In today’s internet age, when starting up a business, a strong online presence can make or break your start up business. Social media, websites, and online networking are becoming the most cost-saving and effective way to get your business noticed. It is how you use these tools which will get your business noticed for the right reasons.
Type of Content
The potential to which shape your of online content takes form is endless — from videos, link pages, and reviews, to research, and original data pages. Inevitably, you want to produce and distribute content which properly represents the values of your business. Creative Director of video production company, Lambda Films comments, “You need to produce content which does your brand justice online, drives sales and of course, makes money.” Further advice from video marketing expert Ryan Stone reads, “Audiences love stories about people, it humanises the business, so tell your story in which ever way you seem most fitting; you now have the opportunity to no longer be just a faceless website.” Unique and relevant content can boost your client numbers, and overall awareness of your business and the type of work you do. The more views your content gets, the more potential customers you may be contending with. However, you can’t start sharing content before you determine the message your business will reflect online. So how do you do this?
Your brand is how your customers and competitors view you. Remember that this brand will be placed online where it can be seen by a large number of people, and so it could have a huge impact on whether you gain or lose clients, as well as affect your overall reputation. Competition with other businesses is fierce, and so it is vital that you create a strong and appealing brand in order to stand out, and in order for your potential clients to remember who you are. What is more, it is important to keep this brand consistent. Once you have created a logo, use the same one in every instance in which it is uploaded online; from your Facebook profile, to your email signature.
The strongest brands are those which boast more than just aesthetic value, they possess both substance as well as style. Keep this in mind when creating your visual online presence. Make sure you keep the design in keeping with your core values as a company.
Distribute Content to Your Target Audience
To ensure you have a strong brand and relevant online content, knowing your target audience is vital. The purpose of enhancing your online presence is to build relationships with potential clients. For start-up businesses, it is even more significant as you need to use online media to help you get recognised in a competitive market. This means that you have to use online resources to attract your target audience, as these are the people who will buy your products or services. So how can you reach your target audience?
Use of Social Media
In the current ‘social media climate’, it is difficult to find anyone who doesn’t have a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account, and what is more is very aware of how to use these platforms for informational and entertainment purposes. This is why it’s important to take advantage of this marketing platform, as so much time is spent on these websites. Most sites are free to use, so you are building a strong online presence with the benefit of no cost, and ultimately a high return on investment if you do it efficiently. Social media has made it easy for businesses to engage with customers online. All of your competitors will be on these sites, so you should be too!
When starting up a new business, social media is a great way to promote to a large population, which would normally only be achievable for large or established companies. However, using social media for business purposes is very different from having a personal account. You need to adopt a professional approach. Remember that everything you post will have a direct impact on your company’s reputation. So you also need to monitor mentions of your brand and make sure everything you post is relevant to your business.
Focus your efforts on target customers by picking social media sites which fit the nature of your business. For example, if you want your business to have a more serious and professional feel, a site such as LinkedIn would be more appropriate than a site such as Tumblr. The opposite can be said if you are trying to appeal to a younger audience. As you are starting a new business, you may find your time and resources are too restricted to devote a large amount of time to online promotion. This is why it’s important to first limit yourself to a few sites, and then increase it as your business grows.
How Do I Engage With Customers on Social Media?
The whole point of promoting your new business through social media is to engage with customers. But how do you do this? Every post must have a purpose, and you can assess this purpose with a little bit of common sense. For example, don’t just bombard your followers with promotional posts — engage with your customers by posting blog posts and articles which you think will actually benefit them. This makes your business appear more engaging with customer’s needs. Ultimately, any online promotion is good news for your business as it is getting you recognised. With the internet being such a far reaching business tool, improving your online presence will help you stand out whilst starting up your company.
About the Author
Chloe Hashemi is a marketing consultant at Fountain. She is an English graduate and enjoys writing about social media, business and music.