November 8, 2022

With the economy being in the situation it is, small businesses and business owners need to use time, budget and resource as impactfully as possible. This includes reviewing their business, what they are doing, what is working and what isn’t, so they can recession proof the business as best they can.

So what can you as an SME do? Here are our 4 tips.

1. Review what your business is doing?

Hopefully your business will be regularly reporting on your marketing and business activity, but if you aren’t, take some top-level stats and notes to create a benchmark before you make any changes. So what should you be reviewing, including:

  • Spend – how much are you spending on marketing? How many leads are you bringing in? How many of these leads are you converting to sales? What is your cost of sale and so on?
  • Leads – where are your leads coming from? What are your main lead sources eg networking or referrals for example?
  • Stats and numbers – Google analytics for web visitors and content, social media profile likes and engagement, email marketing opens and clicks, number of sales calls made, networking events attended etc?

A simple excel spreadsheet could work in the early days before embarking on a CRM or other software. And remember, be open to change and news way to market your business

Why measure?

  • You will want to cross check the numbers you are measuring against your goals and KPI’s so you can gauge progress. So what are the other benefits to measuring your marketing and sales activity?
  • Knowing the numbers and facts will enable you to make informed decisions, and not rely on guesswork as to what marketing to implement, when where and how.
  • You can see what is working and what isn’t, so you can plough time and money into the best channels as opposed to covering them all in a tick box way.
  • You can ensure you don’t lose focus and stay on track
  • And stop procrastinating and taking no action  
  • And finally, you can use such a report to keep yourself and your team (internal or outsourced based) accountable

2. Short term marketing wins?

  • Before you do anymore marketing, take a snapshot report of where the business is today eg number of social media followers, sales, number of leads and their source, Google analytics (users, page views etc), number on database, number of newsletter opens etc
  • If you haven’t already, create a sign-up form for your database/newsletter and share this link on your socials, to your network etc to encourage sign ups
  • Chase up on any enquiries, leads and prospects that have not yet responded or signed up
  • Ask any current and past clients whom you have a good relationship with for a testimonial or LinkedIn testimonial/kudos or Google review
  • Check your social profiles. Are they up to date with the right opening hours, contact info, branding etc
  • Check your website. Are they up to date with the right opening hours, contact info, branding etc
  • Ask your network to like and follow your profiles and share your posts for more engagement and exposure
  • Look at your Google analytics and social media insights to see what topics are popular and what posts are engaging people the most. Then create some more posts around these such topics
  • And still whilst in contact ask if they fancy a coffee or call or dog walk or whatever suits, so you can catch up on what they are offering and update them on what you are offering
  • Write an upload a blog for your website on a topic based loosely around a service you want to promote
  • Create a promotion or mini campaign around a service you are going to promote and sell more of
  • Go to some networking events (do your research first to make sure they are right for your business and attended by your target audience)

3. Make the most of what you have and who you know 

We all know it is easier to up sell or cross sell to an existing customer than it is to find a new one. So with this in mind, what do you so nurturing campaigns wise? With things how they are, businesses are taking more time to decide and commit to spending than before, but this isn’t a no. So, GDPR compliance wise, keep in contact with these leads and nurture them and communicate with them until they are ready to make a decision. Eg LinkedIn, email marketing and so on.

You could contact your current or lapsed customers and upsell to them, where relevant and appropriate and whilst, contacting these contacts, ask them could they consider referring you.

Stop going from one idea to another and be consistent, and if it ain’t broke as the saying goes.

4. Get ready for 2023

The best way to start a new year as you mean to go on is to have a marketing strategy and plan. Without a plan IT will be harder, longer, more expensive and stressful to grow your business and without a plan you run the risk of overspending, wasting time and making poor decisions as a business. But the good news is getting a strategy and plan is easier than you think.

50% of SME’s surveyed want to learn about marketing planning – what it is and why and 67% surveyed want to achieve marketing consistency. A plan ticks both of these boxes and more.

Get in touch if we can help your business plan its way to success!

This is a guest blog from Nicole Martin – Idio’s go to Marketing strategist and planner for clients

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