Make Your Small Business Shine Online
“New Years Resolution” isn’t just some term touted by over-enthusiastic avocado lovers. Take this year as an opportunity to make your brand shine online.
As we venture boldly into a new year, it’s highly likely that you’ve made a number of ambitious business goals. And so you should - be bold! Digital marketing warrants constant improvement so if it’s not already up there as something for you to enhance, it should be.
Size no longer matters when it comes to digital. The smallest of small companies can boost their business by investing time into their online presence. Not doing so will likely harm business - it’s a digital world we’re living in and consumers have digital expectations.
It doesn't take much to give your brand a quick online health check-up. Follow these simple steps and you'll have a firm foundation to make 2017 your year to shine online.
1. Optimise your social media pages
How does your brand look online? Are your social media pages populated by bruised and battered old logos and irrelevant advertising, or do you have one consistent look and feel across board? Start by optimising your pages and ensuring that users get who you are and what you are about at first glance. Utilise your header and profile photo to showcase who you are and start creating a personality.
There are a number of useful free online tools that can help you optimise your social media pages. We’ve collected a list of the most powerful social media management tools for small businesses - check it out here.
2. Optimise your website
Facebook would have us believe that you don’t need a website anymore. But you do. By golly, you do. For the past few years Zuckerberg has done little to hide the fact that he wants to limit the amount of time users have to spend on the internet off of Facebook. But the truth is that websites are more important now than they have ever been. They are the shop fronts of the digital age.
Having your own website with your own blog lets you take advantage of authentic and original content marketing which builds up your social media marketing strategy. The two are basically best friends.
3. Integrate your social media and content marketing
Once you have optimised your pages and your website you can get to creating a consistent full-scale digital marketing strategy that suits you. Think of the two like this; your social pages are where real people come to hear about your brand and decide whether they want to advocate it. It should be used to share advice, resources and deals that would benefit them. Your website is your shop front. Create content that benefits your customers on there and share it on your social pages.
There have always been a number of different goals and things that can be achieved through social media marketing, such as brand awareness, audience growth or increased website traffic. But now we are seeing it used in new and exciting ways, with innovative check-in deals and advocacy benefits strategies being utilised in the hospitality industry.
If you’re struggling to create a strategy that reflects your own goals then drop us a message - we’d love to help. But one way sure-fire way to build your brand is an integrated content marketing and social media strategy.
4. Create and share better content
How do you use your blog to your benefit? Use it to benefit your customers. Quality articles not only entice new customers, they remind current ones why they bought into your brand in the first place and work to make them advocates.
Content marketing in 2017 is expected to see significant development and content creators are getting much, much better. Great news for users, but it means small businesses have to work a lot harder.
So that you know you are investing in the right thing, we’ve put together a how-to guide on creating the right content for your audience in 2017 - check it out here. We’ve also listed the top 12 online tools for content marketers.
5. Craft an online voice
Your online voice needs to be unique and totally human. We cannot stress enough the importance of sounding human on social media. It was made for humans by humans. Shouting about your brand doesn’t work anymore - to get results you need to engage with real people at a human level and get them to trust your brand so that your network will grow organically.
Regardless of your, your pages simply won’t grow if you don’t make people want to engage with you. Millennials are completely aware of what’s advertising and what isn’t, and they are less likely to trust a brand that doesn’t feel authentic. This article will help you build an online voice for your brand.
6. Learn how to listen and respond
One of our biggest (and favourite) pieces of expert social media advice from last year was for business to shut up and listen. Listening and responding goes beyond community management (but if you need help with that, check out this article), its about ensuring you provide what they ask for and give yourself the best chances of success.
Social media marketing doesn’t stop at your posting strategy - it’s about customer service too. Make sure you top off your posting strategy of colossal epicness with a great response rate for queries.
Great digital marketing isn’t just for the big wigs. Make 2017 your year to shine online. And if you need any help along the way, drop us a line.