|Business Online Presence|
In the pre-Internet days, advertising for small businesses was too costly an endeavor. Most relied on word-of-mouth as a means of getting noticed by potential customers. Of course, there were the occasional flyers and catalogue displays as well. However, now in an age that is dominated by various forms of online media, creating an online buzz for your business is not only simpler than ever but also requires minimum financial investment.
So how do you create an online presence for your business?
Remember, creating an online presence is more of an integrated communications and marketing campaign rather than a one-off endeavor. This means that whenever you do decide to create an online presence for your company, you’ll need to make use of several mediums. In addition to this, information over the Internet needs to be constantly updated—to catch customers’ attention you need to engage with them, be attentive to their concerns and queries and achieve all this without being overly domineering. Most importantly, however, you need to provide them with the correct information—information that is not only accurate but is also sought after by your customers.
Creating an Online Presence: What Mediums can I use?
As mentioned previously, there are several platforms you can use online. It’s always better to use a combination of these rather than sticking to one or two alone. Here are your options:
- Website: Although you’ll need to pay for this one, the costs of maintenance are relatively small. But the important thing to know is that your website is where your customers can get the most detailed information about your brand. Here’s where you get to show off. Boast about your achievements, your aims and your customer service. However, keep the design simple and uncluttered.
- Facebook/Twitter: Social media usage rates are at an all-time high which makes them a feasible tool of marketing for all businesses. Such platforms must be regularly updated, both with information about your company and the replies to customer concerns. These are your primary modes of communication with your customers and make for an excellent feedback channel.
- YouTube: Creating a YouTube account is often one of the most underrated aspects of online businesses. Agreed, it’s not as effective a communication tool as compared to social media, it does provide a great platform for you to get creative with respect to visual aspects of your marketing program. Not only does visual impact last longer, but rarely do customers complain while watching a well-made YouTube video.
- Email: This one’s pretty straightforward. Use social media, website forms or face-to-face contact with customers to obtain their email addresses and market your business directly via emails delivered straight to the customer’s inbox. Remember not to spam though!
- Google Ads: Google Ads are another cheap way of creating an online buzz. Since Google uses a targeted strategy for displaying ads, you might want to purchase a slot or two. This may help you find the right customer more easily than you think.
So there you are…online marketing simplified! With a few simple tools (and regular updates), you can now be well on your way towards business success.