You are here to learn about marketing ideas for business but first let’s dive into what are all the marketing options available? traditional marketing, we had the typical Above the line (billboards and TVCs) marketing and below the line (door-to-door) marketing.
But digital marketing and the internet have changed the marketing world so much that frankly, even I can’t keep up. It’s everywhere.
I open my phone and there are 10 unread business texts.
I open Instagram and there’s ads within stories and my newsfeed.
I get to work and there’s an ad on the website I’m doing my research on.
My old brain is getting too overwhelmed and so is that of other consumers out there.
That’s because there are too many marketing channels now and to ensure that potential customers do not filter out your promotions, you need to choose the best marketing ideas for business:
#1. Carry out Guerilla Marketing
There are some things you need to go by the textbook to succeed in, but marketing’s not one of them.
Marketing allows you to be as creative as possible, and it is innovative ideas that will get you to the top, which is exactly the concept of Guerilla Marketing.
Companies have used the most unconventional means to promote their products which is exactly what caught the attention of customers.
Here’s what SuperGlue did:
I love this because it’s funny and humor is one thing that connects everybody.
Plus, they clearly conveyed the concept: SuperGlue is so strong that it can hold an entire bridge together.
The company did it in such a way that consumers would literally turn heads every time they passed by the advertisement.
Nivea did it even better:
In one simple phrase, it has conveyed the entire message: with Nivea, you’ll have absolutely smooth skin.
The best part is, it has literally demonstrated it with a sofa.
Check out more of these Guerilla Marketing examples for inspiration and consider launching one in an area that is concentrated with most of your potential customers.
Your target audience may scroll through an Instagram ad but they will be sure to see something like this and remember it.
#2. Make your content go viral
Critics argue that guerilla marketing is too local, which was true in the past because since it was within a street, only the people who passed by there would see it.
Companies have carried out guerilla marketing on public transport like buses as well, but even they have specific routes limited to a certain locality.
I’ll get to the point. That’s not the case anymore.
All it takes is one person to take a picture and post it on the internet. If it’s good, it’ll automatically go viral.
FrontLine, a company that created tick and flea prevention products, designed a huge flex of a golden retriever scratching itself and attached it to the ground floor of a mall:
At first, people on the upper floors of the mall thought this was fleas but turns out it was just people walking!
This campaign went viral thanks to social media, as did many other guerilla campaigns.
However, you can do your part in ensuring that your campaign goes viral, fast:
- Use trending hashtags
- Get influencers to share your campaign (the more followers, the more the brand awareness)
- Know the best times to post
- Post only on the platforms which your target audience uses
- Boost visibility with engagement
#3. Develop a customer referral program
Why make the effort of going through the marketing funnel with each customer when you can get your existing customers to advocate your brand for you?
There’s nothing that customers love more than having to pay less and if you ask them to make an effort for that, they’ll definitely listen.
If you provide your customers with good products, after-sales service and well-rounded customer experience, they will be more willing to refer your brand to family and friends.
Referral programs will get you more customers and keep your existing customers happy, so it’s a win-win!
Check out these stellar referral programs that worked for businesses.
#4. Tell your story
One of the greatest business marketing ideas throughout time has been storytelling.
Creating an emotional connection with customers through something they can relate to might just do the trick, and there are so many companies that gained success through the art of storytelling, for example, Airbnb.
The rental company is nothing without its hosts and guests, which is why it decided to connect both through stories:
When looking for a rental, guests can check out the story behind it and get to know their host through videos uploaded on the site.
This helps them to feel more at ease when staying in an unknown area and creates authenticity since the guests get to know their hosts.
Thus, the company has effectively played on emotion to bring people together and make them more comfortable with staying in Airbnb homes.
Similarly, Organic Valley is a food brand that sells organically grown food.
It started out with only 7 farmers in Wisconsin and today, it sells farm products nationwide.
But the question is, so many companies claim to sell healthy food. Why do consumers trust Organic Valley?
Simply because they shared their story with people:
The company’s founders created awareness among consumers about unhealthy artificial farming practices and shared the story of how they planned to grow food without hormones, pesticides and any other harmful substances whatsoever.
Today, they’re successful because more than over 200,000 families that grow food organically have joined the company and supply fresh food products in their localities.
Sometimes, success is all about doing the right thing.
Check out these 7 ways to make your business storytelling awesome.
#5. Create unique customer experiences
The 5th marketing ideas for a business is you could have an entire salon dedicated to nail treatment and you’d still have competition.
The point is, market entry has become so easy that you’ll find competitors in every single industry, which is exactly why you need to create a unique experience for each customer.
But how do you do that?
One way is to add customizable options to standardized products, for example, stereo speakers, better rims, insurance etc.
Customers with different interests can choose their customisation accordingly and get a unique product specially designed for them.
And it doesn’t have to be too difficult for you.
If your business does not specialize in a specific area, you can simply partner with other firms that provide those products/services, like insurance companies.
#6. Host online contests
This is one of the oldest tricks in the book.
Hold an online contest: get your customers to share your posts, like your page and so on in order to win free products.
After all, it’s free publicity which is great.
Here’s a company that absolutely nailed it:
The Mexican restaurant company Chipotle carried out an extensive play-to-win game throughout the course of an entire week.
By the end of it, more than 50,000 consumers had taken part in it, making it one of the most successful campaigns.
On the first day, participants were required to comment one the letters Q-U-E-S-O in uninterrupted succession which would result in a free queso meal for the winner.
There were similar games held each day. The result?
Chipotle got a 7x increase in page views, a 400% increase in organic impressions, and a reputation for hosting the most engaging social media contest, the ‘Chipotle Cup’.
Here’s the key takeaway: don’t always focus on direct sales. Engage your audience by coming up with innovative ideas that are fun for everybody.
Your brand awareness will shoot up and potential customers will be willing to purchase from you.
Check out these 20+ social media contest ideas by HootSuite.
#7. Share user-generated content
Did you know that word-of-mouth is the most trust rich form of marketing?
That means consumers trust nothing more than reviews, even from strangers!
That’s why in the past decade more and more businesses have started giving importance to customer experience in order to receive positive reviews.
95% of online shoppers take a look at reviews before making a purchase and as marketers, we all know that more than half of customers shop online now.
With this in mind, businesses simply cannot make sales without positive reviews.
But let’s take that up a notch. You’ll attract more customers by sharing interactive content rather than text reviews:
Badass Beard Care often posts reviews of its happy customers along with pictures. But why is this more effective than text?
Pictures are more believable and help potential customers visualise the results which the product promises. If they like it, they’ll try out your product.
What’s even better is videos.
If you can get your customers to send in videos after using products, you’ll be creating the most interactive form of user-generated content.
If you have a small scale business that you operate through social media, you can upload customer reviews on story highlights so that potential customers can view them before making a purchase from you:
#8. Guest blogging
The 8th and last marketing ideas for business are and you probably already know the importance of SEO in getting your website to rank on the top. One way to do that is getting industry experts to guest blog for you.
With a renowned author for your content, your target audience will perceive it as credible, and thus, you’ll land a higher click-through rate – ultimately resulting in a higher search engine ranking.
You can also do it the other way around and get a high authority person in your business to guest blog on other websites in order to get your brand name recognized.
It worked for Buffer.
The social media app went from 0 to 100,000 customers in just 9 months!
The CEO of Buffer, Leo Widrich began posting on smaller blogs until he gained experience and moved on to better blogs that drove more traffic.
Leo’s experience made it easier for him to get his blog posts accepted by high authority blogs and with consistency, he managed to reach his goal.
Here’s how you can effectively carry out guest blogging:
- Know your target audience: Be picky about the blogs you want to write on because it’s only going to matter if your potential customers have access to your content
- Choose a topic that is either knowledgable or entertaining: Don’t bore your readers. Pick out a topic that they learn something from that isn’t readily available information or give them a good laugh at the end of a tiring day
- Be clear: Talk about topics that are relevant to your readers. Back up your information with statistics and use an authoritative tone
This list is good for starting out but it’s pretty generic so if you want a detailed guideline on how to guest blog, check out Express Writers’ 10 key steps.
Conclusion to marketing ideas for business
So these were some of the marketing ideas for business I’ve come across in my career, and there’s so many more out there.
Do your research, find out what works for your business and incorporate it into your marketing strategy so that you can become the market leader of your industry.