You’ve got a business, and now you need customers. So what are you going to do?
You could advertise in the local newspaper, or you could put your ad on a billboard. I have my thoughts on this, but we won’t discuss that right now.
What do you do when you’re looking for someone to work on your air conditioner, cut your grass, find an attorney, etc.? More than likely you go to Google and do a search, or you may go on Facebook and ask your friends. Most people in America go straight to the internet when they want to find something or someone.
So instead of putting your money into the Yellow Pages (where very few people go to find things) why not put it into the internet (where most people go to find things?)
The next question is what kind of online marketing is the best for your business?
The following are what I call the 7 Dimensions of Online Marketing
I don’t care what type of business you have you need at least a basic website. Even if the majority of your customers find you on Facebook they expect you to have a website. This is where you can tell your customers about why they should use your business over your competitors. This is where you can showcase your skills through pictures, videos, testimonials, etc. Don’t forget that a large percentage of people visiting your website will also be on a mobile device so make sure your website is mobile friendly.
Your website is your online marketing hub! Get a website!
2.) Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
You have a website now you need to get people to find it when searching Google. SEO is a lengthy, scientific process that takes at least 3 months to start seeing results. It’s not the fasest way to get people to know about your business, but since it takes awhile to be effective it’s a good idea to start on this early. The end result is to make Google like your website enough to show up when someone searches for your keywords.
This isn’t necessary a new way of advertising, but what is new is multitude of ways you can create video that can easily be shared with thousands of people. Websites like YouTube and Vimeo allow you to upload a video that can be viewed by people all over the world, but recently services like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat allow you to make simple videos with your phone. Facebook has recently given all of their users the ability to create live videos. You can simply click a button and be live on the internet in front of untold amounts of potential customers.
4.) Social Media
Many of you probably already have a Facebook account and maybe even an Instagram account, but many of the social media “experts” out there will say you need to be on Snapchat or Musical.ly or Twitter or Linkedin, etc. So where do you invest your time? That’s a much deeper question, but we will be talking about this soon. No matter which platform you choose Social Media will play in important part in your online marketing for your business.
Too many business owners overlook using email as a marketing tool. It may seem “old school”, but people still read emails especially business people. If you’re target market are business people then I would highly suggest you start capturing your client’s email addresses. A simple monthly or bi-weekly update or special promotion is all it takes to keep your name in front of them.
6.) Paid Ads
You need to learn the basics of Facebook Ads and Google AdWords! Between these two platforms you can have ads that are laser focused on your target market. Want to target “single females, between 40-60 years old, that own a home with a value of over $200,000?” You can do that with Facebook Ads. It seems kinda creepy, but it’s pretty darn cool for marketers 🙂
7.) Online Reputation Management
The internet allows anyone to leave a review of your company, whether bad or good, and it’s up to you to manage those reviews. Right this very second someone could be leaving you a negative (or positive) review on Google, Facebook, YellowPages, Yelp, Kudzu, Angie’s List, etc., etc. If someone leaves you a bad review would you know it? How would you respond (or would you?) As business owners we strive for excellence (at least I hope you do) and we want people to like us, but unfortunately people are more prone to leave bad reviews than good ones.
Over the next few weeks I will begin going into more detail on each of these. The upcoming classes I will be teaching will also go into more detail along with how to approach each of these topics.