Mike originally came to us for help in updating his flyer and marketing materials, but our conversation took another path. Mike wanted to know how to reach a larger audience. “What should I do?” he asked. The answer was social media, but that is a complex issue.
Solution: I wrote a guide to online marketing.
• PRIMARY OBJECTIVES
– Your website is your main online informational/marketing tool
– It is important to attract attention to your website and stand out from the crowd
– It is also important to attract traffic to your website
– Conversion occurs when a person responds to your call to action (subscribes to your newsletter, makes a purchase, fills out a form)
– Conversion turns a stranger into to a client or customer
– The more expensive the purchase or complicated the service, the longer it will take to convert someone to a customer
– Conversion is not a one-time event; you must work on it constantly
Some conversion tools
– Customer testimonials that describe your expertise, client centered approach, resolution of their issues
– Case studies that showcase successful service and solutions to clients’ problems
– Online newsletter that provides unique and valuable information. A newsletter requires advanced planning and writing
– Regular posting to your Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or other social media sites
– Your website is your ultimate marketing tool—your primary instrument for defining your business, enhancing your brand, gaining new leads
Key website elements
1. Design: attractive, easy to navigate, logical layout
2. Structure: simple, ease of finding information
3. Content: educates, builds credibility, proves expertise, and helps you to stand out from the crowd.
4. Search Engine Optimization: makes it possible for search engines to find, index, and read your site
5. Maintenance: active management of site, frequent changes and additions, updating with new information, value-added messages, and images
– This improves search engine optimization (SEO)
– Moves you up the “search results” ladder
– Gives people reasons for repeat visits
– Google loves fresh content
– Set up a blog for your website and learn how to post to it. WordPress.org is recommended.
– Content should be submitted regularly.
– Content is broken down into “posts.”
– Posts are displayed in a reverse chronological order or by category.
– Readers can leave their comments (you can make these public or private).
– Content can be syndicated (published in multiple places at the same time via Really Simple Syndication [RSS] feed, which also allows people to subscribe to your blog. Anyone can subscribe.
– RSS feed (really simple syndication is a web feed to publish frequent blog entries.
• SOCIAL MEDIA
– Social media is not a selling tool; it is an networking tool
– Doing a little bit often is better than doing a lot once in a while or doing nothing at all.
– Social media makeover tips: http://www.thesocialpath.com/social-media-makeover.html
– Popular social media tools:
– One of the most popular social media networks. You can have a personal page and a fan page (for businesses or organizations).
– Instantly connect to what’s most important to you. Follow your friends, experts, favorite celebrities, and breaking news.
– This is a social network for millions of professionals. LinkedIn members can stay in the loop on your company news, products, and services, business opportunities, changes in your status, and jobs.
– Pinterest is a content-sharing service that allows members to “pin” images, videos, and other objects to their pinboard. Also includes standard social networking features.
– Visit YouTube charts to see a ranked list of popular videos and search for your business market.
Read up before you start:
A simple how-to guide on line that will lead you through the steps of getting started with each of these social media tools: http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/getting-started/
These ideas are just the tip of the social media marketing iceberg. I suggested to Mike to start small. Begin with blogging on his website and choose one network, such as LinkedIn to build business connections.
Talk to N-K about reaching a larger audience.