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New Small Business Marketing Checklist

Are you a start-up business or a well-established business looking to attract more visitors to your site or social media? Has your business fallen behind others, and you can’t seem to understand why?

The digital marketing landscape is continually changing. Failing to understand changes in consumer preferences and current trends can be a make or break for newly emerging or veteran businesses.

Developing a clear, thought-out brand will help a business stand out like a yellow car on a highway and make its business more memorable and attractive to potential customers.

Helping to create, reconstruct, and redesign memorable brands is YLW digital’s specialty.

There are so many layers involved in creating or reimagining a brand. It is easy for any business whether small to midsize or new to veteran to become overwhelmed by an overflow of information. Luckily, we have compressed this volume of information down to a simple and easy-to-read new business marketing checklist.

This essential branding checklist is aimed at any new or existing business thinking about a brand refresh or new brand launch. No matter the lifespan of your business, it’s never too late to update your brand. Check out this useful checklist to help boost and reform your marketing tactics in 2021.

1. Creating Personas

Does your brand know who they are marketing to? Do you understand what behaviors drive a user towards a particular site or product?

Personas are an essential part of brand development. It is important to understand your brand buyer and what motivates them. Ask yourself questions like: What keywords are they likely to search on google?

A persona is a detailed description of someone who represents your target audience. This includes information such as age, occupation, income, geographic area, or family situation. The goal is to develop a reliable target consumer's behaviors and spending patterns. It is equally important to regularly update your user personas in order to consider and account for current trends. The digital landscape is continually growing. Make sure your user personas reflect this.

Without understanding your client base and what drives them to take a particular action, or make a purchase can lead to your business growing out of touch with them. Furthermore, it can prevent you from acquiring potential leads.

2. Market Research

Market research is the action or activity of gathering information about consumers' needs and preferences. Having adequate market intelligence helps to minimize risks when making essential business decisions.

Market research can also identify how customers and potential customers might view your business, or help identify problem areas in customer expectations.

Market research is necessary for you to understand how your brand will measure up when compared to other competing brands. This helps identify particular weaknesses with your brand in the market it is competing in, which will provide the opportunity to resolve them. Another benefit is that research helps you tap into undeveloped niches that your competition has not yet tapped into in order to create business opportunities.

3. Brand Story

Imagine you had to market your brand to your most sought after client. How would you present your brand? Could you be able to do this in three words?

The essence of your brand comes down to branding. It is crucial to effectively communicate your brand along with its key traits and personality to potential clients. Without knowing your brand’s vision and it’s key traits, your business cannot establish meaningful and useful interactions with clients.

Having these noted is vital because it allows businesses to construct their identity and even rebrand if necessary, to stay up to date with the changing times and incorporate customer feedback.

Ask yourself these five W’s.

  1. Who are we?

  2. What do we do?

  3. What do we want to achieve?

  4. What is important to us?

  5. Why does it matter?

If you find that you are struggling to answer some of these, then it’s time to start from square one and reconsider making a few updates to your brand’s mission statement.

4. Visual Branding

Visuals represent a brand’s mood and voice; creating positive, attractive, and engaging visuals is a necessary part of branding. Your clients associate photos, and color patterns with your brand. Look at your visuals, are they engaging? Do they tacitly communicate what your brand stands for?

Businesses can achieve this by creating mood boards, brand kits, style guides. These allow for consistency throughout the brand. They incorporate colors, typography, logo and other branding elements. There is no better place to show off your brand’s visuals than social media or your website.

Branded content is excellent for getting your business much-needed attention and creating brand recognition. In most cases, branded content can come in the form of articles, YouTube videos, podcasts. They should have a clear, distinct brand voice that reflects your brand values. Content should also be able to tell your brand story engagingly to form a connection with your audience.

Social media is an effective tool for a company’s brand strategy. While much of a company’s digital presence will come from their actual website, a considerable part of digital marketing is performed through social media platforms.

It is crucial to work towards establishing a faithful following for your business. These platforms are where you will create meaningful engagement with your audience. The more you post and interact, the more you will grow your base and attract other customers.

This creates an excellent opportunity to get feedback. Find out what interests users. What posts garner the most engagement, what draws them in? Use this time to experiment with relevant photos, infographics, and video content on these channels.

Furthermore, posting relevant, interesting content will only seek to improve your website or company’s ranking on search engines like Google. Make sure your company has a strategy for when and how it would like to manage these platforms.

Here is a list of essential channels your business could take advantage of:

  • Facebook

  • Google Business

  • LinkedIn

  • Twitter

  • Instagram

  • Pinterest

  • YouTube

  • Tik Tok

5. Online Presence

The first step in any company’s comprehensive digital marketing launch should be a professional-looking website. This is where a client will go to gather information about your business. There are many options for hosting and construction, depending on the budget and talent within the firm. A great way to create a quality site for smaller companies is to use content management systems (CMS), such as Wix, Squarespace, or WordPress. A CMS allows you to choose from several preset templates and then customize them using the logo, digital media, and keywords researched and developed.

Search Engine Optimization results from on-page techniques you used to ensure if and how well a business’s webpage will rank on a search engine results page (SERP). It requires both content and technical elements to improve a page's quality, so the more on-site SEO you do, the more traffic and relevant traffic you’ll get to your site. This makes original content creation and site development more essential than ever.

One way to optimize SEO is by having a blog. Maintaining a regularly updated blog with new and exciting content is the perfect way to engage with your audience and keep search engines ranking you effectively.

Having a proper blog strategy sets your brand's pace and lets your audience know when they can expect to see new content updates from you.

Listings need to be managed - remember, your business information is on the Web for all the world to see. Nothing looks more unprofessional than having outdated or incorrect information on the internet. Make sure to review and manage your information on top sites, directories and apps, and be aware of how your listings may appear online.

6. Digital Marketing Campaigns

Companies can perform digital campaigns for various reasons, notably to increase brand awareness and to update a customer about a new product.

It is also great for looking into the past and seeing what strategies worked or did not work for your company, what areas you failed to engage from a target audience, and what methods you need to improve on.

Tracking is a fundamental part of any successful, effective digital marketing campaign. Tracking goes further than just how many visitors a page sees, and it is a visitor’s digital footprint. It allows you to know the links users clicked on to get to your site, what times and locations were most favorable for a particular post, and many more added benefits.

7. Agencies and Freelancing

All the subjects listed above can be treated by in-house members of a company’s marketing and social media team or outsourced to a marketing and social media agency. Maintaining a proper marketing strategy may be too much for the time and budget of a small company. It may prove to be more cost-effective to hire a professional agency skilled in necessary marketing and social media techniques and make weekly updates.

If you need help with your digital marketing and social media management, please contact us for a free consultation. We’ll be happy to discuss your business goals, amplify your brand, and help you distinguish yourself from the competition. You can find our website at

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