In the last year I’ve spent $72,315 on Facebook ads.
For many of us, that’s a number more likely associated with home mortgages, savings accounts, and annual salaries. But for a growing business owner, it can easily be a marketing budget.
For me, marketing is devoted solely to Facebook, Instagram and Google ads. No fancy television ads. No radio. No magazines. Just the power of technology to connect me with my ideal client, over and over again.
Thanks to a strong marketing investment, I’ve built a strong, profitable business in less than a year, while taking on yet another military move (Goodbye, Fort Bragg, but I hope to see you again soon).
Reflecting on the past year, I see even more clearly the power of marketing to help build and rebuild a business – no matter which community the military finds fit to direct us. But thanks to social media and other modern technologies, the business interests of a dual purposed military spouse and entrepreneur can continue thriving when Uncle Sam tells you it’s time to pack your bags for “greener” pastures.
And, the best news:you do not need to make a 4 or 5-figure marketing investment. For as little as $5 a day in ad spend (go on ahead and breathe a sigh of relief, there’s no bank loans required), you can start building, or reinventing, your dream.
So whether you’re moving your in-house cookie baking business, wondering how your dog training business will endure a military move, or now starting a business, here’s how to let social media power your business through your move:
1. Establish your social media platforms and nurture them wherever you are.
If you haven’t already set up a Facebook Business Page, start now. You’ll want to have a minimum of 6 weeks of regular posting before you begin any campaigns. Think about it this way…you’re not going to walk into a boutique with no clothes on the walls. Your audience feels the same way about your content.
If you’re not on Instagram, start now. That’s where your clients are, on average 21 minutes a day. And, now’s your chance to share what you do in absolute full color glory.
If you haven’t set up your business on Google, do it now. Head to Google My Business today, and get started. Even if you work from home, you’ll want to show up in a Google search for your area.
2. 6 weeks before your move: Begin a Facebook Likes Campaign to your new location.
Of all the Facebook campaigns I do, none is simpler than a “Likes” campaign. This is simply a campaign devoted to encouraging residents of your new location to engage with your brand. Typically, the least expensive ads you’ll run are to your own pages “Likes.” Remember, you’re not only building an audience, but also reducing your future marketing costs.
3. 1 Week before your move: Update your Google Business Listing.
Before those movers arrive, update your Google Business Listing to reflect your new location. Not only will you save yourself the headaches of old clients trying to reach you when you’re already across the country, but you’ll also start receiving calls (and potential new clients) immediately.
It’s more than appropriate to share with a prospect that you’ll “open” for business at a future date. And, in fact, many prospects are doing research on that first call and will likely be ready to buy right around the same time you show up.
4. 3 Weeks after your move: Begin your full Google, Facebook, and Instagram Ads campaign.
I view a move as an opportunity for a new grand re-opening campaign. And, people love a grand opening!
When I’m crafting a grand opening campaign, I love to begin with a no brainer introductory offer. So if I were to be advertising dog training services, I might off a 40% savings off my standard package rates for “new customers.” If I was a baker, consider offering a deluxe cookie birthday package at $30 off standard pricing.
In reality, these promotions are incredible for long after your opening date, but they’ll certainly get the ball (and clients) rolling fast into your new location!
And, one last word of advice from a military spouse who has experienced 7 moves while running businesses. Give yourself grace. Moving is the most stressful thing I’ve ever done. Moving with a child just made it harder. Moving with a child and business made me look at “crazy” in a whole new light.
Not everything will go perfectly, but with time and some good strategy, you’ll find yourself with a business capable of the same success you’ve already seen – if not much, much more!.
Lisa Kuecker is a serial entrepreneur and host of Ready. Aim. Empire, a podcast for small business owners.