Marketing Your Online Business – 6 things to do
Marketing your online business needs a thought through plan to get it up and running. And, for me this plan needs to deliver on two things:
- Be effective, bringing in leads for conversion to customers; and,
- Be doable in terms of time, which is always a scarce resource.
What I run through in this blog post, I think, delivers on these two criteria for a typical entrepreneurial start-up or SME.
Let’s get going…
1 – Lead Magnet Offer
Just in case, let me explain what a lead magnet is… it is an offer that is very appealing to your target customer. An offer where they will share their details in exchange for this offer. Examples include:
- Informative PDF download
- Free consultation
- Free coupon
Your lead magnet is often best advertised on the home page of your site with a link that takes the visitor to a landing page.
None of us get our lead magnets spot on from the get go, so expect to have to continually adjust through testing to improve its performance.
Try a completely new one every few months.
2 – Regular Blog Posts
Writing blog posts about subjects that are of value to your target customer is clearly of benefit in getting your business recognition in the marketplace by establishing you as an expert. Additionally, given the blog is properly search engine optimised, the search engines will index it and show posts in organic searches. More about SEO here: SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMISATION
This doesn’t happen over night clearly. But with regular good quality posts the indexing and rankings will follow.
Also, your blog is a very good source of content, with links for both your Facebook Group and social media activity.
Aim for a blog posting per month.
3 – Email Your Subscribers
As your marketing cranks-up and keeps churning out good content you will start to build up your subscribers list. Communicate with this list regularly, talking to them about:
- New blog posts
- New products
- Latest offers
- Industry news
Email content possibilities are many, just keep it interesting and relevant.
How frequent? Well, it depends on how much you have new to communicate, top clothing brands are sending out 3 – 4 emails per week. To maintain an awareness with your list an email per month is the minimum I’d suggest.
4 – Facebook Advertising
My preference, currently, is for Facebook advertising vs the likes of Google Ads. Facebook has done a great deal to simplify its advertising platform; and, with its learning intelligence and audience targeting, it is hard to beat. And finally, importantly, its cheap.
Advertising on Facebook is a very extensive subject; and, a subject, in my view, too important to for the boss of a start-up or SME to delegate to an agency or admin assistant.
In outline terms do two things…
- If you are a start-up use Facebook’s audience targeting to get to your target customer; or, if you are an established SME upload your customer list to Facebook and it will create a lookalike audience which matches the profile of your subscribers.
- Re-market to the visitors of your website using a Facebook custom audience
Get going with frequent low spend campaigns and increase the spend as your skill increases demonstrated by your return on investment. Start a new campaign every couple of weeks.
5 – Facebook Group Participation
Find Facebook groups that are relevant for your business and get involved – post and comment in a helpful and positive manner, add value. Take care not to be too pushy.
I forget where I read this, but a good approach to take…
Be a go giver rather than a go getter.
Pick your groups with care. Some will let you link to your site, some won’t. Enjoy the dialogue with like minded people.
Post a couple of times a week.
6 – Regular Social Media Posts
Chasing likes, followers, re-tweets, etc. is of doubtful value in my view. But, a presence on the main social media platforms is important to help your business’s reach.
The platforms to target will vary depending upon your business sector. The ones I find are most effective are:
And, one which doesn’t quite fit here but needs to get a mention: Google My Business. Have a presence there and Google likes it. Exactly what impact it has on your site’s ranking is not disclosed by Google, but it is certainly a positive effect.
The content you put on social media should be of value to your target customer; with a combination of: blog post links, special offers, lead magnet offers and the occasional sharing of a 3rd party post (needs to be a very good one to warrant you sharing).
As to frequency – at least weekly. Quality content is more important than quantity.
Test Test Test – Marketing Your Online Business
The theme running through this post is one of continually trying new things to see what works and building upon the learning. It is all about testing.
We all fail to start with. That’s just how it is. Fail small and keep testing new things.