Many small business owners are reluctant to come around to it, but the fact is, the Internet isn’t going away, and it’s one of the most valuable resources for marketing your business today. The good news is, online marketing can save you a lot of time and money, and may even be more effective for building your business than the old days of printing flyers, taking out ads in the newspaper, or buying a listing in the phone book.
Online marketing can seem overwhelming. After all, there are so many tools out there; how on earth do you weed through them to choose the best options for your business? Don’t discount online marketing just because you’re not sure where to start. The right techniques can bring you more leads, more customers, help you hire good employees, and make more money. Consider the following ways to make use of online marketing.
· Your website: A clean, easily navigable website is one of the best tools you can have for marketing your services. If people are looking to hire someone for a particular service, they’ll probably weed through several companies before settling on one. You want that to be you, so your website needs to catch attention right off the bat. It should immediately convey what services you offer, and it should be easy for customers to find answers to their questions. Put all the essential information right on your home page, and make sure there is a prominent link to your contact information.
· Search engine optimization: If someone is searching for a service on Google or Bing, they’re going to use a series of keywords, such as “plumbing” or “air conditioning repair.” Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the key to making sure your company shows up at the top of the results. To do so, you need to identify which keywords your potential customers are likely to use, related to your services, location, or other factors. Be sure these keywords are included liberally around your website. That way, when the search engine bots analyze your site, they’ll recognize certain keywords and rank your site higher in the results, which can lead customers directly to you.
· Online listings: You want potential customers to be able to find you, right? Many small business owners forget to register their companies with online listing sites like Google Places, Yelp, Yahoo! Local, and Bing. Most of these will let you create a free listing, which come up when people search for companies offering certain services in their local area. Many of them also allow people to leave reviews, which can also be an invaluable resource for building your business. You can also try sites like YellowPages.com, Angie’s List, or SearchLocal.
· Social media and blogging: You might be resistant to the idea, but everyone and their mothers are on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, and LinkedIn these days, so you need to be as well. Social media sites are a great way to offer promotions, to interact with new and existing customers, and network. Also, especially on sites like LinkedIn and on your own blog, you can set yourself up as an expert in your industry by answering customer questions or writing posts that show not only your knowledge, but your human side. The key to social media and blogging, however, is to use it regularly. An unused blog or Facebook page isn’t going to attract new business.
Especially when you’re starting up a business, online marketing can seem like a very daunting task. But by taking advantage of these few simple techniques, you can draw new and repeat customers, expand your business, hire great employees, and make more money.
Want to know more about unlocking the secrets of business mastery? Contact us at CEO Warrior today.
Mike Agugliaro, “Business Warrior”
Founder of the Warrior Fast Track Academy and CEO Warrior Circle