Here are our marketing predictions for small businesses in 2019. We hope you are as excited about 2019 as we are -there’s a lot of doom and gloom around at the moment but we’re determined to remain upbeat and positive!
The marketing world is changing at a scary pace, making it harder to differentiate your business, here are some marketing predictions for 2019 for Small Businesses, that we’ve seen within existing client activity and also what we think you should keep an eye out for in 2019:
1. From last year it is clear that people are putting more trust in others they know and reputable content, not adverts. Trusted review sites really did become more prominent in small businesses, gradually filtering down from the Amazon model of trusted purchasing. Your service is now your word! For all the good reviews you really should be making the most of these.
2. A few years ago a study showed that the most trusted sources of advertising were people you know, editorial sites (news), and reviews. Adverts were near the bottom of the list, and that hasn’t really changed today. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continue with traditional adverts, but there are other avenues to explore and to be clever with your advertising. Take a look at content marketing, influencer marketing, referral partnerships, and other methods that are designed to deliver targeted information to specific audiences – not the masses. Make your content useful and relevant – but think about SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) as this will bring your content higher in search results. Visitors to your site need to have gained knowledge from reading about your service or product in a blog post. So don’t just do blogs, for blogs sake! The user experience matters so get the simple things right. Content must be arranged in a way that is easily accessible for visitors – when a reader lands on your home page, they must find exactly what they are looking for. Remember that if the user doesn’t find what they are looking for quickly they will leave!
3. Everyone in the same marketplace is selling roughly the same thing. Creativity will set you apart from your competitors. For example, people have been saying for a long time that print isn’t used anymore and that everything’s gone digital. This is largely true but differentiating yourself with something refreshing to read and on paper can really make your business stand out. Last year we produced a newspaper for a client with a specific target audience, which essentially turned into their brochure – selling all products, but in an interesting and content driven format. In a world led by Mailchimp and alike, the ‘old fashioned way’ gave them the limelight.
4. Understanding your customers preferred communication methods and search method for your service or product is essential. Some of it is hard to predict as technology has evolved tremendously over the last few years but analysts say they think almost 50% of all searches will be made through voice search by 2020. Let’s see if that actually happens but the big question is, how do YOUR clients like to communicate? People now expect businesses to communicate with them in a way they like. Some use messenger apps like Facebook Messenger. Facebook Messenger has a huge reach with over 2 billion active monthly users. According to Facebook, 1 in 2 people say they are more likely to buy from a business they can message directly. Chatbots allow you to provide a responsive service 24/7, answering enquiries from your web site instantly. Don’t worry, this can be automated out of hours but also allows you not to miss an opportunity!
5. It’s not all about you! We’re all guilty of this. There is too much of ‘we offer this’ and ‘we are specialist in…’. Whether it’s the text on your website or the words your team use when they speak about the company, it’s not about you but about the potential clients and their specific needs. If you keep this in mind, you will be solving the clients original problem, where you have the solution, and that’s what they will remember you for.
6. Small companies now have the advantage of delivering personal messaging. There’s still far too much red tape in the large organisations and small businesses have the golden opportunity to produce quicker and engaging content rather than just static advertisements governed by rigid brand guidelines. The key message here is, just because you’re small doesn’t mean you need to have a small voice.
7. Create experiences. Good service is expected and somewhat a given these days, so go that extra mile. Make sure customers walk away feeling loved, as they are likely to be your biggest virtual sales team – recommending your business to colleagues and friends.
8. Add video to your social media strategy this year. Consider the opportunities for engaging with new and existing audiences through video. Think how you could bring your business to life with a brand video. ‘Live video’ takes things one step further, but in a more immediate, authentic way. This can work really well for certain situations but ensure everyone in the workplace is aware you are ‘going live!
9. Helpfulness and authenticity: There’s no stopping marketing automation and these systems are great – but it’s still important to add the personal touch. Although automation might cover basic tasks, it’s important to do your best to add a personal touch or offer direct help where possible.
10. Don’t try and do it all yourself! Sounds like a plug I know, but many business owners try and do a lot of marketing work themselves and as a result are not getting the important work done (or end up doing no marketing at all), because they are doing work that they shouldn’t be doing. As a business owner you want to spend your time growing and managing the business. The good thing is that most know how important marketing is for the growth of your business. See what Brand Brown do and can help you.
My final tip therefore, is to have a chat with us to see how we could help manage your marketing activity for you! You probably don’t need a full time marketing person, but do need some help. Get in touch today on 020 3675 2424 and we would be delighted to have a chat about how we can help grow your business. Or look at our latest projects.