Running a small business can be tough. You know you lose customers to larger companies, but you can’t grow to that size unless more people are choosing to do business with you. It can be a bit of a vicious cycle.
However, just because you’re a small business doesn’t mean you can’t appear to be bigger than you are. In fact there are numerous ways to do this without having to say a word.
People make judgements on what they see and what they experience. If you can make sure that those two things are in line with a larger business, it’s automatically going to be assumed that you’re a large company as well.
This has many benefits. People psychologically associate larger businesses with more trust, more choice and structured service. By portraying yourself in the same limelight, these benefits will transfer on to you.
So how do you make your business look bigger than it is? Here are 4 handy tips.
No matter what area you’re in, a huge portion of people will make a judgement on you based on your website. If you don’t have one, it’s essential to get one. If you do have one, it’s important that it’s fresh, clean, responsive and updated regularly.
People assume that large companies are authorities in their sector and expect to see articles and blogs relating to that. Make it part of your marketing plan to write, or get written, at least 3 articles a week that are informative, high quality and solve questions many of your customers are asking.
Developing a strong brand is essential for the long term success of a business. You need to develop a brand that keeps customers loyal and coming back. A brand that is so strong whenever someone mentions a product in your sector, they immediately think of your company.
But how do you develop a brand that strong when you don’t have an endless resource of money?
There are some tips you can implement for very little money. The main aspect is to have a clean and modern logo that differentiates yourself from everyone else. Use it on all marketing material, whether it’s online or offline.
One of the most clever tricks for a logo is incorporating a design that people see or hear every day. Think apple, simple but anytime it’s mentioned or someone see’s one, there’s a good chance of a subconscious thought to the company as well.
Be creative, do your research and use it on everything.
What sets great businesses apart is fantastic customer service. One of the main reasons people are afraid of shopping with smaller businesses, particularly online, compared to larger ones is there is an assumption that the risk of being ripped off is higher.
Make sure your terms and conditions, about us, returns policies, delivery information etc, (basically all information relating to your services) are easy to find, clear and highly informative.
Let your customers know exactly what your process is and what to expect. Transparency builds trust.
Social Media Presence
Having a large social media following is synonymous with larger brands. People like to keep up to date with new developments and see how they’re favourite brands are doing. Some of the best exchanges we see online come from businesses and it really is a foundation of any business’s marketing plan.
But how do you grow your own following? Avoid the temptation to buy followers. It’ll hurt your edge rank, you will more than likely lose them all within a couple of weeks anyway and you have no way of knowing how engaged your followers are.
And engagement is the key to growth.
Instead, identify the social networks that do best in your sector. Do up a strict marketing schedule that you keep to and experiment with posting times and headline varieties. If you analyse what’s working you’ll be able to expand on it, and by producing high quality posts, people will follow you naturally.
It may seem slow at the start but stick with it, once you start climbing and find what your customers want, it will start to rise more quickly.