Best Ways To Market Your Small Business

Not sure where to start with marketing your small business? Here are eight effective ways to get started.
Reading Time: 12 minutes

Corporations don’t become multimillion-dollar organizations overnight. They always start as a small business. Once that small business starts gaining traction, its customer base expands and it becomes a widely recognized name.

So, where do you even start with marketing your small business? Here are some of the best ways to begin: 

First Thing’s First: Identify Your Ideal Customer

A common mistake that small, local businesses make is to target anyone and everyone that may be interested in purchasing their product or service. While this idea may sound good in theory, targeting everyone as a potential buyer won’t provide sustainable results.

Before you jump into planning a sales and marketing strategy, it’s vital that you identify your target customer. Here are some questions to consider when identifying your target market:

  • What industries do I want my small business to work with?
  • What is the most common job title of the decision-makers I currently work with?
  • What company sizes do I want to work with? What yields the most ROI?


Once you pinpoint your ideal customer, it’s time to do more research to explore the buyer personas of these prospective businesses and key decision-makers (KDMs). Understanding the buyer personas of your target market is essential because it allows you to further personalize your sales and marketing assets, guiding leads to the end of the sales cycle. 

If you’re not sure where to start with figuring out your ideal customer, take a look at your current book of business to find similarities between clients. For instance, if you look at the industries you currently work with, which ones do you see the most success with? Why do you think these partnerships are more successful compared to other industries?

On a similar note, take a look at the job titles of the points of contact for your clients. Are they primarily small business owners or other c-level executives? Facility managers? IT managers? Once you identify these similarities, you understand where potential business opportunities lie, allowing your sales development representatives (SDRs) to target specific job titles in particular industries.

Actively Connect With Your Target Market

If you want to market your small business to other local companies, you need to make yourself known around the community by actively reaching out to businesses in your target market

While there are many ways small businesses can connect with target customers, a few of the most common ways your SDR team can contact potential buyers is by:

  • Cold emailing: Research shows that 64% of small businesses use email marketing to reach potential customers. Cold emailing is a great way to contact leads in the sales pipeline because even if a KDM isn’t interested in making a purchase at the time, at least they’re aware of your company and have your information on hand if they need it.
  • Cold calling: Cold calling may seem outdated to a lot of small businesses, but it’s still an effective way to build brand awareness and connect with KDMs. Cold calling allows your sales reps to talk with decision-makers one-on-one to learn about their current B2B product or service solution and the pain points they have regarding that solution.
  • Connecting with KDMs on LinkedIn: If you don’t want your sales team to send cold emails or make cold calls, connecting with KDMs on LinkedIn is a great way to turn cold leads into warm leads. Through LinkedIn, your SDRs can send prospective businesses content marketing materials, such as links to blogs on your website, high-converting sell sheets, and more. 

Practice Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing is when sales and marketing teams use digital marketing to bring leads to them. Today, more growing businesses are practicing inbound marketing efforts to generate new leads. Through these marketing efforts, your sales team has the opportunity to attract new leads that aren’t already active in your outbound sales pipeline.

Here are some ways that small businesses can implement inbound marketing efforts:

Develop a User-Friendly Company Website

An up-to-date company website is one of the most critical components of a successful inbound marketing strategy. Not only does your company website need to look professional, but it also needs to be easy to navigate for intended users. Whether a user is looking at your website on a mobile device or a desktop, the content should be easy to digest.

Since a company website is the foundation of a successful inbound marketing campaign, it needs to include all the information interested users need to fully understand your small business. People should know who your small business is, what products or services you provide, where you’re located, why they should trust you as a thought leader in the industry, and how they can contact your company. 

If users like what they see, they can submit their information on the contact page to discuss a potential partnership or sign up for more sales and marketing assets, like company newsletters, to gain more insight into your company’s successes. Ideally, both of these calls to action encourage potential buyers to close business with you.

Write SEO-Focused Website Content

A professional and easy-to-navigate company website is great and everything, but how are the right decision-makers supposed to find it? Search engine optimization (SEO) is essential for getting the right users to your site.

SEO encompasses a variety of practices to boost your website’s performance on search engines. When your marketing team practices SEO, they boost your company’s rankings on search engines so your website is one of the first results users see when they’re looking for answers to specific questions or solutions to current problems.

Here are a few ways small businesses can start practicing SEO:

  • Include high-volume keywords in website copy: Keywords are the words users type into search bars to help them find what they’re looking for. By using a variety of relevant keywords in web pages and blog posts, you increase the chances of the right users finding your company’s website. However, it’s essential to be cautious with your keyword usage because too much of the same keywords could negatively impact how search engines perceive your website. 
  • Link relevant text from one page to another: Internal and external linking is essential for improving user navigation and establishing your small business as a thought leader in the industry. If a user wants more information about a specific keyword, directing them to a page or blog that expands on those keywords provides them with more relevant insight into the topic. 
  • Write intent-focused website content: While inputting keywords and linking relevant pages is essential for SEO, so is the intent of those keywords and links. Buyer-focused website content is necessary for getting the right users to your website because it increases the likelihood of converting them from users into leads.

Create a Social Media Marketing Plan

Social media may seem like just a fun platform to scroll, read the news, and share photos with friends and family, but it’s also critical for your small business’s inbound marketing efforts. However, it’s important to remember that while there may not be a wrong way to practice social media for business (well, there are wrong ways—but we can save that for another blog), some B2B social media tactics are definitely more effective than others. 

As you build out your social media strategy, be sure to think about your target market and buyer personas. Many small businesses believe they need to be active on every platform out there, but that’s not an effective way to use social media for business. 

When considering what platforms to use, think about your target audience and what social media platform they engage with most. As a B2B company, LinkedIn is a must for growing your book of business. LinkedIn is unique compared to other platforms because it can be used for both inbound and outbound lead generation efforts. While you can post content to a company’s business page, you can also connect with KDMs and send them relevant sales enablement materials to guide them through the buyer’s journey.

Invest in Digital Advertising To Reach Potential Customers

Generating leads organically is a slow process. While it does yield sustainable results, it takes a while to build brand awareness and credibility. In addition to long-term lead generation tactics like SEO and content marketing, you should also use short-term lead generation practices, such as digital advertising on search engines and social media platforms.

Digital advertising solutions like Google Ads are great for getting your brand in front of your target customer. When a user types in a keyword that relates to your industry, products, or services, your company is posted at the top of the search engine results. This inbound lead generation tactic is often referred to as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising

When users click on a Google Ad, they’re sent to a landing page. When you design a landing page for your company, the intent of its content must align with the goal of your ad. If it doesn’t, you risk having a high bounce rate and limiting the number of leads you generate from the PPC ad campaign.

If Google Ads doesn’t seem right for your market or you want to enhance your digital advertising campaign, consider advertising content on social media platforms. This can help your business catch the attention of potential buyers from another platform. When small B2B companies want to improve their marketing efforts, they often take advantage of LinkedIn and Facebook Ads because the ads can be targeted at specific decision-makers and industries.

Streamline Sales and Marketing Efforts

Which comes first: sales or marketing? Just like the chicken or the egg scenario, there’s no correct answer. Combining your sales goals with your marketing efforts is essential for getting the most out of your lead generation efforts because you can’t have one without the other.

Integrating B2B sales and marketing strategies enables your SDR team to effectively nurture leads in the sales pipeline. For instance, say an SDR sends a prospect a cold outbound sales email. From this email, the prospect submits their contact information to accept more sales and marketing assets. In doing so, they become a lead. The lead is then routinely sent sales emails about their product or service interests. When the timing is right, your SDRs can reach out and aim to schedule a sales appointment.

Create Meaningful Content for Your Target Audience

As mentioned previously, many small businesses make the mistake of targeting anyone who may be interested in their company’s product or service. This risks poor results because the marketing content doesn’t align with the target customer’s specific wants, needs, or buyer persona.

From social media to blog content and landing pages, each piece of content written by your marketing experts should provide readers with value. Centering your content around your target market is vital because it will resonate with them and their needs personally, making them feel more heard by your company. 

Social media and blog content is great for building brand awareness and establishing credibility. However, like any lead generation tactic, there are right and wrong ways to do it. If you want to use your social media and blog content as a lead generator, you must establish your company as a thought leader in your industry. This includes sharing content that’s valuable to the reader and encouraging them to learn more about your company.

For instance, let’s suggest that you’re a local MSP that wants to target the importance of ongoing IT services for small businesses. If you write content around the best ongoing IT solutions for large enterprises, you miss your mark on the businesses you want to target. While you may get substantial leads, you risk not having the bandwidth to support the IT needs of these large companies. Therefore, this content can draw in leads that you don’t necessarily want. 

While the content itself must be valuable, you must also write a compelling call to action (CTA) so readers know what you want them to do with the information provided. For instance, a CTA for a social post may be telling users to read a blog on your website. On the other hand, a CTA for a blog post may tell users to read other relevant blogs or schedule a sales appointment if it’s a bottom-funnel blog.

When it comes to landing pages, CTAs are even more crucial for meeting the wants and needs of your target market. Landing pages are often attached to search engines and social media ads, which means a user is actively looking for a product or service solution. Since landing pages are often bottom-funnel assets, the content should further guide leads down the buyer’s journey.

Automate Processes With Sales and Marketing Tools

Automating sales and marketing processes allows your lead generation experts to spend more time building relationships and less time doing tedious tasks. When you automate processes like sending emails to leads in the sales pipeline, your SDRs can contact more leads that are likely to convert into customers. 

Many B2B marketers fear losing content personalization if they automate processes. However, there is a way to get the best of both worlds. By creating specific email lists, your SDRs can put specific leads in each email list based on their company size and the industry they serve. This ensures that each piece of content sent to the lead is relevant and aligns with the lead’s wants, needs, and buyer persona. 

One of the most impactful ways SDR teams automate processes is through customer relationship management (CRM) platforms. With a CRM platform like HubSpot, SDRs can effectively move leads from one stage of the sales cycle to another, ensuring they get the right sales materials for their current stage in the sales funnel.

Continue Marketing To Existing Customers

Who better to market to than happy, loyal customers? Marketing to existing customers is essential because it builds brand loyalty and keeps them satisfied with your company’s products and services. You also have the opportunity to cross- and upsell clients, bringing them deeper into the B2B partnership. 

There are many ways sales and marketing teams can continue marketing your business to loyal customers. Many B2B companies use newsletters and email marketing promotions to keep customers engaged. In these promotional assets, you can offer a discount, a free product or service if they sign up for another product or service, or another promotional deal they wouldn’t have gotten if they weren’t a client.

When it comes down to it, there’s no better marketing channel than word of mouth. If a customer is happy with your company’s products and services, they’re more likely to recommend your business to another decision-maker in their network. You should encourage clients to leave reviews on Google My Business, Yelp, or another business review platform. 

While social media is an excellent platform for building brand awareness, it’s also ideal for engaging with potential and existing customers. If a prospective or current client has a question or concern regarding their business with your company, they can submit a comment on your social media page. A customer service rep can then answer their question or address their concern.

Key Takeaways

Successful corporations don’t just appear out of thin air. It’s important to remember that they all started as small businesses. It takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and understanding of lead generation best practices to turn these small businesses into trusted names. 

To reiterate, if you want to effectively market your small business to decision-makers, it’s vital that you and your lead generation experts:

  • Identify Your Ideal Customer 
  • Actively Connect With Your Target Market
  • Practice Inbound Marketing Efforts
  • Invest in Digital Advertising To Reach Potential Customers
  • Streamline Sales and Marketing Goals
  • Create Meaningful Content for Your Target Audience
  • Automate Processes With Sales and Marketing Tools
  • Continue Marketing To Existing Customers

If you need a hand marketing your small business to potential buyers in your target market, reach out to the outbound and inbound email marketing experts at Sapper Consulting.

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About The Author

About Sapper Consulting

Sapper's sales prospecting team becomes a natural extension of your existing sales efforts, helping you find new leads that are a great fit for your business.

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