I really recommend using digital marketing and social media for your local business to help promote and amplify your brand online, to help drive online engagement with your website and, as a bonus, bring some more sales to you.
Where small businesses often get digital marketing wrong is: digital marketing is not a silver bullet for your company’s marketing. It’s definitely not the only thing to do, and if you think it’s your sure-fire, quick-fix way to market yourself to a booming business then you’re going to be very disappointed.
In my opinion, the biggest benefit of digital marketing is the ability to initiate and foster online relationships by directing your online connections to various online destinations of value to your targeted audience. In other words, you’re posting an article that is relevant to your target audience or you’re directing traffic the blog post you wrote on your website because it has valuable best practices for a common problem your target market experiences. Or, it can be a great way to keep in touch with current contacts and/or interested prospects.
However, digital marketing, and more specifically, social media, is just one piece of the target-audience-relationship-building activity plan (aka marketing plan). The idea is to build trust with those who ideally fit the profile of your ideal client – solving their problem or challenge with your solution (your product or serve).
The best advice for businesses is a combination of on- and off-line marketing. Online, offers quick, wide-reaching capabilities that are awesome for initiating and even maintaining relationships. The neat thing is that the more you connect with people online who like what you do the more they’ll naturally help to amplify your online posts to their own audiences – increasing your online reach farther beyond your own ability to do so, and for less money (this is where a lot of the appeal of social media for business comes in).
Off-line, or often referred to, high-touch marketing, requires more person-to-person interaction – over the phone, or better yet, an in-person meeting. I’ve found the quicker you can move a relationship that starts online, off-line, the faster you can build some real trust with that individual, which is more likely to lead to new business for you or a valid partnership that benefits you both.
The point is you cannot use digital marketing alone, but you also cannot ignore digital marketing – together their sum is greater than the individual parts. Local businesses often have the advantage of being able to connect in-person with their customers and prospects – be sure to take advantage of that and continue the conversation online, or initiate it online and quickly encourage an in-person meeting. That’s a sure fire approach.
Posted by: Nick Ventuerlla