From natural search engine optimization to posting sales videos on YouTube, these tips will help you stretch your 2009 web marketing budget.
1. Invest in natural search engine optimization.
Quick. Find your Yellow Pages book. Can’t find it? You’re not alone. Your office might not even have Yellow Pages (or the mountain of other phone directories). I tend to toss my phone books right into the recycle bin. Why? It’s quicker and easier to find stuff on Google. Now, Google your city and industry. For example, if you’re a chiropractor in Jacksonville, FL, search Google for “Chiropractors Jacksonville”. Does your business come up on the first page? If not, then you’re missing a big opportunity. The first step is to include relevant search terms in the meta title, headline, and body text of your home page. Check out Google’s free optimization tools.
2. Use a free content management system to update your website’s text and photos.
Has it been a while since you updated your website? Is it difficult? Does your web development company have to do it for you? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you should consider upgrading your web site with a free content management system such as Joomla, Drupal, or WordPress. Each offers an easy-to-use text editor and image uploader so a non-coder can easily update content.
Spend a few minutes and register with the largest social-networking sites. It takes more time to really build your network, but the first step is signing up. Add your business name and a link to your website. Join relevant groups (industry, associations, geographic, alumni, etc.).
4. Produce a sales video and upload to YouTube (and other free video sites).
Are you knowledgeable about your industry? Do you like to talk about your business? Do you regularly give sales presentations or product demos? If so, practice a 1-3 minutes script, then shoot it. You don’t need a fancy camera. You can get a Flip video camera for less than $150 from Amazon, and it allows you to easily upload to YouTube or other free video sharing sites. Or you might even have a web cam on your laptop. Just use what you have. Keep in mind: content is king.
5. Go paperless: Use your website as a hub to distribute information to customers and employees.
Instead of printing and mailing a bunch of brochures and paperwork to customers, convert your documents to PDFs and create a download page on your website. Most content management systems even offer a user registration/login system so you can make the documents accessible only to registered users. Likewise, employees can share data online using customer relationship management software such as the free open source version of SugarCRM.
Please contact us if you need any help implementing your web marketing initiatives for 2009. Happy New Year!