In this day and age, where so much of what we do is driven by social media, it’s easy for businesses to be complacent and think that social media is the only way to get your business message out there. After all, isn’t that what the media (social and otherwise) is always telling us? That print is dead? That Facebook/Twitter/ Instagram users are on the rise? That FREE interventions can reach your demographic, so you don’t need to use traditional routes to marketing?
What gets lost, however, amongst all the noise of social media, and the fact that people don’t retain information that they skim online, is everything else that goes with marketing your business. Building brand awareness, trust, recognition and resilience. Social media is fast paced, fast moving and forgettable; by the time you’ve posted your ad (and maybe even paid to ‘boost’ it in the hope of ‘reaching out’ to more users), a user’s feed can be filling up with cat pictures, memes, and ads backed by bigger, global brands with real marketing oomph.
So that brings us back to basics: You MUST advertise your business. And there are loads of ways to do it.
Of course, as editor of a monthly local magazine, I could tell you that print is the only way to advertise (after all, it’s the most trusted form of advertising, which is probably to do with the fact that you can touch it, feel it, keep it…) BUT I’m not going to do that. I am a firm believer in the marketing mix (yup, an old-fashioned ideal subscribed to by many of us who’ve studied marketing or business management at any level!). Just ADVERTISE! Use radio; use online; use print: These are controlled forms of advertising, where YOU decide your message and your audience. Back up this controlled advertising with a social media presence (ok, it feels like you control it, but don’t forget the trolls and commentators…); sponsor an event or community initiative; get your PR right. You have less control over these, but, together, they all create a sense of awareness.
One really important thing to remember: advertising adds credibility to your business. It communicates that business is going well, that you’re serious, committed and reliable – and what business doesn’t want people to think that about them?
If you want any more information and advice on how to make your business stand out, get in touch. I’d love to talk to you about it.