I have shifted focus with my online marketing services and I am advising all of my clients to concentrate on Reputation Marketing. In Northumberland County and Peterborough, most businesses aren’t aware of or don’t know what to do about online reputation and reviews. Certainly a company needs to get a website up. It provides convenience for you and your clients. But there is almost no point in doing any Search Engine Optimizations to get your website higher in the search rankings compared to your competition in Trent Hills if you don’t have a good reputation. Go to any larger center like Toronto or Kingston, or Oshawa and key in “used car dealers.” You are going to see some stars, anywhere from 1 to 5. Five is good, one not so much. Now to show up on the first page results for Google can cost a lot of money. The more fierce the competition, the more it costs. And if you make it to the first page, and you are rated 3.6 stars out of 5, and your competition is rated 4.8, you just threw away a pile of cash. The great thing for my local clients in Campbellford, Cobourg, Port Hope or Peterborough and Reputation Marketing, or Review Management, as it is sometimes called, is that there really isn’t that much competition. It can be relatively straight forward to standout. It reminds me of my senior year in high school track and field. There was no one entered in the Senior one mile race. I needed one track event to go along with my three field events to get my Track and Field Athletic letter, so I entered and came in first. My time wasn’t excellent, but I did come in first. Sometimes you can win just by showing up. That’s the state of Reputation Marketing, or Review Management in Trent Hills, Northumberland County and Peterborough today. Google now shows your reputation along with your company name. So first things first: I can help you get customer reviews so you stand out from all those companies with one, two or no reviews. And I can provide the help you need to make sure your company deserves and gets good reviews. Then I can help ensure potential customers find those great reviews from your fans.
Websites can be a foundational element of online marketing. Site building is not something I am looking for. I am not a graphic artist and have little design sense. I highly recommend John Charlton for web design. John does a fantastic job and is the best local web designer I know. Having said that, if you just need to throw up a simple brochure type site, and are happy with using an existing template (of which there are thousands) I can help for a pretty basic fee. But please, talk to John first. He will give you an honest appraisal of your needs.
Once your reputation is secure, and your website is up and running, it’s time to make sure it gets found. This is where I can step in again. Actually, I recommend consultations before the website is complete. We want to make sure all the text and images on the website are optimized before they get put in place. I can do that for you and then just pass the text and graphics on to John. We can work seamlessly together.
When you search for a product or service in a geographic area, like “plumber Trent Hills Ontario” or “plumbing services Peterborough” you will be served up Google’s map, with locations identified. You might be interested in knowing that some of the businesses ranking highly in the Google Map don’t rank very high with their websites. There is an art and science to getting a good Maps ranking. I know how to do it. Even if you don’t have a website, you can be rocking it on Google Maps. Actually, getting an optimized Google Places listing is step one, and an important part of establishing your Reputation. These two together are fundamental to your online marketing strategy.
I can create a mobile friendly website for you, with click-to-call buttons, and essential information in a phone friendly format. Smart phone visits to the web will outnumber desktop visits by next year. If your business can’t be easily found by people with phones, it is probably already costing you sales. A solid mobile online marketing plan is important to your success. Don’t think that people only use their mobile phones when they are driving around and want to find someplace to eat. The next time you are in a waiting room someplace in Cobourg or Peterborough, or in a restaurant, or coffee shop, or a sporting event, just count the number of people staring at their smart devices. They aren’t all just texting. Some of them have just thought “While I’m sitting here, I might as well see if I can call a landscape place about getting some yard work done,” or “I wonder if I can find a physiotherapist close to the west end.” You know that you have used your phone this way yourself and when you come to a website that isn’t mobile friendly, you just go to the next one. If you have a business, this could be costing you serious dollars. How many extra clients a month would it take to pay back a $2-300.00 worth of mobile site investment?
Video marketing is both expected by your potential customers and also and effective at helping them find you. for more details on Video Marketing, read this page.
Many businesses are missing by not actively integrating their offline advertising with their online marketing. Event scheduling in Campbellford, local sponsorships in Hastings, press releases in all local papers, community events in Warkworth, booths at trade shows or local fairs, all of these things can work far more effectively if they work together. Don’t waste money by just throwing your marketing efforts against the wall to see what sticks. I can help you create a strategy, establish targets, put together a timeline and then come up with some metrics so you know what is effective and what isn’t. This allows you to put your marketing dollar where it has the most impact. Again, talking to clients and businesses throughout Northumberland County or Peterborough, I see little integration of offline efforts with online marketing. Most businesses could do much, much better. So, let me summarize your local online marketing strategy, to provide you with a bit of a game plan. Get your Google Places listing optimized. It probably already exists, in a simple form, because Google scrapes the Yellow-pages for business information. Start working on your Reputation Marketing now. this means ensuring you have a good reputation, collecting and encouraging reviews (don’t cheat or do it the wrong way, you could get put in Google’s Sandbox or not have you review show up on Yelp). Get at least a simple website built. You can do this for $300.00. Don’t use a free site, that you don’t own or control the hosting on. Get your mobile site up, This is essentially an add-on to your existing site, or if you are starting from scratch, can easily be incorporated into the initial build for very little extra money. Have a little Search Engine Optimization work done on your site. If this is done at the same time as your site is constructed, it is easier and cheaper. Do some video marketing. It is both cost effective and customer centric. You can convey a lot of information in 60-90 seconds, and drive traffic to your website. Ensure all your marketing, both online and offline is integrated so that each initiative support others and they all are singing the same song. Your print ads should point to your website. Your website should have links to your videos. Your videos should point to your websites. Your Google Places listing should link to both your website, and your videos as well as images you have uploaded to Flickr. It all may seem complicated, but really it is just one step after another. But you DO need a plan. Call me, I can help.