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Cogeco: 5 Online Advertising Solutions For Your Small Business

Promote your products online with these creative ideas.

In our new normal, online business is thriving. As a small business owner, now’s the time to start promoting your business online if you haven’t done so already. On the other hand, you may have already tried online promotion, but haven’t got the results you’re looking for.

Try out these 5 online advertising solutions to keep your customers engaged and grow your business’ online presence.

1. Get seen on local news sites with display ads

With display advertising, your ads can reach your customers on popular websites they frequent. Currently, consumers are turning to trusted websites for the latest news and updates. For example, local news sites have seen a 30% increase in traffic.1 Try designing ads that resonate with your local community if they are displayed on a local site. Use images of landmarks near your workplace, or even pictures of your employees at work. Compared to stock photos, these can better attract the attention of your local customers.

If you’re looking for a more economical solution, we suggest you try using a Google My Business account for free advertising. You can learn more about leveraging a Google account in our next section.

Do you run a non-profit business? Did you know you can get free Google Search advertising with a Google Grant? Once your application gets approved, you’re eligible for up to $10,000 USD of in-kind advertising every month. If you run a non-profit small business then this is an opportunity you can’t miss.

 2. Increase your chances of getting found with Google My Business.

Opening a business account on the world’s most popular search engine is a basic necessity for small business online advertising. A Google My Business account is a free online advertising solution that displays important information about your business on Google’s tools. So, whenever a customer searches for your business on Google Maps or Google search they’ll be able to get a comprehensive profile that shows your products and services. Here’s some of the valuable content your business profile can include:

  • A Q&A that addresses customer questions.
  • Your location and business hours.
  • Photos of products or services you’d like to promote.

Additionally, a profile lets you respond to customer reviews, allowing you to directly engage in online discussion with your customer base – showing that you care about their experience and are willing to listen to their feedback.

3. Host an online event.

Events are a great way to bring attention to your special offers, and advertise your business through word of mouth and direct customer engagement. For an online event you have to be a bit more creative than just bringing a group of people together. As your attendees won’t be able to mingle as easily compared to face-to-face events, have a specific topic for your event that suits your business. Here are some examples:

  • Restaurants can host cooking lessons.
  • Salons can provide hairstyling tutorials.
  • IT services can have live webinars.

Be sure to connect your promotion to your event: If a cafe hosts an online coffee brewing lesson, attendees can get a free virtual voucher to use for a curbside pickup, so they can compare what they made at home with your cafe’s coffee. By providing a positive experience and clear opportunities for customers to take advantage of your promotions, a successful event can lead to long lasting customer relationships and increased awareness of your business.

4. Leverage social media platforms.

Social media is a great way to stay in touch with your online customer base, while also advertising your solutions in a way that feels human. Leverage platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram or Twitter to keep your customers updated with helpful, relevant content and important changes to keep them engaging with your business.

Don’t know where to start? If you’re new to social media and you’re not sure where to get started, read our article on how to best utilize your energy and resources to grow your online presence.

Here are some examples of engaging social media content:

  • Ask for customer feedback in a post
  • Highlight your employees
  • Share content that relates to your specialty by linking videos or blog articles
  • Post brief positive messages

Social content can also include important updates such as letting your customers know that you now do curbside pickups, that your hours have shifted or how many customers can be in your business at once. By consistently engaging your customers on social media with the right content, you stand to grow your online following and define your brand’s reputation with your audience.

5. Promote solutions while customers visit your business.

Did you know that your online promotions can keep targeting your customers even while they visit your workplace? A great way to do this is to use a Wi-Fi solution with a customizable splash page that lets you redirect customers to a promotional web page. How does this work? When your customers visit, get them online with free Wi-Fi so they can entertain themselves while they wait or shop. Once they enter their login credentials, have your Wi-Fi splash page redirect them to your business website where ads of your products and services are clearly visible. To minimize risk and to show customers that you care, you can also include your safety measures here too. This enhances your customer experience by providing visitors with free Wi-Fi and information on your latest sales and promotions.

Implement these 5 marketing ideas for your small business, and you’ll have a solid foundation for improving (or launching) your online presence. Growing your small business with innovative online advertising and solutions is an important step in adapting to our new work environment.

1. https://localiq.com/blog/local-advertising-ideas-for-small-businesses/

2. https://www.wordstream.com/small-business-advertising

Special thanks to Cogeco as one of the Supporting Partners for LiONS LAIR 2022, and for encouraging our finalists as they progress through the competition.

Learn more about LiONS LAIR on lionslair.ca

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