If you’ve decided to make the leap and take advantage of the enormous opportunity that exists within the world of online marketing, you’re smart. You can get qualified eyeballs on your products and services that you would never have reached through traditional forms of marketing.
But they won’t come for nothing.
An effective online marketing strategy doesn’t mean slapping up a Twitter profile and calling it a day. Why should your prospects who know nothing about you think your “being on Twitter” is proof enough that you’re worth their time and money?
To get them to buy from you, you have to get them to trust you. And to get them to trust you, you have to give, give, give. Before you run away, let me show you just how easy it can be to develop and execute a powerful online marketing strategy.
Here is the Goose Dog 5-Step Online Marketing Plan. It’s a small amount of front-loaded energy that will result in wildly powerful results. Please read through to the end and consider adding this plan to your business’ existing marketing efforts.
Step 1: Establish Your Authority
Effective marketing means establishing yourself as an authority in your industry. You already are one. You just need a platform to show it off. The easiest way I’ve found to do this is through a blog.
Don’t run away screaming because it’s really very simple.
Blogging doesn’t have to mean you’re tied to your computer day and night building an online community. It doesn’t mean you need to be an award-winning author who can make people cry with your words. And it doesn’t mean you need to be a nerd who’s obsessed with computers like me. It simply means spending a few minutes a week telling the world what you’ve been up to.
Give some helpful tips from time to time. Mention exciting new developments in your industry and your company. Share interesting anecdotes about your work. Just show that you are active and busy. Show that you love what you do and why.
Posting on a blog is as easy as writing an email but the beauty of it is that your blog posts are archived and saved so that those prospects who might come to you five years from now will see that you’ve been an expert for years.
Think of blogging as investing in your web property.
You add value every week by simply jotting down a couple paragraphs about what you’ve been up to and sharing with your prospects some helpful information that persuades them to choose you over your competitors.
Step 2: Build a Web Presence
Marketing is all about reach. If you want to venture out into the online world, you need to cast a wide net so you reach as many people as you can.
Some people might come straight to your blog by typing a search into Google that’s related to your industry and content. Don’t even get me started on how great blogging is for the search engine optimization of your website!
But other people might be spending their time online hanging out on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Reddit, Pinterest, or Instagram.
Find out which of these platforms your ideal customer uses and create your own profile that matches the branding you use on your website and other marketing materials. This shows a new prospect that you speak their language and will increase the number of prospects who can find you and what you have to offer.
Don’t worry, it only takes a few minutes and it’s completely free.
Step 3: Double, Triple, Quadruple Your Effort
This step is the magic trick. Talk to your web designer about setting up your blog so that link posting to your various social media profiles is automated. Don’t have a web designer?
Contact us because this is our favorite thing to do. It’s easy enough but the results are astounding.
Here’s what happens. You write a blog post in five minutes. You hit the Publish button. Your blog post appears on your website. Then a link to your new blog post automatically appears on your Twitter page, your Facebook page, your LinkedIn profile, and whatever other social media profiles you’re using. That means in five minutes, you’ve taken care of your social media marketing altogether.
Now, sometimes when I present this plan to a client, he or she will say to me, “But don’t you have to be active on Twitter or Facebook for it to work?” My answer is both yes and no.
Yes, when you receive an email from Twitter or Facebook telling you that someone sent you a direct message, of course you need to respond. After all, a direct message could mean a real live prospect and so they deserve all the attention you can give.
But aside from that, I’ve found that simply posting meaningful links to your blog posts speaks to your social media audience in a powerful way.
Your prospect is shopping for the cupcakes you sell. There are two cupcake shops equidistant to them: yours and the other one. The other one has a website comparable to yours. Your prospect doesn’t know which shop to choose. They notice that you have a Twitter page and they happen to be a Twitter freak. They visit your Twitter page and see your logo, your face, and an image of your shop. They see you just posted a link announcing an exciting new cupcake flavor you’re introducing! Framed on the Twitter page, suddenly your brand, your shop, your cupcakes feel like home to them. They see you as a real person rather than just a store.
You’ve got yourself a new customer.
Step 4: Show Off Your Professionalism
Now remember that your blog is your shortcut to establishing your authority and showing that you’re active in your field. To maintain your professional image, you need to be consistent in your blogging effort. Whatever you need to do to keep yourself posting to your blog, do it.
Here’s what I do.
I wake up early three days a week for what I call my Business Development Hour. For thirty minutes, I read a book or article that teaches me about a specific aspect of my business I feel needs development such as marketing… or else a technical aspect of my business such as mobile web development. After reading for thirty minutes, I decide if what I just learned could be synthesized in such a way that could benefit my potential clients. If so, I blog. If not, I move on to something else.
Sometimes what I read in just thirty minutes can be turned into two or three blog posts. Now, I only release two posts on my blog a week. So where do all those blog posts go?
I schedule them so that they automatically post on a rainy day.
This plan kills so many birds with one stone.
1) I am constantly educating myself and bettering Tall Cube so I can deliver the best websites and service to my clients.
2) My current and future clients are benefiting from the helpful information I’m taking the time to read and then write about.
3) Anyone who stumbles upon what I write on my blog or my social media profiles will see that I love what I do so much that I care enough to tell them about it.
All of this establishes authority and in turn builds trust.
Step 5: Give and You Will Get
This last step has nothing to do with social media or online marketing. It’s about life. If you’re generous, what you give will come back around to you. So put yourself out there and don’t worry about the investment of time or energy. Resolve to try out this plan just for one month.
You will see that something you hadn’t imagined will happen to you.
The truth is, regardless of how much new business it brings you, you have nothing to lose. You are guaranteed to learn something new about your industry, your company, your business, or your customers that you never knew before.
So get to it! Step One is just a blog away!