As internet marketing consultants, we often talk to a lot of business owners who are still trying to work out how to market their business using Google, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc. For example, I spoke to a young guy this week who has an online store and a high quality product that he sells at a very competitive price. Yet he still isn’t getting many leads. What’s going wrong?
Let me share with you a few general concepts that might help.
1. PEOPLE ARE BUSY. VERY BUSY.
They are busy and they generally get overwhelmed with marketing. The stats say that we each receive 4500 pieces of marketing on average every day. So it really doesn’t matter that you have a great product if people are too busy and overwhelmed to pay attention to your marketing. My question to you is: Out of the 4500 pieces of marketing that your customer is going to see today, why should be pay special attention to yours?
2. ENTERTAIN, DON’T SELL
Often when I check out a business’s Facebook page, 99% of posts will be the business promoting their products or services. WRONG. The same goes with email newsletters. It’s all SELL SELL SELL. Ugh. Think of your digital communications with customers in the same way you would a telephone call or a visit to someone’s home. Would you ring up a customer and just start selling your products? Would you knock on someone’s door and try to sell them something? How successful would you be? Most people will hang up or close the door in your face. People want to be entertained and inspired. Try changing your approach to the digital messages you put out. Build communities of like-minded people. Start a podcast about something your customers might be interested in. Entertain them. Inspire them. They will love you for it.
3. GOOGLE IS THE FRONT DOOR TO YOUR BUSINESS
Even though most people have a rough idea of what SEO is these days, I still find most businesses doing a very poor job at it. They almost treat Search Marketing like it’s an unimportant afterthought! If you treat search marketing like that, there’s a good chance your business will be the unimportant afterthought. While SEO can be a complex task, the single most important aspect of it that you can focus on is continually publishing high quality, original and entertaining content. People tell me “I’m too busy to write content.” If that’s the case, hire someone to help you. Content is king. Never forget that.
4. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE CUSTOMER – NOT ABOUT YOUR PRODUCTS
99% of websites we look at go on and on and on about their products and services. Try to spend more of your website’s real estate talking about your customer’s problems, than you do pimping your own services. If customers think you really understand their problems, they are more likely to trust that you know what you are doing – and isn’t that what we really want when we do business with someone? An old sales coach once told me “People do business with people they like and trust”. I’ve always found that to be true. How well does your website convey your likeability and trustworthiness?
5. GIVE THEM AN INCENTIVE
How many times have you walked into a business and seen a sign that says “LIKE US ON FACEBOOK”? The question in my mind is always “Why???” I know what’s in it for them – access to my friend network – but what’s in it for me? What’s MY incentive to perform the action they want me to perform? So give people an incentive. Here’s an example. I produce a podcast. One of the keys to a successful podcast is getting positive reviews on iTunes. We weren’t getting many (because it takes some effort for people to write a review), so we started telling our audience that we would give away a free coffee mug for the best review each week. The reviews started FLOODING in. In three months we went from 2,000 listeners a month to 60,000, largely based on the positive reviews and the 20 coffee mugs we gave away to get them.