Overcoming 4 Common Small Business Marketing Problems

Common Small Business Marketing Challenges

As a business owner, ideas for growing your business are bound to be running in the back of your head at all times. No one cares more about your business’ growth than you do, but marketing your business could often prove to be a time consuming and difficult task. People all around the world have faced the common small business marketing problems mentioned in this article. If you are facing one of these challenges right now, or if you want to arm yourself with knowledge to overcome these in the future, then we’ve got you covered.

Problem #1: Getting customers to find you

Let’s face it, running a business is entirely dependant on customers being able to find you. If you aren’t able to maximize the number of customers walking into your store, then you’re facing a marketing challenge that most businesses face. Understanding how consumers find businesses is absolutely important if you want to drive more people to your business.

How you can overcome this:

Put yourself in the consumer’s shoes, and think about the first thing you’d do if you want to, say, find a laundromat near you. Over 80% of people to whom I’ve asked this question say, “I’ll search for ‘laundromats near me’ on Google” on my phone. Or if it’s a restaurant/bar, they usually say, “I’ll search for it on Yelp”.

Consumers primarily search and discover businesses using the internet. If you are not listed online (you can check how you’re listed online for free here), you are going to be ignored by the customer, even if the customer is standing within a less than a mile from your business. Make sure you’re listed online on all major directories to get over this issue.

Problem #2: Losing out to competitors

Following up on what we were saying earlier, consumers discover businesses primarily through online searches. However, when they do make a search, they’ll be confronted with a screen like this one.

Small Business Marketing Problems - Getting Customers to Find You

Consumers like options, and search engines/directories will gladly give them all the options they want. Making these consumers to choose you over your competitors, however, is in your hands.

How you can overcome this:

Consumers look for two things when they are choosing a local business:

    1. Proximity relative to their location:
      You can’t relocate your business for one customer, but you can make sure that your business is listed accurately so that your consumer finds you. Have consistent and accurate information about your business on all websites to get over this issue.
    2. Reviews and star ratings:
      The most common thing that customers do when they have options is look at the online reviews and star ratings of businesses. If you want to make a consumer pick you over your competitor, then work on building positive reviews and 4 or 5-star ratings for your business listings. If you’re unsure about how you can do this, you can read more about generating positive reviews for your businesses here.

Problem #3: Time Management

Time is the most precious resource that you have as a business owner, and you can’t afford to lose it doing redundant tasks. Unfortunately, we hear a lot of business owners say that they do a lot of things manually instead of automating it. May it be marketing via email or social media, manually getting them done is going to prove to be a time consuming ordeal.

How you can overcome this:

Here’s a simple mantra that the marketers at Synup live by:

“If it can be automated, then automate it!”

Automating tasks using tools is cheap and efficient. It also gets the job done significantly faster than it would were you doing it manually. You’d be amazed at how simple it is to let a tool automate your email marketing, accounting or even help you designing posters/banners – you can read more about automating small business marketing here.

Problem #4: Channelizing Your Marketing

You can market your business to consumers in a number of ways, but you probably want to know what the most low risk – low investment – high return option is. Figuring this out is one of the most common small business marketing problems that business owners face. While there is no single correct answer for this, you can do a bunch of things to find the most effective way to market your business.

How you can overcome this:

  1. Understand that different channels work better for different industries/verticals. Check out our industry specific marketing guides section to learn how you can market your business better.
  2. Double down on efforts that work for you. Google AdWords working wonders for you? Invest more in it. A particular promotional deal is helping products fly off the shelves while delivering great profits? Try it on other products as well. Hosting live bands is showing a surge in customers? Do it regularly.
  3. Today’s world is all digital, so make sure that you’re doing all that you can for millennials to find you on social media and through voice search.

Harsha Annadurai

Harsha Annadurai works as an Inbound Marketer at Synup. His excessive love for music and football has led many to believe that he was a jukebox in a football stadium in his past life. You can follow him on Twitter @harshaannadurai.

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