The world of small business marketing is an ever-evolving beast that you can never truly conquer. The best you can hope for is that you’ll stay ahead of the curve a little better than your competitors manage. That means you must periodically reexamine your methods. When necessary, you perform a digital marketing update. One of the best ways of working on this process is by keeping an eye on marketing trends. With the new year approaching fast, these small business marketing trends for 2023 can help you keep ahead of the curve.
While video marketing isn’t a particularly new trend, it’s one of those trends that stays on marketing trends lists for a reason. For one thing, video is the source of more than 80 percent of all internet traffic. Just let that sink in for a second as you consider the sheer volume of websites and all the kinds of content.
The good news is that the types of video content that consumers respond to are quite varied. You can invest in everything from brand story videos to webinars, product demos, and behind-the-scenes videos where your employees discuss your products.
Beyond that, video production has moved out of the realm where you need astronomical budgets and dedicated studio space to produce something of quality. You can get excellent video footage using inexpensive cameras, tripods, and subscriptions to video editing tools.
Another one of the top small business marketing trends for 2023 includes improving the customer experience. Much like video marketing, providing a top-tier customer experience is nothing new. What has changed is the intent behind the idea of the customer experience. Let’s face it, no matter how often a company mouthed the words, “the customer is always right,” stories abounded of terrible customer service delivered by unhappy customer service reps.
These days, customers are much savvier, better connected, and provided with many choices for nearly every service or product out there. If you provide lousy customer service, it’s not something that people will gripe about privately. They’ll leave terrible reviews on review sites, write scathing blog posts, or post videos on YouTube tearing you apart.
On the other hand, if you build a culture of excellent service into your business, that knock-on effect from providing that experience will go the opposite direction. Customers will post glowing reviews, praise you in their blog posts, and talk lovingly about your product or service on their YouTube channel.
The term influencer has gained a lot of traction over the years. Social media stars with large follower bases command much power to direct people toward specific products or certain products. It’s why you see beauty Instagrammers getting sponsorship deals from makeup brands or athlete TikTokers cutting deals with equipment manufacturers of supplement companies.
Businesses recognize that these influencers can help drive social commerce. When an influencer talks up a product, the people following it often flock to it. When their followers use and like the products, they talk about them on their social media profiles or channels. While their followings aren’t as big, it’s also more organic.
Minimally, get your company gets a much wider audience than it otherwise might, assuming you pick your influencer with care. There must be synergy between your product or service and the influencer’s audience. When it works, though, it can mean enormous windfalls for your business.
Email marketing may sound painfully old school to some businesses, yet it remains one of the most effective kinds of marketing that any business can do. At least, it is if you can execute it effectively.
Good email marketing is delicate and depends significantly on your product, service, or brand. For example, if your business offers a high-ticket item, your email marketing must focus mainly on persuasion. Most companies approach this with a drip marketing campaign that doles out a steady stream of emails that combines pure informational and benefits-driven content.
If your business focuses on lower-ticket items, you can often attract subscribers with offers like discounts, and you keep them interested with a mix of deals of factual content. The real power of email marketing comes from curating a list of warm leads. If you do that, you can see huge sales numbers on new products or services without the hugely expensive advertising campaigns that typically accompany them.
User-Generated Content (UGC)
If your business can inspire positive user-generated content, it’s like mana from heaven. Think about it for a second. This is good word of mouth, which is always a plus. It generates trust because it doesn’t come directly from you. Even better, it’s marketing content that you don’t have to pay for directly.
Sure, there were your customer acquisition costs, but those costs are already in the rearview. By the time product or service user is writing good content about you, they’re a paying customer.
All you need to do is share that content around. You can share links on your social media profiles. You can, within reason, even quote that user-generated content in your content.
User-generated content is also something that you can directly encourage. For example, you can ask users to share videos of themselves using your product on your social media pages. You can even highlight some of the best examples.
Back to Basics
While there is always something new to explore, like a new social media platform, you must keep an eye on the basics. That means getting your website house in order.
Are you leaning into proven marketing tactics like search engine optimization, website design, content marketing, and local search? Let’s face it, if your website is a hot mess that’s difficult to navigate, it won’t matter if you make a great product. No one will stick around to find out about it.
If your company doesn’t turn up in search engine results on the first page or two, no one will ever find your products or services. Getting those excellent search engine results depends heavily on good website design, SEO, and generating great content regularly.
Focusing some of your time and attention on the basics is one of the small business marketing trends for 2023 that you should pay attention to.
Everyone likes to feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves. Just look at the fanatical devotion some people offer to sports teams. They buy products, go to games, and talk with their friends about the team. Some even go so far as only going to certain bars where other fans of the team hang out.
In other words, people build small communities around their passions. Granted, sports teams have had generations to build up their fanbases, while many businesses have only existed for a few years. Yet, the same principles can apply.
You don’t need to wait for the process to happen organically. You can give it a healthy push and create a dedicated space for your customers to engage with others about your products or services. After all, social media giant Facebook lets people create groups devoted to almost anything.
They will if you give people a space to congregate and talk. Just as importantly, it gives you a space to interact directly with some of your most devoted customers. You can offer people in that space an opportunity to test-drive your products or services and give feedback. Once you finalize your new products or services, you mobilize the customers in the community to help you spread the word about your latest offerings.
Small Business Marketing Trends 2023 and You
While staying ahead of the marketing curve can prove challenging, it’s worth the effort. The time and resources you invest in following or being on the front edge of new trends will almost always pay dividends in increased sales. Remember that you cannot ignore the basics in favor of the latest and trendy. Keeping an eye on the basics can often prove the difference between one sale and getting recurring, repeated business.