So you have made the decision to market your business online. Congratulations, you have taken the first step towards being successful in this digital era of ours. By now, you have probably noticed one of two things. Either your marketing plan has been successful or it has not. Simple enough, right? Not quite. An internet marketing campaign is much like walking a tight rope. If you succeed, you will impress your clients and garner a solid reputation. If you fail, you will notice a sharp decrease in your profit margins. This is the perfect analogy, because it is very true.
Companies that attempt to perform an internet marketing endeavor on their own risk the potential of ruining their brand image. Everyday, websites get penalized for negative marketing; the unfortunate thing about this is that the vast majority of businesses are never aware of the repercussions. For this reason, it is vital that you hire a professional consultant to perform your online marketing. The times have changed since the inception of the web years ago, and competition has increased significantly. This has led search engines like Google to further scrutinize the way in which websites are being marketed. If you are not careful, you can destroy your business just as quickly as you can grow it.
Some examples of “negative” internet marketing
- Lack of a unique brand image
- No social networking presence
- An outdated or bland website
- Incorrect approach to SEO
You can market your business all you want, but unless you have a brand image that your customers recognize, chances are you will be considered a spammer. Establishing a company logo is very important, because it shows consumers that you are reputable. Likewise, it is never a good idea to frequently change your image/logo, as this can give customers the impression that your business is not stable. People prefer consistency; it gives them the reassurance they need to make purchases.
A successful internet marketing strategy requires putting yourself in your customers’ shoes. You may not be fond of sites like Facebook, but they are. Most consumers will be more apt to use a company’s services if they are in the “social loop.” This does not mean you need anything fancy, as a simple and informative page will be enough.
The worst thing you can do as a business owner is neglect your website. A decade ago, you would have been completely fine setting up a simple page. That is all it took to get customers. Don’t live in the past; if your website is outdated or has a poor design, you are not going to get anywhere. Take the time to make it great, because this is what is going to separate your service from that of your competitors.
Search engine optimization is still the most popular way to establish an online presence, but a successful SEO effort is not easy to implement. Many companies are penalized for keyword stuffing and for employing black hat methods. Search engines are getting smarter, and will be quick to punish a website that is abusing search.
Internet marketing can be a great thing when used the right way, but it can also be damaging to a company’s reputation when not. BAM specializes in sound internet marketing strategies, and has helped numerous clients get their brand noticed online. Contact us now to set up a free consultation!