Marketing is a big, HUGE field that's pretty overwhelming to most business owners.
I know, because I work with business owners every day to decipher what marketing will be most effective for them. Some of these businesses are small, one person contractors. Others are big $1 million+ revenue companies.
The problem always persists: with so many options, how do you start?
First thing is first. Get your business in order.
It won't matter how effective your marketing is if customers have a bad experience doing business with you. The best and worst type of marketing is word of mouth.
Give a stellar experience to every customer you do business with and encourage them to become advocates of your brand. That's the most effective form of advertising.
That usually isn't enough on its own. Especially if you have competition that is also providing good experiences. You need to do more to stand out.
After spending over a decade trying to dwindle down marketing categories, the three that make the most sense to me (but are still pretty wide) are Location/Property, Organic, and Advertising.
Craig Inzana is the Director of Digital Sales & Services for Priority Digital Services. His mission is to bring big city marketing to small town and regional businesses.