The simple solution to driving customers to your business.
In my last newsletter, I wrote about why it’s better to hire a professional for your online business marketing rather than “DIY-ing” it. But I failed to explain why online marketing helps you in the first place.
Marketing is the lifeline to connecting with new customers. With all of the competitors fighting for sales in order to survive, it doesn’t make sense to just sit back and wait for customers to show up at your doorstep.
You have to drive traffic to your business somehow; you may even have to go get them and drag them to your business (no kidnapping, please). At the very least, you have to advertise to them or to their needs.
There are multiple ways to be seen by customers, but you have to figure out which one works most efficiently for your business. Which medium is the most cost-effective for your business, television, radio, billboards, or internet? Which medium is easier to target a particular segment of the market?
In this article, I’m going to explain why the internet is your best option for marketing.
I'm convinced that the most cost-effective solution to increasing your revenue is marketing via the Internet.
I could start by quoting statistics about global internet usage and online shoppers and such, but throwing a bunch of numbers down that I pulled off of some other website hardly classifies as reliable research.
My clients are all small business owners that operate on a fairly local scale with fairly small budgets, certainly no money to waste. My most successful clients want to know that their existing customers and potential customers can find them easily, are reminded of them often, and encouraged to recommend them to others. All of this is achievable without breaking the bank.
The biggest obstacle to online marketing is TIME; time to learn web design, time to study new trends, time to learn SEO, time to learn the changes Google made to it’s algorithm this week, time to interact with existing customers, time to send out reminders and requests, and time to find new customers.
If you’re reading this blog, not only did I find you, “my potential new client”, I also got you to read this article about why you should pay me to find your next customer willing to pay you. I don’t claim to be the only company competent to handle your online marketing, but how many other marketing blogs did you read today?
Now that I’ve gotten you this far, please go to the next step and search for your company online just like potential customers would, but there’s one catch; you cant use your company name in the search bar.
Put yourself in the shoes of a random local person looking for a good or service. Customers searching online aren’t going to know your company name so instead, type in a product or service you sell, like “Athletic Shoes”, or “Haircuts near me”.
Click the link below to search google. Or go even further in-depth and try our online scanner that will tell you exactly how well your business ranks online.
Was your company name listed at the top? Or one of your competitors perhaps? If you don’t find your company listed at the top, your customers won’t either.
Effective online marketing will fix that problem.
To further express the value of online marketing, I’ll leave you with this:
Ask Yourself how often do YOU search Google, check social media, see a youtube video, or “window shop” online before going to the store to purchase?
When someone searches online for something you’re selling, will they find you?
Will they find your competitors? These are important things to consider.
The internet is paramount to business growth, you must take advantage of it.
But why internet? Why not radio, TV, or billboards?
Think about the last time you were riding in a car and heard an advertisement on the radio or noticed a billboard brandishing some companies slogan and contact information. Let’s say the ad on the billboard was for a plumbing service. Now, consider the cost to that plumbing service for that radio ad or billboard. Those types of advertisements can easily cost several hundred dollars, sometimes thousands per month depending on the scale of the campaign.
But I bet the next time you need a plumber, maybe a few months after first seeing or hearing that ad, you’ll still Google local plumbing services. It’s just what we do. We look for reviews and ratings. We want to compare prices online. Then, even after doing our online research we’ll ask friends and colleagues who they recommend for the job.
So what good did the billboard or radio ad actually do? None. In advertising, the amount you spend on the ad has a direct correlation to how much exposure it’s going to get. So a billboard on the side of I-20 inside city limits is going to be expensive because of the amount of traffic on the highway expected to see your ad.
But out of the thousands who might see your ad, how many are interested in what you’re selling? There’s no real way to tell. Regardless, you paid good money to show that ad to everyone, no matter their interests.
If for some reason your target audience is females age 45+, why pay to advertise to men and women on the highway of all ages. Why not save your money, and ONLY advertise to your target audience?
You can do that and much more with online marketing. With the internet, you can fine-tune your target audience to a specific group of people, or set it to broadcast your ad to anyone and everyone depending on the type of marketing campaign you’re running.
The advantages of the internet
Ability to target those who are most likely to make a purchase.
Direct and accurate feedback about your advertisement’s performance.
Cheaper than all other forms of advertising.
When you go to Google and search for a good or service, you might notice that the top two or three results often have the little “AD” symbol next to them. That means that company paid google to list their information there, and they didn’t pay much for it at all. Notice, that it only appeared there because of what you searched.
That is the biggest difference between online ads and other ad platforms with respect to effectiveness. If you’ve set your advertisement up for a targeted campaign, the people who are seeing your ad online, are only seeing it because they searched for something related to your business.
So rather than blanketing the highway with your ad and spending a ton for it, online ads have the ability to target only the people who are likely to click your ad, if that’s how you want the ad to function. In that case, you’re only paying for advertising to people who are actually interested.
Google isn’t the only method though. There are other large search engines to use, and social media plays a HUGE role in online advertising as well. But social media is its own beast, I’ll save that topic for next weeks newsletter.
The fact is, reaching people on the internet is affordable and effective and you should include it in your business plan. In my next newsletter, I’ll discuss more on Social Media, Search Engines, and all of the other facets of online marketing.