Having a set marketing strategy may seem like a high-level distraction for a smaller business, but thanks to creative new content avenues, business owners of any budget can deploy a marketing plan that is affordable, effective–and can even be fun and creative.
Take it from David Ciccarelli, founder and CEO of Voices, the largest marketplace for audio and voice-over products and services in the world. As an entrepreneur, Ciccarelli understands what it takes to set the vision, execute the growth strategy, all while managing the company on a day-to-day basis. He lists five marketing strategies every business can afford:
- Starting a blog
- Running a social media channel
- Starting an email newsletter
- Publishing a report
- Launching a podcast
While taking on all the above at one may seem daunting for new founders, Ciccarelli says you needn’t fire on all five cylinders to get started. He suggests focusing on one ideal and highly effective starting place.
“Start by writing a blog,” says Ciccarelli. “Copywriting is the secret weapon of any marketer because it is transferable across email, social media posts, email newsletters, research reports, and serves as the outline for your podcast.”
In fact, says Ciccarelli, copywriting is the thread that connects all of these other distribution mediums. A blog post helps you express an idea with limited constraints. For any given topic, you can cover the history, tips, and tricks, identify and describe trends and infuse your personality through your word choices.
In contrast, to other forms of media, a blog is not limited by word count, image dimensions, audio file specifications, or other technical constraints. It’s also easy for others to collaborate with you. You can ask colleagues or customers for quotes to ensure more people are reading and sharing your content.
Ciccarelli’s 3 tips you for solopreneurs starting their marketing efforts for their business:
1) Become a subject matter expert. Write from your experience and also cite authoritative sources. The topic should be an area that you’re passionate about and one that directly relates to your business. Years ago, Malcolm Gladwell popularized the idea that you can achieve expert-level performance if you invest 10,000 hours which equates to five years of effort. Since then, the reality is (and popularized by Josh Kaufman in his Ted Talk 20 Hours to Learn Anything), achieving outstanding results actually requires as little as 20 hours of effort, so start your learning journey now.
2) Pick your channel. You don’t need to master every digital marketing channel available, meaning you don’t need to be a proficient search marketer, social media advertiser, podcaster, or public speaker. Some of the best advice I have received was to apply the 80/20 principle. Focus 80% of your time on a single marketing channel you believe you can capture a disproportionate amount of leads for the amount of effort that you employ.
3) Be consistent. To build an audience, you need to create content consistently. By doing so, you will be able to connect with your audience regularly and develop a following, and ideally a community, over time.