Cookies 🍪

This site uses cookies that need consent.

Eight things that a SME should consider when getting started with digital marketing

As a small or medium enterprise, there are often a lot of tasks being juggled at once, and given the multifaceted and continuous nature of digital marketing, there can be a temptation to “get around to it when we have a moment”. 

Unfortunately, the best time to get started with your digital marketing strategy is yesterday, but the next best time is today. So, to help you kickstart your thinking, we’ve pulled together eight provocations to help you get your strategy started. These points are also really useful if you plan to outsource your marketing to a digital marketing agency. 

What does your product/service actually do, and who is going to use it? 

This may seem an obvious question, but really stop and think what it is you’re actually offering your customers. What do you do, and how does it help them solve a real-world problem? Can you articulate who it is your product or service is targeting? If you aren’t able to answer these questions, then you have more work to do with your core business concept before starting to think about marketing. 

Can you explain to a stranger what your product/service is without a whiteboard and a 40 slide powerpoint presentation?

Sure, you know what your product or service is, and who you want to use it, but can you articulate those points in a simple, quick way? The 30 second elevator pitch is too long in this instance, we’re talking about 1-2 sentences that concisely explain what you’re offering, and to who. If you’re unable to do that, your product is probably too complicated. Remember, you only have a very short amount of time to capture somebody’s attention online, so you need to get straight to the point!

Take a look at the social profiles of some of your competitors or peers in the field to get a feel of how succinct you need to be. 

How do your current customers use your product/service?

Your existing customers are your cheat code for better understanding your future customers. You can get amazing quantitative data about how they use your product or service, what they find useful, and what doesn’t connect with them, but there’s even more to be learned if you seek qualitative data from your customers. Speak to them 1:1, really find out what their pain points are, and how your product is solving those problems – both practically and emotionally if possible. What they say here will not only serve as great testimonials, but it’s real feedback from real customers, which you can then take into further product or service refinement, ensuring you’re then solving the pain points of more people. Remember though, speak to a spread of customers – the opinions of one person cannot be taken as gospel! 

How easy is it for someone to buy your product/service? 

Start to scrutinise your sales funnel, and understand how people are buying your product or service. Is everything on a website, and can they buy on-page, or do they need to speak to a sales person. If they’re buying in-store, how are they learning about your location, and what are the busiest times. You can never have too much data, so long as you know how to use it effectively. 

Looking at the data, and the way people are finding and buying your product will allow you to understand how you can start crafting your customer journey for new consumers. 

Who is your competition, and do you have a competitive advantage?

It’s time for a cup of tea and some potentially brutal self-reflection. To flourish, you need to understand the market and who you’re competing against within it. If you think you don’t have any competitors – try again. It’s delusional to believe you sit alone, and if you’re honest, there will be things you can learn from those you compete with, just as there will be things you do better than them. 

If you have a competitive advantage, it should go without saying that this should be the hook upon which you hang your campaign; it comes back to effectively solving customer pain points. Distil that advantage into an easily understood message, and then run with it.

It’s ok if you don’t have a USP, sometimes there isn’t one. Just focus on having the best marketing which (say it with us) starts with explaining clearly how you solve a customer pain point. 

Do you have a hook that offers value up front? 

Preempting and meeting a potential client’s needs is one of our favourite things to do at Brew Digital. We want to provide value to people at every stage of the process, not just once they’ve brought a product or service. We use an audit or discovery session with all new clients, but being able to offer it to everyone upfront before they’ve signed on gives real value to businesses, and helps to build trust. 

While you might look to do something similar, you don’t have to give away parts of your service for free. Being able to provide value upfront could just be spending the time scrutinising your sales enquiries, customer service conversations and search term reports to understand what people are asking, and then making it easier for them to find answers. Customers will love interacting with your brand when you provide value to them, and it serves as marketing in its own right. 

Put together a plan 

It may seem daunting, but if you have already considered the above points then you’re well on your way to making a plan. Of particular importance is understanding the environment around your product or service, and deciding how you will fit into – and stand out from – that market. 

Research some digital marketing strategy frameworks, such as SOSTAC, RACE, or Flywheel, and then choose one that best fits you and your business, and don’t be afraid to get things wrong – you can always pivot when you have more data. 

Lean into the expertise of your team. Use your sales teams, marketing colleagues, co-founder to help you with putting a plan together as they’ll help identify flaws earlier in the process; the more perspectives the better. Consider it a working document rather than something you spend months on and then present, as that will help you stay nimble. 

Don’t get carried away, but always be moving forward 

Avoid the temptation to dive straight into running a digital campaign. Although we say that marketing is all about testing, iteration and refinement, having an informed and considered starting point will save you time and money, and will mean you start to attract conversions sooner. If you have a plan that considers points 1-6, you will have a much easier time. 

That said, don’t fall victim to paralysis by analysis. You can spend forever trying to plan for every market variable, but at some point you will just have to dive in and give it a go. As we said, marketing isn’t a single action, it’s about reviewing the data, making changes, and then repeating – experimentation is key. As you get to grips with digital marketing, you can do more of what works and less of what doesn’t work and generate solid growth for your business. 

Brew Digital is here to help you on your digital marketing journey. We have loads of content in our resource hub that breaks down many of the key aspects of marketing, but if you’re looking for more support, we’re just an email away!

Read more

Stay up to date

Sign up to get the latest content from Brew Digital delivered straight to your inbox.