10 ways to promote and advertise your business
Promoting and advertising a business can be challenging for small and midsize business (SMB) owners. After all, you’re not working with an unlimited budget, and you may lack extensive marketing and advertising expertise.
But don’t let that stop you. SMB owners can still effectively and strategically promote their business online, across social media, and to their local community without breaking the bank.
Promote and advertise your business with these 10 strategies:
- Claim and optimize your Google Business Profile
- Improve your organic search visibility
- Run a Google Ads campaign
- Post regularly on relevant social media platforms
- Hook the audience in the first moments
- Pay to play (especially with TikTok Spark Ads)
- Optimize post captions for social search
- Engage with community events and organizations
- Invest in local search engine optimization (SEO)
- Use the local targeting option for social media ads
How to promote your business on Google
Although many consumers are turning to social media for search purposes, Google still remains the number one search engine and the most visited website worldwide, according to 2023 data from Similarweb.
If you’re looking to promote your business online, start by focusing on Google. Below are ways to help consumers find your business on Google.
1. Claim and optimize your Google Business Profile
Claiming your Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business) is one of the best gifts you can give yourself as a merchant. It’s free to claim your listing, and your profile will sit at the top of relevant Google search results alongside Google Maps, attracting new customers.
To claim and optimize your Google Business Listing, visit the Google Business Profile page, search for your store, and verify your site.
Once you’ve verified ownership, update your listing with accurate business details, phone number, other contact information, and high-quality photos. Finally, to improve search visibility, select the appropriate primary and secondary categories. For example, if your business is a grocery store that includes a cafe, a pharmacy, and a deli, you would select Grocery as your primary category. Your secondary categories would be Cafe, Pharmacy, and Deli. Once you finish this process, your Google Business Profile will go live.
2. Improve your organic search visibility
According to a 2019 SEO research report from BrightEdge, 53% of all website traffic comes from organic search results. What’s more, Ahrefs found that 91% of pages get no organic Google search traffic.
These data points demonstrate how successful well-optimized content is at capturing large portions of targeted organic traffic. They also show how many websites are producing content and seeing zero results—all due to ineffective SEO.
To capture high-quality organic traffic, it’s important to invest in targeted and updated SEO techniques. On a basic level, this means starting with keyword research and on-page SEO. Here are some essential steps to get you started:
Identify target keywords. Use keyword research tools like Google Ads’ Keyword Planner to find keywords you can target to drive customers to your website. Evaluate based on relevance, competition, and search volume.
Prioritize keywords. Select keywords that have high demand, have low to medium difficulty, and match user search intent.
Analyze search engine results pages (SERPs). Manually review the SERPs to see what sites are ranking for your main keywords and identify how they structure their content.
Create a content calendar. Put together a calendar to write content for each of your keywords.
Write SEO briefs. Create a separate SEO brief for each keyword you want to target. Include the primary keyword, on-page SEO guidance, and an outline based on what you learned from your manual SERP analysis.
Implement on-page SEO tactics. Use your keywords in the title, meta description, headers, URL, and content.
While creating content around your primary keywords is essential to achieve search engine rankings, it’s only half the battle. SEO also includes off-site and technical tactics. Once you’re ready to dive deeper into SEO strategy, follow the steps in The Beginner’s Guide to SEO from Moz.
3. Run a Google Ads campaign
While organic search is an excellent investment, it’s also a long-term play. It often takes months of posting quality content to produce results. If you’re looking to get in front of your target audience immediately, consider a Google Ads campaign.
According to WordStream’s 2023 Search Advertising Benchmarks report, the average click-through rate for paid campaigns across 23 of the most common verticals is 6%. For restaurants and food, the click-through rate is almost 9%. This shows that consumers with specific search intent click on Google’s paid advertising listings.
When starting a Google Ads campaign, Google offers several features to help you maximize your ad spending for optimal results. For example, you can set parameters to target specific customers and demographics and filter out those you don’t want to see your ads.
You also have full control over when your ads run, your keyword bid price, and your total budget, and you pay only when someone clicks on your ad. Other helpful features to review include frequency capping to prevent overexposure to ads, content targeting for increased relevance, and metric monitoring like conversion tracking for quality control.
How to promote your business on social media
Investing in social media marketing is one of the smartest decisions businesses can make. Consumers live on their phones, and social media usage across all generations is skyrocketing.
Social media advertising is even poised to become more popular than paid search. A 2021 Zenith report shows paid social growing at 25% per year and topping pay-per-click by $2 billion, to reach $137 billion in 2021.
Moreover, the average consumer is now turning regularly to platforms like TikTok and Instagram to search for local recommendations. In 2022, Google Senior Vice President Prabhakar Raghavan confirmed that almost 40% of young people will start searches on TikTok or Instagram over Google Search and Maps.
Let’s take a closer look at some strategic ways to promote your business across social media.
4. Post regularly on relevant social media platforms
You’ve likely heard the adage “The early bird gets the worm.” In social media marketing, it’s “The consistent bird gets the worm.”
Even though social media algorithms are notorious for changing regularly, one factor remains steady across platforms: algorithms reward accounts that post regularly with a broader reach.
Because TikTok rewards new accounts with more exposure, it's especially critical to post every day for the first 2-3 months.
5. Hook the audience in the first moments
Social media users move fast. If you don’t hook your audience within the first one to 2 seconds of your post, video, or caption, potential customers will scroll on. TikTok’s Creative Center reinforces the idea that the first 2 seconds of a video are critical and can make or break an ad.
When planning your social media content, pay special attention to the hook and give viewers an incentive to keep watching. Make sure it’s undeniably interesting. Create multiple hooks. Test your hooks. Take the time to learn what interests your viewers, then lean into your findings.
6. Pay to play (especially with TikTok Spark Ads)
Achieving organic reach on any social media platform is a dream come true. You can take your content further in several ways with paid opportunities across social platforms.
The social media platform where you choose to advertise most will largely depend on your target audience. If you’re comfortable and familiar with creating video content, TikTok is worth exploring further.
A 2021 TikTok and Neurons global study found that 99% of the time, users are fixated on their devices when a TikTok ad is playing, and that they are fixated only 76% of the time when watching ads on other platforms.
One reason for this may be because of TikTok’s unique Spark Ads option. Spark Ads let brands boost organic posts made by other creators. In other words, Spark Ads are paid promotions of user-generated content (real customers talking about something like a cool new product, restaurant, or store). A 2023 TINT report found that consumers rank authentic user-generated content as the most trustworthy content, especially compared with staged user-generated content and branded content.
How to promote your business locally
It’s no secret that digital marketing is a stellar way to promote your business—especially if you’re looking to expand your reach to new audiences.
But there’s also a case for promoting your business to people who walk or drive past your store regularly. Let’s dive into smart, cost-effective advertising and marketing strategies targeted to your most loyal patrons: your community.
8. Engage with community events and organizations
If the community isn’t marching to your store in droves, then take your small business to the community to foster brand awareness. Chances are, local consumers either don’t know your business exists, haven’t heard about your store through word-of-mouth yet, or haven’t tried any of your amazing products.
Research the most profitable and well-attended local events your audience goes to in person, then sign up to be one of the local business vendors. This could mean working at a booth, giving out samples of your product, providing irresistible offers like giveaways or referral promotions, or even parking a food truck at an event. While at your local event, you can also focus on building your email list to send future promotions to interested customers.
9. Invest in local SEO
A 2021 Milestone Research report found that 23% of all digital traffic comes from local search. That’s a hefty number, considering there are 8.5 billion searches a day on Google, according to 2022 tracking from Internet Live Stats.
Local consumers search every day for recommendations on where to eat, where to get groceries, and what local products to buy. Investing in local SEO is an excellent way for small business owners to capture new customers and edge out competitors.
For example, a local coffee shop in Austin, Texas, could optimize its content to drive more local foot traffic by first ensuring that it has a complete and accurate Google Business Profile. This coffee shop could also optimize for local search by targeting keywords like “coffee shop in Austin” or “Austin coffee shop” in their website content, meta tags, and descriptions. Additionally, the coffee shop owners could encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on their Google Business Profile listing, as positive reviews help boost visibility in search results.
10. Use the local targeting option for social media ads
While it’s essential to optimize your website and Google profile for local search, it’s also wise to target your social ads to a local audience.
Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok have all recently updated their ad platforms to include local targeting options. This means that when you run a social media ad, you can opt for it to appear only to prospective customers who either reside in your area or are currently visiting your community.
Not only does local targeting help drive foot traffic to your store, but targeting local patrons through social media advertising is also more cost-effective. Instead of advertising to everyone, you’re paying only for ads to be served to people who can feasibly visit your store.
Learn how Uber Eats can help advertise and promote your business
Several effective tactics can promote and advertise your business on search engines, through social networking and email marketing, and by driving local traffic to your website. But don’t forget about the value of third-party delivery platforms as a way to easily expand your reach.
Listing your business on the Uber Eats Marketplace is an outstanding way to get in front of new customers who have a high intent of ordering. As of Q1 2023, Uber Eats had 130 million monthly active platform consumers, who browse the app to go anywhere and get anything at the tap of a button.
From there, you can compound this exposure and put your business at the front and center of your community with engaging ads on the Uber Eats app. Uber Eats allows you to create custom ads that shine a light on your business in high-traffic places.
Additionally, Uber Eats helps you increase your average order value and capture new customers by setting up attractive promotions. Make a commitment to stand out from your competitors today by checking out advertising and promotion marketing tools available to Uber Eats merchants.
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