50 Creative Marketing Ideas to Grow Your Small Business
The success of your small business is hugely impacted by the success of your brand’s ability to market itself, its products, and its services effectively. After all, your potential customers can't find you if they don't know that you exist. You could have the most incredible service or product ever invented, but without marketing it you won't be able to sell it to its utmost potential.
Marketing your small creative business ultimately leads to sales. Therefore, the more diverse and strategized your marketing game plan is, the more sales you are likely to make. As a small business, you really should make the most of digital channels as a way to generate leads and convert interest into customers.
Why is marketing critical to your business plan?
- It builds brand awareness and recognition
- It connects you with your target audience
- It puts you in the market with your competitors
- It educates your target audience about your service or product
- It gives you access to performance and analytics
There are the obvious forms of digital marketing - creating a website or posting on social media. But with so much more competition in the digital marketing world, it's a good idea to think outside the box when it comes to marketing ideas. Be creative in planning the strategies you need for success. Coming up with creative marketing ideas is what will you an edge against your competitors.
I've put together the ultimate list of 50 creative and innovative marketing ideas that you can utilise to inspire your small business marketing strategy!
1. Host Competitions
Host a giveaway or competition on social media to help boost your brand awareness, increase engagement and gain more followers. Make sure that the people who enter the competition are following your accounts.
2. Use Lead Magnets
Using lead magnets can help to grow your emailing list and encourage more opens and clicks on your campaigns. Lead magnets can be things like free resources, a discount, an interactive tool, a special offer, or a webinar.
3. Post User-Generated Content
Some of the best advertising you can get is from existing customers. Happy customers can vouch for your brand and add proof to your marketing campaigns with reviews or photos.
4. Use Video Content
With the rising popularity of video platforms such as YouTube and TikTok and with more and more consumers watching video regularly, video marketing provides a huge opportunity for audience awareness.
5. Develop a Welcome Email Sequence
Creating an email sequence to welcome new customers can build a sense of loyalty and excitement about buying from a brand.
6. Join in on Trending Topics
Joining in on a new trend or a viral sensation can help boost your brands visibility and connect you with your target consumer base.
7. Participate in Events
Either online or in person, participating in related events is a great way of networking, building a presence and sharing your brand knowledge.
8. Collaborate with other Small Businesses
Partner with other businesses in your industry and co-create strategies that let you take advantage of each other’s audiences.
9. Join the conversation on Quora or Reddit
Using message board-like platforms like Quora or Reddit is a great way to build business authority by answering industry-specific questions your audience may have and connect with relevant conversations.
10. Host a Contest with Another Brand
Launch a social media contest, competition, or another special event in partnership with another brand. Set rules that encourage sharing, tagging, following, or signing up to help your campaign spread for both audiences.
11. Partner with Influencers Influencers have the ability to effortlessly connect with your target audience, so partnering with relevant influencers will put your product or service in front of their eyes.
12. Play with Interactive Content
The modern day audience wants content that demands interaction. Using a dynamic experience can encourage active engagement and build lead generation.
13. Write Engaging Blog Posts
A blog provides your audience with valuable content. By writing engaging content you will convert readers into leads and customers. A blog is also a great way of use targeted keywords to improve your site’s SEO and rank higher in internet searches.
14. Host a Podcast
Produce a podcast that discusses topics related to your industry or interview interesting people in your field.
15. Create Infographics
Create engaging and informative infographics to share with your audience that provide them with valuable content and encourage them to find out more.
16. Publish Case Studies
Case studies show that you are a professional and reputable business that is knowledgeable in your field. They're a great way to share your expertise and inform your consumers.
17. Use Hashtags on Social Media
Use hashtags relevant to your business to increase your posts’ visibility and reach. Make sure they are also relevant to the platform that you are using them on.
18. Share Tutorials
Sharing a tutorial for your product or service is an incredibly effective marketing tool as you are also providing your target audience with need-to-know information that converts sales. They promote trust and provide a sense of accountability.
19. Open up a Community Group
Building a community around your brand promotes a loyal customer base and can give you a method to communicate with them directly.
20. Create Memes and GIFs
Memes and GIFs are more interesting to the eye than static images. They are engaging, stand out and can travel around the internet very quickly.
21. Use Testimonials
Sharing past customer testimonials is a very effective way of helping a potential customer build trust and make the decision to buy from your brand.
22. Target Your Mailing List
Email marketing is the most direct form of communication with your customers. Use your mailing list and target them with regular updates, special events, personalized offers and your latest news.
23. Go Live on Social Media
Go live offers your audience the option of connecting with your brand on a closer and more personal level. Social media heavily promotes live streams making it an easy way to connect directly with your consumers.
24. Offer Freebies
You can offer free products or services with each purchase, or sign-ups to your website or mailing list, to incentivise the action.
25. Host a Webinar
Host a webinar where you discuss important topics with potential customers, distributors, or investors to share your knowledge and expertise with.
26. Feature as a Guest on Podcasts
Just as hosting your own podcast is a great way to connect with consumers, being a feature guest on another podcast is a brilliant way of expanding your reach and sharing your expertise.
27. Share a Press Release
If you have any news you want to share regarding your business, write a press release and share it with media outlets like magazines, radio stations, online publications, or even to a dedicated mailing list.
28. Write Guest Feature Blog Posts
Connect with other businesses or individuals in your industry and offer to write a guest blog post which links the two brands together in some form to be featured on their website.
29. Utilize Sponsorship Offers
Sponsoring means you provide financing in return for advertisement. and it can be for anything such as an event, a sports team or an individual.
30. Place Ads Online
Invest in placing ads on websites and platforms where you think your potential customers will be visiting or engaging.
31. Perfect Your Pitch
Being able to explain what your business does and summarize it in just a few sentences is one of the most important elements of your marketing strategy.
32. Automate Your Marketing
Automate emails, social media message replies, campaigns, and more to free up time to focus on other areas of your business marketing.
33. Use a Marketing Funnel
Create and finetune your marketing funnel to understand every step a customer goes through before they purchase your product or service.
34. Get Seasonal
Create custom marketing strategies in line with seasonal events. This can be special offers at Christmas, Summer sales, an event for Mother's Day... the possibilities are endless.
35. Manage Relationships with a CRM
A CRM will store information about your leads, prospects, and customers so that you can keep track of customer interactions and identify sales opportunities more effectively.
36. Research Your Keywords
Keyword research is an extension of buyer persona research. Use a tool such as KW Finder to find related keywords for your target audience.
37. Boost Your Google Ranking with SEO
Leverage the power of SEO to rank higher on Google searches. This can include defined keyword use, alt text on images, editing your page titles and meta descriptions, optimizing your images and using internal & external links.
38. Optimize Your Website
It's super important to have a site that looks clean, is easy to navigate, loads quickly, and isn't complicated to read. Consumers will quickly make a decision whether they stay on your site or not, so optimize it for both web, tablet, and mobile view.
39. Develop a Referral Programme
Incentivize existing consumers, clients, or employees by using a referral program. Offer a discount, free gift, or another perk in exchange for them bringing in new customers.
40. Join in on Hashtag Themes
Joining in on fun regular social media traditions that already have a loyal audience such as #ThrowbackThursday ensures that you are an active participant in your online community.
41. Pin on Pinterest
Pinterest users say the platform has more influence on their purchasing journey than other platforms, making it an incredible platform to convert sales.
42. Sponsor Your Products (eCommerce)
On most eCommerce platforms, such as Etsy, Amazon, Google Shop, you have the ability to give your products a boost by participating in their sponsored products program.
43. PPC ads with Google
Using pay-per-click ad programs like Google Adwords can really help build awareness and drive customers to your business.
44. Offer Coupons or Discounts
Offering a coupon or discount in an email campaign or on a social media post is a great way to engage and excite your customer base.
45. Share Statistic Lists
Collect interesting statistics on a subject matter related to your biz and share content about what you’ve learned.
46. Have a Pop-Up Opt-in on Your Website
They might be annoying but they definitely work! Having a pop up email subscribe opt-in is a brilliant way of capturing leads as soon as a customer lands onto your website.
47. Set up Google My Business
Creating a free Google My Business profile is a simple and effective first step to helping potential customers find your business.
48. Write an eBook
Creating a comprehensive ebook on a known pain point or popular industry topic in your field and then create a quality landing page around the offer is a brilliant way of generating leads.
49. Post about Trending Topics
Post about topical news and trending topics related to your industry to get in on the burst of action and show that you’re in the know.
50. Make Appearances in Expert Roundups
Share the specialized knowledge of your industry, experience or your brand’s unique take on products and services in an expert roundup post, video or article.
Small business marketing allows your brand to inform your target audience of what you offer. It's an opportunity to connect with and convert your audience. Not only is digital marketing a must-have for promoting your products or services as a small creative business, but it's also critical in your business's overall success.
What are your favourite creative marketing ideas? I'd love to hear in the comments!