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13 Evergreen Digital Marketing Strategy for Small Business

13 Evergreen Digital Marketing Strategy for Small Business

Digital Marketing_rishikapandey.com

Do you own a small business and are looking to grow, but your business does not generate enough funds initially to pay for heavy marketing activities? Then adopting digital marketing is the way to grow your business.

Let us read through.

Owning a business is a privilege, and it requires continuous day and night efforts to build a small business into a grand empire. Never forget that every big brand today was a small startup.

As technology has dramatically revolutionized, so are marketing practices. A buzzword today in the world of marketing is Digital Marketing. 

Digital Marketing is cost-effective, gives better analytics of your marketing plan, and is fruitful.

Let us move ahead understanding how to grow your business.

Here are 13 EVERGREEN digital marketing strategies that every business can adopt at the initial stage.

1. Create a website 

The question that arises is why websites are important for small businesses? 

It is crucially important that you have a web presence irrespective of your business type, as 81% of people perform some type of online search before purchasing a product or a service. 

The reason for such behaviour is most of us have become lazy and need everything at our fingertips.

Another reason is that having a website increases your chance to be visible to your right customer at the right time. 

If you search for a small business such as an ice cream parlour or a multinational business such as a rocket launching firm, you will find that every business is online. The one which is not online is losing a great deal in the market. 

So, how to create a website? 

  • First, you need to register your domain name. You can use services such as hostinger, Godaddy, Namecheap, BigRock etc.
  • Second, You require a web hosting company to get your domain name on the internet to be visible. Companies such as Hostinger, Bluehost, Hostgator etc. provides web hosting services.
  • Third, Prepare a content strategy and your website layout 
  •  Fourth, Include the desired pages as per the layout you have designed.

2. Include Blog writing

According to optinmonster.com, 70 million posts are published every month by various WordPress users, and each month, approximately 409 million people view more than 20 billion pages.

This is why a business needs a blog as there is a demand for the right knowledge and the need for a quality blog as the competition is high. 

You can create a blog page on your market niche. For example, you sell paintings, then can create a blog page on different paintings around the world. Or if you are into Travel ticket book services, maybe you can write detailed articles on places to visit in a particular season.

So How much time it takes to write a blog?

On average it takes about 2 to 3 hours to research and write an average blog article. 

But still, your proficiency and experience play an important role. You can develop writing skills on the job while developing regular content for your website.

3. Vouch for SEO

Search engine optimization a.k.a SEO is a digital marketing strategy that will help your website rank better on the “search engine result page” (SERP). 

In layman’s terms, SEO will help you occupy a rank on the first page of Google, whenever someone searches for keywords related to your business.

The importance of your website ranking higher will never fade. It is a proven fact that websites that rank on the first page of a search engine get 31.7 % of all clicks

But there is a Catch.

Google search engine changes its SEO algorithm about 500 to 600 times a year as estimated by MOZ and therefore it will only be tougher to compete in 2021. 

So, What can you do to cope up with these algorithmic changes?

  • You need to analyze your website and your competitor’s website.
  •  You can use ubersuggest, semrush.com, moz.com, ahrefs to keep track of your competitors and check for how many keywords your website or your competitor’s website is ranking high. 
  • You can use these tools (ubersuggest, semrush.com, moz.com, ahrefs ) to check how many backlinks you and your competitor is receiving.

Then you can include the missing keywords on your website content (Description, headlines, subheadings, etc.) and use white hat techniques for building backlinks and rank better.

Then you can include the missing keywords on your website content, but make sure you are using white hat SEO techniques. You can insert keywords in the description, headlines, subheadings, etc.)

4. Keyword research is a must for Digital Marketing

One of the most important strategies for small businesses in India or anywhere in the globe is to perform fresh keyword research for your website content regularly.

Choosing the right keywords for your website helps you be found among various similar websites or businesses like yours. 

There are free keyword research tools, one of the most popular tools to use is the Google Keyword Planner tool provided by Google Ads, where you can search for the relevant keywords to rank for. But that will work when you are setting up a Google Ads account and have the intention to advertise your business online.

Google also provides you suggestions when you type your query on the Google search bar. The automatic suggestions can be considered a long-tail keyword.

Other free keyword research tools are from cleverads.com, wordstream.com, Soovle, to name a few. 

5. Leverage Social Media 

Social media is a boon to marketers. 

Digital marketing is not entirely different from traditional marketing the only major difference is the mode of communication.

Traditional marketing is not completely eradicated, there are still strategically placed billboards in the market. 

What has entirely changed is consumer behaviour. Most of the consumers are using social media, and that is what makes social media platforms so powerful. 

You need to be there, where your prospects or consumers are. 

Creating and strategically maintaining social media presence increases your views and visibility and attracts the right customers. 

So, how to leverage social media?

Use the S.M.A.R.T framework for your creating your social media goals, whether it is Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn.

 The SMART stands for the goals which are:

  • Specific
  • Measurable 
  • Attainable 
  • Relevant 
  • Time-Bound

You should also create or join social media groups where you think your prospects would be and participate in discussions related to your business or viewpoint. 

Creating social media presence will also provide you with new opportunities to expand your business or to track real-time feedback and improvement points.

Another importance should be given to the response time. The response to a query or suggestions by your prospects should be managed without delay.

6. Get Involved in Forums

Quora, Reddit, and Tumblr are famous forums where you can learn about your audiences and their queries. You can also join as an expert and gain credibility as well as promote your brand and business.

7. Add a comment on relevant blogs 

Commenting on a relevant blog with a valuable point of view and leaving your website URL as a reference, gives you needed exposure and increases your networking opportunities and increases traffic on your website.

8. Create an Email List

Email address lists should not be ignored by startups and small businesses, as in long run, they will help you for generating leads for your business. 

Marketers believe that email lists are an asset for your company and much more powerful than all social media platforms.  

It is also a fact that email is likely to be considered by your prospects than your social media posts. 

How can you build an email list?

You can create an email signup form, from Convertkit or Mailchimp and insert it in your website so that you can collect the email id of your website visitors.

You can also create social media ads (Facebook ads, Instagram ads, LinkedIn ads) for your products or services. By using social media ads you can not only collect emails but also create ads for specific demographics (age, gender, location, etc.) at a budget-friendly cost.

So start collecting emails via your website or Facebook ads.

9. Create significant YouTube content 

Video marketing has significantly grown over the past few years. Using video content can help you take your business to new audiences and it’s free to use.

Youtube is the second largest search engine, after Google and so the user base is extremely high. You can also monetize your youtube channel to get those extra monetary benefits. 

All you need is great content that follows the three E’s strategy i.e. Educate, Entertain, and Engage your audience. 

Make sure you perform SEO for your video content. Some important points to take care of are while creating YouTube content are:

  • Use an attractive channel art
  • Perform keyword research on the title of your video
  • Use an attractive thumbnail that matches your content. Make sure it does not seem like clickbait. A clickbait can do more harm than good to your brand. 
  • Use relevant hashtags in the description and write a clear description.
  • Add your other video links and website links with your contact information
  • Use timestamp for long videos 

10. Setup Google alert 

It is free, it is easy to use, and it is worth it. You can set up Google alerts for getting an alert via an email, every time there is a direct or similar search for products or services that you offer. 

It can also be used for tracking mentions related to your brand. 

How can you set up Google alerts?

  1. Click on this website google.com/alerts 
  2. Enter the word that you want to track
  3. Choose how often you require to be alerted 
  4. Choose the source for your alerts
  5. Choose “all results,” or “only the best results” based on your preference 
  6. Select the email address where you want your alerts to be mailed
  7. Then click create an alert

You can also set up alerts to keep a track of your competitors. 

11. Make sure to use Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a popular tool from Google. It is used to analyze the traffic data on your website.
Google Analytics is free to use and automatically collects the data. You just need to set up Google Analytics on your website using Site Kit. (for WordPress website).
The insights from Google Analytics can then be used to shape strategy for your online business and publish or write.

12. Get help from Digital Marketing Agencies or Digital Marketers that specialize in promoting small Business

Get help from Digital Marketing agents or freelancers that specialize in promoting small businesses.
There are good digital marketing agencies and digital freelancers that provide you necessary services for digital marketing, without charging you extra.
If you are a sole proprietor or a business that wants to focus on your niche and outsource marketing services, then it is a good idea to reach out to budget-friendly digital marketing freelancers.
I am a digital marketer myself. I provide overall digital marketing services such as SEO, SEM, SMM, Content management and help you design effective digital marketing campaigns and ads. You can contact me here.

13. Keep your vision and mission statement Clear 

Every business should define its goals and build strategies to achieve those goals. Digital marketing is one of those strategies.

Due to COVID 19, the marketing practices are completely digitalized today. Having a full-proof digital marketing plan is a necessity. 

Having a practicable mission and vision statement promotes your business internally, provides a pathway to your business and employees, as well as let your audience know where you want to be, and helps you gather stakeholders support.

Conclusion

Any business can leverage these simple practices for promoting its brand. All you need to have is a small budget, a lot of time, and a willingness to learn, unlearn and grow.

Companies are spending a lot of money on marketing practices, but nevertheless, these strategies are effective and evergreen. 

Do you have any other strategy in mind that works for you? Do let us all know in the comments below. 

 

Chocolate story and the science behind it.

Chocolate story and the science behind it.

“Will looked horrified. “What kind of monster could possibly hate chocolate?”

― Cassandra Clare

Well, Will, not everyone is an Angel.

I am sure you may not relate to me on this that I am not a fan of chocolate, but I have people whom I love, and their love for chocolate is immense. I have often heard them saying that they are “addicted to chocolates”.  This made me think about what makes chocolate so addictive? What science is involved in? And hence my inquisitive behaviour pushed me to research and find more about chocolates and the science behind chocolate addiction. 

This article is a bi-product of my behaviour which describes the benefits of chocolates, especially dark chocolate, and a little science behind it that you may have not known before. 

Let’s start from the start!

Discovery of Chocolate 

Cocoa Pods
cocoa pods Credits: Rodrigo Flores, Unsplash

Let’s begin our knowledge tour from the journey of chocolate in the beautiful land of Mesoamerica, which is now known as Mexico, where the cocoa (from which chocolate is extracted) was discovered. The Olmec civilization (around 1600 BCE), which were the oldest civilisation of Mexico can be credited for the discovery of the world’s favourite sweet. 

Olmec were the first to create drinks and gruels by fermenting and grinding cocoa beans, which are produced from Theobroma Cacao or Cocoa (Kuh-KOW) tree. During the Olmec civilization, cocoa beans were used to make lavish drinks in rituals, however, cocoa beans were also used as a medicine. 

The cocoa drink was perceived to enhance digestion and stomach bloating as it was known to increase healthy gut bacteria.

In later days, chocolate drink was labelled as the “food of god”.  Why? Let’s read through.

The word Theobroma translates to “food of God”.

The Aztec civilizations (in Mesoamerica around the 15th century), believed cocoa beans were the blessing of Quetzalcoatlan ancient god of civilization and the planter of Cocoa trees. 

Aztec also used cocoa beans to exchange goods and services, and would often drink fermented and bitter beverages made from cocoa beans before a war. However, only the adult males were offered the distinguish antioxidant cocoa drink, because of its aphrodisiac ( sexual arousalproperty.

As the days passed, the goodness and the taste of Chocolate travelled from Mexico to Spain, stayed as a secret for many years, till travellers visited Spain and experienced the exotic cocoa. Then the journey of Chocolate continued with the rest of Europe.

What happened next?

The Globalization of Chocolates

Belgian chocolate
Credits: Yu Hosoi, Unsplash

The chocolate popularity escalated from North America to Europe with a stamp of luxury, and was consumed by the then superior and royal societies.

That is how the Belgian brain got hold of chocolates.  

The Belgians then invented delicacies made of the best section of cocoa seeds with rich cocoa butter. After the industrial revolution, when mass production of chocolate was possible, the Belgians invited the world with open arms to cherish the chocolate sweetness. That gave (Brussels), Belgium, a new Identity as the world’s chocolate capital in modern times.

So, that was the briefest history of the journey of chocolate. 

What about the Science behind Chocolate addiction that I promised to tell about? Let’s begin.

The Bitter “Sweet” truth

The widely available chocolates (Milk chocolate and white chocolate) are fatty and sugary that makes them addictive.

That means every time you eat chocolate, your sweet receptors are aroused, which in response releases dopamine (helps us feel pleasure) and lure you to consume chocolate repeatedly. You fell in love with it and hence the addiction gets stronger and stronger.

In addition to this, phenylethylamine which is otherwise known as “chocolate amphetamine”, triggers the reward centers in your brain. Phenylethylamine is the same chemical that your brain releases when you fall in love.

But it not just love!

Chocolate cravings can also be a result of nutrient deficits or a craving for magnesium by your body. Also, eating too much chocolate can not only increase your dentist expense but can give you serious side effects such as insomnia, nervousness and increased heart rate.

Fluctuating hormone too can contribute to a chocolate craving. This could be seen as to why some women would crave chocolate more during their menstrual cycle than on any other day.

Chocolate is also aphrodisiac food and is also called a “love drug”. Hence, the exchange of chocolate is popular on Valentine’s day since the 17th century.

What Else Chocolate can do to your brain?

Good mood chocolate drink
Credits: Yuriy Yosipiv, Unsplash

1. Chocolate helps to elevate your mood

Endorphins are chemicals released by the brain and are found in pituitary glands. These are released when you are stressed or in pain and helps to calm you. Often Endorphins are known as “feel-good chemicals”. 

Chocolates provide an external boost to release Endophrines and help your brain mitigating your stress and pain, this could be one of the reasons why some people crave chocolates when they are stressed and it helps them to feel better.

2. Chocolate provides Mental Health benefits 

If you are a fan of dark chocolate, then you have got a new reason to love it more. 

Cocoa is rich in Flavanols. Flavanols are antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents which are great for your heart health. 

Also, Flavanols can help in boosting your memory and learning ability as they accumulate in your hippocampus, known for memory, learning and emotions. 

One study conducted by researchers showed memory improvements in young adults within 2 hours after they consumed 773 milligrams of dark cocoa chocolates.

3. Protects your skin from Sun

Well, the flavonols also hydrate and increases the blood flow to the skin, (not only when you eat but also when you apply it to your body), and protects your skin from sun damage or help in skin healing.

That is one of the reasons why cocoa is used heavily in the beauty industry too (Chocolate wax and Cocoa moisturizers), as it provides glowing skin and makes your skin supple.

Planning to enjoy summer and the beach? Keep the chocolate with you, but remember, the darker the better.

4. Helps you reduce weight

You would be shocked if you didn’t know it already, as I was when I learnt that chocolate can help you in staying slim. Well, precisely a dark chocolate will. Researchers have proven that if you take small amounts of dark chocolate (five times each week), it can help you stay fit. 

How? 

Because of epicatechinan antioxidant agent which keeps your heart healthy and improves your metabolism as well. On the other hands, scientific proof suggests that dark chocolates keep you full for a longer period compared with milky, sugary chocolates, and the plus point is it reduces your cravings for junk food. 

I am convinced why ancient people used it as a medicine. They indeed were smart.

5. Chocolate Reduces anxiety 

Anxiety is a mental disorder, (affecting around 38 million Indians) that cannot be taken for granted. It can hinder your day to day activity and can impact your sleep or your concentration level. 

Polyphenols, another compound found in chocolates can help you to calm down if you suffer from moderate anxiety issues. Also, dark chocolate will increase your serotonina hormone (released from your gut) that stabilizes your mood and keeps you happy, as low serotonin is the leading cause of anxiety and depression.

Sugar/milk chocolates too have these benefits but comparatively in less quantity than dark chocolate. Eating a lot of milk chocolate can worsen your feeling of anxiety.  

Look for food that contains magnesium, antioxidants, vitamin B12 and zinc to tackle your anxiety like dark chocolates that contains a high amount of magnesium. 

Conclusion

I need to give attention to chocolate after understanding its benefits, especially dark chocolate. As it indeed is brain food. 

Will wasn’t wrong after all.

What are your thoughts on chocolate? How do you perceive it? Feel free to share your thoughts and knowledge in the comment section.