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SMALL BUSINESS MARKETING

Introduction to Marketing

Introduction to Marketing

Let’s be honest here, marketing is often not the strong point of a small businesses. Unfortunately many small companies do not have the resources or ability to get their name out there. In short, marketing is the opportunity for a small business to convince a consumer why their product or service is the best in the market.

Traditionally, marketing was only available to companies with large budgets. As we become an increasing digital species, it becomes more viable for small companies to join the race. You should look at marketing as a mediator between a business and a consumer. With a better mediator, you increase your chances of success. Marketing is often the difference between successful & failing small businesses.  Below we will look at some marketing basics.

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What is the Difference Between Marketing & Branding?

What is the Difference Between Marketing & Branding?

This is a topic that is very debatable; we can spend hours with marketing vs branding philosophies. At its core there are many differences between the two. In short, we believe you market a brand and eventually the brand markets itself. Wow, that’s a mouth full. Let’s look at that in a little more depth.

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Basics of Branding

Basics of Branding

What we believe is when you start a business; you do not have any brand recognition yet. You need to start building your brand to a point where you can eventually gain some traction. In order to do this, you need to market your brand. Branding is what your company looks like, almost your companies personality. This is the picture you portray to your potential clients. Your brand refers to things like your logo, corporate colours, values & even customer service. These are some of the factors that combined make up your brand. You need to start with branding before you can consider marketing your company. Remember, branding is what your customer sees when they close their eyes and think about your business.

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Basics of Marketing

Basics of Marketing

Once you have a brand, you need to make people aware of it. Marketing can include a wide range of possibilities. You can advertise online, or even in traditional media. Marketing is a way to convince your client that you have the product or service they need. Marketing is often defined as your company saying “We have the best product on the market” vs branding, you have the consumer saying “I trust you have the best brand”. This can be a hard concept to grasp but we will get there. Marketing is more than just selling. Effective marketing strategies require a deeper physiological understanding of your customers.

Marketing Plan on Laptop

Understanding Marketing Models

Understanding Marketing Models

Effective marketing plans takes time to fine tune. You need to understand & learn your potential client’s behavior. It takes some trail and error to get to know your customers on a deeper level. Not all industries work the same way. Let’s look at an example. If you sell plumbing services, it might not be a good idea to advertise on a pay per impression model on Facebook. Pay per impressions means your advert is shown to a certain amount of Facebook users and it does not cost extra if the user clicks on your link.

For a Plumber it might make more sense to look at a cost per click model on Google Adwords. This model charges you more per customer but the customer is currently looking for your service. It’s can be difficult to create a need for a specialist service.  The client will only need plumbing services if something goes wrong. You need to make sure that you always get the best results for your budget. On the other hand, the opposite will be suggested to a company who sells attention-grabbing t-shirts.

Marketing is like a conversation between two people who do not know each other. You need to sit down and chat for a couple of hours to learn more about each other. You need to sit down and understand how consumers respond to your product or service.

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Positives of Marketing Correctly

Positives of Marketing Correctly

Marketing should always respect and support the brands vision. In most cases, great brands also have great marketing teams. It’s a company culture. Great marketers understand that advertising can sometimes be invasive. You need to respect consumers if you want to gain their trust. Brands must often disrupt consumer experiences to reach their target audience. Imagine watching a Rugby match and the next moment an advert for dog food pops up. It can be an inconvenience to the viewer. You need to take this into consideration if you want to be successful.

If you advertise correctly, you will convert potential clients into sales. It will also help your brand gain trust. Marketing correctly will give clients the confidence to try your company out for the first time. If your brand offers great products & service, you will gain a repeat customer.

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Marketing vs Advertising

Marketing vs Advertising

This is a concept that can be harder to understand than branding vs marketing. Advertising is just a small part of the bigger marketing plan. You can have an entire marketing plan that does not utilize advertising at all.

There are two main categories for marketing, online (digital) & offline (traditional).  Most small businesses will rather focus on the online part of marketing.

It’s cheaper and more targeted than offline methods. Because small businesses often have tight budgets, advertising on TV, radio or billboards are often not possible. Word of mouth will also be considered a powerful offline marketing method. The best RIO (Return on Investment) for a small business will usually be online marketing.

For a small business there are a lot of advantages of using online channels. You can target your audience based on age, gender, race, location, etc. This will help you get the best value for your money. Advertising on Facebook is just one part of your marketing plan. Your marketing plan should include how you are going to gain organic customers and offer the best possible service.

You do not have to make use of all types of marketing to be successful. You need to find the channels that work best for your brand. It’s important to diversify your marketing plan, however, for a small business; it can be beneficial to focus on just 2 – 3 online channels.

Examples of Marketing Options

  • Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

  • Content Marketing

  • Email Marketing

  •  Social Media Marketing / Posts

  • Retargeting / Remarketing

  • Social Media / Influencer Marketing 

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Examples of Marketing Options

  • Search Engine Marketing

  • Search Engine Optimization

  • Content Marketing

  • Email Marketing

  •  Social Media Marketing

  • Retargeting / Remarketing

  • Influencer Marketing 

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DO YOU NEED A MARKETING STRATEGY?

Good Marketing


Some of the biggest brands in the world truly understand their customers. They spend millions of dollars to research and analyse consumers. Small business can learn from this. Many successful marketing strategies focus on the customer and their needs, not the physical sale. They build a true connection with their clients. Marketing should be about telling stories, not selling products. Advertising can be used to sell a product or service.

Brands who show their customers they care through effective marketing strategies are usually the big winners. Marketing is not all about sales; sales will come through building trust with potential customers. You need to make sure consumers understand that you are there to solve a real world problem. Great marketing requires a passion for people. It can be difficult for a new brand to gain trust; this is where great branding helps.

A good marketing strategy will not focus on just one channel. You need to make sure you cover all your bases. In some cases, it might be worth spending time building organic growth. Although things like SEO are done in the background, it will eventually translate sales. It’s important to make sure you diversify into short & long-term goals.

A good marketing campaign must have measurable results. It’s important to track how consumers react to ensure that you adapt to their needs. Tracking results have become a lot more practical over time. Most digital advertising platforms will help you a reach your goals.

Bad Marketing


Building a brand can be hard work. It often takes years to gain a loyal following through consumer trust & dedication. Marketing your brand can have a positive or negative effect on your brand reputation. Some smaller companies cease to exist because of bad marketing choices.

We have seen companies go viral for all the wrong reasons. If you follow international sports, you might remember the murder case related to the “Blade Runner” Oscar Pistorius, the double amputee from South Africa. Nike immediately pulled an advert featuring the runner with the phrase “I am the bullet in the chamber” directly after he was charged with murder. He shot and killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentines day. Nike did the right thing by immediately handling the situation to protect their brand reputation. Although this could not have been foreseen, it’s a prime example of the impact on a brand as a result of marketing or advertising. Just imagine if they did don’t pull the advert; it could have generated a lot of negative publicity.

You need to understand that a bad marketing strategy can severely damage your brand. You can lose a client forever because you are for example to aggressive, sexist, create wrong impressions, etc. – A bad marketing strategy can even be focusing on just paid advertising vs organic growth.

Gone are the days where people buy into the whole “sex sells” idea. Showing adverts with a man with a pretty girl in the one arm and a product in another can cause more harm than good.

There is just one way to answer this… YES! It’s a common misconception that small businesses cannot market effectively, or it’s too expensive to do quality marketing. You can have the most amazing brand in the world but it will be of no use unless people see it. It’s true that some companies can function without any marketing; however, this is not the majority of small businesses out there.

There are a couple of things we must do to implement your marketing plan.

1. Identify your Goals

Firstly, we need to assess your needs. We need to figure out where you stand and what have you been doing to reach your customers. We then have to determine what you want to achieve.  We have to discuss what you are willing to spend on your business. Once we are on the same page, we can formulate an official marketing plan.

2. Market Research & Competitor Identification

Before we start, we need to look at your competitors. This gives us an idea of how the market reacts to your type of product or service. We spend some time to investigate what other companies do in the industry. It also helps us to identify who and how to market effectively. In most cases, you will know your market better than us. We need to combine information to get the best out of your marketing plan.

3. Identify Selling Points

We need to figure out what makes you better than your competitors. What gives you the edge to stand out. Many small businesses do not have a proper brand yet. By letting us handle your branding too, you might already be a step ahead of the market.

4. Choose Marketing Channels

Once we have done all the above, we will suggest the best digital channels. For example, some small businesses will do really well on Facebook, other will do better on Adwords. We often try both to test the market. We can manage your accounts or just help you create them to be effective.

Marketing Conclusion

Marketing is a way to increase your revenue. It’s important to establish your brand first. We can assist with your marketing strategy from start to finish. We have about 10 years experience in online marketing. We have physically built an award winning business with nothing but online advertising and a great branding. Let us show you what we have to offer, give us the opportunity to help launch your small business into a brand.

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Brandable™ Marketing Services:

  • Google Adwords Services

  • Facebook Advertising

  • Instagram Advertising

  • Digital Content Creation

  • Flyer Graphic Design

  • Promotional Material

  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

  • Social Media Posts

Brandable™ Marketing Services:

  • Google Adwords Services

  • Facebook Advertising

  • Instagram Advertising

  • Digital Content Creation

  • Flyer Graphic Design

  • Promotional Material

  • Search Engine Optimization

  • Social Media Posts

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