Internet Marketing Summit

Fox Valley Internet Marketing Summit – February 21, 2014

You can still register for this upcoming Fox Valley Internet Marketing Summit.  Read the FVIMS flyer below or link to the event site here. This is an all-star line-up of local internet marketing talent!

Take a Look! and register today for this educational, and I am sure entertaining event.  Help your small business use the power of the internet to be found!

Fox Valley Internet Marketing Flyer

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Strategy

At a recent meeting, I overheard someone say that an entire campaign was going to be directed to a Facebook page.  Is Facebook your only strategy?  Are you relying on one method to get your message out, build your brand, or manage your customer service?  Most people will probably be answering that they have more than one path to lead clients to their information. But where are your potential clients being directed to find your information?

Back to the meeting, Facebook is a great option especially if you are a B2C business with a storefront.  But so many people, believe it or not, do not use Facebook or any social media on a regular basis.  So what you do for your marketing strategy truly depends upon your audience.

If you haven’t already heard it before, here goes – your website should be the hub of all of your hubmarketing efforts.  It is the repository of your on-line brochure, the way to contact you for more information, your blog – where your share your opinions and expertise, and a gallery of examples.

Everything that you do, whether it is phone calls, emails, brochures, direct mail or social media, should drive back to your hub – your website.

If you need assistance in learning more about how to do that with social media, please contact me so that we can schedule some one-on-one time or so you can find out if there is an upcoming workshop that you might be able to attend.

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LinkedIn Company Pages

  1. Do you have a website?
  2. Do you have an email address at that domain name?
  3. Do you have a company LinkedIn page?

How many of you are 3 for 3?

I still run into people who have been doing business very successfully without a website.  Many of them are hyper-local and do most of their business by word-of mouth.  But if you have ever watched Eric Qualman’s Social Media Video?  Your growth depends upon “World-of-Mouth”.

When you have a website, you validate your authenticity.  By taking it one step further and having a company LinkedIn page, you increase your authenticity, but you increase the likelihood of showing up higher in search results.LInkedIn company profiles

The first step in creating a company page on LinkedIn is that you MUST have a company email to set-up the company LinkedIn page. You cannot use gmail, yahoo, hotmail or (heaven forbid) aol. If you want to get started right away you can link here – http://marketing.linkedin.com/company-pages/

If you want to take advantage of all of the bells and whistles, you will need some graphics to optimize the profile to the fullest and the time to create a listing of your products and services. This gives you in-bound links that also help drive up your website’s SEO.

Last but not least, if you are creating a company profile, you will want followers.  To keep them interested, you will more than likely need to post some interesting information about your company or industry. Get a twofer by sharing your company update to your personal connections! Need to know more about that? Check this post.

Does all of this sound overwhelming?  Give me a call.

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Keep an Eye on Your Competition

Gone are the days of just having a “secret shopper” go to the competitors store to find out pricing. New tactics are required. After reading this article in Entrepreneur by a former CIA Officer onspying How to Get Ahead of Your Competition, I thought about how you could “spy” on your competition through social media.

There are four aspects about social media that help you build or protect your business.  Let’s review:

  • Build Your Brand with Social Media – Using social media allows you to have your logo, ideals and business practices in multiple locations, hopefully, in the right places where your customers are looking for you. Make sure that you are sharing the same message everywhere you are.
  • Build Relationships – as you are developing your clientele you are also building a rapport between you and them.  Learning more about what they want or need.  Social media can help you stay in touch with them and carry on conversations.
  • Level the Playing Field – every business has access to the same networks and tools available on the variety of social media platforms.  It is how well you use them and the available features as to how much better of an opponent you will be.
  • Monitor Competitors – you can “keep an eye on your competition” by following their movements on the various platforms in which they participate. Have they offered a coupon, a pop-up sale, a new white paper? Do they have a newsletter, a blog, a photo journal? Can you modify or improve upon their idea to help your business?  Are you using more platforms than they are, but your engagement is lower?

What have you discovered when you were “spying” on your competition?

 

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One of my Favorite Things

If the song from the Sound of Music – Favorite Things

could be rewritten to my thinking social media and LinkedIn would be included as one of the items in the list. LinkedIn is one of my favorite social media tools. Whenever I see an article on LinkedIn, I take a peek.  Often the titles are the X number of tools or things you don’t know about LinkedIn.

I have found that there seem to be two types of users:

  1. The person that collects connections and updates their resume
  2. The person who participates in groups, answers questions and shares status updates.
The more often you participate in LinkedIn by sharing via groups, status updates or showing

Image representing LinkedIn as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

your expertise when answering questions, the more frequently your name appears in your connections updates stream.

This article about announcements raises some good points about direct communication to group members, but unsolicited emails could cause frustration, which we do not want to do when trying to generate leads.

Remember that by participating regularly, your connections will see your name and will be reminded each time they do of what you do or where you work.  As much as we would like things to be simple, they aren’t always easy.  Networking face-to-face and building relationships is often the way to increasing the on-line relationships that you have established.

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