Web Strategy; Having a solid website foundation is critical. This is where all other online and potentially offline strategies will direct users so your company website needs to be solid(content, usability, seo) as this is hopefully where you will direct users and convert them. Internet MKT Strategy(Online press mentiones, ads, media relations) Social Media Strategy; Relationships and networks, using tools to connect and engage with users.
Here’s a list of the most popular social media activities you’re likely to hear or have heard about. Based on the survey responses and research I was able to perform on your businesses I have applied the GTD to-do list approach to the laundry list. You can get so bogged down in all these items that you feel like you’re spinning your wheels in social media.
If you’re not familiar with the GTD approach to task management it essentially asks you to write down all of the todos on your plate and rate them numerically 1-5 based on how long they will take to complete. While not always prefect, many times this helps me surface the ‘quick wins’ or the easy tasks that have a decent ROI. The list above is my GTD result based on looking at your businesses.
Ensuring your company has created social media profiles is an easy win for any company no matter what you do or who you sell to. Benefits include: securing your company’s social namesake, and creating links back to your company’s website. The LinkedIn’s Company Directory allows businesses OF ANY NATURE to describe their company, add their logo, geographic location, industry, and again a link to your website.
Twitter’s one of those applications that a large demographic of business people like to pan. While we don’t know where Twitter’s real-time communication functionality is going there, with such a large user base rest assured it’s going to be relevant for a long time. Making sure you secure your company’s twitter handle (seen above) is a simple thing you can do today. Twitter also allows you to fill out a profile including company description, logo, and LINK TO YOUR WEBSITE.
Facebook’s page is called a FanPage. While I could spent an entire hour on creating effective facebook fan pages creating one for your company is at least a start.
Depending on your business there are numerous other social networks that I would encourage you to create profiles on. - If you do anything that people might find interesting in video form, create your youtube account. Video is a trend on the way up. If you are in the graphic design arena or art world having a Flickr account for pictures is a good idea.
54% of search users have substituted Internet/search for phone book. Source: http://www.skyabovelocal.com/questions/local-search-stats
82% of users use internet search for local purchases. 54% of search users have substituted Internet/search for phone book. Source: http://www.skyabovelocal.com/questions/local-search-stats
130.5% Growth rate for local mobile search. Small and medium local businesses are far behind large businesses in their attention to online marketing. While 82% of consumers use search engines for local business information, those local businesses focus less than 10% of their marketing budget toward web strategies Source: http://www.mdurwin.com/2009/02/new-mobile-statistics-search-local/
At the start of 2009 Google overtook Mapquest as the foremost map search application. Prevelence on mobile devices such as the iphone have propelled it even further. Therefore if you sell locally you MUST BE IN THE GOOGLE BUSINESS DIRECTORY.
Google business directory -everyone should add themselves in, if you’re a business that sells to local people then that 82% of people are looking for you online. If you don’t sell locally, it gives you another link back to your website and it helps your guest find you. Be found by rapidly growing mobile contingent.
Since you’re company’s website is the hub for online activity both social or marketing related. I personally think it’s a crime to talk about social media without devoting discussion to SEO. SEO (search engine optimization) essentially refers to the science of making your website more appealing to google and other search engines. All the social profile creation we just talked about will help your site’s off-page seo. Which is generally more important than in-page these days. But there are several basics that make a huge difference and can’t afford to be missed.
A good title for your page is in my opinion the single most important factor when it comes to in-page optimization. The title of your page should not just be &quot;name of your company&quot;. You should have a keyword phrase in the title. For example, if you have a site that sells hand made candles and the name of your company is “ Luminosity” Your home page title should NOT be “ Luminosity”, this is a mistake that 90% of all sites I see make. Title should contain keyword phrase like “Handmade Candles by Luminocity”. Or better ““Handmade Scented Candles and Natural Soy Candles-Luminocity”. Also do, Meta Description
Another very common mistake I still see if using images or Flash(animation) on pages as opposed to pure text. The search engines can’t read images or animation so the more actual text you have the better. If you use images make sure they have an ‘alt’ tag to explain to the search engines what the image contains.
Drawing from the results of a June 2009 survey from eMarketer, the second best way to drive sales online is via email. Create 2 lists clients and prospects Quarterly emails Example email: Hi Anne, I wanted to drop you a quick note to let you know how we’ve been helping our clients during the past 3 months. We recently began offering a new product for annuity compliance monitoring. This extension of our Lansare Insight platform allows insurance carriers such as yourself monitor sub account reallocations, product concentration, and examine various age buckets to ensure that contracts being sold remain in good order throughout their lifetime. Furthermore our surrender alerting helps your team retain clients by notifying them when contracts are nearing critical surrender dates or the policyholder has crossed notable life events. I would be happy to tell you more about these new services if you’re available this week. Thanks, Andy <end> Even if it’s just a paragraph tell them what you’ve been doing for the past month or two, recent projects. Include links to Flickr, YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook. If the number is under 50 I would recommend sending them manually otherwise use something like: MailChimp is you have under 500 emails for free. Pay per click Behavioral Marketing
Tell them what you’re working on and then put a call to action. Integrate with your social media and website, links to your LinkedIn page, links to your website, links to view pictures, videos etc…
Creating content is the biggest barrier to doing anything in the social media space but there’s no way of getting around it. If you want to be successful in social media you will need to generate largely written content. So while it’s expensive from a time perspective I’ll give you some of my best practices that hopefully can help you if you choose to embark down this path. UGC / Content
At this point it makes sense to pause and gain a little bit more insight on your specific verticals. Head over to one of these two sites and search for product names, technical words, or competitors to see if people on the web are talking about your business. Use the following sites to search on products, buzzwords, and competitors. - answers.yahoo.com (437 results for ‘clock repair’) - search.twitter .com/advanced If they are it may make sense to do the GTD exercise again and engage in some conversations.
GTD Approach To Social Media <ul><li>Setup Blog </li></ul><ul><li>Email Newsletter </li></ul><ul><li>Create Social Profiles </li></ul><ul><li>Local Search </li></ul><ul><li>Share Buttons </li></ul><ul><li>Basic SEO </li></ul><ul><li>Viral Video </li></ul><ul><li>Write Whitepapers </li></ul><ul><li>Write Content </li></ul><ul><li>Social Bookmarking </li></ul><ul><li>Adding Followers </li></ul><ul><li>Widgets </li></ul><ul><li>Mobile Apps </li></ul><ul><li>Podcasts </li></ul><ul><li>Mashups </li></ul>
After GTD <ul><li>Create Social Profiles (1) </li></ul><ul><li>Local Search (1) </li></ul><ul><li>Basic SEO (3) </li></ul><ul><li>Email Newsletter (2) </li></ul><ul><li>Writing Content (2) </li></ul>
GTD Results <ul><li>Cost: 2 hours </li></ul><ul><li>- Additional Links in Google </li></ul><ul><li>Protect links. </li></ul><ul><li>You’re company is setup to use the most popular social media platforms. </li></ul>
2. Local Search <ul><li>54% </li></ul>Source: comScore
2. Local Search <ul><li>82% </li></ul>Source: comScore
2. Local Search <ul><li>130.5% </li></ul>Source: Kelsey Group
3. SEO <ul><li>Content </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t overuse images and animation(code) </li></ul><ul><li>Use alt text for my images and links(code) </li></ul><ul><li>Html site map </li></ul><ul><li>Meta Descriptions(code) </li></ul>
GTD Results <ul><li>Cost: $200/1 skilled hour </li></ul><ul><li>Help people find your website. </li></ul>
4. E-mail <ul><li>“ I wanted to drop you a quick note to let you know how we’ve been helping our clients during the past 3 months. In August we began offering a new product for annuity compliance monitoring. “ </li></ul><ul><li>Also check out our company: </li></ul><ul><li>LinkedIn | Facebook Fanpage | Pictures | Video </li></ul><ul><li>Sincerely, Andy Theimer </li></ul>
GTD Results <ul><li>Cost: 2 hours / quarter </li></ul><ul><li>Give contacts multiple action items. </li></ul><ul><li>Keep your company on their radar. </li></ul>
5. Content Creation <ul><li>Take inventory; pics, vids. Easier and faster to publish then written content. </li></ul><ul><li>Set aside half a day and write articles for the month. (4-14) </li></ul><ul><li>Look at sent emails for potential topics </li></ul>
GTD Results <ul><li>Cost: 4 hours / month </li></ul><ul><li>Search engines like you. </li></ul><ul><li>People will like you. </li></ul><ul><li>Doorway to advanced social media usage. </li></ul>
Thank You <ul><li>Andy Theimer </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>414-732-5289 </li></ul>