You’ve got a business so now you need more customers. How will you accomplish this goal? You need to promote your business meaning get the word out letting potential customers know about the goods and/or services you offer.
Promotion can involve such activities as community involvement, sponsoring special events or giving away specialty items like coupons, hats, key chains, etc. These are good methods of subtly promoting your business and putting your company name in front of the public.
Those are some tangible ways to promote a business but what about online promotion? Most customers seem to like the ability to view products and services online before making a commitment. Here are six promotional ideas your business should consider.
Local Listing Services
Take advantage of the three big local listing services. Get registered with Google Places be found more easily on Google and so your business will appear on Google Maps. Yahoo! has a large database of businesses called Yahoo! Local. It is free, and worth the time it takes to get set up. Microsoft’s Bing has a comparable service with an easy signup process.
Embrace social media
It isn’t just a tool to increase exposure. It is now a requirement for a successful business. Your ads can be tied to offers on your Facebook page. A customer -focused direct Twitter channel can be set up. LinkedIn is another social networking site you should use. Using social media allows you to reach a large audience with no out-of-pocket expense to your business.
Create a Video Blog to enable the sharing of information in a more interesting way. People love good content that speaks to them and a video blog is a great way to attract them. Set up a YouTube channel and upload a new video on a regular basis. You can discuss the same topics as in you would in your regular blog.
Avoid Generic Emails
Avoid generic/form emails. Make your customers feel special by allowing them special benefits available only to subscribers. Include those specials and promotions in the emails to only those customers. Also, make it as easy as possible for people to sign up for your subscriber emails.
Almost everywhere you go these days you are offered some way to earn points or rewards that can be used toward future purchases. Grocery stores, gas stations, pharmacies and even hardware stores pass out “rewards” cards so why not you. It may not be a physical card you offer but some way your customers can earn rewards based on their purchases. Maybe they earn discounts or possibly free merchandise but the incentive will bring them back to your site for future purchases.
Pat yourself on the back by using Testimonials. If you have a positive story take the opportunity to share it. Don’t be shy about taking advantage of any good press you receive. To make testimonials powerful and effective, use video whenever possible.
These are just six strategies your business should consider. Finding what works for your business will require some trial and error, plus some time. You need to figure out what will attract a larger audience and more customers. Put more focus on the ideas that work and drop those that fail.