10 Compelling Marketing Strategies for Business Growth You Can't Ignore
Growth can feel like a never ending pursuit. For startups that need to scale their operations fast, a marketing plan that gets real results can seem downright unattainable. Fortunately, you've come to the right place. We've compiled ten marketing tips that are guaranteed to point your growth strategy in the right direction — if you’re an entrepreneur with a startup or small business that needs to grow, these tips are for you. Let’s dive right in:
1. Analyze Your Competitors
In practically any market, you won’t get far if you don’t know what you’re up against. That’s why competitor analysis is a cornerstone of any successful small business marketing strategy. Analyzing your competitors gives you insight into the successes and failures of companies like yours, which not only helps you stay one step ahead of the competition but also clues you in to opportunities you might be missing.
For example, studying your competitors’ product or service offerings could reveal a demand within your target market that you had previously overlooked. Likewise, you might discover a new audience altogether based on the groups your competitors are targeting.
Paying attention to what your competitors are doing right is important — but it’s just as important to pay attention to what they’re doing wrong. Another way to approach competitor analysis is to identify the needs or customer segments within your market that your competitors are neglecting. These market gaps are often the best places to focus your market penetration efforts. Be sure to subscribe to your competitors email or blog to be aware of their email marketing strategy.
2. Get to Know Your Target Audience
Knowing your target customer segment(s) is perhaps the most fundamental marketing tip there is to identify your target market. The world’s most effective marketing campaign will fall flat if it isn't aligned with the right audience. That's why in addition to analyzing your competitors, analyzing your potential customers should be a top priority of your market research efforts.
You should have a clear picture of the specific person who is most likely to want what your company is offering, including their demographic information, pain points, needs, preferences, interests, values, and anything else of relevance. This picture is called a buyer persona. Your company might have one buyer persona or several. A couple of the best ways to gather customer insights for buyer personas is to conduct surveys and analyze data from your business’s website or social media accounts.
3. Make Sure Your Website Is Mobile Friendly
Of the many ways to promote your business online, few are as impactful as mobile optimization. Studies suggest that there will be approximately 7.49 billion mobile users worldwide by 2025 — up from 2.5 billion less than 10 years previously. It’s absolutely vital that you make your business’s online presence accessible to this enormous audience.
While mobile users were once a growing subset of customers, the vast majority of customers now expect seamless mobile experiences from brands regardless of industry. Ignoring this demand will result in a significant amount of lost business. To avoid alienating smartphone or tablet users, take the time to optimize your website and any other online resources for mobile devices.
4. Take Advantage of Social Media
As we all know, using social media is a fantastic marketing growth strategy for connecting with an incredibly broad audience. However, its value as a marketing tool does not actually lie in its ability to share information with wide swathes of customers; it’s much more valuable for its ability to help digital marketers narrow in on specific market segments.
Use social media to engage directly with customers and learn about the people using your product or service. Don’t use it as a megaphone to try to spread your marketing message across the entire internet at once. Especially when it comes to small business marketing, you’ll likely have more success using social media as a direct pipeline of engagement that informs your picture of your ideal customer.
Similarly, consider aligning your social media presence with the types of customers you’re targeting instead of trying to dominate every social media channel at once. For example, if you’re selling a consumer product to young adults, you’ll probably find the most valuable engagement on a platform like Tik Tok or Instagram. On the other hand, if your focus is business to business marketing (B2B marketing), you might have more luck posting regularly on LinkedIn or Facebook. Consider hiring influencers to do influencer marketing to increase
5. Create High-Quality Content
You’ve probably heard a lot about the importance of SEO, or search engine optimization, for successful content marketing. It’s true that it’s crucial to optimize your content to rank as highly as possible in search engine results pages (SERPs). A well-optimized content strategy is one of the best ways to improve the flow of new leads to your website. There’s a wide range of factors that contribute to on-page SEO, from the keywords you use, to the hyperlinks you include, and much more.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that the quality of the content on the page makes a huge difference when it comes to search engine ranking potential. Including the right keywords and technical SEO elements is only half the battle — the other half is providing information that’s extremely relevant and useful for your audience. Not only will relevant, high-quality content make it easier for search engine algorithms to index your web pages accurately, but it will also build goodwill with customers who benefit from the information you publish.
6. Stay Consistent
You may have heard it before, but it can’t be overstated: consistency is key in digital growth marketing. Publishing content (or better yet, distributing personalized marketing materials) on a regular basis is a great way to make sure your brand stays top-of-mind for your audience.
Social media marketing is even more dependent on regularity. Posting frequently on social media using a consistent schedule greatly improves the odds that your target audience will see your posts, since the more frequently a user interacts with your content the more likely your content is to continue appearing in their feed.
7. Humanize Your Brand
Despite the rise of AI, personalization is still a key point for customers in many industries. That doesn’t mean you should be afraid to embrace technological innovations; it simply means that you also shouldn’t lose sight of the value of a personal brand experience.
Humanizing your brand is all about showing customers that they’re dealing with real people who genuinely want to help them solve a problem — not with a faceless, robotic organization that can’t see beyond its own self-interest. One of the easiest and most effective ways to start humanizing your brand is to let some of your personality or sense of humor show through in your business’s content. There is also an incredible amount of value in storytelling as a tool for building a relatable brand image.
8. Nurture Customers with Email Campaign Strategies
One of the most frequent areas of uncertainty among entrepreneurs is the role of email marketing. You might have heard that email is dying or that it is no longer worth investing in as a marketing tool; however, this is simply not true. According to a report compiled by HubSpot, there are still 4 billion daily email users in 2023. That’s far too large a group of potential customers to ignore.
Email lists remain one of the best mediums for following up with prospects and encouraging repeat business from customers. A well-tailored marketing email sent at just the right moment in the buyer journey can have a tremendous impact on a customer’s decision-making process.
9. Implement Customer Loyalty Programs
Customer loyalty programs are another traditional marketing tactic that continue to hold a seat at the table of modern digital marketing for the simple reason that they continue to work. When you’re evaluating the worth a customer brings to your business, you have to consider their entire lifetime value, not just the value of their first purchase. Customers who have great experiences are more likely to return and make future purchases (or continue to pay for your services long-term), thereby increasing their projected lifetime value.
Customer loyalty programs are both a way to incentivize repeat business from first-time customers and a way to make sure that the customers with the highest lifetime values continue to have top-tier experiences. By offering rewards or discounts to those who give you their business time and again, you can build strong relationships with loyal customers and continue to increase their lifetime values at the same time.
10. Leverage Customer Testimonials
Some startups unwisely tinker with their products for months or years before they ever put it in the hands of an actual end user. Yet, reading reviews is a non-negotiable step in the decision-making process for many customers. According to a survey of over 8,000 consumers from the United States, 45% of customers won’t even consider your product or service if they can’t find any reviews online.
That’s why it’s usually best to start conducting beta tests with real users as soon as you have a minimum viable product (MVP). An MVP is the first version of your product that delivers the expected value to the end user even if it isn’t perfect yet — kind of like a first draft. Once you get a working MVP into users’ hands, you can start leveraging their feedback to improve the product and their written reviews to attract subsequent rounds of buyers.
Bonus Tip: Don’t Underestimate the Power of Business Advisors
Effective marketing for business growth is a tall order. If you need help applying any of these growth strategies, consider finding a business advisor online. A marketing advisor is someone with extensive first hand experience as a startup founder or marketer who can guide you as you implement these marketing tips to make sure you’re using them to maximum effect.