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Starting a business

How to market your new business

Most business owners understand the importance—and difficulty—of finding new customers. This is especially true for those with a new business. It doesn’t matter how good your products or services are if nobody knows about them. 

If this rings true for you, you’re in the right place. Read on to learn how to market your new business.

  1. Define your brand
  2. Establish a website
  3. Find new customers
  4. Create a Google My Business account
  5. Promote your business on social media
  6. Advertise online
  7. Build relationships with your customers
  8. Create an email marketing strategy

Define your brand

People get to know companies in the same way they get to know other people—by interacting with them and learning about their personalities and values. These things all fall under the umbrella of your brand. 

By first defining your brand, you create a consistent and impactful approach that can be applied across all future marketing efforts. Don’t skip this step!

When thinking about your brand, you should consider three things: your target market, your unique selling proposition, and your brand identity. Each should be tightly aligned. Aim to keep them closely connected as you refine them.

  • Identify your target audience: Describe your ideal customer. Consider their needs, struggles, hopes and goals.
  • Create your unique selling proposition: Your unique selling proposition answers the questions “What does my business offer?” (e.g. your products or services) and “Why should my target audience come to me, instead of my competitors?” in a single phrase or sentence.
  • Establish your brand identity: Your brand identity is much more than just a logo and colour palette, but they are two great places to start—consider designing or commissioning a logo and choosing the right colours for your brand.

You may find yourself instinctively wanting to throw out as wide a net as possible in the search for customers. But consider this: when you try to sell to everyone, your message gets so watered down that no one pays attention to it.

Instead, define your ideal customer as precisely as possible. You can choose more than one target group as long as each one is clearly specified. But if you’re just getting started in marketing, your life will be easier if you begin with just one. Your unique selling proposition and brand identity should directly solve for and appeal to this audience.

Establish a website

With your brand clearly defined, you can start building out your marketing engine. One of the best places to start for most small businesses is with a high-performing, professional website. As the first impression for many of your prospective customers, it’s worth spending time to get it properly set up. Here’s how:

1. Register your domain name

Also known as a web address or URL, your domain name should be easy to remember and ideally related to the name of your business. Search for an Australian registrar to see if your domain name is available and to register it. Prices can vary, so it’s worth checking out a few options.

Confused about the difference between a domain name and an extension? Let’s look at the address “yourwebsite.com.au”. The first part, “yourwebsite”, is the domain name, and “.com.au” is the extension. Choosing the extension “.com.au” is a safe bet for Australian businesses. 

2. Choose your hoster

The web hoster is responsible for storing your website. For most, it's a good idea to consider a hoster that also offers website building. More on that below.

3. Find your website builder

Many website builders offer domain name registration, hosting and a templated interface to design and build your website all in one package. Some, like Mailchimp, also offer additional marketing capabilities. It's worth searching to find the website builder that meets your needs and budget.

4. Design your website

Once you’ve got your domain name, hosting and website builder sorted, it’s time to think about your website design. Pick a template you like from your website builder and get started! It will likely include suggestions for pages. Not all will be relevant for you. The following pages should be considered the bare minimum:

  • Homepage: the “need to know” of your business.
  • About page: details about the history of your business and even yourself as the business owner.
  • Products and services page: information about what your business offers. If you have an e-commerce website, customers should also be able to add items to their cart here.
  • Contact page: how people can get in touch with you. If you have a bricks-and-mortar location, you should also list your business address.

You might also want to add an email signup page, a blog, an FAQ page, testimonials and other pages, but they aren’t necessary for launch.

5. Collect your website content

Now you can pull together information to go on your website. Collect your images, logos, product/service descriptions and written content and save it all in an easy location. It’ll make things a lot easier when it’s time to start dropping it into your website template. When writing content, make sure to refer to your brand guidance from above.

6. Build your site

You’ve pulled together all of the content you need. Now all that’s left to do is to add it to your website builder templates. The great thing about website builders is that they’re easy to customise. Jump in and give it a go, in doing so, you’ll learn a lot about how it works. Plus, you can take comfort in the fact that it’s easy to undo any changes if you make a mistake.

7. Test, then publish

Once you’ve got your basic website looking how you want it, it’s a good idea to test it out using different browsers (e.g. Chrome, Safari, Edge, Firefox) and on different devices (e.g. desktop or laptop and importantly, on a mobile device). Fix any issues that arise and then publish it. Don’t stress over it being absolutely perfect—you can always add to it and change it later.

8. Optimise

After your website has been live for a while, consider learning about ways you can optimise your website for traffic. Implementing tactics like SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is a great way to increase organic traffic without having to pay for it.

Find new customers

Now that you know exactly who your market is, what you need to tell them and where you’re going to send them, you’re ready to find ways to bring your brand to their attention.

Here are a few tips for how to market your business and find potential customers.

Create a Google My Business Account

Setting up a listing with Google My Business can pay off in terms of search engine placement, especially if you run a local business, and it’s free. Your listing also lets you control how your company appears on Google Maps and gives options for collecting reviews and offering discounts.

Promote your business on social media

Social media is a popular way to get the word out about your business, but you don’t need to go overboard. Choose social media platforms that will attract your target market; 

  • Facebook is widely used by people aged 30 and over
  • Instagram appeals to many in their 20s
  • TikTok and Snapchat are often used by a younger audience
  • X/Twitter and YouTube tend to skew towards men
  • Pinterest tends to skew towards women

Whatever social media platforms you choose, create posts that reflect your brand identity while being useful to your audience. Some of your posts should be about your products, services, and promotions, but make sure you’re also offering tips, humour, and links that your followers will enjoy. Engage them in conversation by asking questions or polling them for their opinions.

Once you’ve established a social media presence, use those platforms to drive people to your website. You could even publish and promote other content—like a blog, for instance—to bring more potential customers to your website.

Advertise online

A small budget doesn’t need to limit your advertising options. Google and Facebook, the two giants of online advertising, let you set your own budget. Even better, you can opt for a “pay-per-click” model, which means you only pay for advertising that brings traffic to your site.

Both Google and Facebook let you specify an audience according to age, income, location, and interests. Whether you want your ads to reach young mums who love to knit, retirees who like decorating, or teenagers in your city, you can accomplish it with either platform.

Build relationships with your customers 

As your customer base grows and your audience expands through email and social media, make sure you give as much attention to nurturing those connections as you do to creating new ones.

Create an email marketing strategy

While social media lets you broadcast messages to large groups, email marketing allows you to talk to people one-on-one. Your email strategy should include a welcome email (or series) when people join your list and a regular schedule of messages to stay in touch.

What kind of messages should you send? While you definitely want to let your audience know when you have a promotion or a new product, you should also send information that will entertain, amuse, and engage them. If you regularly share useful tips, discounts, and resources, your audience will be more likely to open your emails than they would if they expected self-promotion in every message.

Think of email as an opportunity to build strong relationships with existing and potential customers. Show them that you understand their needs and want to help them. Give them a chance to get familiar with your brand and learn more about your business. If people connect deeply with your brand, they’ll become ambassadors who not only buy from you again but recommend you to their friends.

Wrapping up: Marketing your business

There are a lot of elements to keep track of when learning how to market your business. However, as you work through all these methods and techniques, you’ll see that they fit neatly together to form a cohesive marketing strategy.

Weaving your brand identity and unique selling proposition through all of your marketing efforts will create synergy and tie everything together. In the end, you’ll have an effective plan that brings new customers and increased sales to your business.


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