A report given by the National Federation of Independent Business says that there has been a large drop in the Small Business Optimism Index for the past six months. This indicates that the small business group is in danger. And with all the figures and statistics given in the report, it is telling us that if this decline continues, more and more businesspeople might lose confidence in the government’s ability to recovery. The NFIB even predicted that in the next few months, small business optimism will still decline. And that the underlying problem of most of these entrepreneurs is poor sales.
So, how can these small businesses and start-ups increase sales? I would say effective marketing. Effective marketing would mean more people knowing your brand, and more people liking and eventually buying what you sell. Nowadays, effective business marketing strategies has been enabled by the advances of technology. Millions of people own a computer and log on to the internet frequently. Whether you are a student, general worker, retiree or a housewife, all of them find things on the Internet. Although there’s still the power of advertising through television, more and more people are finding facts, news, products, and services, online. This is what they call Internet Marketing and this is where small businesses should focus.
More and more businesses are now encouraged to have their ads posted on the internet. You do not need to be a computer savvy to do this; you don’t even need to hire someone to do this for you. It is so easy that you can do it yourself. Although if you want to use a different kind of media like a video or a slogan of some sort, then you might need to hire a graphic artist to do this for you. Even if you start with a little investment for manpower, the returns are high. There different internet marketing strategies to choose from.
There’s PPC advertising, or as what they call it, Pay-per-click advertising. This strategy is effective because you’re posting your ads in different websites and this will give more exposure to what your brand is. SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, will let your website or product on top of the list when it is searched by a search engine – whether it’s Google.com, Yahoo.com, or MSN.com. For example, if one searches for the “best conditioner” in Google, it will post tons of results. If you want your product/company to be at the top (which most people choose), then you have to use this strategy.
One last strategy of Internet marketing is social media marketing, which has been gaining popularity for the past few years. In this program, products and services are being promoted using social networking sites. Members of these sites then can share those ads and articles that are pleasing to them and let their network of friends know about it too. This would mean more exposure and more promotion for your product.
So, whichever strategy to choose, it’s not too late for our small business entrepreneurs. Just have the guts to learn and to do thorough research will also be helpful. Thanks to the magic of technology, now it can change from “poor sales” to “more sales”.