Digital Marketing Strategies For Small Business



If you run a small business, you know how important it is to pick the right digital marketing strategy. After all, your marketing efforts can succeed or fail depending on how well you use digital marketing. So, in this episode, we’re going to talk about 20 (yes, 20) of my best digital marketing strategies, from which you can pick and choose to make the best digital marketing strategy for your business. Alright, let’s get started. Hey, I’m Adam Erhart, and welcome to the Modern Marketing Show, where we help you make marketing that matters. So, if you want to find out about the newest and best marketing strategies, tools, tips, tricks, and tactics, you might want to think about subscribing. All right, let’s talk digital marketing strategies.

In this video, I’ll show you 20 of my best digital marketing strategies that you can use no matter what market, business, or industry you’re in. Now, instead of going into the details and specifics of each one, I want to give you a high-level overview and my key takeaways about what these strategies really mean and why they’ve worked for all of the small businesses I’ve worked with and coached in order to help you get more leads, customers, and sales. One more thing: you’ll notice that some of these things overlap a little bit, and that’s on purpose. Still, when we look at digital marketing strategies, it’s sometimes important to look at both the big picture and the small details in order to figure out which combination of two, three, or four things will really get your business’s point across.

The goal here is to give you a lot of ideas, and not just any ideas, but ideas that have been proven to help businesses like yours grow, get more leads, and do all the other things that businesses are supposed to do. Because at the end of the day, it’s less about the tactic and more about the overall strategy behind that tactic, because a well-executed but average strategy is going to fail miserably. At the end of the day, what really matters is what gets done and how well it gets done. Also, make sure to watch the whole video to the end. The first 18 points are listed in no particular order, but I think the last two points are the most important for small businesses to think about today. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s move on to the first tip.


Okay, the first tip is to make an offer that people can’t refuse. Now, an offer that is hard to refuse is pretty much what it sounds like. It’s too good of an offer to turn down. Now, sometimes people call these “godfather offers” or “IOs” or something else, but they’re all basically the same thing. It’s an offer you can make to your ideal target market that speaks directly to them and makes them want to take action. Here’s the thing, though. We don’t have to compete on price when we make an offer that’s hard to refuse. Nothing needs to be given away for free here. All we have to do is realise that it’s important to show that we understand where the customer is coming from. This means that we need to show that we know their pains, problems, and frustrations, and that our business is the best way to help them.

When making an irresistible offer, one of the most important things to keep in mind is that you want to sell a painkiller, not a vitamin. This means that you want to solve a pain rather than prevent a future problem, because people are much more likely to act when they’re trying to solve a problem they’re having right now. I like to call these pains and problems miseries. Basically, it’s some kind of pain, problem, fear, or frustration that they’re trying to get over. This can also be called a bleeding neck, which emphasises how important it is to solve this problem quickly. You can show this irresistible offer in an ad, as a call to action on a blog post, or right on the homepage of your business. The only thing you really need to remember is how important it is to have it so that you can force someone to act right away. Now, in tip 2, we’ll see the first overlap among these 20 tips. This means that your lead magnet can include parts or all of your irresistible offer.


Now, if you haven’t heard of a lead magnet before, all it is is some kind of valuable content or information, or it could even be something tangible or physical like a book or a trinket or a widget or whatever it is. You’ll use this in exchange for your customer’s contact information, like their name, email address, phone number, or even address. Now, there are two reasons why a lead magnet is so important and valuable for your business. The most important thing is to have a good lead magnet. This makes you look like the expert and shows that you know what you’re doing by helping them solve a problem with your content. The second reason is that you’re going to use this lead magnet to bring in leads, which shouldn’t be a surprise. Now, the way lead magnets usually work is that you’ll want to put this lead magnet offer in front of your ideal target market. You can do this with an ad or a link on your website. The link will take them to where they can get their free PDF, free guide, or free book with shipping, depending on what it is.

When they get to the landing page, they’ll put in their name and email address. In return, they’ll get the guide, and you’ll get their contact information, which you can use to keep in touch with them in the future. One last thing I want to say about lead magnets. You don’t have to stick with only one lead magnet. Since it’s unlikely that your customers only have one problem, you may want to address their pains or frustrations from a number of different angles. Your lead magnets let you do that. Now for tip number three: SEO is one of the best digital marketing strategies for small businesses that I’ve seen work.


Now, SEO, or search engine optimization, is by far one of the most technical, geeky, and nerdy things you can talk about in digital marketing, but it’s also very important. In fact, SEO and content marketing helped my first marketing agency grow a lot back in the day. However, there is some overlap between the two because content marketing and SEO work well together. Anyway, the point is that SEO, which stands for search engine optimization, is a very valuable skill. Now, we don’t have time to go into all the specifics and details here, but the point is that you may want to start putting more resources into SEO, especially if people tend to search for one of the problems that your business solves.

Now, when it comes to SEO, there are a lot of different things that affect it, such as on page rankings and off page signals. Now, when we talk about on page ranking signals, we’re talking about things like the keywords you use in your URL, your title, your headings, your on page content, and other things like that. When we talk about off page ranking signals, we’re talking about the number and type of links that link back to your content, which tells search engines that your content is good. Anyway, the point of this video isn’t to get into the details of SEO, but to show you that it’s a valuable strategy. If you want to learn more, there’s a lot of great content out there, and I’ll make sure to link to some of it in the description below. Okay, the next point may sound like the last one, but it’s very important to know the difference: Google 3-pack SEO.

Google Three-Pack SEO Strategy #4

Now, this point is only really useful if you have a local business or an actual storefront or physical location, because what you’ll be doing here is ranking in the map, which is very important, especially on mobile, where most searches are done now. Now, it’s pretty easy to figure out if you’re in the top three. First, open a private or incognito browser so that your history doesn’t affect the results. Then, type in the industry you’re interested in and the name of the city you’re in, and see what comes up on the map. If you’re not in the top three, you’re missing out. This means you really need to spend some time, energy, and money optimising your Google 3-pack listing because it gets a lot of traffic, especially from mobile devices, where most searches happen. This next tip is a little less common than SEO or Google 3-pack SEO, and it has to do with audio marketing.



Now, as I said at the beginning, these tips are in no particular order, except for the last two. This is because I don’t want to over emphasise or underemphasize how important or relevant audio marketing is to your business. Still, I know that if this is the right channel for your target market, it can have a big impact, and that’s the key. So, if you want to decide if audio marketing is something you want to do, you need to know who your ideal target market is. We’ll talk about that in a bit. Now that we’re talking about digital marketing strategies, you’re probably going to think of things like podcasts, Spotify ads, and other similar things. Also, I want you to think about audio channels that don’t work online, like maybe even good old-fashioned radio. Now, in my experience, radio doesn’t give the same return on investment as some of these digital channels, but as a supplement or extra, or even as something to think about, it might still give you enough of a boost to make it all worth it. Now, let’s talk about email marketing, which is one of my all-time favourite topics.



Now, luckily, we’ve already talked about lead magnets and how important it is to get contact information from customers, like their name and email address. Well, email marketing gives you the chance to keep in touch, offer more value, and make offers over and over again. Now, a lot of people are complaining about lower open rates and how email marketing is losing its effectiveness. While this is partly true, think about how you interact with content and how you take in information. There’s a good chance that you check your email once, twice, or even ten times a day. Well, your customers feel the same way. They regularly check their email, which makes it a great way to get in touch with them and spread your message. As with all the strategies we’ve been talking about, the devil is in the details. That means you can’t just spam your audience with all kinds of offers and garbage, or they’ll just unsubscribe and delete your emails as soon as they get them. Instead, you should be strategic and try to give as much value as you can. This means that you should educate, inform, and provide entertaining content. Overall, you should try to be real and human and give as much value as you can. But once all of that is done, you still have to make offers, so don’t be afraid to do so as long as they are relevant to your market.


Content marketing is the next thing we’ll talk about. As I’ve already said, SEO and content marketing were the main ways I built my first marketing agency. Content marketing is a great tool because it lets you educate, inform, provide value, and show that you’re the expert in your field by teaching people what you know. Now, content marketing is kind of a high-level macro overview that includes a lot of different things below it, like podcasts, videos, blogs, interviews, lead magnets, resource guides, and a lot of other things like that. So, it’s really that high-level overview. The point is that you should be making content for your target market in some way, shape, or form if you aren’t already. The most important part of content marketing is choosing the right format and style for you and your audience. For example, if you hate the idea of being on video, video probably isn’t for you. If you hate the way your voice sounds, you might want to stay away from audio content. If you hate the idea of writing, a blog isn’t going to be the best fit for you, either. All that being said, if I had to pick the best type of content marketing we’re seeing right now, it would have to be video. There are a few reasons for this, which we’ll talk about in a minute when we talk about video marketing. Okay, as promised, our next tip is about how to market with videos.



Now, video marketing is a great way for small businesses to get more leads, customers, and sales, and to show that they are the experts in their field. Video is the next best thing to having a face-to-face conversation or meeting. It’s a great way to build trust, show your personality, and make your brand and business seem more real. Also, the video has a relatively high barrier to entry, especially compared to just writing a blog post. This is actually a good thing, because if you’re serious enough to be watching this now and really want to improve your small business, it means you’re serious enough to overcome that barrier to entry and do things your competitors aren’t willing to do. In particular, get over some of the initial discomfort that comes with video, such as setting up all the equipment, deciding what you’re going to say, and then recording, editing, and uploading your videos. Now, as I mentioned in my last point about content marketing, one of the reasons I think video marketing is one of the most powerful forms of content is that you can take the video content and then syndicate it across a number of different channels. If you take out the audio, you now have audio marketing. You can have it transcribed, and then you’ll have a blog post. You can then take little snippets, clips, quotes, or anything else, and you’ll have quote cards for all kinds of social media sites. This is the main thing I’ve learned about video marketing. It will only become more important as the year goes on and into the next year. So, if you haven’t already, now is the time to start putting money into making more videos for your business if you haven’t already.



Copywriting is the next thing we’ll talk about. When we say “copywriting,” we don’t mean copyright or the legal side of protecting your work. Instead, we mean writing persuasive sales copy. Copywriting is so important because if you have a small business, which I hope you do, or else you wouldn’t be watching this video, it’s important to communicate, persuade, and change the minds of those who deal with and communicate with your business. Copywriting is how we do this. Here’s the thing about writing copy, though. Instead of getting caught up in all the details, the most important thing to remember is that almost everything you write, put on your website, or put in your ads comes down to the copy that you write. This includes the opening hook, some of the benefits, some of the features, how this will help your customers do what they want to do, and how your business is uniquely positioned to solve their problems.

So, there are a lot of different ways to get started with copywriting, but the most important thing to remember is to really try to understand what your customers are going through. Know where they are coming from and what their problems, pains, and frustrations are, as well as their dreams, wants, goals, and desires. Put yourself in their shoes and try to understand them. This will make your copy much more effective and help you sell a lot more. Now, let’s talk about how to market YouTube in a natural way.



Now, it’s probably not a surprise that I think YouTube is a great way to spread your message, give your market something of value, and help your business grow. After all, that’s why we’re both here right now. Now, when it comes to marketing on YouTube, there are two sides: the organic side and the advertising side. We’ll talk about the advertising side next, but let’s talk about the organic side first. Now, to be successful on the organic side of YouTube, you have to realise that YouTube works like a search engine. This means that one of the best ways to get your YouTube channel off the ground is to make content that your ideal customers are actively looking for.

Now, whether or not your video gets watched depends on a number of things, such as the thumbnail you choose, the title, how competitive the keyword is, and how good the video is as a whole, but there’s no better way to start than to just start. Even if you don’t want to rank for different search terms or become a YouTube star, you should still upload your content to YouTube because it can be a great place to send current or potential customers to answer questions, solve problems, or even help them figure out how to fix problems with your product or service. Overall, content marketing is important, and video marketing is a great part of it. If you’re going to make videos, YouTube is the best place to host them.



Now, as I just mentioned, the next part of YouTube marketing is the advertising platform, and YouTube ads are quickly becoming one of the most profitable and effective ways to advertise online today. I said that a little more quietly because it’s still a bit of a secret. You see, we’ve seen the cost of Google ads skyrocket over the years, and now we’re seeing the same thing with Facebook ads. However, this hasn’t happened yet with YouTube ads, so we can still get views for pennies on the dollar. The YouTube ad platform is a little more complicated than the Facebook ad platform, which again creates a barrier to entry. However, YouTube is making it much easier to get your ads in front of relevant and ideal target markets. There are a number of ways to do this, including pre-roll ads, which are those annoying, skippable things they put in front of videos that everyone kind of hates (clicking).

So, those really do work. The same goes for discovery ads, which are those little yellow things you see at the top of a search. Those work, too, and your video can show up when your ideal audience types in a search term that you want it to show up for. To really get the most out of your YouTube ad, you need to follow a good script and template. Again, I’ll link to one in the description box below. You also need to make sure that your targeting is on point, which means that you’re only showing your ads and videos to the people who are most likely to take action and do business with your company.



Our next tip is something that gets me a lot of flak: using your personal Facebook page to promote and grow your business. Now, I always hear the same things against what I say. They range from “I’m not on Facebook” to “I don’t use Facebook” to “I don’t want to be spammy and promote my business on my personal page” and pretty much everything in between. But the truth is, if you’re good at what you do and your business really helps people, you’re not doing them a favour by not letting them know what you have to offer. Also, in today’s world, where people don’t like to do business with businesses but with people, it really helps and goes a long way to humanise your brand and make your business a lot more real.

So, how do you do this? How can you use your personal Facebook page to get the word out about your business? Well, it’s pretty easy. All you have to do is be yourself and talk about things that interest you. If you can do this in a way that helps your business in some way, shape, or form, that’s even better. You could do this by telling stories about customers or talking about things that would be interesting to your market. You could also talk about your successes, highlights, or even new things that are happening in your world. Don’t be afraid to start slow here. Maybe just put a few “test” posts out there to get things going. I think you’ll be surprised by how interested people are in this part of your life.

So don’t be afraid to tell other people. Okay, a video about digital marketing strategies for small businesses would not be complete if it didn’t talk about advertising on Facebook. Now, I know we’ve talked about how YouTube ads are quickly becoming one of the most effective ways to advertise, but that doesn’t mean Facebook is out of the running yet. In fact, it’s still a very powerful way to reach your ideal audience. Now, I have a number of videos out on the top of Facebook advertising, so I’ll link to a playlist in the description below, but the point is that if you have a small business, you need to be using Facebook ads.



You can use them to get people to know about your brand, to promote your videos, to get leads and give away your lead magnet, and just about anything else. The point is that you have to spend some time, maybe some money, and a lot of energy figuring out which strategy and approach will work best for you, but I know there is one. If you’re just starting out, and since we talk a lot about video in this video, a Facebook video ad is a great place to start. This is so powerful because Facebook wants to promote videos as much as possible. You can also retarget people who watch a certain percentage of your video. For example, if someone watches 25% or 50% of your video, they’ve shown interest, intent, and action by staying engaged up to that point. Well, you can now make a list of these viewers so you can reach out to them again in the future with other relevant offers or videos and keep building trust for pennies on the dollar. The main takeaway is that you have to use Facebook ads, which leads us nicely to our next point about Instagram ads.


Now, the main thing about Instagram ads is that your target audience is on Instagram. If they are, it’s clear that you should also use Instagram ads. The best part is that you can choose from different formats, such as feed ads and stories ads. If you’re not familiar with Instagram, those are the two main ways that people use it. But the most important thing is to choose the right one for you and your business and then design them so that they fit. The great thing about Instagram ads, Facebook ads, and pretty much any other kind of advertising is that you can put your message right in front of your ideal target audience right away. This means you don’t have to spend weeks, months, or even years building up an organic audience. You can put your ad right in front of the people you want to see it right away to see if it works or not, whether you need to change your offer, your target audience, or your message in general. The main thing to remember about Instagram ads is that you need to use them if your audience is on Instagram. They are incredibly useful tools. This brings us to our next tip, which is to retarget.


Now, retargeting means that you can go out into the world and show ads to people who have already interacted with your content in some way. Now, retargeting is incredibly powerful for a number of reasons, and I’m really excited about it. The beauty of retargeting is that you can show your ad to someone, and if they do anything at all, you can follow up with them again and again and again. This lets you increase the number of times someone sees your message, and as humans, we’ve been trained to associate things with the frequency with which we see them. Here’s the beauty of it. You can use retargeting on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and the Google display network.

Here’s a tip for experts. All you really need to do is get someone to your main website or landing page. As long as you have the pixels installed, you can then cross-retarget across a number of different platforms. For example, if you can get someone from Facebook to go to your website, you can then retarget them on Instagram or the Google display network. YouTube is the same way. If you can get them to go from YouTube to your website, you can then retarget them on Facebook, Instagram, or back to YouTube if you want. They all kind of work together, so you end up with a marketing strategy that is everywhere and uses many different channels. It sounds really geeky, but it’s really cool. This brings us to our next point about Google’s display network.


Now, most people are familiar with Google and Google ads, which are the things that show up at the top of search engines and have a little ad button next to them. What most people don’t know, though, is that Google also owns space on a lot of different websites, so you can put banner ads pretty much anywhere you want. Now, banner ads by themselves aren’t the best or most effective strategy, but when combined with the retargeting strategies we just talked about, they’re a great way to get your message in front of people more often. The great thing about the Google display network is that it is very cheap. This means that you can go out and show your banner ads to people who have engaged with your content, and only to those people, for very little money. Here’s the main point I want to make about the Google display network. I don’t think you should use this to bring in “cold traffic,” which means you shouldn’t show it to people who have never interacted with your business before. It’s going to get really expensive and not very effective, but retargeting is a great way to keep the relationship going, show relevant offers, and stay in the minds of your target market. Now, our next tip for digital marketing strategies for small businesses is to not use any digital marketing strategies at all. In the digital age we live in, this is a very dangerous thing to do. Direct mail is that tool.


Now, when it comes to direct mail, I want you to think of it like the Google display network, which we just talked about. That is, I don’t want you to use it to get new customers, but rather to keep in touch with the ones you already have. You see, in this day and age, there’s something very valuable about getting something in the mail that you can touch. This is true for people of all ages, even millennials, who still value and open and read hard copy direct mail. So, if you have a list of customers, leads, or even prospects, you should definitely spend some time putting together some kind of direct mail material. My advice is to make it as personal, relatable, and real as possible. This means they don’t need glossy brochures or really polished materials. Instead, they just need a simple typed letter telling them what’s going on, why it’s important to them, and why they should care. This is a great way to build trust and keep the relationship going. Now, let’s talk about the value of a customer over their whole life.


Now, what is the lifetime customer value, and why is it important to your business? First of all, the lifetime customer value is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. It’s how much a customer is worth to your business over the course of their whole life. Now, why does this matter? Well, when you know how much a customer is worth to your business, you can decide which marketing decisions are good and which ones are bad in a way that is both smart and good for your budget. Take the case where you know that the average customer is worth $1,000 to your business over the course of their lifetime. Well, then you can decide how much of that you want to spend on marketing to bring in new customers.

Say, for instance, that you can go out and buy as many customers as you want for $500. Well, you might want to do this because each of these choices will give you a profit of $500. Let’s say that you are investing in a certain marketing strategy and that it costs you $1,200 to get a new customer. Obviously, you’re going to want to cut this short or make some changes soon, since what you’re doing is getting customers at a loss of $200. Again, there are a lot of different formulas, strategies, and other things we can look at later, but the main point is that you really need to know what a customer’s lifetime value is to your business so you can make educated and informed marketing decisions about which ones will give you a return on investment and which ones will lose.

Okay, you’ve made it to our last two suggestions. Congratulations! I hope you have a lot of good ideas that you can pick and choose from to come up with the best business strategy. Even so, the next two tips are likely to be effective, no matter which ones you’ve used so far, because they’ve been shown time and time again to give you the best return on your marketing investment. The next thing we should talk about is how important testimonials and case studies are.


Now, testimonials and case studies have been around since the beginning of business, when someone asked, “Hey, how’s that business doing?” They said, “Yeah, it’s not bad.” Well, that’s a testimonial right there. You should record these and then show them to potential customers to show that you know what you’re doing. Now, there has been a lot written about testimonials, and everyone says that you need them. In fact, it’s so common that it’s often just ignored because everyone thinks it’s just something you need so everyone understands it, so everyone just ignores it. Even though it doesn’t make sense, that’s how it works.

So don’t be one of those people. Instead, make sure you’re one of the people who knows the real value and importance of a testimonial and a case study if that’s how your business works. You see, putting them on display and showing them off gives a lot of social proof. This will become more and more important as we move into the next year and beyond, when people’s scepticism, cynicism, and doubt about businesses and companies are at an all-time high and they want to give their money to real, proven, and authentic businesses. Now, talking about testimonials and case studies seems strange when we’re talking about digital marketing strategies for small businesses, but it’s very important because getting testimonials and making really thorough case studies are great ways to show that you know what you’re doing.

Social proof is one of the most important ways to get someone to trust your business and do business with you. Testimonials and case studies are the social proof you need to do this. It can then be used on all your social media platforms and on your website to make it clear that you’re the right person for the job. Now, our last tip, which I think is the most important part of a digital marketing strategy, is to have a very clear, very well-defined, and very well-thought-out “ideal customer avatar.” So let’s talk about what this avatar should look like and why it’s so important.


Now, when we talk about a “ideal customer avatar,” we mean making a fictional version of your best customers or picking one or two of your ideal, most perfect customers and really describing who they are and what makes them different. We’re talking about things like their age, gender, income, job, and title. We’re also talking about their city, state, province, country, neighbourhood, or wherever they live, as well as their attitudes, interests, opinions, beliefs, affiliations, and other similar things. The more you know about your ideal customer avatar, the better you’ll be able to make them feel understood when you’re making your marketing materials, and that’s what really moves the needle and gets them to take action. So, here’s why it’s so important to have an ideal customer avatar. Well, when you have this “ideal customer avatar” in mind and you know who they are, what they like, how they talk, what they wear, and what they do, you can make really strategic marketing decisions. For example, you can figure out which social media platforms your “ideal customer avatar” is active on and which ones they aren’t.

You can tell what kinds of messages will get through to them and which ones won’t, as well as what kinds of campaigns to run and which ones to completely ignore. When you look at your digital marketing strategically and wholistically through the eyes of your ideal customer avatar, everything becomes a lot easier, a lot clearer, and a lot more effective. This is why it’s my top tip and my top digital marketing strategy for small businesses. Okay, so thank you very much for watching. I hope that you liked the show. If so, give it a thumbs up, subscribe to the channel, and say hi in the comments section below. Make sure to check out for more great marketing strategies, tools, tips, tricks, and tactics. The site is full of resources, articles, blogs, and videos that can help you take your marketing and business to the next level and beyond.

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