Maximizing the Benefits
Every so often the business landscape goes through some major changes. Those businesses who can adapt and go with the change become successful but those who stubbornly operate according to yesterday rules fall behind and do not grow as much.
In the past, media changes came relatively rarely. Now however, with the age of social media, businesses must be on their feet and constantly update their knowledge with technology to promote themselves and keep connected with customers or risk being left behind and loose out.
The number of platforms for online marketing for small business owners to promote their business is continuously growing and expanding. Understanding how to use these platforms effectively Is more important now than ever. We looked at three of these platforms.
LinkedIn was launched in 2003 and today it’s become internet’s premier professional networking tool hosting over 175 million members nearly all professional in one field or another.
LinkedIn has become number one resort for those professionals searching to collaborate, find information, employment and for employees. Just about anything a small business owner could need. LinkedIn is useful for all businesses and because it’s free, it makes it a worth while resource for small businesses.
LinkedIn is like a online resume. You need to use it proactively. Great engagement tool. But you need to use it and get involved with the people already in the industries or positions you’re looking for.
In recent years, Facebook and Twitter have become twin standard bearers of the social media scene. Twitter is a small blog site where users can interact with each other in short and easy scannable burst of text.
Facebook was originally geared for college students but now almost everyone, young and old has a Facebook account with over one billion users, it’s at a point where at least everyone has at least heard of it. That’s a sign of market saturation and a major reason why every business should have a presence on one or both of these tools.
It’s important how you present yourself. You can’t just set up a Facebook account and expect success. You need to figure out why you’re there. Make your existing website to contain professional content and than place a teaser on Facebook or Twitter. That draws eyeballs to your site and starts to build reputation in the industry.
Blog, short for weblog, came about only 15 years ago and blogging already established a status in the world of online business promotion. Blogging has placed a secondary importance compared to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
In the late nineties and early 2000′s the Internet based writing was lot smaller and bloggers were able to build audience slowly without lots of promotion.But now, the blog market is overstuffed. Social media is required to promote a blog. You need to post links on Twitter and Facebook to drive people to your blog content.
We live in a day and age of content marketing. Drawing people to your site. A blog is a great way to educate people on the information they need to make a better buying decision. And if your content offers that, it’s mush more likely you’ll get the sale.
You’re Audience and Your Needs
Experts caution businesses to do a self-examination before getting involved with the online world. Even though social media tools are free to use, they can take a lot of your valuable time. Time that can be spend elsewhere and can still be effective.
Know where your target audience is and who your customers are. Sometims a business will think they need a LinkedIn or Twitter account, but it might not be beneficial to your business or target market.
Know your audience and you’re need.
Entrepreneurs , by nature, are do it yourself people. To be successful at marketing business blemishes must be seen and effective marketing starts with an unbiased perspective.
Here are five marketing tips for your business.
1- Advertise small – not like a big business.
Big businesses advertise to gain name recognition and sales. A small business approach should be to have an insentive program and draw customers to it. Example: 15% off your next hair cut or website classes original price $1200. Now for a limited offer $599. The customer will generally come for the sale and than remember your store name.
2- Offer cheap or premium.
Some customers are not willing to pay full price for your product. However, they will pay a lower price rather than get best quality. You can offer a smaller or stripped down version of your product to meet there needs.
But not all customers are looking for cheap price. Some are willing to pay a little more and get high quality product. To these kinds of customer, a more comprehensive product or combine several products in a special premium package.
3- Reduce your ad.
Reduce the size of your ad so you can run more ads for the same price. Repetitious and consistency is the key. If your ad is in color run the ad using the same color every time. Use the same consistancy of ad size, color and layout every time. This way your ad will stay in people’s mind and it’s a way to start branding your business.
4- Joint promotion.
Partner up with some non-competing businesses serving customers in your market and by combining efforts your ability to cross-promote will help sell products for a very low cost.
Example: A health clinic, a children’s store and a pizza store, they got together and the health nurse immunized kids in a fun party atmosphere and gave happy parents coupons for the pizza store. The foot traffic to these stores were overwhelming.
5- Your current customers.
Your current customers are great advertising tool, they already know you and trust you, so when you have a new product or enhancing an existing product introduce it to your existing customer first. It’s easier to get more sales from them, than to get any business from somebody who has never bought from you. Create some special deals for your existing customers and announce the deal to them first before announcing it to the general market.
I hope marketing for dummies helped you a little bit. You can always ask us a question.