It is no longer optional… every business must have an online presence!
Wondering why your business needs to have that online visibility? Research shows that 97% of consumers look online for local products and services; and equally striking — 90% of consumers use search engines like Google to find local products and services.
If you are overwhelmed and not sure how to get started, read on! You will find all the information you need to build a strategic and meaningful online presence for your business. Don’t try to accomplish it all at once; it is surely a daunting task. Pick one place to begin, master that area and then move on to the next one.
Be Seen on You Tube. You Tube is a video sharing platform owned by Google. Use the power of this amazing service to showcase your company, brands, products, services, how-to-guides, product launches and more. Here are a few mind blowing statistics for you.
- 1 Billion People use YouTube
- 6 Billion hours of video are watched per month
- 4 billion videos viewed per day
- 100 hours of video is uploaded per minute
Join LinkedIn. Go to LinkedIn and set up an account. Many of your LinkedIn connections can introduce you not only to business influences and partners, but can also refer your company to new customers.
- Attracting and managing your connections
- Increase your business opportunities
- Gain business intelligence
- Accelerate the growth of your business
Join Twitter. Just having a Twitter account sends a positive message to the marketplace.
- Set up a Twitter account (pay attention to your user name – that will be everywhere). If you can make your business name the user name, that is your best option.
- Even if you are not going to “Tweet” anyone, be sure to fill out your bio including your location and a little about your business.
- More than half of all small businesses use Twitter to manage their business reputation.
- Simple, efficient way to engage customers.
- Use it to publish news, announcements, or give away special offers.
Create a Facebook account. Consumers get the products, services and company culture in one convenient and effective place.
- Set up a Facebook business account
- 1.1 billion mobile users monthly
- 703 million mobile users daily
- 1.5 million advertiser
- Be intentional with your posts, no need to share what you had for lunch.
- 3 out of 4 small businesses use Facebook to communicate their brand.
Try out Flickr. Flickr is basically a photo-sharing site – so break out that Smartphone (with a camera) or find a couple photos you can post. Set up a Flickr account and fill out your bio. Post 5 pictures of you and/or your business. Try and make them fun or interesting. This can have big Google and SEO benefits.
Discover Pinterest for your business. When creating your account try to use your full business name. Include keywords in your accounts “About” section, boards, board descriptions, and Pin descriptions and don’t forget to use hash tags. Discover the power of Pinterest marketing as there are many benefits this visual platform has to offer a small business.
- Get discovered by millions of people looking for things to plan, buy and do
- Increase website traffic
- Heighten brand exposure
- Genuine and loyal followers
- Showcase your products visually
- Boards show up in search engine results
- Pinterest itself has a powerful, built-in search engine
Make your words count. You need to be writing or at least posting Blogs on your website, LinkedIn and/or on your Facebook page. You have only 10 Seconds to capture a reader’s attention online. Most people want information but they don’t want to have to think to get it. They don’t even want to have to READ to get it. They want to scan, skim, and jump around and it’s your job make that process easy. Some clever ways to grab their attention are:
- Bulleted Lists
- Short Paragraphs
- Numbers & symbols (Look at this page you’re reading).
- Bolded Words in the right places
- (Things in parenthesis)
- Periods. In. Random. Places.
Speaking of Blogs…Consumers like blogs because they make companies more colorful. A conventional blog that isn’t too promotional showcase a side of the business that is human, relate-able and likeable, something that a product can’t do alone. You need to produce quality, informative content. If your content is top-notch and like none other, helps people, solves their problems and impacts them in big ways, then you’ll make an impression on people and stand apart from your competition. Also blogs help help your site new and fresh to the search engines so they know you have current important information for their searchers.
- U.S. online consumers trust information and advice from blogs.
- Companies that blog have 97% more inbound links.
- Marketers who use blogs generate 67% more leads than those that do not.
- 61% of U.S. online consumers have made a purchase based on recommendations from a blog.
Social Media is the Game Changer. It’s obvious that social media will continue to have a significant impact in 2014 on marketers and business owners: both now have the ability to reach out and communicate on a personal level with their target audience on a daily basis. Your business is essentially open 24/7, 365 days a year with all the various forms of social media now available. If you give people what they want and you match your prospects’ needs, they will keep coming back for more and even recommend you to others.