For small businesses, keeping operations afloat is the primary concern, and marketing is something that is done ad hoc or not at all. However, for businesses to thrive in the competitive marketplace, marketing of some sort is needed. With limited time and resources, traditional marketing plans don’t tend to make the list when it comes to small and micro business. They don’t make sense and end up depleting your energy and time. There are many ways to utilize your existing resources to generate free marketing and build your business’s awareness within its target audience.
Instagram has done it again! Earlier this year they launched an algorithm that placed the most individually relevant content at the beginning of each user’s feed. Now, Instagram has introduced a suite of business services to further solidify its standing as legitimate and in-demand advertising business platform. Regardless if you’re a micro business or a business Goliath, the need and opportunity within Instagram is significant:
“According to Instagram, about half of users now follow a business on the platform and even more—around 60 percent—say they’ve learned about products on Instagram.”
For small businesses, developing a brand means working from scratch to piece together a cohesive and inspiring representation of their business. Once a business is up and running, it can be daunting to think of rebranding. You put a ton of time, effort, and resources into perfecting your brand, its imagery, and tone of voice. Yet, given how quickly audiences and industries are evolving, in order to stay relevant, businesses of all sizes must continually innovate and rebrand.
There is good news, though! Rebrands do not equal starting from scratch and forgetting everything you designed for your initial brand. A rebrand does not mean your business is failing, but rather indicates that your business is aware of its competition, market, and audience preferences and wants to stay up with the times. It can also incorporate slight changes, instead of total overall, such as realigning your brand promises.
In this fast moving world, it’s a major accomplishment to launch a small business. There can be years of preparation and when your business is finally open to the public, it’s a huge feat. Yet keeping the momentum going and growing your business takes another level of focus and strategy. For small businesses, your funds are precious, so making the most of your free or limited-cost options is essential. Enter social media. Social media of all kinds should be your best friend. There are platforms for all industries and it is free marketing and PR for your business. You can become a social media ninja and watch your business boom from a few tactical moves.
As you well know, your business logo is much more than an image or a colorful compilation of words. It communicates the value, purpose, and integrity of your brand and plays a significant part in how people perceive your business. Whether you have an established logo or are at the beginning phases of creating your first one, there are a few design considerations you should make in order to craft a compelling and memorable logo.
First things first, do your research and know your audience.
Knowing who you are trying to engage and what kinds of images, colors, and language they respond to is critical for crafting a logo that is recognizable and distinct from your competition. Your competitors and other industry leaders are a great resource for determining what you want your brand to look and feel like. Take note of what stands out to you. Which symbols and color combinations evoke the feelings you want your logo to generate?
It seems like every month Facebook releases a new feature, which enhances the user experience and keeps people within their platform. One of the more recent announcements was about Facebook Live and its capabilities within the Facebook mobile app. To save you time and mental energy, we’re here to break down Facebook Live so you understand what it is, how to use it, and how it can positively impact your small business. Let’s get started!
What is Facebook Live?
At its core, Facebook Live is a real-time video streaming service within Facebook. With the rising popularity of video across all social media platforms, it should come as no surprise that Facebook has embraced video and is attempting to create the preeminent video platform. Facebook Live allows users to stream live video to their friends and followers. Streams can run up to 90 minutes in length and can be restricted to certain groups requiring an invitation from the creator. A novel feature is that videos are automatically stored in the creator’s timeline, which builds a virtual video library for friends and followers. However, the creator does have the ability to delete stored videos at their discretion. This compilation of videos is in stark contrast to SnapChat, where snaps are only available in the moment and instantly disappear once viewed. Currently, Facebook Live is available on iPhones and Androids, but has ambitions of being rolled out globally this year.
We’ve all done it: you spend time crafting a thoughtful blog or social media post, you feel satisfied with the end result, and joyfully push send. Then, you review your content once published and realize there is a mistake! It feels awful, but fortunately, most posts are editable and you can quickly fix the error before too many people see said post.
However, we don’t always catch our mistakes and that can wreak havoc with our reputation among consumers. The words and messages put out into the world by a business bear significant weight and the public takes note of their value. Like I said, this happens to everyone occasionally and is not an indicator of writing proficiency. Rather, common mistakes are an example of how small businesses are juggling so many deliverables that details easily fall through the cracks and can negatively impact business.
All day, every day, our lives are filled with words. They’re communicated to us in verbal or written form and have a huge impact on our decisions and opinions. That’s why when you talk about your business, having an acute understanding of your audience and what they want to hear is essential to building brand awareness and sales. This applies to the written word as well. You probably put more written words in to the universe each day than verbal, and those are forever searchable courtesy of the Internet. Speaking and writing with intention and authority on your business is something that takes planning and practice.
We’ve all heard the tell-tale tactics of successful people and that their morning routines are a large part of their accomplishments. Certainly you can attribute some parts of your daily life that helped you launch your business and keep it running successfully. Routines, of any kind, provide stability and expectations for people, which make it easier to tackle business objectives and whatever else life might throw their way. As Mike Vardy, entrepreneur and productivity strategist, said,
“Routines are the ideal way to bookend your day. I think they are the building blocks of effectiveness, efficiency, and efficacy.”
Working from home can seem like a dream come true: you can work in your pajamas, your commute is nonexistent, there’s no negotiating with officemates over room temperature, and you get to choose your office decor. However with these upsides, there can be drawbacks, which make you less productive and successful than you may have hoped. There are endless distractions to pull you away from your business duties and leave you with squandered time. Mitigate these potential problems by setting yourself up to win with our seven practical work from home tips.