For small business owners, marketing their businesses is a daily challenge.
Every day you have to do something to keep your business under the eyes of potential customers. And you have to do it at the stage where the client is receptive to your message, not while they are busy with other important decisions.
This is especially important if your business is located in a small town, where every possible customer is important. Or your customer, buyer or guests, may come from anywhere in the world – and you have no idea from where.
If you can’t be where your potential business is at the time the decision maker makes the buying decision, there is something you can do the ensure your business is one of the choices when the decision is made.
You can use your Internet (online) presence to be your 24-hour information provider and salesperson.
As a business owner, your challenge is how you will be found between the thousands of websites, social media profiles and blogs.
There is only one way: you have to be found when a potential customer searches for your product or service. And the only effective way is that your online footprint or web presence must be wide and visible enough to give you a fair chance of being seen.
How do you do that?
Your presence: a website, a blog, a social media profile, photos, business directories, forums, a mailing list.
- have a search engine optimised website with optimised content;
- blog at regular intervals providing potential customers with useful information. No, not advertising, although you itch to tell them how good and affordable your service or product is;
- create and optimise your social media profiles and actively manage them;
- post photos wherever you can, but make sure they are properly named and optimized so that the search engines can index them;
- build a mailing list by ensuring that you get people’s email addresses whenever your business encounter them. If you have enough addresses to require bulk emailing, use a proper mailing service so people can unsubscribe to ensure you don’t market to people who have no interest in your product or service;
- use free business listings (directories) to widen your business’ online footprint without any expense;
- Make sure you know what the “sales funnel” is. This will give you the background to form an opinion of where your future clients may be in the buying cycle, so you know what message they may be susceptible to.
It’s not easy, nor is it cheap to promote your small business.
It is possible and affordable for a business owner who is prepared to plan his time properly, set aside 30 minutes early morning or late night, and talk to the world about a topic that is dear to him.
It requires discipline and a serious approach to business.