Small Business Advertising 101: 3 Ways Besides Social Media to Get New Customers

Last updated: August 30, 2022 | By Jed Dreben

Advertising that drives return on investment doesn’t have to be an advanced course; a few simple marketing tips can go a long way for small business owners. For instance, prospective customers will travel or search farther than you think (with a little help from Google Maps and local search) if they receive a referral or recommendation about your business or your products. Your offline and online marketing efforts should go beyond brand awareness and ecommerce initiatives too. When you emphasize what you stand for and how your brand values align with your customers, you drive even more conversions. Whichever marketing tactics you choose, from SEO and PPC to local events and direct mail, keep marketing year-round, regardless of seasonality. Here are 3 ways (besides social media marketing) to keep your business top of mind and profitable.

1. Geo-Targeting to Reach Your Target Audience

When it comes to advertising your small business, there is a science behind how far you can expect customers to travel (or search) for your products or services:

Does Location Matter When Advertising?

Short answer: absolutely! In a Valpak survey, 38% of respondents indicated they would be willing to try a new business based on its proximity to their work or home. Marketing campaigns more than doubled that percentage to 81% if they received an ad or coupon from that new business.

What’s Next?

  • Determine how far customers will travel or search to shop your business
  • Use demographics to drill down to your target audience within that radius
  • Ensure your business listings (Yelp, Google My Business, etc.) are up to date
  • Identify low-cost, effective print and digital marketing to reach new customers

2. The Role of Brand Values in Business Marketing

Valpak advertising 101 men discussing bikes
Brand values are the fundamental ideology that drives your business – what you believe and stand for. They’re often an incentive / motivator for buying decisions too. 82% of shoppers want to buy from brands and local businesses that align with their values. Brand values, when done right and with authenticity, can be an extremely lucrative marketing tool.

Brand Value Examples + Benefits

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

7 in 10 consumers say DEI is an important factor when choosing a brand to purchase from


62% of shoppers actively seek out brands that are sustainable in their business practices

Customer Service

44% of U.S. adults make a point to shop in person where salespeople are helpful and friendly


47% of consumers switched companies over data (contact information, etc.) privacy concerns

What’s Next?

Review your business’s goals and mission to figure out if your brand values align with your customer’s. Engage in community outreach, email marketing and targeted advertising to increase word of mouth about and goodwill for your small business.

3. High-Quality Marketing Strategies to Combat Seasonality

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Competition never sleeps. Consistent advertising projects stability, keeps the noise level up, provides measurable results (metrics) and can increase your profits when every dollar counts. Here are a few reasons why you should be advertising during your busy and slow seasons.

Advertise During Your Busy Season to:

  • Build brand awareness during peak sales periods
  • Maintain (even grow) market share vs. competitors
  • Recruit and hire staff to meet increased demand

Advertise During Your Slow Season to:

  • Stay top of mind when consumers are ready to buy
  • Cost-effectively reach more potential customers
  • Increase revenue when sales are traditionally soft

What’s Next?

Once you have a clear understanding of your busy and slow seasons and the types of customers you attract during those seasons, you can identify your target audiences and the most appropriate advertising to increase conversions year-round.

Planning Ahead to Advertise Your Local Business

We hope these marketing tips for geo-targeting, brand values and seasonality help with advertising your small business and creating future marketing plans. Contact your local Valpak rep to learn more about cost-effective direct mail and digital marketing and move your business to the front of the (marketing) class! You may also qualify for free advertising in Valpak’s Blue Envelope.