Delegate, Focus, and GROW Your Business

Light Bulb! Turn on Your Marketing Techniques

Creative business ideaGetting noticed online is much more difficult today than it was even a decade ago when simply having a website with a basic shopping cart system could set you apart from the crowd. Make an extra effort to stand out and get your business and its products the attention they deserve:

Become a sleuth

You think you know who your customers are, but do you really? Take some time to think about their lifestyles, likes and dislikes. Empower yourself by studying what your competitors are doing to attract business. The more you know about what “works” with your customers, the more successful you’ll be in creating a website that truly speaks to your target audience.

Redefine your brand

Once you have a better conception of your target audience’s needs, redefine and strengthen your brand message so it speaks directly to your customers in a way that clearly sets you apart from your competitors.

Create a local buzz

Getting involved in the local community is a powerful way to build positive word of mouth. Chances are, your neighbors want you to succeed so you can contribute to a more vibrant community. Sponsoring sports teams, hosting events and participating in local fairs can increase your visibility quickly. Touch base with your chamber of commerce, too.

Meet the press

Send press releases at regular intervals — often enough to get some press but not often enough to annoy the news editor. Make sure your releases have something to say and are not purely promotional. Possible topics include participation in community events, promotion or addition of staff, new programs or customer incentives, or special sales.

Pay attention to SEO

It’s not enough just to have a Web site; ensure your site is designed to be found not only by your customers, but by search engines too. Identifying and incorporating the words and phrases people are using to search for the products or services you offer are critical steps in ensuring your site gets as much traffic as possible.

Start a blog

Blogs are a great way to connect with customers on a more personal and casual level, and they’re also an ideal way to promote your unique brand message and voice. Since content can, and should, be updated frequently, they’re good for incorporating newly identified keywords and quickly responding to changes in SEO.

Get social

Having a strong social media presence is more important than ever before for businesses that want to connect with a new generation of plugged-in customers. Maintaining a good online reputation is critical; if you find your company’s online reviews are lacking, turn to a company like Reputation.com that specializes in monitoring and optimizing business’ online reputations.

Offer swag

Key chains, pens, T-shirts, cup cozies — the number of promotional items is virtually endless. Use them as customer giveaways during promotional events or as handouts at fairs and trade shows. Looking for something beyond the ordinary? Think “techy” and offer flash drives or anti-slip cellphone holders.

Flyers

Few people actually swoon with joy when they find a flyer sticking to their windshields or stuck in their doorframes, but that’s no reason to avoid using what can be a very inexpensive and often surprisingly effective means of advertising. Offer a special deal like a high-value coupon and to use clever wording that brings a smile rather than a scowl to the reader’s face.

Networking events

There are likely many networking opportunities in your neighborhood, but don’t forget online options: Guest blogging and offering webinars are two prime venues for connecting on the worldwide web.

Author’s Bio
Eric Scott: Eric is a full-time web designer who specializes in e-commerce.
Posted on June 20th, 2013 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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