Are you a small business owner who wants to get satisfying results? You might think that good results demand investment and a considerable small business loan call from the bank might attract your attention. But hold on! We have brought you the 5 best tips for small business growth on a bootstrapped budget.
Well, let's first understand what bootstrapping is. Bootstrapping is a way of conducting business operations with little or no outside cash. An example might be starting a business by investing all your own money in it or it might be expressed as a strategic planning approach aimed at drastically decreasing business expenses. Let's get into the job and discover what are the best working 5 tips for a small business growth.
Without a unique business idea any amount of investment into the business might be in vain. The problem is simple: no one asks you to reinvent the wheel. To come up with a winning ideas you should:
choose the industry you want to enter
conduct a thorough research to understand what the pain points of your potential audience are
combine research results and personal hunch to find the ultimate working idea
turn your brand into a Subject Matter Expert (SME)
The clue here is not to market your product but to establish your brand as an identity your audience will turn to for advice, guidance and expertise. If you are a web design and development company, consider holding free workshops in universities. If you are a restaurant or cafe, consider sharing content that would educate your audience, develop a lifestyle and establish your brand as an expert.
Remember: sharing your experience and knowledge builds trust and earns engagement for your brand.
Social media is the best up-to-date tool that you can use to not only promote your business to potential consumers, but to gain valuable insight through "social listening” as well. Through social listening you can track your consumer behavior, identify strategic keywords, improve your consumer service and discover what consumers talk about your brand. Furthermore, "content is the King” expression hasn't lost its power. Taking into consideration how highly buyers appreciate valuable information you should strive to develop content by:
Implementing the right set of keywords will definitely pave your way to success. Keywords are important as they act as the main linchpin between the users queries and the content you provide. Your most important goal should be ranking high on search engine result pages (SERPs). What is the benefit of it? Well, the organic traffic from the SERPs will directly come to your website in case you utilize the right keywords: the ones matching with the users’ queries.
Conduct a keyword research and find out what keywords your competitors are ranking for by using tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, UberSuggest or Moz. Majority of these tools provide a free trial and all you have to invest in is a skilled content writer.
In fact, there are some specific keyword usage rules that guarantee better results in terms of driving organic traffic. For example, if you own a blog, it is better to have unique keywords on each page of your site. You can also incorporate your primary keyword into the URL, the meta description and even in the “Alt” attributes of images on your webpage. Evenmore, you can use keywords in your Instagram page Bio.
Be careful: do not stuff the title or the body of the content with keywords, as this might lead to clickbaiting.
You can collaborate with a relevant business and offer to promote them through your content and vice-versa. Another option for leveraging social media for content promotion is content repurposing: it is simply the transformation of your existing content into another format. This way you’ll help your audience to better recall previously provided information and also boost the engagement on your social media page. A vivid example of content repurposing is creating a video based on the previously shared content. Another important aspect is designing proper design visuals and consistent brand style.
And one more thing: do not ignore the power the influencers hold on social media platforms. In fact, influencers act as “industry experts” your audience might turn to for advice and guidance. The clue here is to find the influencers who match with your brand the best.
The gist is, whatever you do, aim to make it memorable.
It is a proven fact that 90% of the information processed is visual. Evenmore, the human brain processes images 60,000 times faster than text. Hence, visuals are a powerful tool for making content easy-to-consume. An addition to the previous point, if you want to share some interesting facts instead of writing a full text, better use infographics. They are a great way for attracting backlinks and earning interest as well. Furthermore, infographics do a considerable job for improving search ranking and attracting free organic traffic.
The “King”of visual content is video. As a matter of fact, YouTube is the second largest search engine, sure after Google. Don't you think why is this so? It is just because people prefer video content to text as videos combine both visuals and sound, grab attention and what is more important, keep it. And do not think of creating video content as a complicated process requiring professional technology: just a smartphone is enough in most of the cases.
It is not a secret that consumers appreciate value offered by brands the most. Consider what you can offer beyond your products and services, whether it would be a how-to video, a podcast, or an infographic, shed a light on a confusing topic.
Here is where the Vaynarchuk's “jab, jab, jab, right hook” theory fits best. If we try to put this expression into words free from any complicated boxing terminology, it would simply mean "give, give, give and then ask". A "right hook” type of content aims at self-promoting and selling, while a "jab, jab, jab” content aims at engaging and triggering an emotional response. In the explanation of his theory Gary Vaynarchuk points out that, unfortunately, brands are throwing too many “right hooks” that actually annoy the audience and negatively affect engagement. According to Vaynarchuk, businesses should "throw” well-trimmed jabs that would resonate with the audience on an emotional level, thus turning them into brand loyalists or brand ambassadors. After quite a few well-thought "jabs” your audience would catch the "right hook” and actively participate in any initiative you want, being it a sale or any other action.
Gathering customer reviews and promoting those among your target audience is the best way to expand your consumer base. According to BrightLocal’s 2019 Local Consumer Review Survey, 82% of consumers read online reviews and 91% of consumers said positive reviews make them more likely to use the brand. You can incentivise customers to leave a review on your page by either making it an inseparable part of putting an order or providing a 2% cashback in case of providing a review.
Establishing good relationships with other businesses can help you generate the buzz, discover new consumers and, hence, increase revenue. Collaborating with businesses for fundraising events and cross-promotions are among the best tactics you can get advantage of. If you are a specialty store selling bath products, you can cooperate with a massage service to offer their consumers product bundles and, hence, generate awareness about your brand.
Keeping up with competition in the market and growing your business might seem too daunting for a while, but in reality it is quite doable. With the right strategic approach and a bunch of thoughtful tactics you will manage to stay up-to-date, attract a new audience and increase the engagement on your social media page.
Remember: small steps taken in the right direction can produce big results.