When you think of a New York City business, it would be no surprise if skyscrapers and large corporate offices came to mind. But of course, there’s much more than that. NYC is a great place for start-ups and small businesses to grow.
However, if you’re a small operation in Manhattan, you need to know what it takes to stand out in a sea of big businesses—part of which is marketing.
All businesses should develop a marketing strategy that involves, but is not limited to, the following vital tools—social media, physical ads, websites, content development, networking, etc. As a small company, chances are you have a far more limited budget and staff to dedicate towards your marketing operations compared to a large corporation. Thus, it’s crucial you understand how your marketing strategy should differ to utilize your limited resources efficiently.
Maximize Small Staffs
As a small business, you may only have a fraction of the staff at your disposal compared to a large one. You need to utilize your smaller team more efficiently by focusing on shorter marketing runs and long-term ones. Long-term marketing campaigns focus on establishing your brand in the market and cementing its reputation with time. They include:
- Building Public Relations.
- Developing a Business Website.
- Social Media Marketing.
- Search Engine Optimization.
These projects are not resource-intensive and provide a solid ROI if successful. It contrasts with smaller marketing stunts, such as regularly changing billboard ads, which require more staff and investment that you might not have on hand. Although you should adjust your marketing campaign with time, you don’t have to do it too frequently and overwork your staff.
Stretch Your Budget
While it may sound tempting to skimp on marketing budgets whenever faced with financial crunches, you should keep in mind that marketing plays a crucial role in building brand awareness. It’s all the more critical if you’re a smaller business based in a crowded market like New York, where brand recognition directly impacts customer loyalty. You should always keep your marketing budget reasonable and learn how to stretch your dollar.
If you want to maximize your budget utility, consider hiring an ad agency in NYC to tailor marketing to your business needs. Although that may require an upfront cost, it’ll not only free up your internal staff but also save you both money and time in the long run.
Focus on Free Marketing
Besides creating a dent in your budget, paid marketing resources are often full of features that lack intuition or are challenging to use. Moreover, as a small business, you may not even require many of those features that you paid for. It’s best to utilize the multitude of free marketing resources available on the internet to promote brand awareness with minimal investment.
There are plenty of sites that you can use to create digital and physical-print ads for free. These sport readymade templates and have a consortium of essential tools that you or your staff can use even without a graphics design background. Additionally, you can initiate an email marketing campaign for absolutely free. For starters, it can include asking people to sign up for newsletters and reach out to critical groups or organizations that might be interested in your business via email.
Build Relationships and Networks
It’s not about ‘what’ you know but ‘who’ you know in the business world. Networking is essential for any business and even more so for smaller startups. It can generate new referrals, present more opportunities, and significantly build brand recognition. As such, networking typically is free and is crucial for any small business’s success.
Free networking groups may include online sites like LinkedIn, where businesses can promote themselves. Simultaneously, you can join local commerce chambers or incubators, which often require you to pay a premium to make use of their services. You can also reach out to other small businesses that aren’t your competitors and share ideas and tips about what has and what hasn’t worked. Such informal networking is a free and highly efficient way of building connections and co-promoting brand awareness.
Create Impactful Paid Marketing
Although utilizing free marketing resources can go a long way, they will, at some point, exhaust their effectiveness. When the time does come to pay for marketing, you should be conservative about which types of ads you chose. You should research to ensure that your desired means of advertising—be it TV, radio, billboards—are both cost-effective and reach the maximum number of your target audience.
You should also keep in mind that your website will serve as one of your essential marketing tools. If you’re using a website host, consider paying for an actual plan instead of running with a free one. They provide many more customization tools and are generally more optimized for multi-device viewing. It can make your website work better and be more attractive to potential clients.
Make the Best of What You Have
Being a small business owner with limited resources, based in a highly competitive market, can be unforgiving. That’s why you need to have a clear understanding of how marketing strategies differ for big corporations and smaller businesses. With that in mind, you can then work towards developing a marketing plan that makes the most of your resources for the market where you aim to create your brand recognition.