Updated: Dec 3, 2020
With new years come new resolutions. If there's anything we've learnt from the year 2020, it's that we need to be more than prepared for anything.
In order to be well prepared for the year to come, it is important to review the previous years' learnings. You need to ask yourself what worked and what didn't. If it worked, should you continue doing it as is? Should you continue doing it with a few tweaks? If it didn't work, should you stop doing it? Should you give it a little time to ameliorate - maybe it will work after a little more time and nurturing?
Small and medium sized businesses are the economic pillars of Kenya and Africa - a load-bearing beam. As such, these businesses need to be nurtured to success. At the same time, these very businesses are struggling to keep their heads above the water.
As we take a look back at 2020 and plan for success in 2021, these are the areas that we would advise marketers and/or business-owners to focus on in order to propel them out of the red areas of their business and make them more efficient.
1: Get the right marketing technology stack:
For many small and medium size businesses, financial constraints inhibit them from moving forward. These businesses don't generate sufficient revenue to market their business, products and/or services, to hire more resources, and even to expand their businesses. This keeps them in an unprofitable cycle.
It's time to start embracing technology! With the right marketing technology stack, you can keep your processes efficient while simultaneously freeing up time and resources to do more. Use technology to collect data that you can analyse for a more intentional approach to your marketing.
Few or under-qualified resources can be detrimental to your marketing and business output. For that reason, you need to invest in a strong and qualified team. Few or under-qualified resources will mean that your team will either over-stretch themselves or bend over backwards to achieve business results. Both outcomes result in compromised quality of work.
Sometimes doing something poorly is much worse than not doing it at all. Instead, focus on your core business roles and outsource the rest. In the long-run, doing it right the first time will be cheaper than spending time correcting avoidable mistakes.
3: Build your online presence:
Today's consumer is impatient and needs information instantly. The first step of the consumer journey usually begins with search. A quick online search of your business industry, location, products and even business name should give results showing your brand. Getting your name at the top of search engine results is no easy feat. The process of getting discovered on search engines requires search engine optimisation (SEO).
Your online presence is everything these days. If your business is available on search engines, searching exposes your brand to a consumer who is literally asking for your products and services.
SEO is a process for gaining organic traffic to your website. It can take 6 months to a year to start seeing results. If you are looking for quicker results, you may consider social media marketing and search engine marketing. These are paid sources of traffic achieved by running ads online.
With the way 2020 played out, there's no doubt that taking your business online is the direction the future.