It’s been a very good year for small business marketing tips provided by some of the best marketing experts out there. As a small business owner, there’s a good chance you weren’t able to see them all but as our holiday gift to you, we’ve provided them to you in one blog post so you can catch up!  Listed by month, below are the 12 best small business marketing articles of 2016. We tried to showcase articles that have great information without a lot of fluff, so the short reads below should be easy to read yet effective in reinvigorating your marketing efforts. Enjoy!

January:  “The State of Small Business Marketing in 2016

OK, it’s a video, but it’s still full of fantastic information that small businesses will find very useful. Created by Constant Contact, they compiled insights from Constant Contact customer surveys, data from tens of millions of emails, and external data from valued experts. The result is this handy video. Check it out!

February:  Marketing Terms for Small Businesses”

Unless your small business happens to be offering marketing services, chances are you might be a tad overwhelmed by all the jargon out there. Not sure what guerrilla marketing means and if you should do it? And what exactly does “positioning” entail?  This article showcases a few of the marketing buzzwords you should get familiar with. You’ll be talking like a marketing pro in no time!

March: 25 Content Marketing Tips Every Marketer Needs To Know”

This fabulous list applies to ANY marketer, whether your company is big or small. Good stuff here, so take the time to check it out. They set up the information by acknowledging what we’re all thinking:  Content marketing is HARD. While they don’t provide shortcuts, they do provide some great suggestions on making it a bit easier and a lot more effective. This is one of those must-read small business marketing articles.

April: “How Long Before My Content Marketing Shows Results?”

Vertical Measures KNOWS content marketing, and this is another example of how well they know it. Written by Mike Huber, this article will help you keep the faith when it comes to content marketing. This is one of those blog posts you need to come back to when you’re feeling like your efforts aren’t gaining traction quickly enough. Check out the statistics to get a better picture of what you should expect for your efforts and how they’ll ultimately pay off.

May:  “6 Ideas To Keep Small Business Marketing And Social Media Going”

We love how this article calls out the pain points right away, starting with this:  a Bank of America survey showed small business owners voted to say that running their businesses was twice as stressful as handling relationships with a spouse and three times as stressful as raising children. Then the article provides great ideas to keep going. Read it an get inspired.

June:  “Is Video the Future of Small Business Marketing?”

We get asked about video all the time. Many business owners think it’s too expensive and too hard. Wrong and wrong. Done correctly with a strategic marketing services company, you CAN do video.  This short read provides some viable options for dipping your toes in the waters of video marketing.

July:  Set Clear Goals For Your Strategic Social Media Marketing Plan”

We’re all about having a plan, so we loved this article that talks more to planning and strategy than simply tactics. While there are many articles out there on how to DO social media, there are too few that talk about how to plan and strategize for your social media marketing efforts. Take the suggestions in this blog post to heart; they provide great insights on having a strategic social media marketing plan.

August:  4 Ways to Create a Marketing Strategy for Your Small Business”

Is your small business doing marketing without a plan?  Don’t worry, you’re not alone!  Of course, we’re all about having a strategy but for many business owners, there is simply not enough time in the day. You of course can hire someone to do it for you, or you can check out this article on how to create a basic marketing strategy. Give it a quick read and start working on a marketing strategy for your small business.

September: “15 Free Social Media Marketing Tools for Small Businesses

If you’re looking to take your social media efforts to the next level, this is a great article to read. Written by Brian Sutter, this article provides great stats on how small businesses are using social media, how much they’re investing, and how to manage your efforts going forward. Plenty of easy, straightforward advice to be had in this short read.

October: “22 Low-Budget Ideas for Small Businesses with Limited Budgets”

Marketing doesn’t have to be expensive. As a matter of fact, many tactics are free (OK, except for your time). This is a great list of ideas for low and no-budget marketing tactics to try. This was one of the more popular small business marketing articles.

November: “Why You Need a Style Guide (And How to Make One)”

Yep, a style guide. The internet is a great equalizer, where small companies can compete with big companies but to do so, you need to look professional on a consistent basis. A style guide is a document that defines, references, and guides the style of your company. Think logos, colors and fonts to start. Want to learn more?  Check out the article.

December:  The Ultimate List of Free Content Creation Tools & Resources”

HubSpot is always our go-to when we want to get the latest and greatest tools, tips and ideas. You should bookmark this site, and start by reading this article. It’s just plain awesome. Trust us, go read it.

While there are many more articles out there, these small business marketing articles are a great start to approaching 2017 with solid marketing ideas. Happy holidays!

Patty Hughes
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