Congratulations! You have set up your online business. You have everything in place to make your new start-up a success. You’ve sourced your products/services, researched your markets, built your website, and sorted online payments and product distribution. Now you can just sit back and watch the pennies roll in. Your hard work is done. Wrong! The hard work is just starting. You have made your first massive step; now you need to embark on the ongoing process of promoting your business. Here are just a few things to consider.
Get your social media presence set up. Whatever business area you are in, the world is social now. If it is business to business, consider LinkedIn. Consumer products often require a Twitter account and a Facebook page. If your audience is younger or your brand is more visual, then Instagram and Tik-Tok will be your friends. You probably need a presence across a mix of them, and you need to post regularly to let your customers know what you are up to.
You can link your social media accounts so that one post is shared across all accounts. However, be careful that it does not look monotonous – they are all very different platforms.
Make sure that you have your social media feeds embedded in your website’s home page, as this means that every time your social media feed updates, so does your website. No one likes a static website, after all.
Offers and Reviews
You need to attract customers to your brand-new business. They need to know that they can trust you. Consider introductory offers such as free postage or a limited-edition gift item when consumers make their first purchase. It is tempting to offer money off, but most marketing professionals advise against this. If customers buy at a discount, they always expect a deal. You are always better off offering added value than money off.
A great example of online businesses that create attractive offers to attract customers is real money online casinos. By offering bonuses and cash backs, they get punters to try out their products and services and encourage them to sign up. They also recognize the power of reviews, and you should too.
Once a customer has engaged with your online business, elicit a review from them by sending out a link to a review site. Once the reviews are back with you, make sure to post about them on your social media. You can see that you are beginning to create a circular feedback loop that will generate more interest in your business.
Friends and Family
While we all dream of hitting the big times, sometimes operating at a micro level can bring huge rewards. Let your family and friends know about your business and encourage them to visit your site and tell their family and friends. By building networks, you can help to grow your awareness organically. Ask them to like your social media sites as well.
You might also want to get your customers to refer a friend and offer them an incentive for doing so.
Ensure that you collect the data of anyone who visits your website so that even if they do not purchase the first visit, you have their permission to follow up with inducements to buy in the future. You can also send out regular newsletters.
Link up with businesses who have a similar but non-competitive target market to you. Offer links from your website to theirs and vice-versa. Depending on what you produce, you might want to create a collaboration with the other business, an exclusive line, or offer specific to their customer base. These third-party links are well worth doing but do be realistic and match your ambitions to the reality of the size and scale of your start-up.
Make sure to claim your business on Google. Get on the map and start using the review function. Then, put the reviews on social media.