11 Marketing Lessons from Canadian Small Business Experts

October is Small Business Month in Canada.

It’s a month dedicated to honoring Canadian entrepreneurs, and celebrating small businesses for all that you do.

Here at Constant Contact, we are fortunate to have the chance to work with small businesses and organizations throughout Canada every day.

One of the things we enjoy most is when we have the chance to hear the stories of successful small business owners who have used our email marketing tools to become better marketers.

To celebrate Small Business Month, we wanted to share some of our favorite tips from these small business experts.

Read them all below, and help us in celebrating Small Business Month Canada by sharing your best advice with the hashtag #BeaMarketer.

 

1. Provide a personal touch

“It’s always nice to hear someone tell us how much they enjoyed reading our newsletter and thanking us for reminding them to come visit the store or give us a call. The personal touch really makes the difference.”

Sue Bedell, Owner, Second Bloom Design

Dorchester, Ontario

Constant Contact customer since 2010

Learn more: 3 Steps to Building Better Relationships with Email and Social Media

2. Ask for permission

“If you have been following e-newsletter best practices all along, you have nothing to fear from CASL! I’ve only ever added people to my list who had given me permission, so I was super happy when CASL came into effect.”

Rebecca Coleman, www.rebeccacoleman.ca

Vancouver, British Columbia

Constant Contact customer since 2015

Learn more: [Q&A] How to Use Social Media and Email Marketing to Strengthen Your Business

3. Be clear and concise

“People don’t have the time to read a lot of text. We make sure our emails are informative but also quick and easy to read.”

Julie Ananny, Owner, Wine Station

Ottawa, Ontario

Constant Contact customer since 2012

Learn more: 10 Small Businesses & Nonprofits with Great-Looking Email Templates that Drive Action

4. Stay consistent

“In an industry like ours, it can sometimes take a few years before you actually convert a new client. So, we really focus on being consistent and building the relationship any way we can.”

Bahar Saadat, Marketing Manager, Davidson & Company, LLP

Vancouver, British Columbia

Constant Contact customer since 2013

Learn more: How to Use Email Marketing to Build Brand Awareness

5. Focus on client success

“When you help your clients succeed, they’re going to come back time and time again because you’re generating that positive return on their investment.”

Vito Marchese, Founder, Whiteboard Studios

Toronto, Ontario

Constant Contact Solution Provider since 2011

Learn more: How the Right Partner Helped One Consultant Expand His Services and Add Value to His Clients

6. Listen to your audience

“We want to make sure our families are enjoying their experience, so we send out a couple surveys each year — once a semester, one in September and one in January.  We ask about their experience, what we can improve on, what they’re enjoying about their lessons. And we found that’s a really great way to get feedback.”

Cynthia Lee, Community Manager, Dominelli School of Music

Edmonton, Alberta

Constant Contact customer since 2009

Learn more: 5 Types of Emails to Show Your Customers How Much They Matter to Your Business

7. Make it easy to sign up

“At first we only had a sign-up form on our website, but once we realized how well it worked for us we’ve added it to our social media sites and pretty much anywhere else we can possibly add it.”

Dan Plouffe, Co-owner, MyCollingwood.com

Collingwood, Ontario

Constant Contact customer since 2006

Learn more: How One Small Business Became the Talk of Their Town with Email and Social Media

8. Understand your audience

“We work closely with every client to understand the challenges they face and the results they want to achieve. We put a plan in place to fit their needs and offer the coaching and support to help them get where they want to go.”

Brandon Klayman, CEO, Conscious Commerce

Calgary, Alberta

Constant Contact Solution Provider since 2004

Learn more: From Worst to First: How to Find the Right Partner to Turn Your Marketing Around

9. Track your results

“Email has definitely helped us with web traffic and attendance at our events. I like that after I send an email out, I can go back and see how many people clicked through on which links. That way I can tell people are interacting with our content and click through to our website.”

Ally Whittaker, Public Relations Manager, The Local Good

Edmonton, Alberta

Constant Contact customer since 2009

Learn more: 5 Steps to Grow an Email Audience that Looks Forward to Hearing from You

10. Go beyond the inbox

“Social media and email really go hand-in-hand.  The ultimate goal for all of my social media campaigns is to get people to join my email list. I would rather have one subscriber than 10 followers, because I have direct access to that one subscriber.”

Marc Gordon, www.marcgordon.ca

Toronto, Ontario

Constant Contact customer since 2007

Learn more: [Q&A] Small Business Marketing Advice from a Lifelong Entrepreneur

11. Try something new

“You need to learn, but at some point, just get out and try it. You’ll never know everything about the marketing tactic you want to try, so it’s best to just try it out and see what kind of impact you can get, then adjust accordingly.”

Lisa Kember, Constant Contact Regional Director for Canada

Learn more: Small Business Tips from the Field: Meet Lisa Kember

Share your best marketing advice!

Post your best marketing advice in the comments below or share it on social media with the hashtag #BeaMarketer.

Happy Small Business Month Canada!

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