I‘m regularly asked what a small business has to do to succeed with online marketing. This is, of course, not easy to deal with in five minutes; however, if you want the splatter gun answer, here are some of the things I’ve learned over the last 5 years since I’ve been running Jontus Media.
1. Your website is everything! If it’s down, you’re literally dead in the water so choose your web host really, really carefully. I personally use Enginehosting. They rock.
2. Invest in good website design from the offset. You wouldn’t walk into a store that was half finished, looked like it was in need of serious repair and badly stocked now would you? Your credibility starts with your website
3. Make sure that if you go with a designer for your site that they teach you how to use the site properly.
4. Start a blog as soon as possible using WordPress and host it on your own domain. Install must-have plugins to help you with things like site maps, database backups, etc. Make sure your blog is targeted at your key audience and that all the content you generate is for them and not yourself.
5. Ensure your website is optimized for search engines with a site map, great code, keyword rich title tags and regular content. There are plugins to help you achieve this but you’ll have to generate the content yourself (or get other people to do it for you).
6. Learn how to write blog headlines that grab the attention of your audience. Think more like a sensational news hack than a conservative business person.
7. Create audio and video content to complement text posts. People take in information in different ways and you should appeal to as many prospects as possible.
8. Today’s best practice is tomorrow’s dinosaur. Never stop learning about changes in the industry, new communications channels and so on.
9. Track your data in any way that works for you. Data (or analytics as some prefer to call it) is what will make you make informed decisions about what’s working and what’s not.
10. If something’s not working, change it. We all learn through our mistakes. Even successful online marketers. [Read more...]