Building a strong online presence isn’t something that is achieved overnight, and it isn’t something that can be achieved through owning a website alone. An effective online presence for any small business requires an ongoing cycle of planning, implementation, monitoring and analysis.
Once You Start Don’t Stop!
Social media profiles, directory listings, your website and other properties are the foundations of your company’s online identity. Your internet presence accumulates through active growth, which you achieve through the ongoing process of content creation and online marketing campaigns. Creating and maintaining an online presence requires commitment, but it is rewarding:
- Everyone is online – whether it’s via a desktop, tablet or mobile device, your local target market will be shopping around online looking for your products or services.
- Online marketing is cost effective – no other form of marketing is so cost effective and can offer the same levels of ROI.
- Online marketing is measurable – perhaps one of the most important aspects of online marketing is that it is measurable. Using various tools, you can analyze previous campaigns, which will help fuel smarter campaigns in the future.
The key to a successful online presence is to ensure that once you start you just don’t stop!
Plan, Implement, Monitor, Analyze and Repeat
The internet does not offer a quick fix for your business, and it certainly does not conform to a ‘do it one and never again’ approach.
If you are going to make your business a success based on your marketing activities via the internet, it is important to understand that it is an ongoing process. Your online presence needs to grow and evolve with the internet as it changes and adapts to new technology and demands from society; which is why you need the discipline to plan, implement, monitor and analyze every aspect of your online presence on a regular basis.
- Plan – Think about your website, your social media profiles, your email campaigns, your SEO, and other methods – how will you use these over the next 30 days to achieve your business goals?
- Implement – With your goals confirmed and your plan in place you need to dedicate the time and resources to implement your ideas.
- Monitor – Make sure that all of your activities are being monitored by an application such as Google Analytics and Facebook Insights to see if you are meeting your targets.
- Analyze – This is the most important step. Once you have gathered data on your online marketing campaigns dedicate some time to analyzing the data. Time spent learning from past campaigns will help you to craft smarter online marketing campaigns.