Are you a small business owner? Do you want to see a lot more customers coming to you in 2011? Certainly, every business owner I’ve met answers these in the affirmative! What’s your plan to grow your business with great new customers?
Clearly, every new customer is a function of new leads in your sales funnel — we know this as conversion. And, every new sales lead is a subset of the number of eager buyers shopping for what you offer who are exposed to your business — we know this as marketing. Admit it, the numbers of people exposed to your business depends on marketing strategy, tactics, advertising, etc. Times change and so has effectiveness of traditional marketing tactics and offline advertising. Whereas, telemarketing, yellow pages, newspaper ads and other previously effective tactics are seriously lame today, online marketing for small business produces more targeted sales leads everyday.
Don’t Ignore Online Marketing For Small Business
Most small business owners ignore online marketing, because they don’t understand how the Internet has dramatically changed consumers. Furthermore, many unwary businesses have been duped into costly schemes to fool Google and other search engines. Have you been duped into believing that #1 on Google first page or a million website visitors in a month are ends in themselves? How do they add to your bottom line? Here’s a clue: work both of them into a business plan, pass it on to your banker and ask for a business loan. Point is, show your banker a plan to get more targeted sales leads calling you on the phone and then they’ll talk money. Google itself and random website visitors do absolutely nothing to grow your business.
Fortunately for you, this Internet thingy has totally changed the way we consume! No longer flipping through yellow pages or browsing the Sunday Trib classifieds, eager buyers shopping for what you offer are on the Internet right this second searching for you. Every time they search they receive a search results page. If you’re not on that page, they will buy from somebody else. Online marketing for small business has one goal: everywhere they search they find you there.
Affordable Online Marketing For Small Business
Fact is, effectively marketing your business is now possible with any realistic budget:
- Email marketing has long been the favorite of Internet marketers, perhaps because it’s the online equivalent to direct marketing. Done right, instead of intruding in the Inbox, you ask and they grant you permission to nurture them and keep them informed with current and relevant information. Keeping permission marketing foremost in your mind, think of events, specials and successes that you’d appreciate knowing about your favorite vendors. Your customers and prospects will appreciate the same about you.
- Online articles are another great way to increase awareness of you, your business and, especially, those special things you do that benefit your customers. Do you remember fondly thumbing through a magazine, reading interesting articles and clipping some articles so you can refer back to them later? The Internet is several magnitudes greater than any paper magazine. This very minute somebody is reading an article about your product and service and today she’ll bookmark it and maybe tell her friends about it. Have you ever tried to find a article in a magazine you threw out a long time ago? That won’t happen online, because it’s always available to be found, 24/7, 365 days a year.
- Social media is all about family, friends and vacation pictures — right? No. It, too, can be tremendously effective in putting your business in front of eager buyers. Facebook membership alone is the third largest country in the world: China, India, Facebook, USA… In 2010 it’s been reported that the largest growing Facebook demographic is middle aged women. Again, keep in mind how online marketing for small business is primarily about developing relationships with your marketplace. What better way to start a conversation with a new prospect than at a huge party? Facebook, for example, is a neverending party of friends, family and coworkers, and they’re all talking about what’s on their minds. Strike a positive chord with just one, and they’ll tell somebody about you, and on and on.
Follow Online Marketing For Small Business To Success
Online marketing is about branding. The more people recognize your personal name, your business name and your place in the community, the more likely that one of them converts into a customer. Notice how we haven’t mentioned traditional advertising agencies and TV commercial production crews — the prohibitive prices of traditional marketing simply are not necessary online. It’s more about leaving thousands and thousands of bread crumbs from your business throughout the Internet. Whenever some eager buyer happens on one crumb while shopping for what you offer, Hansel and Gretel will follow the trail to your door. Like all marketing, the only goal of online marketing for small business is to create customers.