All businesses need customers to survive and grow. To gain customers, you need to promote your business.
There are a lot of ways online to promote your business.
There are several old-school offline tactics you can use to advertise your business as well.
This article highlights a few proven ways on how to advertise your business on and offline.
How to advertise your business on Google
One of the best places to advertise your business online is Google.
1. Create a Google Business Profile
Your Google Business Profile, also known as your Google listing, allows your business to show up on Google Maps and the local section of Google Search results.
You can create and verify ownership of your listing through your free Google My Business account.
After being granted ownership, you can make improvements to your listing to show up higher in search results and for relevant searches.
Your Action Item: Setup a Google My Business Page.
2. Update your website
Your business website is one of the first impressions customers have of you.
It not only informs potential clients of your products or services, but also tells your story and highlights your brand’s personality.
Make sure your website stands out from the crowd and helps customers easily learn about your services.
Your Action Item: Check out this guide on how to build a small business website.
3. Take advantage of search engine optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization is a set of tactics that can help your website rank higher on Google Search results.
It uses Google best practices to help your business show up online to customers looking for your services.
At the root of SEO is creating valuable content for your website as well as making sure your website uses all the latest best practices.
Create content based on popular topics and keyword searches and post it on your website.
Your Action Item: Learn more about how search engine optimization can help your company in this Beginners Guide to Search Engine Optimization
4. Start a business blog
Starting a business blog can give your website more visibility, especially with SEO.
Your blog can provide educational content related to your industry, products, and services.
Using keywords that potential customers are searching for in Google will help your business rank higher in Google Search results.
For example: If you are a lawyer, you may write an article that answers commonly asked questions.
Your Action Item: Learn ways to drive traffic to your website, including with a blog in this guide.
5. Promote your content
Publishing content is great, but it would be useless without anyone viewing it.
Promote your content so your customers can benefit from it. You can do this on social media, advertising, or email newsletters. Advertising is an art and requires some knowledge to get you going.
Your Action Item: Learn how to do get more leads for your business with this guide to paid advertising.
6. Use Google Ads
SEO helps to get you to the top of search results, but it can take time.
If you want immediate exposure and are willing to invest advertising dollars, run a Google Ad campaign.
Google Ads show up at the top of search engines above organic (think SEO) results.
Your Action Item: If you would like to know more about Google Ads (also known as Pay-Per-Click campaigns), contact us at Scorpion.
How to promote your business using online reviews and directories
7. Create listings on major directories
Creating a listing for your business on major directories can help you gain exposure.
Google and Yelp are two of the major online directories available.
Be sure to create a Google My Business account and Yelp profile.
Both of these platforms allow consumers to discover and connect with local businesses.
Smaller directories tend to pull data from larger directories, so keeping your information consistent on major directories is important.
Most online directories are free but may have paid options for advanced features.
8. Improve directory listings
Improve your listings on online directories by filling out details in your profile, adding photos, and collecting reviews.
These will all help to highlight your business and rank it above competitors in searches.
Make sure that the information in all of your listings is consistent with the information on your website.
9. Get customer reviews
Testimonials on your website are great, but online reviews on major platforms like Google and Yelp are even better.
Many consumers turn to them first to find trustworthy businesses.
10. Respond to reviews
Consumers nowadays expect for businesses to respond to their reviews.
Responding to reviews, good or bad, demonstrates a commitment to good customer service.
Your Action Item: Set a time each week to respond to reviews on major platforms.
How to get your business out there using social media
Expand your brand on social media with these tactics:
11. Prioritize Facebook
Facebook is the largest social network online and is a great platform to connect with customers.
Facebook provides businesses with a way to advertise to their ideal customers in their local markets.
Your Facebook business page should include accurate business information and relevant content so that customers who click on ads know how to reach you.
Your Action Item: Create a Facebook page for your business.
12. Connect and share on LinkedIn
LinkedIn allows you to stay connected with customers and potential partners who want to know your company on a professional level.
Your LinkedIn business profile will give customers a chance to learn more about you and your team.
Join in on group discussions, form new partnerships, and promote your business on LinkedIn.
Try linking back to relevant content on your website.
Your Action Item: Sign up for LinkedIn and setup a business page.
13. Upload content to YouTube
YouTube provides a way for businesses to market to customers using an engaging format.
You can promote your business for free by simply creating a YouTube channel and uploading content your customers want to see.
Your Action Item: Create a free Youtube channel.
14. Advertise on Youtube
You can also invest in Youtube advertising by creating video ads that play before videos in your category.
This allows you to reach many potential customers since YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google.
Your Action Item: Learn how to make the most of Youtube advertising.
15. Engage your audience with Instagram
Instagram helps you to engage your customers and promote your business visually.
Promote sales and deals using Instagram’s diverse posting formats.
Publish a permanent post, a short-lived story, or an IGTV series to connect with your audience.
Your Action Item: Set up a free business Instagram account.
16. Share on Twitter
If your target audience is mostly younger adults, give Twitter a shot.
It may take a while to build an audience but stay consistent.
If a few hashtags in your category are trending, take full advantage by tweeting using the same hashtags.
Your Action Item: Sign up for Twitter today.
17. Try Pinterest
Pinterest is for sharing photos that can link back to your website.
This creates an opportunity to market and drive more traffic to your site.
Your Action Item: Set up a Pinterest account now!
18. Give TikTok a chance
TikTok is fairly new, but is one of the most popular apps with a ton of active users.
You can use the platform to create short video clips with special effects to advertise your business.
Your Action Item: Create a Tik Tok account today to attract thousands of potential customers.
19. Join online communities
Join online communities and groups relevant to your business industry.
You can offer people sound advice, suggestions, and solutions to issues they need help with.
This will build a genuine reputation and form solid connections with potential customers.
20. Collaborate with influencers
Popular figures or experts in your field can have a lot of influence with your potential customers.
These influencers usually have a large following so collaborating with an influencer in your field can lend your business credibility and reach.
Your Action Item: Search social media using business hashtags for influencers in your industry.
21. Invest in social media advertising
Investing in social media advertising is one of the best ways to market your business.
Social media allows you to target specific customer profiles, attract more followers, and gain new customers.
Your Action Item: Learn more about paid and other social in this Beginners Guide To Social Media from Scorpion.
How to market your business in your community
22. Get local press
Try to promote your business by reaching out to the local press.
This can be anything from local blogs to newspapers to other local news sources. You can look to create an event or contribute to the community in a way that would inspire the press to write about you.
Your Action Item: Call, email, or do in-person visits to make sure you get your business out there through the local press.
23. Create partnerships
You can opt to partner with non-competitive businesses that serve the same clientele as you.
Cross-promote each other’s services to maximize the promotional value of the partnership. For example, if you are a plumbing company you may partner with a local restaurant or another service provider to put on an event or provide special deals to each other's customers.
Your Action Item: Perform online searches to find non-competitive businesses.
Attend local networking events to increase your presence in the community. Chamber of commerce or being a member of other associations are a great way to connect with others in the community. You can also try reaching out directly over social media.
Your Action Item: Put yourself out there and meet the people in the community.
25. Attend local events
Attend local events in your community to strengthen connections with local customers. Making your face and brand known will connect you more to the community. Get involved.
Your Action Item: Do this to better understand the needs of the local community.
26. Host local events
Host a local event in your community whether it's a classy or a fun event to market your business.
Your Action Item: Spend time with the folks in your community and let them get to know you and your business on a personal level.
27. Sponsor local events
When the event is being advertised in the community, so is your business. Find opportunities to sponsor events where your ideal customer might attend. That could be a local high school play, sporting event, or something much larger.
Your Action Item: Sign up to be a sponsor at any local annual or recurring events in the community.
28. Donate to charity
Donate your goods or services to a local charity.
This way your business can shine in a positive light and help support worthy local initiatives. You can use your local influence to help raise funds or volunteers for a charity or charitable event.
Your Action Item: Find a worthy cause and get involved.
29. Try direct mail
Send postcards, flyers, letters, and other types of direct mail to nearby customers. Traditional marketing may not be the lead of your efforts anymore, but it can be a supplement.
30. Advertise locally and offline in your local area
Place ads in newspapers, magazines, on the radio, and even television to promote your business
Connect Directly with Your Customers
31. Run email marketing campaigns
People are constantly checking their emails.
Running an email marketing campaign keeps customers updated with the latest coming from your business.
Your Action Item: Start an email marketing campaign with Scorpion.
32. Use chat on your website
Giving leads the option of contacting you immediately while they’re on your website helps with converting them into customers.
Chatbots may be cheaper to run, but having live chat run by real support agents gives your customers the type of experience they might have with your business.
Both options are great for helping you engage customers around the clock, whether you’re busy managing your business or out of the office.
Your Action Item: Integrate chat on your website.
33. Use text messaging
Everyone nowadays has a smartphone.
Use text messaging to directly communicate with your customers. Get personal with reminders and thank you notes. Text messaging technology can help you do this easily for all your customers.
Your Action Item: Get text messaging for your business.
Advertising is a key piece of any small business marketing plan. There are several ways to advertise your business on and offline with or without paying. Online giants like Facebook, Google and Yelp can help get your name out there.
Making sure your customer experience and communication is top notch is vital in keeping the attention you gain from advertising and marketing.
Implementing just a few of the strategies highlighted in this article is going to set you up for success.
For help with your advertising strategy, contact our experts at Scorpion.
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