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Creating a Digital Marketing Strategy For Small Businesses


January 19, 2023

3 min read

As a small business owner, you know that digital marketing is crucial for reaching and engaging your target audience online. But, creating a comprehensive and effective digital marketing strategy can seem overwhelming, especially when you’re trying to do it on your own. That’s why we’ve created this step-by-step guide to help you create a strategy that is tailored to your specific needs and goals.

Step 1: Define Your Target Audience

The first step in creating a digital marketing strategy is to define your target audience. Who are your ideal customers? What are their demographics, interests, and pain points? How do they currently find and purchase products/services similar to yours? The more you know about your target audience, the better you’ll be able to reach them and create content that resonates with them.

When defining your target audience, it’s important to be as specific as possible. Instead of saying “everyone,” try to narrow it down to a specific group of people. For example, “working mothers in their 30s with a household income of $75,000+.” By doing this, you’ll be able to create a more targeted and effective marketing campaign.

Step 2: Set Specific, Measurable Goals

The next step is to set specific, measurable goals for your digital marketing efforts. What do you want to achieve? Examples include increasing website traffic, boosting sales, and improving brand awareness. Make sure that your goals are S.M.A.R.T (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound).

For example, a SMART goal for a small business owner might be “increase website traffic by 20% in the next three months through search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising.” By setting a specific and measurable goal like this, you’ll be able to track your progress and determine if your efforts are paying off.

Step 3: Identify Your Unique Value Proposition

What sets your business apart from your competitors? How do you solve your customers’ problems in a unique way? This is your unique value proposition, and it’s an essential part of your digital marketing strategy. Use it to create a clear and compelling message for your marketing efforts.

For example, a small business that sells handmade soap might have a unique value proposition like “Our soap is handmade with all-natural ingredients and is gentle on sensitive skin.” This sets them apart from larger soap manufacturers who use synthetic ingredients and harsh chemicals.

Step 4: Research Your Competition

It’s important to know who your main competitors are in the digital space. What are they doing well and where are they falling short? Use this information to inform your own strategy and tactics.

For example, if your competitor has a large following on Instagram, but their website is not very user-friendly, you could focus on creating a visually appealing website.

Step 5: Choose Your Channels

There are many different digital channels available for reaching your target audience, such as social media, email, search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, etc. Choose the channels that will be most effective for reaching your target audience. 

For example, if your target audience is on Instagram, then it would be a good idea to focus on creating a strong presence on the platform. But, if your target audience is more likely to be found on LinkedIn, then focusing on creating a strong presence on LinkedIn would be more effective.

Step 6: Create a Content Plan

What type of content will you create to attract and engage your target audience? How often will you post new content? Who will be responsible for creating and managing the content? Having a content plan in place will help you stay consistent and focused in your efforts.

For example, if your target audience is interested in wellness and self-care, you could create a content plan that includes weekly blog posts about natural remedies and self-care tips, daily Instagram stories about the benefits of your products, and a monthly newsletter with exclusive discounts and promotions.

Recommended Reading About Content Marketing: How To Build Your Small Business Credibility Using Content Marketing & Web Design

Step 7: Measure and Analyze Your Results

It’s important to track your website traffic, social media engagement, and other key metrics to determine the effectiveness of your efforts. Use analytics tools such as Google Analytics and social media analytics to measure your progress and make adjustments as needed.

For example, if your website traffic has increased but your conversion rate has not, you may want to focus on creating more compelling calls to action or improving the user experience of your website.

Recommended Reading For Increasing Conversion Rates: Difficulty In Converting Website Visitors Into Customers: How Digital Marketing and Custom Web Design Can Help

Step 8: Set a Budget

Before you begin implementing your digital marketing strategy, it’s important to set a budget. You should consider how much you’re willing to spend on each channel and tactic. Additionally, you should also consider what channels and tactics are the most cost-effective for your business.

Step 9: Continuously Improve

Digital marketing is an ongoing process, and it’s important to continuously monitor and assess the results of your strategy. Stay current with industry trends and new technologies, and make changes as necessary.

Step 10: Review and Adjust

Regularly review your strategy and performance and adjust as necessary. Use the insights gained to inform future digital marketing efforts.

By following these steps and filling out our free worksheet below, small business owners can develop a clear and actionable plan for growing their business through digital marketing. It may seem daunting at first, but by taking a step-by-step approach, you’ll be able to create a strategy that works for you and your business. Remember to be patient, stay consistent, and most importantly, enjoy the process.

Click the image above to download your FREE digital marketing strategy worksheet.

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