Is It Time to Leverage the Internet?
The calendar may say 2017, but are you doing business as if it were still 1999? What I mean by this is that it may be time to add an online component to what you are doing in your bricks and mortar business. Allow me to explain further exactly what I mean and to bring you fully into the new millennium by learning how to leverage the internet.
Marketing for small businesses is something I’ve done since the summer of 2007. I was new to online marketing at the time and offered to help a family member with his handyman business. He was still paying for a small print advertisement in the local newspaper, as well as for ads in a couple of local magazines. This was a costly proposition and he was just starting out. He confided in me that it sometimes took two full weeks before he was in profit each month. We agreed that I would help him out for the first month at no charge to see what would happen. I wanted to leverage the internet for his business.
First, I set up a simple site for him using the WordPress platform. The domain I used was the name of his business so that prospective clients could find him more easily. This worked extremely well. I also wrote short articles on this new site about his business, using the words anyone might type into Google if they were looking for a handyman in his location to do specific tasks for them. Within two months he pulled his ads and begin getting as many assignments as he needed from what I had set up for him.
Now I do not mean to say that print advertising is not valuable and worthwhile. If anything, it is quite the opposite. Your ads let people know you are legitimately in business and reach those for whom the internet is not a medium they trust to inform them and to find reliable and trustworthy services. Choose the publications you know and trust and continue to advertise there. But adding the online component is crucial for long term success in any business.
The second part of this marketing strategy to leverage the internet is to begin building a database of customers, clients, and prospects. This will become a valuable asset to your business over time. The idea here is to stay in touch with the people you serve so that you can open up the lines of communication more easily. Email them regularly and let them know what is happening in your industry. And use this as an opportunity to offer a discount coupon or other seasonal special.
The third and final component to small business marketing online is to offer something related to your business that can be delivered digitally. This can be a monthly audio recording that is available as a podcast on iTunes, a short book where you explain in great detail what you offer in your business, or even a physical product that could be available on Amazon and delivered by them. These components will serve to connect you with more prospects and to set you apart as someone who is at the top of their field or industry.
Setting up and maintaining a WordPress website costs about a hundred dollars each year. Setting up and maintaining a digital database is about two hundred dollars a year. Having these as a part of your business is priceless. Take a look at my Small Business Marketing training course so that you can leverage the power of the internet for your business and come into the new millennium.
I’m Connie Ragen Green and I’ve been an online entrepreneur since 2006. If you are ready to get started on your journey to multiple streams of online income, visit my site at Online Entrepreneur Blueprint and download your complimentary training to get started today.