For small businesses in New Hampshire—specifically those in the Seacoast Region—it may feel difficult finding clients and launching marketing campaigns with such few potential clients. However, in this guide, we’ll be discussing marketing tips so that your company can take over the Seacoast Region.
Marketing can be difficult. It’s even more difficult outside of major metropolitan cities like Boston or New York. For small businesses in New Hampshire—specifically those in the Seacoast Region—it may feel difficult finding clients and launching marketing campaigns with such few potential clients. However, in this guide we’ll be discussing marketing tips so that your company can take over the Seacoast Region.
Start with a quality website
Probably around 95 percent of companies we’ve talked to have said that they didn’t need anything fancy for a website—just a homepage and a contact form! Respectfully, we have always disagreed. A website should be built almost mathematically to convert visitors into leads. Basic three-page websites just don’t do that. Each visitor that clicks off your website is a lost potential client, so we recommend starting off your marketing efforts by creating a quality website that is both modern and optimized for all screen sizes. And yes, that means especially mobile.
The best websites should be eye-catching—homepages should use a video banner or a contemporary feature like parallax scrolling to keep clients on the site and to give them a reason to stay on your site. For reference, check out our blog on mastering video banners for websites. It’s filled with tips for creating a video banner that “wows” without hurting the piggybank. A good example of a site that’s built around converting visitors into capital is Kelliebrookfarm.com. We created that site for our client in Greenland, New Hampshire and built the site so that it funnels all visitors into an order page in order to promote the farm’s products. Simple three-page websites just can’t do that.
On a final note, it’s becoming increasingly important to research what kind of website you want. Most companies go with WordPress, despite the fact that most custom-built sites end up performing substantially better. Custom sites usually end up costing more, but if you find anyone knowledgeable in both coding and creativity, they should be able to make a compelling site. If you want to know more about our hatred for WordPress, check out our blog on why those sites are often subpar.
Claim your business on Google
When I’m laid to rest, I hope that my tombstone reminds people to claim their business on Google. It’s the easiest flipping tip and yet so many companies just don’t do it. The second we at Mintleaf moved to Portsmouth, we claimed our business on Google. It immediately skyrocketed our local search results and SEO ranking. When people search for marketing agencies, we popup on the map simply because we took 20 minutes to register our company with Google.
Additionally, claiming our business on Google allowed us to showcase our services and photographs so potential clients would see them even if they didn’t click on our website. If you have a company in the seacoast that has a physical address, you’ll want to claim your business on Google as soon as humanely possible—as the process can sometimes be drawn out.
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Invest in inbound marketing strategies
If you want to find out whether a company is healthy or not, check if they have an active blog. If a company has an active blog where they’re posting frequently and creating quality content, it means they have the resources to invest in their own future. Blogs rarely ever generate any form of revenue for months—meaning that if a company is pouring resources into them, they are laying the seeds for a future harvest. When companies abandon their blogs, it usually means they’re focusing on only what’s directly in front of them and not the future.
Take the time to blog—even if it’s once a month—and plant the seeds for a future (client) harvest. It’s also important to create landing pages—each promoting a singular product or service, so your company pops up in Google searches. These efforts may take months to pay off, but they generally will produce leads for years to come if done properly. For a more comprehensive guide on SEO strategies, check out our guide on improving your search engine ranking in the Seacoast Region.
Run a few paid promotions
We get it. Paid promotions can be terrifying. The two biggest reasons why small businesses don’t run paid promotions are that they don’t have the budget or they’re afraid they’ll do it incorrectly and waste money. Digital marketing can be quite an insurmountable obstacle for small businesses in the seacoast, but it’s not too hard to learn digital marketing strategies.
The hardest part of digital marketing is A-B testing different demographics. For instance, if you own a yoga studio in Portsmouth, you’d probably mainly target females living in the Seacoast Region. But you’ll also want to A-B test even more narrow demographics—such as females who are aged 50+ compared to individuals in their mid-20s. You may find that your digital ad is very effective with one of those narrow groups, and yet not as much with the other. Quality A-B testing allows you to better spend your future digital ad budget.
If this all still scares you, there are plenty of marketing agencies in Portsmouth that would be happy to help you. Us included—if you don’t mind a shameless plug.
Design a video ad
Nothing is better than a video ad. I really mean it. Video advertisements are versatile—they can be thrown on a website, shared via social media, or even thrown on a screen during a pitch to prospective investors. Heck, you can even get them televised if they’re good enough. They’re captivating in a way that photos often can’t be. If a picture’s worth a thousand words, image how many words a 4k video ad is worth? We get that not every small business has the resources to get into video marketing—we’ve covered in the past just how expensive that can be. But we’ve also written blogs about creating a video ad on a budget—because basic marketing needs shouldn’t have to break the bank. Some newer iPhones can record video in 4k, allowing everyday small businesses to create compelling and visually pleasing ads.
Invest in quality photography
Product or service photography is an essential component to helping your customers visualize your company. Let’s face it, stock photos can be good, but they’re readily overused and look impersonal. If you sell a product or offer a service, it is essential that you use photos from your actual company.
In the past, we covered mastering product photography on a budget. Here are the basics: invest in lighting, thoughtful set design and a couple of quality lenses. Oh, and a camera may come in handy. These usually don’t break the budget. The goal of product photography is to connect your clients directly with your product or service. Additionally, they make perfect website assets, can be readily shared on social media, and if done really well they’ll probably be shared by other people. Simply speaking, photos are super sharable. That’s great for your small business.
The image below (made for a client in Greenland, NH) uses set design, contrasting colors, and high-quality photography to make soup stock look appetizing for potential customers. It’s a stock photo without being a literal stock photo. The photo is super easy to share, looks good on a website and overall, just looks super professional. Product photography is always a great investment for a small business.
Emphasize word-of-mouth marketing
Imagine having to spend no money at all and getting customers lining up at the door. Word-of-mouth marketing has been, still is, and will always be the most effective form of marketing for a small business. Good work spreads like wildfire. We can’t tell you the amount of times we’ve gained new clients through them witnessing old work we’ve done. If you’re a massage therapist and you fix old Betty’s busted back, she’ll tell everyone at the office about the great work you do. Does your restaurant serve the best burger in the seacoast? If customers agree, they’ll tell everyone about it. Word-of-mouth marketing can be an adrenaline boost to your company if utilized correctly.
Carry a business card on you wherever you go. Every interaction is a chance to bring your company up and directly introduce your small business to potential customers. That tangible interaction is so invaluable and cannot be replicated through simple email or digital marketing. Everywhere you go, you’ll want to introduce yourself and your company. Think of Bob Vance from The Office. Okay, don’t be that extreme.
Marketing is an ever-evolving science—and small companies across the Seacoast Region need to keep up with all these strategies in order to stay competitive and grow. If this seems overwhelming, just try to achieve one of these each year. One year you should revamp your website, then you can update your photography and videos. This way you won’t be burning too big of a hole in your company’s wallet.
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Mintleaf is a creative marketing agency located in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. It serves the greater Seacoast Region and specializes in videography, content marketing, social media and web design.