Many small businesses are on the Web these days, which means, out of necessity, that online marketing must be part of the small business owner’s strategy. Though certainly no small business owners should be under the illusion that simply throwing up a Website is sufficient to launch their business on the Web, few may have fully considered what marketing online really entails. Do you have a blog, a social media presence on Facebook and Twitter, a YouTube or other video channel, etc.? You get the idea! Do you know what you’re up against? Here’s just a sample of the things you need to consider on your way to an online marketing mindset.
Commenting is great, but don’t overdo it. Paul Wolfe looks at the comment, the basic weapon in the social media arsenal of all online marketers and asks, have we gone too far? Commenting can be a great part of your marketing strategy, but what happens if it degenerates into a “comment love-in?” Want to know how to avoid this social media marketing trap? Read on. One Spoon at a Time
Finding your online niche. Online marketing gurus are quick to layout a road map for Internet marketing success. But the truth of the matter is that online marketing, like every other aspect of your business model, must be developed over time. There are no shortcuts, no simple solutions, and no one-size-fits-all strategies. Developing your unique online marketing strategy is the first step to success. Bloomberg BusinessWeek
Why Google remains key to online marketing. You may have heard plenty about the new social media revolution, but make no mistake. If your business model still depends on organic online search marketing in any way to bring customers to your Website, then your fate remains in the hands of Google. Online entrepreneurs can complain about the shadow cast by the world’s most used search engine, but ignore factoring Google into your business model at your own risk. WSJ
A whole new way of marketing. What Seth explains in this post (though he doesn’t mention online marketing at all except when referencing Google) is that this new approach of reaching your customers over the Internet is about more than just tools. It’s also about changing your outlook. Worried about drawing millions to your site? Don’t be. Think micro markets instead of the masses, and you’ll start to get an idea of where these things are going. Seth Godin’s Blog
Tricks for getting your Website found. Of course, drawing attention to your business Website, presumably the place where your products or services are available, is among the most important things you can do as an online entrepreneur. The solution to getting your small business site found by potential customers is Search Engine Optimization, the process of getting more traffic to your Website via search engines and it’s more involved than you think. Bloomberg BusinessWeek
The future of online video marketing is here. Actually, it’s been here for some time, arguably, with YouTube and other video sharing sites making it easy to share marketing messages about your business with the world. Now Google, which owns YouTube, plans to take things a bit further with an effort to broker video advertising on the site. Let’s see what happens. WSJ
PR and marketing pros now prefer social media. A recent poll suggests activity heating up among PR and marketing professionals on Twitter with many anticipating increased activity on Facebook in the near future. As you plot your online marketing strategy, be sure to consider both of these platforms as a great place to spread your brand’s message or better yet have others spread it for you. Check out the free Webinar at this link for more. BizReport
Travel and tourism industry leverage online marketing. The reason for the move of the travel and tourism industry into online marketing provides perhaps the best reason for small businesses to be there as well. As Kasem Thianthongdee, managing director of Metropoint Bangkok, explains, potential customers are looking for travel and tourism choices online, so that’s where marketers for the tourism industry must be as well. Where are your customers today? The Nation
Even politicians market themselves online. This article from a local Massachusetts news source shows how online marketing has moved beyond big brands and national political races to grassroots local campaigns. If local politicians can use online marketing to bring their message to a local audience (or a national audience) why can’t you do the same for your business? TheDailyGrafton.com
Online marketing workshops give aid. If all of this is a bit too overwhelming, workshops all around the world are springing up to help you get your business online and to help you learn the online marketing techniques that can lead to success. Here is one such workshop coming up in Bundaberg, Australia. Look for an opportunity near you to help get your business marketing online. NewsMail
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Thanks for another great rendition of “Great Small Business Tips.”
Everything here is equally important.
Google? I’m not sure if it’s right or wrong, but I don’t spend too much time with any other search engines. They don’t work as well.
That includes search and marketing.
The Franchise King®
This is one of those moderation-with-all-things. Yes, you must participate in forums, be active with social media and preferably have a blog, but you don’t want to come across as spam. It’s often a fine line so the thing to remember is that this takes time. Stay active online and see success as you would with a diet or exercise program; if you are consistent and in it for the duration things will work out as you want them to.
Love the bit about overdoing comments so they sound like a “love-in.” Hallelujah!
As a social media instructor, my experience is that small business owners find it a challenge to take an entire day or afternoon off to attend a workshop, so online courses often work better for them. Be sure to look for courses that are offered from a reputable organization, whose instructors have deep backgrounds in training, and are available for individual questions.
Facebook is the largest and easiest online marketing platform to start with. Start with a business page, customize it, and show up to learn how to market to your customers online.
Great tips. One that took me years to figure out via a lot of frustration and one that I try to tell everyone – IT TAKES TIME.
great post. important things for small businesses to think about before they invest time and money into getting their presence online.
good tips and good resources. thank you
While it is true that all businesses with a web presence should adopt a web marketing mindset, I’m of the belief that one of the biggest mistakes businesses are making these days is the misuse of social media. Having no social media presence is better than misusing the medium, or worse, starting a blog and then letting it die. Social media as part of an online marketing strategy should be though of similar to another form of PR. It should also be thought of as a commitment that needs constant attention, like a pet.