The townships; ekasi; eLokshini as the South Africans will put it. Being an entrepreneur is not defined by what kind or how big your business is. The fact that you offer a service or sell products; you thought of it and put it in execution – you’re an entrepreneur.
From the local tuckshops, to the local salons, to the local car washes; no matter how big or small your business is, a digital marketing plan is vital to assess the growth of your business.
Creating The Strategy Plan
Before even continuing, let’s define what exactly is a strategy plan. This is a systematic process that helps you set an ambition for your business’ future and determine how best to achieve that. Most of the township businesses have physical presence only, forgetting that online presence is just as important.
Venturing into the digital space is a great way to expand yourself, widen and reach other and new customers other than the ones in your local vicinity. After all, online presence is the future.
1.Have your short and long term goals
Written Goals Are Achievable Goals
Your goals need to be challenging yet realistic and attainable. Your short term goals may be to grow your brand, make it known on socials what exactly you offer; grow and gain followers. Your long term goal would be to attract new customers that didn’t know about your business, or even greater – the ones who live far away, who have to travel a bit of distance just to get hold of your services/products; finding you through online platforms.
2.Understanding and defining your audience
It is very important for a business to define who their target audience will be. It is extremely difficult to reach everyone all at once but focusing on a particular group of people will help you to tailor your products to what they are looking for.
In a Township setup, there are many businesses which are surrounded by the community, businesses like barber shops, spaza shops to name a few. Small businesses need to start looking at who their target market is, what type of product/service they need, where do you mostly find the target market to hang out so that you know where to market your business.
It’s most likely that whatever idea you come up with, already exists. That shouldn’t demotivate you. As a matter of fact, remove that de from the word and turn it into your motivation; rather focus on how and what unique features your business has. What do you offer that your other competitors don’t have. The question then really becomes, how do you use competition and existing ideas to your advantage as an entrepreneur?
- If you decide to offer car washing services, your competitor would be garages and other car washes obviously.
- You could be different and expand your business by offering things like fresh fries and braaid sausages to your customers while they wait, if they opt for a full house.
Content creation is the technique of producing topic ideas that appeal to your buyer persona, writing or creating visual material around those ideas, and making that information available to your audience as a blog, video, infographic, or other format known as content generation. It is one of the main things to do when you have social media. Plan and strategize how and when you can post.
5.Key performance indicators
Make use of key performance indicators (KPI). KPI is a tool used to measure the performance of a business. Goals would be set and one would use KPI to determine if the business is achieving the goals set. Examples of these indicators would be sales target & growth and ROI (Return of Investments), to name a few.
How you can implement your ideas
After all the planning and breaking down of all your ideas and goals, you need to implement and execute them. There are different ways you can do that. You can do it through:
One of the best ways to establish an online presence is to have a website for your business. Having a website will establish credibility. Potential clients usually start off by doing research about a particular company before wanting to make use of their service. Google offers businesses an option to create a website with Google business.
●Google My business
Google My Business is a free service that allows businesses and organizations to manage their online presence across Google’s various platforms, including Search and Maps. You can check and change your company information to make it easier for clients to find you and to tell them your story. If financially you can’t afford a website, this is a great option for you because as stated above, the first thing clients do is search about your business. Your business will then pop up by GMB, giving all necessary basic details like contact info, times available, etc. Again, this provides credibility.
●Social Media Advertising
Another option to opt for if you can’t afford a website. Social Media has seen a huge increase in users, more and more people are using social media. Getting your business on these platforms will greatly benefit your business. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram are commonly used to advertise their businesses. It is as simple as creating a business account and posting items related to your business. Consistency is key, posting on a regular basis will get your business noticed by followers. Following certain trends and hashtags will get your business noticed.
A great visual way for people to see your business. Videos allow viewers and potential clients a bit of a thorough ‘vibe’ and the whole feel of your business.
Search Engine Optimization is a process of assisting a website rank higher on Google. This results in organic search, the higher ranked your website is, the higher the chance of your website getting noticed and increasing traffic directed to your website. Make use of tools such as WordPress to optimize your website.
Market Strategies are set in place with the aim of improving your business activities, looking at ways on how you can generate more income, and planning on how you can do better in your business. A strategic plan is effective for small businesses. In an age where technology and social media is the norm, merging your business with the digital economy will ensure that you reach more customers than your traditional way of doing things.
Hey there, I’m Sphephile Dlamini, a digital marketing analyst intern at the International Institute of Digital Marketing. I love art, design, marketing, and watching series 🙂
My name is Getson Chirwa, an intern at the International Institute of Digital Marketing, I enjoy reading books, watching documentaries, and anything related to technology