Small businesses are the order of the day, especially here in Zimbabwe. The turbulent state of the economy, the ever-depreciating Zimbabwean dollar, and the mostly stagnant salaries are some of the push factors. This causes Zimbabweans to explore side hustles or businesses to boost their income streams. This usually causes people to flood the same side hustles or business ideas. For example, poultry production is one of the most common go-to’s. This creates a business environment of stiff competition. Without effective marketing strategies, you will not thrive. Here are 9 marketing strategies small Zimbabwean businesses can use:
Know And Communicate Your Unique Selling (Value) Proposition
Do not just advertise what you sell; something that I tend to see in Zimbabwe. Countless others are also selling what you are selling. What is it that makes you any different? That is what you need to communicate to the market. Is it the price? Is it the features? Is it the payment terms? What is that you unique have that makes you the best option for customers? That is what you should figure out and communicate to stand out.
Use Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Content marketing is now a major part of modern-day marketing (digital marketing in particular). You want your content to be easily discoverable online. It can either be through people searching via search engines (e.g. Google) or social media platforms. To stand out you need to know and apply strategies for search engine optimization. Anyone who uses the internet or social media for marketing their enterprise must appreciate what SEO is.
Use Email Marketing
I have spoken about email marketing before; check out the articles. Whilst email marketing is a big deal in other countries, in Zimbabwe it is still sparsely used. Most small businesses in Zimbabwe are yet to appropriate the value locked up in email marketing. Several studies have shown that the return on investment in email marketing is higher than in social media marketing. Small businesses which are going to seriously use email marketing will stand out.
Use Social Media
It might seem like a no-brainer but most small businesses in Zimbabwe are not on social media. Some are there but barely use it or are not using it effectively. Just by using social media, even just organically, you can open up your enterprise to more market prospects. Try out some social media platforms that are not considered the best in Zimbabwe. For example, Twitter can be an effective platform to use to market your business. There is also LinkedIn which can give you pleasantly surprising results. With the popular WhatsApp, some small businesses are yet to realize the power it carries to publicize their business. The secret is to use social media using the content marketing approach.
Use Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC)
I am not going to dwell much on this since I have covered it before. I have a whole article on what pay-per-click advertising is and the different types of PPC one can use. This is a marketing approach that many small businesses in Zimbabwe do not use. It is high time you start looking into how you can make it work for you.
Solicit And Use User-Generated Content
Any brand in Zimbabwe (or anywhere in the world) that I have seen effectively using social media or the internet understands user-generated content. How has user-generated content changed the business world? I once did an article on that subject focusing on what user-generated content is and the different types. Be sure to check it out and learn more. Your brand image can be enhanced through the soliciting and use of user-generated content.
Encourage And Reward Word Of Mouth Marketing
Word of mouth marketing is something I mention a lot and for good reasons. Brand awareness largely depends on encouraging and rewarding word-of-mouth marketing. It is also one of the vital contributors to building customer loyalty. You need to encourage and reward your customers to get others talking about and recommending your business. There are ways to get word-of-mouth marketing on your side – I have an article where I discussed 6 of those ways. You can do without this marketing strategy; it is cheap and effective!
Enter Into Partnerships, Joint Ventures, Or Strategic Alliances
No matter how small you may be as a business you must never be an island. I understand there is competition and all but there are times you must collaborate with others. I have an interesting article on what you need to understand about collaborating with your competitors. You should check it as it shows you the importance of entering into partnerships, joint ventures, or strategic alliances at times.
Regularly Conduct A/B Testing
It is quite interesting that almost everything I am sharing in this article relates to things I have exclusively covered before. I once did an article on how to effectively do A/B testing in social media; check it out. A/B testing is a technique used in testing out marketing approaches and how they perform in light of any tweaks one might use. It applies to social media but it can apply to other things as well. It is mainly a matter of a certain principle i.e. identifying what works and using that more.
Those are the 9 marketing strategies you must as use as a small business in Zimbabwe. Kindly make sure you check out all the other articles I mentioned. That will help you get a well-rounded understanding of everything I talked about.