To help website owners take full advantage of the most important online marketing opportunities, here are 3 things small businesses can do to attract and engage new customers.
Content Publishing & Marketing – Consumers are interacting with multiple content sources before purchase and businesses that provide useful information beyond product features and benefits can attract more traffic and referrals.
Tips, articles, videos and experts interviews provide customers with the information they need to buy and refer to others. Useful content optimized with keywords also attracts more search engine traffic and links.
Social Media & Networking – 90% of marketers say that social media is important for their business according to the 2011 Social Media Marketing Report. Word of mouth, referrals and buzz on social networks can increase awareness, build trust and influence sales.
Social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube offer useful platforms for small businesses to be helpful and share information with networks far beyond their customer base.
Local & Mobile – By 2014, mobile Internet will take over desktop Internet according to Microsoft Tag Lab. Small business websites can increase page views by offering a mobile friendly version of their website. They can also increase visibility on local search by making sure they’ve claimed their listings on Google Places and Bing Business Listings.
I just spoke last night to a group of independent home inspectors about these very issues. Some didn’t even have a site. Those that did had ‘brochureware’. The problem, I explained to them, is how will someone know you’re an expert if they can’t google you? That’s now this next generation of buyers will make there decisions…
The answer is as easy as using a free WordPress site as your business blog and adding Google Apps for corporate email. Next, link the rss feed from your blog to your Facebook page, Twitter account, LinkedIn account and your MailChimp newsletter. Then all you need to do is use Google Reader to ‘listen to the internet’ and make the information you need come to you. Out of that listening will come a lot of great ideas for you to create or curate on your website. This is the ‘lather, rinse, repeat’ cycle of ‘thought leadership’ marketing. I call it the ‘e1evation workflow’.
Anyone who can send an email can use these tools to get known by Google and the best news is every single one is free and completely cross platform right down to the smartphone level. Comment or ‘connect’ so we can talk about how this applies to your organization…