Four States Small Business Blog

5 Marketing Essentials for New Businesses

Posted by Jeannette Royle on April 16, 2024 at 7:19 AM
In the dynamic and competitive business landscape, effective marketing is often the differentiator between success and obscurity. Following last week's discussion of   why businesses should be spending between 3-15% of revenue on marketing, we will examine the core necessities you should spend your budget on as a new business. For companies just starting out, establishing a solid marketing foundation is crucial for attracting customers and building a sustainable brand presence. Here are five marketing essentials that every new business should prioritize.

1. Concise Statement of Value Proposition

In a market flooded with options, standing out is essential. Your business must clearly articulate its unique value proposition—the " difference maker" that sets you apart from competitors. This concise statement should communicate what makes your product or service special and why customers should choose you over others. Whether it's superior quality, unmatched customer service, or innovative solutions, your competitive advantage should be the focal point of your marketing efforts.

2. Brand Logo

A logo is the visual representation of your brand and often serves as the first point of contact between your business and potential customers. It should be memorable, versatile, and reflective of your brand's values and personality. Whether you opt for a sleek wordmark, an abstract symbol, or a combination of both, invest in a professionally designed logo that effectively communicates your brand identity. Your logo will appear on everything from business cards to advertisements, so it's worth getting it right from the start.

3. Consistent Design Basics – Brand Colors & Fonts

Consistency is key when it comes to branding. Once you've created your logo, establish a cohesive visual identity with consistent brand colors, fonts, and design elements to help create brand recognition and foster trust with your audience. Choose colors and fonts that reflect your brand's personality and resonate with your target demographic. Whether it is a healthcare brand's calming blues or a youth-oriented company's vibrant hues, ensure that your visual identity remains consistent across all marketing materials, from your website to your social media posts.

4. Business Website

A website is more than just a digital storefront—it's often the first interaction customers have with your brand. Your website should be visually appealing, user-friendly, and informative. It should clearly communicate what your business offers, provide easy navigation, and offer a seamless experience across all devices. Invest in professional web design and optimize your site for speed, mobile responsiveness, and search engine visibility to ensure maximum reach and engagement.

5. Organic SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is essential for improving your website's visibility and driving organic traffic. By optimizing your website content, including keywords relevant to your industry and target audience, you can improve your search engine rankings and attract qualified leads. Invest in keyword research, on-page optimization, and quality content creation to increase your chances of appearing at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs). Additionally, leverage local SEO tactics to target customers in your area and capitalize on location-based searches.

Next Week

If you've already taken the steps above, you may be wondering what's next in your business's marketing journey. In our next blog, we will look at five marketing next steps to build on the framework we've created here. Following these steps is the fastest way to get results out of your marketing budget and maximize brand recognition!

Start Advertising with Zimmer Marketing

If you need expert guidance in preparing a marketing plan and setting a budget, Zimmer Marketing would love to partner with you! We have helped hundreds of businesses across the Four States conduct successful marketing with custom web design, radio, and digital campaigns!

Get in Touch with a Marketing Consultant
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Topics: Marketing Strategy, Marketing ROI, Branding

Why $500 a Month Isn't Enough for Business Marketing

Posted by Melissa Little on April 9, 2024 at 7:00 AM
Are you a business owner looking to expand your reach, attract more customers, and ultimately grow your business? If so, you're likely aware of the importance of investing in marketing. For some, $500 a month seems like enough to fuel your business's growth through marketing. But is it really? In this blog, we'll examine whether or not $500 is adequate for conducting successful marketing campaigns.
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Topics: Integrated Marketing, Radio Advertising, Marketing Strategy, Marketing ROI, BrandsFormation, Digital Marketing, Advertising, Branding

Mark Your Calendars for BrandKamp on April 11

Posted by Mark Zimmer on April 2, 2024 at 3:35 PM
Are you ready to take your business to the next level? If so, you won't want to miss BrandKamp, a groundbreaking event hosted by Zimmer Marketing. Join us on Thursday, April 11th, at 11:30 a.m. at the Holiday Inn in Joplin, MO, for an opportunity that could transform your business forever.
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Topics: BrandsFormation, Branding

The Power of Radio Political Advertising

Posted by Amber Ward on March 26, 2024 at 7:00 AM
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Topics: Radio Advertising, Advertising Creative

5 Tips to Craft a Powerful Radio Jingle

Posted by Brett James on March 19, 2024 at 7:00 AM
Have you ever found yourself belting out the lyrics to a commercial while cruising down the highway? Or maybe you've started a spontaneous sing-along with friends because of a song that's stuck in your head? That's the magic of jingles—catchy melodies with a lasting impact.
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Topics: Radio Advertising, Advertising Creative, Advertising, Branding

Why Is My Website Slow? | 5 Reasons for Poor Performance

Posted by Mark Zimmer on March 12, 2024 at 7:00 AM
In the fast-paced world of the internet, users demand quick and seamless experiences when browsing websites. If your site is lagging, it frustrates visitors and can impact your search engine rankings because Google prioritizes user experience. Several factors contribute to poor website performance, and understanding them is crucial for optimizing your online presence. This week, we'll explore five common reasons your website might be slow and how to address each issue.
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Topics: Website Design, Online Sales

Understanding the Search Results Page: How to Rank Up

Posted by Amber Ward on March 5, 2024 at 7:05 AM
In the vast landscape of the internet, search engines, such as Google, play a pivotal role in connecting users with the information they seek. For businesses and content creators, mastering the art of search engine optimization (SEO) is essential for visibility and success. One key aspect of SEO is understanding the ins and outs of the search results page (SERP). In this blog, we'll explore the key elements of the SERP, providing insights on how to rank up effectively.

Sponsored Results and Ads

Sponsored results almost always appear at the top of the Google search results page. Businesses bid on keywords with Google Ads to have their business displayed when users search for those terms. While organic results rely on relevance and quality, sponsored results depend on effective ad campaigns and budget allocation, as well as relevance and quality. Crafting compelling ad copy, choosing the right keywords, and optimizing landing pages are crucial for success in the sponsored section of the SERP.

Featured Snippets

Featured snippets are concise, informative snippets that appear at the top of the search results page, providing immediate answers to user searches. Earning a featured snippet position is highly coveted, as it boosts visibility and credibility. To optimize for featured snippets, focus on creating content that answers specific questions concisely. Use structured data markup to help search engines better understand and extract relevant information from your content.

Maps Results

For businesses with a physical presence, local search results are pivotal. Maps results, often seen as a map pack, display local businesses relevant to the user's query. Organic map results are based on relevance, distance, and prominence, while sponsored map results are influenced by paid advertising. Additionally, for more map visibility, you can pay to promote your business listing. To enhance local visibility, ensure your business information is accurate and up-to-date on Google Business Listing. Encourage positive reviews, as they contribute to prominence in local search results.

Organic Search Results

Organic results are the standard listings on the search results page, appearing below the featured snippets, sponsored results, and maps results. Achieving high rankings in organic search requires a comprehensive SEO strategy. Focus on creating high-quality, relevant content, targeting essential keywords for your business. Regularly update and maintain your website to stay in line with search engine algorithms and user expectations.

How to Rank Up in Search Results

Mastering the intricacies of the Search Results Page is crucial for anyone looking to enhance online visibility. Whether aiming for the prized featured snippet, navigating sponsored results, dominating local maps, or securing high rankings in organic results, a comprehensive approach to SEO is key. By understanding each element on the search results page and tailoring your strategy accordingly, you can rank up and connect with your target audience effectively online.

Boost Your Online Presence with Zimmer Marketing

Zimmer Marketing's web development team is pushing the boundaries of website design and performance. Fast, visually appealing, and SEO-friendly websites are no longer the exclusive domain of multi-billion dollar companies. If you want to give your business a competitive advantage online through content marketing and cutting-edge design, we're here to help!
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Topics: Website Design, Digital Marketing

The Relationship Between Web Design and Content Marketing

Posted by Brett James on February 27, 2024 at 7:07 AM
In the digital era, where online presence is paramount, the synergy between web design and content marketing plays a pivotal role in determining a brand's success. In this blog, we'll delve into the profound impact of web design on content marketing, assess whether content marketing is truly worth the investment, and explore the costs associated with this powerful digital strategy.

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Topics: Website Design, Digital Marketing

Why You Should Be Combining Radio Advertising with Digital Targeting

Posted by Mark Zimmer on February 13, 2024 at 8:16 AM
Finding the perfect blend of channels is crucial for a successful marketing strategy in the ever-evolving advertising landscape. Radio and digital advertising, each with unique strengths, create a symbiotic relationship that significantly enhances your brand's reach and impact. This blog delves into the dynamic synergy between radio and digital advertising, with a particular focus on how radio can elevate a business to top-of-mind status.

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Topics: Radio Advertising, Digital Marketing

5 Criteria for How to Evaluate a Website Design

Posted by Amber Ward on February 6, 2024 at 1:27 PM
Are you trying to determine the quality of your website design? Evaluating your business website can be a challenge, but it's essential for your business success. That's why we've compiled this quick guide to help you accurately assess your company's online presence.

1. Layout

Your website's appearance must be balanced and arranged logically. The content on your site should be arranged hierarchically, with the most important information and brand positioning messaging positioned further up on your homepage. Your content sections need to be paired with well-placed call-to-action buttons. Finally, pay special attention to your website employing mobile-first and responsive design to fit various screen sizes.

A great example featuring a perfect layout is this design we did for  Superior Roofing !

2. Colors

Your website should be consistent with your brand and logo while following solid principles of color use in design. A bad use of color can be both offputting to users and make your website difficult to read and navigate. For instance, having green font over an orange background would be a poor combination, while white on orange can be a good match.

We recently completed a new website for  Windows for Less , which exemplifies ideal color balance.

3. Navigation

Your website's navigation should be intuitive and avoid crowding screen space on the page. For mobile-friendly versions of your site, this can take the form of a hamburger menu, while desktops can feature top-bar navigation styles or collapsible sidebars. Whatever your site's navigation style is, your menu should be simple and avoid having too many pages listed at once. For example, your top-level navigation may have five to seven pages. Further pages, such as those for individual service types, are ideally set up as child pages under a main services page to ensure your top-level menu is manageable.

Notice how we collapsed the multiple services pages on  The Chimney Sweep LLC 's website into a drop-down menu underneath the button for the main services page.

4. Content Quality

The text, images, and videos of your site must be of excellent quality to wow visitors. Your written content should be confident, informative, and free of spelling and grammar errors. A good site utilizes shorter paragraphs and text blocks to avoid overwhelming casual web users scanning for specific information. Images and videos need to be sized correctly to prevent long loading times or a pixelated appearance. 

Our website for  MW Fence  offers a great example of informative copy in brief sections, along with a perfectly optimized auto-play video on the homepage.

5. Search Engine Optimization

The good news is that most decisions that will positively impact your website's visibility on search engines are very simple, often combining principles from the aspects mentioned above. While technical SEO can be a more complicated field, you can start addressing the basics immediately. Your website pages, headings, and content should address strategic keywords for your business in a manner that satisfies the user's search intent. There are many   research tools  that can help you identify important keywords for your business and shape a strategy.

Check out  All Dogs Dream  to see a good example of SEO supported by a successful blogging strategy.

Evaluating Your Web Design

If your website stacks up well in four or more of these categories, you are on your way to a solid web design to promote your business! But don't stop now; there's always room for improvement, and your website should always be evolving. If your site is satisfactory in three or fewer criteria, that's a sign to take swift action to improve your design.

Need A New Web Design?

Zimmer Marketing's web development team is pushing the boundaries of website design and performance. Fast, visually appealing, and SEO-friendly websites are no longer the exclusive domain of multi-billion dollar companies. If you want to give your business a competitive advantage online, we're here to help.

Get in Touch with a Marketing Consultant
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Topics: Website Design