So you have started a new business (or perhaps you are thinking about it), and you know you have a great product or service. You might be so confident that this idea will work and many people could benefit from it. Well it could be true that you are a great businessman when it comes to creating goods and services for your customers, but if you are starting a business by yourself, you are going to need more than that. Going it alone for a while means having to be a jack of all trades. You are your business’ accounting, marketing, product development, etc. One of the most important factors for a successful startup is your marketing strategy. After all, you must be able to reach your target market in order to start making sales.
Marketing can be overwhelming, especially when you are starting a business all on your own. Having a few focus areas to start off with will set your business up for success. Here are some great areas to focus on in the early stages of your business. You do not have to be an expert in all of these categories, but learning some basic and even intermediate skills in these categories will serve your business well while it continues to grow.
Understanding of Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the best way to grow organic traffic to your site. What is organic traffic? Organic traffic is when people find your site on their own, not through any targeted marketing. In other words, someone finding your business through a search engine is organic traffic. The best part about organic traffic? It requires little upkeep and can bring new readers back to old posts year round.
Learning about SEO can be overwhelming at first, but once you set up your website and learn some SEO best practices, it will get easier. This is a big time investment in the beginning, but worth it when you reap the rewards. Do some research on what would rank your particular business higher on search engines. Do research on topics such as on page SEO, off page SEO, and local listings. Once this is set up and in place, it requires minimal upkeep, and you will get the hang of how to integrate it into your writing.
You do not have to be a Photoshop expert, but having some basic knowledge of how to create eye-catching graphics is a huge asset to your new business. Most people are drawn to visuals, so knowing how to create them is a must for any startup. First, you should do some research on what type of graphics work best for your target demographic. Then pick a platform for you to create these illustrations. If you want to keep your marketing budget low, there are great free programs out there. Two examples are Canva and Adobe Spark Post. Both are free to use, and great for beginners. These programs have plenty of templates and options to create unique and engaging content.
Once you find a program and style you like, create some graphics and share them across a variety of platforms. On your website, social media platforms, email marketing campaigns, etc. Having a consistent graphic design style can also start to create brand awareness that will serve your business for years to come.
Another important part of any business is being able to explain and sell your idea in writing. It is easy to overlook how crucial writing is to any business. However, writing is everywhere when it comes to marketing. From something as simple as composing a tweet to writing persuasive sales emails. This is not to say that you need to become an expert copywriter or journalist, but it is important to know basic grammar and find your style as a writer. Staying consistent in your style builds a connection with your target audience.
Having knowledge of persuasive writing techniques can be extremely beneficial as well. There is a fine line between being able to authentically persuade potential customers and coming off as too pushy or aggressive. Learning about some subtle ways to persuade readers through writing will be an asset to your business.
Light Coding and Tech Skills
Lastly, you will need to learn about some technology systems you might not be familiar with. Having a website for your business is critical. First, you need to pick a platform. There are several popular ones out there, so find out what your needs are for your business website, and choose which one will best serve those. Then once you pick a platform, do some research on how to use it and customize it to fit those needs. Luckily you don’t need to know too much about the backend of the technology. Most website platforms have user friendly templates and systems to make things simple for you. A simple Google search will yield tons of great how to guides and YouTube videos.
Some great subjects to start with are learning about beneficial plug-ins for your website platform, how to set up contact forms, proper formatting, and updating themes and color schemes to fit your brand. Know that your website does not have to be perfect, but you want it to be functional with an easy to use design.
Whether you have just started a business on your own, or are considering it, it is important to familiarize yourself with these marketing subjects to achieve the most success early on. After all, marketing is the best way to reach your target audience and find potential customers. While finding the time and tools to do the marketing for your business can seem like a daunting task, focusing on these areas will help keep you on track. Once your business grows, you should be able to hire people with the skills you need to get your business exactly where you want it to be. For now, focus on these key points, and you should continue to grow.