What’s the first thing that pops into your head when you think of marketing? Chances are, it’s social media. And social is amazing! It is a total game changer when it comes to owning and marketing your own business successfully, and we’re (obviously) pretty into it.
But… it’s not everything.
There is a lot of stress around social media and there are a lot of people who are wasting a lot of time on it, just because they feel like they should.
Let’s take some of the pressure off! Here are a few other things that you can implement in your marketing strategy (and not feel quite so bad for “only” creating three posts per week for your Facebook page).
1. Online Review Sites
Social proof is everything, so be sure to leverage online review sites like Google, Yelp, and Facebook reviews! Every few months, shoot your readers a quick message with a link asking them to leave a review if they’ve enjoyed working with you in the past.
(If you want to add a fun little incentive, it’s totally okay to do a giveaway or draw for those that have participated!)
2. Local Search
Be sure to pop into your site a few times per year and do some basic maintenance! That includes optimizing your pages for local search. Here are three things you can do in just a few minutes.
- Create pages primarily for users, not for search engines. I know, it sounds counter intuitive – but search engines are so clever they’ll catch on if you’re trying to trick them!
- Create local content. Be the local authority for your industry by promoting local gatherings, news, and other educational content on your blog. Photographers – be sure to include the shoot location in the title and content of your blog posts!
- Name your images properly. Instead of “DCIM-1438”, name your photos things like “lethbridge-wedding-photographer.jpg” – this goes a long ways!
3. Team Up
Host a giveaway, workshop, or local event. Collaboration works both online and in person, and opens up a whole new audience for both hosts!
Try to collaborate with businesses that have a similar client base to yours, so you can expand your reach quickly.
Example: we love collaborating with Kinsey Holt Photography. She’ll take your brand photos, and we’ll take care of the strategy behind thoughtful, intentional brand and marketing materials. It’s a match made in heaven!
Networking events aren’t just for corporations. In fact, it’s super important for small business owners to get out there and meet new people!
If the thought of networking makes you cringe, change your perspective – you can join a local mastermind or small business group that focuses on building community and relationships.
If there’s nothing in your area, you can fill the need by starting something on your own.
5. Give It Away
A real conversation goes a long, long ways in helping potential clients know, like, and trust you.
Offer up a free consultation or give away trial periods, mini sessions, or strategy sessions on occasion. That way folks can see what you’re all about and get a taste of working with you!
6. Show Your Support
This is such a win for everybody and works so well for local businesses! It gets your name out there for all the right reasons and allows you to immerse yourself in your local community.
Plus, getting behind causes that you love will help you meet like-minded people (and chances are, you’ll also love doing business with those folks too!)
7. Impeccable Client Experience
You can shout your own name from the rooftops till you’re blue in the face, posting on social media every single ding dang day, coming up with new promotion ideas, doing all the marketing things… but at the end of the day, that’s not going to go as far as a past client whispering to the gal sitting next to her, “Ooooh, I just got a text from ___! Look at this! She’s so thoughtful! She’s so on the ball! I love working with her so much!”
Referrals are the holy grail of marketing… and the way to get more of them is to provide your clients with a phenomenal experience when working with you.
We’ve got another post coming SOON that’ll teach you exactly how to take your client experience to the next level!