Up until recently, it was fairly simple and streamlined to promote a business: call up your local newspaper or Pennysaver, take out an ad or two, hold an open house, if you had the budget – maybe even run a commercial. But the future is here and if you’re a business owner in the 21st Century, you really need to know a little bit about how to promote your business online.

We now have technology at our fingertips and it feels like everything is more complex. This may be true, but our marketing tacts are more targeted and if you have a computer, there are a couple things you can do on your own! We know it can sound overwhelming.

No need to worry. Here are 5 easy things you can do right now to promote your business online directly to those folks who are wondering where they can find someone like you.

1. SEO

You may or may not have heard about the term “search engine optimization” or SEO. It’s what internet browsers like Google, Yahoo or Internet Explorer use to serve you the content customers are looking for.

There’s a lot that goes into this, but at a glance, a good rule of thumb that you, as a business owner, need to know is: There. Are. No. Magic. Tricks.

If a marketing agency is helping you optimize your traffic, just know that it takes good content, a bit of strategy and some patience. However, this is probably the very basic way to promote your business online and it can be done simply and effectively. If you want to learn more about SEO, let us know! We’ve actually been doing this for years and are up on all the changes that have happened to level the playing field for all businesses. We’d love to give you some insight and chat about one of the things we do best.

2. Paid Traffic and Display Advertising

This is pretty much the complete opposite of SEO (organic) traffic which is free (completely free!) Display advertising allows you to write and design ads in a simple way and then put them on affiliate sites to garner more potential customer reach. There are many packages you can purchase or words that you can “bid” on. If you choose to go this route, you definitely should talk to someone who knows the ins and outs.

You could easily blow through your marketing budget in a week and have no idea what happened.

However, when it works, it works well! And it can get you in front of more potential customers you ever thought possible. And yes, we specialize in this too. So, any questions? We’re here.

3. Content Marketing

In this writer’s opinion, this is the most exciting and interesting route to take (please know that there is no correct way to advertise your company online. It will take trying multiple avenues to see something that works.) But, content marketing is just like it sounds. It’s content, which includes storytelling, articles, blogs posts, videos or infographics that give potential customers information about your business or the type of field you are in.

The content can be educational, humorous or informative, as long as it is something that your customer base will want to interact with.

It keeps users coming back to your site, it’s great for SEO (see above) and shows folks that you’re willing to tell people what you stand for. We LOVE writing content at Steady Glow Digital and look forward to finding unique ways to make you glow.

4. Social Media

I’m sure that if you’re reading this, you’re on Facebook or know about it. If you don’t, I’m very surprised. Or impressed. Current social media has us now focused on a couple different social media platforms. The big players are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. At the time of this writing, Facebook has actually changed its platform so that ads and paid content will be seen less by the casual users. This actually keeps Facebook users happy because, let’s be honest, it was getting downright noisy in there.

Nonetheless, make sure you have a company Facebook page. A social media presence not only helps promote your business online but also helps make you appear established.

In addition, it enables you to directly communicate with your audience. Make sure folks are seeing your updates by incentivizing them to follow your page – think about giving a discount to those who do. Keep it fresh with new stories (see content marketing above) and folks will keep coming back. There are many strategies you can employ to get customers and potentials excited about your business on social media. Need help managing your social media? We can handle that too!

5. Yelp/User Reviews

This one is a little bit tricky, but something that works – especially with the Millenial to Generation X folks (think about Ages 23-40). The buying cycle of these customers is a bit different because they tend to rely a lot on reviews and what past customers have said about you. And, news travels fast – especially online. However, you can use this to your advantage. Yelp is a great platform that is user-driven. This means the customers provide all the content. You add your business, then folks will write reviews based on the quality of the service or product they received from you.

The better the value they get, the more glowing the review will be thus inspiring more folks to walk through your door.

People love when companies are authentic and transparent. It tells them that you give your best each and every time. It also keeps you accountable.

If you have any questions about any of the above tactics mentioned, please give us a holler. We’ll be happy to point you in the right direction!

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