Startup Business Guide: Online Presence 101 – What Comes First?
You are the proud business owner of a new company – congrats! It is truly an amazing feat to have created a business, managed the day-to-day, and begun to nurture it. Of course, in order to continue to gain success, you need to start creating awareness for your brand… by marketing! It is recommended that every business dedicate 10% of their budget to marketing, so why not make it digital marketing? When done effectively, digital marketing has known to create HUGE success for businesses (even elephant-sized!) at much smaller costs that traditional mediums. With the opportunity to use the many free resources available online, you will have a chance to reach your target audiences for no cost! Ready to start creating an online presence for your business? Here is your startup guide to creating an online presence!
Define Your Brand
If you haven’t figured out your brand yet, you NEED to do that first. Figure out who you are, how you speak and are presented to the public (your tone), the vibe you give off, what you believe in, what you are selling (its personality), and why you exist. Knowing these key things prior to creating an online presence will save you the time of rebranding! Figure it out NOW and get it right the first time!
Digital Marketing strategy
It may seem strange to do a digital marketing strategy before making a website, but doing it in this order helps to lay the foundation for everything moving forward! Not only will you have a clearer sense of how to move forward, but you will determine how to keep your brand on track and become a recognized business. Create a strategy that includes your:
- Long-Term and Short-Term Business Goals
- Brand Notes
- Industry’s Market Analysis
- Competitors Successes/Failures
- Your ideal marketing tools (website, social media, newsletters, paid ads, etc)
Make a Website
If you don’t have a website yet… GOODNESS GRACIOUS IT IS TIME!!! Create a user-friendly website that offers information about your business, services, and USP (what make you unique/stand out). When writing the content for your webpages, use keywords that are relevant to your industry. For example, if you are a company selling ethically grown sunflower bouquets in Calgary, use the keywords: sunflower bouquets, Calgary, ethical florist, eco-friendly bouquets, and Calgary florist in your copy text! Doing this will improve the SEO (search engine optimization) on each of your pages, which will encourage Google to recognize your business website’s authority (make it want to show more people). The more Google likes your website, the easier you will be found.
Your website is up, but without great SEO, it will get lost in the dark vortex of online searches (no one looks at search page 1,304… heck… they don’t even look at page 3). Blog SEO can be boosted by having a focused keyword that is relevant to your industry. Use it in your title, intro, about 3-5 times in your body copy, and in your image file names. Doing this will be viewed as ‘awesomesauce’ by Google, resulting in pushing your company higher in the search result list!
Next step is to make a company social media page on the relevant platforms that your target audience will be engaging on! Be consistent with your handle, profile image, banner, and bio/description on each platform. Once they are FULLY completed (yes… FULLY COMPLETE!), you are one step closer to being found easily online!
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Now that everything is set up for your customers to find you, you can’t just kick up your feet and expect them to come rushing to your front door. Like every loving relationship, it’s a two-way street! YOU need to create content for your audience to engage with. How? With engaging social media content! Prepare 1 month of organic content that is relevant to your business and schedule it to go out on your social media pages over the next month to keep up an active status!
PSST!! If you don’t have a clue what/how/when to post, why not sign up for our online course that will teach you how to make 30 days of content in 1 day!
Email Signup – ‘Freebie’
To improve your online presence further, gather emails and send out newsletters. Of course, you can’t just scam a bunch of emails and send them out – those will get deleted and blocked immediately. The best way to gather emails organically is to offer a ‘freebie’ upon newsletter signup! A freebie will encourage users to give their email in return for something worth their while. Make this freebie something that they will want: a sample pack, e-book, template or cheat sheet, etc.
Sale-Specific Landing Page
When sharing your company website in your newsletter and social media content, you want to navigate viewers to a page that will complete the transaction. Create a landing page on your site that is specific to one of your items/services and make that the designated ‘drop site’ for users to find.
Drip Emails to Go Out to Subscriptions/Clicks
As the saying goes, ‘the squeaky wheel gets the grease.’ But when it comes to an Email Drip Campaign, the ‘dripping email gets the sale!’ Using newly gathered emails, draw further attention to your business by offering exciting follow ups! Creating an email drip campaign is a way to slowly release information about your company and products to your subscribers to stay on their radar without bothering them. Do this in a way that starts out casual/engaging and builds up to a sales pitch at the end!
You have created content and sent out emails, but you still need to make your business online presence KNOWN! The more you go ‘out’ and inform your target audiences of your existence, the more likely they will see your company name and go “Hey! That’s a cool company!” Not sure how to get the bug in people’s ear? Google and Facebook ads! They will remind relevant online users that you exist, creating awareness of your brand, and encouraging them to check you out!
Now that you know the steps to take to improve your online presence for your startup, it’s time to get crackin’! Build up your business digitally and get ready for digital success!
Still not sure what is going on or how to actually get each task done? We can take the stress off your shoulders! Our Startup Marketing Kickstarter will get your business on the right track when it comes to creating an online presence. We can’t wait to see your startup become an extravagant success!