitter posts
Instagramimages– (You can use copyright-free stockphotosor create a graphic using Canva or PicMonkey.)
Every business’simagesand graphics will differ, but you’ll want to make them cohesive with your brand and always eye-catching.
Repurpose existing assets
Don’t forget that everything you share on social media or in youremail newsletter doesn’t need to be brand new.
By repurposing the great content you already have and delivering it in new ways, you can get more out of the content you’ve already created. Not only will you save time, but can help create brand consistency, build authority, and raise awareness in a whole new way.
For small businesses, with their a smaller staff and less formal processes in place, is often it much easier to innovate than it is for larger business with a corporate structure. Yes, larger companies may have the budget to try a new platform or build a mobile app, but time is of the essence.
Being a big business doesn’t necessarily mean being seen as big. There are many large corporations out there that have a mediocre presence across the nation. There are also many small businesses out there that have a big name in their community. Being a small business that has a well-earned reputation in your surrounding area, and that receives daily praise, in person by its customers can be much more rewarding than a larger business that may not enjoy such benefits.
One of the great benefits of being a small business owner is the closer connection you have with your target audience. Consumers like businesses that engage with them, such as on social media, but it’s extra meaningful when the owner of the company is the one writing blog posts, responding to reviews, or commenting back on social media posts.
Also, by engaging with your target audience directly, you can discover new needs and services they are looking for much faster than a big business can.
Your small business might not have the bandwidth for massive new ideas, but it does have the advantage of executing and iterating quickly which is the key to getting the results you want. With less red tape to cut through and a more centralized location to brainstorm, plan, and execute, your small business can actually use innovation for its competitive edge over big businesses.
Social share buttons are a key element in increasing the “virality” of your site, which can, in turn, drive traffic and boost online sales. Make sure the buttons to the popular social networks—Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest—are easy for users to find.
To implement this social media marketing tip on your own online store, consider an app likeAddThis, which has its own analytics and can help you optimize positioning and layout.
Social media marketing needs a creative touch
Effective social media marketing should involve curating content, scheduling product-related posts, and automating what you can.
But bringing out the best in social media marketing is about more than broadcasting your brand—it’s about understanding, engaging and reacting to your audience and the world they live in.
Because when so many brands use social media as a soapbox to pitch their products, it pays to be one of the ones building a real connection with their audience and adding a bit of joy to their day-to-day lives.
Things to consider
If there are any especially interesting aspects of the business, they should be highlighted and used to attract financing. For example, Tesla Motors Inc.’s electric car business essentially began as only abusiness plan.
Abusiness planis not meant to be a static document. As the business grows and evolves, so should itsbusiness plan. An annual review of the plan allows an entrepreneur to update it when taking evolving involving markets into consideration, and it also provides an opportunity to look back and see what has been achieved and what has not.