Written by: Eugenie Delhaye, Founder, My Little Big Web, Montreal, QC

Small business marketing has much in common with gardening: you must plant and maintain some seeds to see growth. This analogy is simple enough, however, most small businesses run into unexpected marketing challenges along the way.

Marketing your business can be overwhelming if you aren’t familiar with many of the terms and strategies. There is such an enormous amount of information you can learn about marketing that you could easily spend your entire day reading about it for the indefinite future.

Unfortunately, most small business entrepreneurs don’t have the time nor the patience to be doing a Master’s Degree worth of reading on the side. The goal of this article is to serve as an easily digestible launching point for some of the most common marketing challenges faced by small business owners today.

Challenge #1: Customer Engagement

Why is this a challenge?

One of the greatest challenges faced by small business marketers is promoting customer interactions. Many businesses simply have trouble effectively communicating with their customer base and getting them to interact with their business.

Good customer engagement can lead to brand loyalty, sales increases, and positive feedback. These are all things that every small business should strive for.

Learning how to enchant your customers is a sure-fire path to business growth.

How to overcome it

Instead of simply focusing on acquiring new customers, you should be devoting an equal amount of attention to engaging those you already have. This can be done in a number of ways:

  • Set up easy methods of contact and give quick and professional responses
  • Analyze and take action on feedback from customers
  • Reward customer loyalty (discounts, freebies, etc)
  • Interact with customers on social media
  • Host a customer appreciation event

Challenge #2: Ranking on Google

Why is this a challenge?

In the digital age, having a website for your business is vital to your marketing efforts. Unfortunately, many small business owners neglect to follow web marketing practices that will give them good visibility on Google.

If you want people to make purchases online or find your business location from their mobile phones, they must first be able to easily find your website in a search engine (preferably on the first page).

How to overcome it

The first step towards a better ranking on Google is to understand how a search engine functions and, more specifically, how to implement search engine optimization (SEO). Once you have a good understanding of SEO, it’s important to optimize your website for local search results for the city or town you operate in.

A good starting point for local SEO is to set up a Google My Business page as soon as possible. The process of optimizing your website is never truly complete, so it’s important to stay up to date on new trends and best practices.

Challenge #3: Content Marketing

Why is this a challenge?

Once you have a business website set up with good SEO practices, it is important to implement a strong content marketing strategy. Content marketing involves the creation of meaningful and consistent content to attract new customers and make conversions.

Did you know that content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and can bring in 3 times as many leads? This makes it indispensable for smaller businesses.

Coming up with a good content marketing strategy that drives sales for your business is no easy task. Lots of SMEs struggle to maintain an audience and a good online presence with their content.

How to overcome it

The key to good content marketing is to understand your target audience. A content marketing strategy geared towards middle-aged women that enjoy baking is going to be much different than one targeting teenage boys that like science fiction books.

Your content quality must be kept to a high standard and you should strive to maintain a consistent publishing schedule. It’s also important to be able to analyze what works and what doesn’t and adjust your strategy accordingly.

Final Thoughts

While these challenges are certainly not the only ones faced by small businesses, overcoming them will lay the groundwork for future scalability. Successfully engaging your customers, having good visibility on search engine results pages (SERPs) and creating lead-generating content are all key components of a powerful small business marketing strategy.

Get up to $60,000
in financial support,
and the support of one
of our 2,400+ mentors.

Learn More →