Posted 11/02/2020

Online Marketing Strategies for SMEs

Online Marketing Strategies for SMEs

There are over 50 000 small to medium sized enterprises in South Africa, however a large number of these businesses do not do any form of marketing. 

Marketing plays a very crucial role that most small businesses ignore, however it has the power to change and aid in the success and growth of any business.

It has been proven that a big part of a small business' success depends on a business owner marketing their products or services to the intended target audience. 

You may have an amazing and innovative product or perhaps offer the best service in town, but the reality is that if people do not know that you exist, you will not be able to generate sales.

There are a number of traditional marketing methods that small businesses tend to use such as, and those include, flyers, word of mouth, posters etc. These however, do not guarantee foot traffic. In order to increase your chances of success, business owners should make use of digital channels to generate leads and sales. 

Traditional marketing versus digital marketing

To begin, let's first explain the differences between traditional and digital marketing. Traditional marketing is any form of marketing done offline , and is the most popular form of marketing. Examples of traditional channels are television, newspapers, billboards, flyers, posters and word of mouth to name a few. 

In recent years, as the rise of 4IR became more prominent in the world, digital marketing was set to become the next big thing. Digital marketing is any form of marketing done online and through the internet. It includes social media, content marketing, lead generation, affiliate marketing, pay per click, SEO and many more.

Although traditional marketing is more commonly used and the most dominant form of marketing, it is often too expensive for small businesses, this is in comparison to digital marketing channels which are often cheaper than traditional marketing with a far greater impact and reach. 

The benefits of online marketing

  • Online marketing allows you to interact with your target audience and find out more about their needs and wants.

  • With online marketing you are able to track marketing efforts.

  • It allows you to reach a larger and wider audience with less money.

  • With online marketing you are able to reach people beyond your country/region. 

As mentioned above there are a number of online marketing channels, this article will go into more detail below as we explore three of these marketing strategies that small businesses can utilise.

1. Lead Generation

Lead based marketing, or sometimes known as lead generation, is the process of attracting and converting prospects who have shown interest in your business’ product or service offering. These prospects who are interested in your product/service offering are referred to as leads. 

2. Social Media 

Social media marketing is another form of marketing that ensures instant brand visibility and great awareness of a business. Social media marketing is done through social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn. These platforms allow you to engage with your audience and find out exactly what your target audience needs.

3. Content marketing 

Content marketing is marketing that is focused on creating valuable content to attract and retain customers. Content marketing can be used across multiple channels, including social media, email and SEO to name a few. It is one of the most widely-used forms of digital marketing.

How Serv works

Serv works on a lead based generation basis, through their platform you are able to link your social media and respond to reviews which means connecting with your target audience. You are also able to create content and add pictures to your profile. 

Join Serv for a one stop online strategy that guarantees you qualified leads as well as brand awareness and maximum reach throughout South Africa. 

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