When you think about marketing do you feel like the woman in this picture?  If so, this post is for you!  At the end of each year, I like to take a moment to reflect and share the marketing lessons I learned throughout the year.  If we look at what we learned in 2015, we can avoid mistakes in 2016 and get our marketing efforts off to a good start.  So, here’s my top 5 marketing lessons from 2015.5 Marketing Lessons We Learned in 2015

  1. Facebook is no longer free – This is no secret.  We’ve been talking about it for months, even years.  It’s time to accept it and start planning to leverage Facebook as it stands today.  Facebook can no longer be considered a FREE item on your marketing plan.  If you’ve taken the time to build up a large Facebook following, don’t abandon those efforts.  Instead start budgeting some money toward Facebook advertising in 2016.  You have a group of people you know were interested enough in your business to like your page at some point, so rekindle the relationship through advertising.

    If you’re just starting out, don’t think you’ll build it and they’ll come.  They won’t.  You can post awesome stuff but if you have 100 fans on your page, about 10 or less are probably seeing your posts.  Budget to advertise!

  2. Email is still important – Many of my clients rely heavily on social media as a means of promoting their business.  As I just mentioned, it’s no longer free so if you want another way to reach your customers, email them!  While some people may say email is dead, I think it is more important than ever before.  It gives you more control over how, when and what you communicate with your customers.  It also allows you to have possession of their contact information which is important.
  3. The low cost option isn’t always the best option when you’re on a tight budget –  Before you decide to do something or work with someone because they are offering you the cheapest price take a step back.  Think about whether or not the solution you are buying is going to be able to grow as your business grows.  Also think about the quality of what you are buying.  Depending on what it is some low cost options, look “low cost” and you need to determine if that’s how you want people to perceive your business.  You definitely get what you pay for in most cases.
  4. You must think mobile – From websites to emails to text messaging, mobile marketing is here to stay and growing.  If your website is not mobile friendly, you need to get it updated.  If you’re sending emails that are not mobile friendly, again, it’s time to rethink what you’re sending out.  In all the marketing you do, you should be thinking about mobile, right down to buying a print ad.  Yup that’s right, many print publications have online versions so if you’re buying a print ad, be sure that one, you get included in their online edition and two, that your ad translates well on mobile.
  5.  Data is driving decisions – There is SO much data available these days when it comes to marketing.  Today more than ever, small business owners are letting data drive their marketing decisions and seeing results because of it.  If you are not using data to make decisions about where and how you market your company, it’s time to think about making some changes in 2016.

2015 has been a great year for Small Talk and I hope it was good for your business too!  We’ve worked with a lot of great small businesses and built ongoing relationships with many of them.  If you’re struggling with your marketing, let’s talk about how we can partner in 2016 so you don’t have to learn marketing lessons the hard way and feel like this lady again next year!