For small and local businesses, word of mouth can appear to be the simplest and most effective form of marketing, and while it certainly helps, you’d be doing yourself and your business a disservice if you weren’t actively utilizing the power of Digital Marketing.

Digital marketing is highly effective when done correctly and with the proper Digital Marketing Strategy. The key is knowing how to strategize accordingly, keeping your budget in mind. Luckily, not all marketing tactics have to cost an arm and a leg. Here are a

Local SEO

Having an online presence in general is crucial, but all activity could be falling on deaf ears if your website and social media profiles are not properly optimized. Adversely, you don’t want to cast too wide of a net that you are overshooting local business.

The first step is getting more traffic to your website, as well as your Google My Business page. This will directly translate to foot traffic through your door. Make sure the URL of your site and other off-page elements are optimized as well.

Posting blogs, company updates, educational resources, humorous content, and more on a consistent basis is also essential for branding. Other factors include receiving positive customer reviews, having contact information prominently displayed (including a contact page on your website), and participating in your community. Getting your face out there and humanizing your business allows people to connect with you and your story.

Email Marketing

This may seem like a dated form of marketing, but email lists are still extremely powerful. Emails are more likely to be read than social media posts, making their clickthrough rates exceptional. The more contacts subscribed to your list, the more business you’ll receive.

Once you have an email list compiled, there are plenty of tools out there to help with automation. Mailchimp, Constant Contact, and HubSpot are just a few examples, but there are many platforms that can work for your business.

Influencer Marketing

Social media influencers have become exceedingly popular in the digital world, and while those with millions of followers may be a little out of reach for a small business to work with, micro-influencers can be a great alternative.

Find industry experts within your area to collaborate with that you trust to represent your brand and tap into an entirely new audience of potential customers. A great way to ensure a mutually beneficial relationship is by offering them a product or service of yours for free, which also helps them better understand your business.

Social Media Contests

Contests are a great way to engage your customers and build your social presence. Once you’ve identified your goal, which may be growing your audience/gaining followers, promoting a specific product, or driving sales, you’ll need to map out how you’ll run your contest on social.  Comment to win or tag friends to win contests are popular and provide a quick way to get the contest off the ground. There are also contest platforms that you can purchase that provide an easy way to organize and track the contest, which also helps to prove the ROI of your campaign.  The most important thing with contests is to ensure that the contest method and prize is what your audience wants.  Run a poll or ask a select few questions before you put the work in to run the contest.