The world is certainly a strange place right now! And the uncertainty and nervousness that the global pandemic has brought about has inevitably led to some confusion about how to adapt your small business’ advertising campaign in such challenging times.

I’ve been asked by some of my clients whether they should decrease their advertising budget during the second wave of COVID. And it’s understandable that small business owners such as yourselves are concerned – after all, knowing what the most fruitful way to spend your precious advertising budget is challenging at the best of times, let alone right now.

So, let’s think about the best way to approach this situation, keeping a clear and focused business head. It’s my view that, in business, we have to adapt pretty much constantly to the many curveballs that we are thrown. Absolutely, this is an exceptional situation, but we need to be flexible, open-minded, and adapt our strategies carefully.

It makes sense that many small business owners have had to cut their budgets right now. With this in mind, I’d like to give you four points to help you with the process of changing your strategy to attract more potential clients.

1. Create valuable content for your followers

Focus on engaging with your followers and future clients by presenting them with information that is genuinely useful for them and encourages them to follow you and then posting it on your website. Blogs, videos, “how-to” tutorials are all great ways of getting on your future clients’ wavelengths and offering them solutions to what they are needing, what their challenges are, and supporting their decision to choose you as opposed to somebody else.

2. Boost your Facebook posts

Full-blown Facebook campaigns can be expensive. So, if you are looking for a more cost-friendly option in these difficult times, consider setting aside a small budget for boosting the posts that you intend to write and share on Facebook. When you simply post your blogs onto your Facebook page, only about 5% of your followers actually see them which is far too small an amount to grow your business effectively! So allocating some money towards boosting these posts to your potential audience can be really valuable – don’t forget that Facebook’s algorithm is cleverly geared towards advertising and can help you to reach your potential audience much more effectively than posting to your followers alone.

3. A post is not complete without an opt-in!

When you write and boost your blog posts, it’s crucial to offer some kind of opt-in. It could be a sign up to download a cheat sheet, a checklist, a free mini-course – anything that enables you to capture that potential customer’s data and give them something that is valuable to them in return.

If your objective is to get some traffic to your blog posts, particularly if you boost them, you need more than for your follower to read the post – you need to tell them what to do next. Or they will leave! By getting their details, you can start engaging with them and building a relationship. Which leads me onto point number four….

4. Use email to get a dialogue going

Once you have your potential clients’ email details and they are on your email list, you can start nurturing them with a well-thought-out email sequence and continuously update them with your new blog posts, new videos. This is the perfect way to create connections with them, build trust with them so that you can answer their questions, relieve their doubts, and share your case studies and testimonials with them.

And remember that, while there’s a lot of activity on social media, there is much less competition in their email inboxes and you have a real opportunity there to connect with your future clients. Communicate with them once a week, every fortnight at a minimum, and nurture that relationship.

In a nutshell, the purpose of these four steps is really to build and enhance that close connection with your future clients, ready for the time that the current situation improves and they are ready to move forward with working with you or buying from you. I hope this helps to give you some confidence that, even if your advertising budget isn’t what you would like it to be, there are some concrete ways for you to increase your social media following and engage meaningfully with your future clients.