“How can I boost local business fast using the internet?”
That’s one of the most common questions a local business owner will ask me. The short answer…Increase Your Online Visibility! There are so many marketing strategies to increase the visibility of your business on the internet and surprisingly, you can get results pretty quick.While many of these marketing strategies are readily available online for you to learn and implement, the reality for you and so many other local business owners is you’re far too busy running your business. If that’s the case, you probably don’t have the time to learn internet marketing, let alone implement the necessary strategies to boost local business. That’s where the professional services of a SEO (Search Engine Optimizer) can come in handy. They are already skilled in the area of internet marketing and the results they can produce to boost local business will usually far outweigh the investment put forth to engage their services.
Local internet marketing is most effective when leveraging several marketing strategies through a process called search engine marketing (SEM). SEM is composed of both paid search and natural search results. The most common natural results are achieved through a process known as search engine optimization (SEO) which, if done right, can have a long term effect in generating more local business for reasons we’ll be discussing in other posts. Another method, which can generate immediate business and can be quite expensive if it’s not done right, is Pay Per Click (PPC). This usually involves selecting one or more specific keywords relative to your business and paying for search engines to drive local consumers to your website or blog. Other methods include Video Marketing, Article Marketing, Press Releases, Local Directory Submission and Social Media Marketing. Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the past five years, by now I’m pretty certain you’re aware of the power of Social Media Marketing.” Social Media and Local Search are on a major collision course over the next couple of years. The internet is going local and if your customers can’t find you, your business could suffer in a major way. Most local business owners aren’t even aware that there are two ways to use social media. The first is to make friends and the second is to make money. The biggest mistake many local business owners make is attempting to make friends and make money simultaneously. After trying that and failing, many local business owners throw in the towel and say “it just didn’t work for me!” We teach our clients how to use social media marketing effectively to boost local business and build name recognition through branding. If you think social media is just a fad that will soon pass and that you can “get by” in your business without it, you’re taking a huge gamble with your business. Watch this video below and if that doesn’t change your mind…well, I’m not sure what will. Bottom line, social media is here to stay so you may as well use it to your advantage!
Q. Can Social Media Help You Boost Local Business?
A. In A Monumental Way!
Now that you’re pretty clear you need to be using the internet if you’re a local business owner, you’re probably asking that same question I hear all too often, “How can I boost local business fast using the internet?” and I’m about to show you some strategies that will put you on what I call the internet visibility fast track! I’ve listed below 7 Powerful Marketing Strategies that you can put to work immediately to boost local business pretty quick:
1. Local Directory Listings – Make sure you have listings in as many of the free local directories as possible. Definitely have your business in Google Places and the local business directories for Yahoo and Bing. There are plenty of online tutorials that provide step-by-step instruction on how to publish your listings.
2. Email Marketing - If you don’t have an email form on your website or blog, you’re not building a list of customers and prospective customers to market to using email marketing. Most local business owners don’t even realize that their biggest profit centers are in their existing customer base. It’s absolutely critical to stay in close contact with your existing customers and email marketing is the best and most economical way to do it. A recent study found that Email Marketing delivers about $51 for every $1 spent. Try getting that return outta your print ads and yellow pages!
3. Social Media Marketing – USE IT! Start with the three most essential ones; Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook – more specifically, a Facebook “Like” Page for your business.
4. Video Marketing – Get your local business its’ own YouTube Channel to start! It’s a phenomenal way to generate leads. Currently, YouTube is The 2nd Largest Search Engine In The World! Video marketing is extremely powerful in reaching new local consumers. This is one of the most effective methods we use to boost local business fast. Watch this video below to get an idea of just how awesome video marketing can be for your business.
5. Start Blogging – Search engines love fresh new content and this is the perfect place for you to share your ideas, tips, tricks and just about anything else related to your product, service or industry that your readers (prospective customers) will appreciate. Blogging doesn’t have to take a lot of your time and if you don’t have the time, you can always hire people to post about your topic for as little as $6 – $8 per post. Not to mention, your blog can be the perfect place to capture email addresses to build that list we mentioned in No. 2 above. Also, with the explosion of growth in video through sites like YouTube and Vimeo, “Vlogging” is quickly gaining popularity. These are dedicated blogs using the medium of video to channel their message to their audience.
6. Article Marketing – Write a unique article about your product, service or business once a week…or at the very least, once a month. Article submissions will add to your online visibility and there are dozens of free directories to submit them to. Make sure to include a link to your website at the end of your article.
7. Press Release – So many local business owners think they have to be IBM or Microsoft to submit a press release. You could be Joey’s Pizza Parlor and submit a free press release on your new “gluten-free, non-dairy, thin-crust pizza.” It doesn’t matter what the size of your business may be, anyone can leverage the power of a press release. Don’t discount this strategy, it’s very effective.
By now I’m sure you realize that we’ve only scratched the surface when it comes to local search marketing for your business. There are really so many strategies that fall under the umbrella of SEM and SEO that any local business could begin using to quickly rocket to the top page one in search engine rankings. If you haven’t leveraged any of these three strategies, don’t get overwhelmed. Everybody starts somewhere. If you’d much rather leave it all to the professionals, don’t hesitate to give us a call. As a matter of fact, if you’re currently spending a good part of your advertising budget on “old school” offline print ads, yellow pages and other advertising channels, you can easily redirect a portion of that budget towards getting the professional help you need.
We can implement smart internet marketing strategies that are designed to boost local business fast so shoot us an email or give us a call when you’re ready. We can conduct a preliminary evaluation of your business and provide you with a detailed analysis of what strategies would be most effective to start with and what we can work on moving forward. If you’re not quite there yet with your budget, at the very least implement these 7 strategies above as soon as possible. Before you know it, you’ll have more new business than you can handle!