I still get asked this a lot. In fact, it’s very common for smaller business owners and not that uncommon for mid-size businesses. I blame this on the slight shift that happened when some businesses thought you could drop traditional advertising and just have a website. It’s not enough.
I promise you, all of the time you used to spend on your website will soon be spent on your online brand and social reputation. Remember when we (the collective we meaning you, me, online experts) said that websites are dying? In the traditional sense, that is? Well let me explain why this is still true.
- People (and I mean the younger generations) have been trending towards a lot of things. Mobile of course. But also the use of social to access information. On the simplest of levels, imagine being on your phone, using google maps to find a nearby coffee shop, finding a location and then looking at the google reviews to see if it’s a decent place to go.
– A customer conversion and I NEVER went to the actual website –
Use online marketing because someday it will be the only way someone who doesn’t know you or your business will judge you and find you.
- A social presence makes you look better. Just like those fancy jeans you’ve got. Seriously, when you have an active online and social presence, you look smarter, more connected, more involved with your community and more renowned.
Use social media because it makes you look better. This is true regardless of if you are really better.
- Name recognition is a big deal. Radio often touts this effect. It’s so hard to measure at times, but social is very similar. When you are active, sharing your own content, sharing others content and talking to others you are much more likely to get the effect where people think they’ve met or heard of you before. Always a plus.
Use social marketing because people will think they already know you when you call or meet them in person.
- PR is a big deal. There’s nothing like having your name and company name written up in an article, in print or online. In order for this to work, you need to build credibility online as well. Social does this for you. Keep in mind you can’t just share – this is the equivalent of talking loudly on the corner of a busy street. Sure, people hear you, but how much more could you gain from 5 actual conversations?
Use content marketing because it establishes credibility with the media.
- Writing about yourself helps you get to know yourself better. Sounds odd? Well it’s true. The more you write online (blog, post, engage in conversations), the better you can articulate your business. Let’s face it, brand identities evolve over time. And, although everything online lives forever, it’s still true that a tweet has a limited shelf life. So start talking online and hone your ‘elevator speech’.
Use content marketing because it helps you know your brand.
See if these 5 approaches resonate with you and try some of them out! I’d love to hear feedback of your efforts.