Marketing is a huge challenge for business owners so we wanted to write a quick blog and try to demystify the area of Internet Marketing and how we have used it to expand our business. There are a plethora of internet marketing channels out there and we know how much Marketing Consultants love using all sorts of buzz words and phrases like non-tangible brand recognition (Wha?) to drive us crazy.
I have yet to meet one marketing consultant, who has really grasped what business owners want from marketing, just get me more customers and I’ll do the rest !!!
Not all of these may be for your business but the key is to get the right mix, on the right budget for you.
As business owners we are experts our chosen business but when it comes to marketing our business, we all feel a little lost.
At Sendmode for example, we started out as a couple of computer programmers, what would we know about non-tangible brand recognition? All we know is building technology that helps business owners increase their revenues. So how do business owners find us?
There are many channels you can spend your money, (TV, Paper, Social, Email, SMS, Adwords) but we’ll concentrate on the ones that work for us.
Make sure your brochure website looks professional, works on mobile devices and gets your message across in 5 seconds. If your USP is price, this needs to be front and center. If it is an enterprise sale, then testimonials from large brand names will bring credibility.
The website doesn’t need to huge; just get the message across quickly and with a call to action.
“Be found by the people who are looking for you”. If you are selling products online and want to get the right people to your website, try Google Adwords. Start with a small budget and get your conversion process right, so when people come to your site.
SEO and Blogging
When your website is being developed you should insist that all the rules of SEO are followed so that your website will be indexed by the search engines.
www.woorank.com will give you a report on how optimized your website is for SEO. Your website should be found by your business name at the very least.
If you have a marketing resource then we would recommend blogging as a way to be found by people looking for specific topics which you can blog about. If not, blogging is very time consuming and the topics need to be researched thoroughly and well written.
Some blogs read like an advertisement for a company’s services and provide very little information of real value. Our advice is, if you are not sure about blogging, put some extra money into Google Adwords and get your message right on your brochure website.
Very popular for out-bound marketing but with so many emails landing in peoples inboxes nowadays, your response rates could be very low. Email is great as a follow up mechanism for people who have started Free Trials for example.
Social Media is an excellent for exposure and brand awareness. If you are B2B use Linked In and contribute to groups. Facebook and Twitter are great for B2C business, competitions etc.
Be aware however Facebook and Twitter are for social communication and be careful how you word advertisements as people will be on these sites for social networking and may not respond to a blatant marketing message from your company.
Great for direct engagement with customers, SMS are delivered instantly and 98% are read within 3 minutes of receipts. Do not bombard people though, as consumers will opt out of your text lists.
We’ve used a mix of all these channels and managed keep our marketing spend at a reasonable level by leveraging each channel to the areas it suits best, for example; if we get a new customer in the education sector we would ask for referral and use emails to contact the referred address.
I hope you enjoyed this blog and thank for reading.