It is important now more than ever that businesses connect with and engage their current and prospective customers in all ways they can, including online.
A brand’s online presence is critical to the business’s and its products’ success. A survey carried out by Salesforce confirmed that customers are increasingly relying on online research before engaging a business.
The survey further found that:
Prospective customers try to find the business or product online 85% of the time
Prospective customers will turn to business or product descriptions or third-party reviews 74% of the time
Prospective customers turn to social media to research a business or their product 38% of the time
A strong digital presence is critical to reaching a new market demographic and retaining the current ones. Unfortunately, establishing and promoting a digital brand is quite resource-intensive, requires specific technical skills, and takes quite a bit of time.
Here are six hacks you can try to build an online presence for your business faster.
1. Cross-Promotion Really Works
The easiest way to spread an idea or promote a brand is the good old cross-promotion. This is an age-old way to spread an idea by trading with friends or other businesses. On the internet, cross-promotion is often referred to as a ‘shout out’ because of its simplistic way to reach a target crowd.
Cross-promotion can happen in many ways. The most popular is publishing content on more popular websites to get backlinks. Another way is to generate activity through promotions on websites, retweets and shares on social media, and referrals.
If you are going to invest the time in social media cross-sharing, remember that most algorithms revolve around engagement times. Your campaign may trend for an hour or two, so be sure to make the most of the opportunities it brings.
2. Publish your Google My Business Profile
It is 2022, and no business can afford to ignore the influence of the Google My Business profile. Whether you run a real estate agency, an online service, or a restaurant in your area, you need to center your online presence around a dependable profile.
Google My Business profile is a free tool that you can use to create a business profile that appears in search results. You can personalize the profile to suit your business needs in a few minutes. Once live, the profile will provide more information about your business to Google to better present your business to the right audience.
Google My Business profile is also easier to manage your online presence across the Google ecosystem. These include search results, Google Maps, Calendar, and Google Reviews.
3. Dominate Social Media Marketplace
Social media is a great place to sell almost anything. As a result, every business that is not making a dent on social media is constantly trying to catch up – or is already out of business.
Social media for business has come of age in 2022. Platforms have released some of the best tools for businesses to promote their brands and even make direct sales on the platforms. One sure way to dominate the competition is to invest in turning your business’s social media pages into sales pages.
There are many ways to achieve this, but it all starts with gaining enough followers or an audience. The most important hack to gain a great following is to give users a reason to follow you.
4. Emphasize on Multimedia Content
The demand for good content is insatiable. Video, in particular, is the de-facto way to share content and get impressively high interactions. In 2022, video alone makes up for about 80% of the world’s internet traffic.
How can you make this work for you? Simple: create videos.
Social media is the ideal platform to share brief videos that promote your brand. You can share insightful and entertaining videos as stories or status. Emphasizing on video is a sure way to reach more social media users.
If you cannot include a video to a post such as a tweet, there is always the option to upload an alt image. This can be anything – from a picture or screenshot of a document, or ‘receipt’, to a complementary meme for attention.
5. It’s All About Reviews
According to a report by invesp, about nine in every ten online shoppers consider online reviews as important as a recommendation made by someone they know. The report found that customers are 31% more likely to choose a business with ‘excellent’ reviews over another with merely ‘good’ reviews. This shows just how important reviews are to building a good online presence.
Getting good reviews is difficult for any business. This is mainly because customers and users are less likely to leave a review unless when dissatisfied. As many as 47% of customers admit to posting reviews as few as once a month, and it is up to the business to ask for them.
As an entrepreneur, you can learn the subtle art of soliciting reviews from current and former customers. The more reviews your business gets, the more recognisable the brand is. Getting good reviews is also a proven hack to promote SEO and your business’s overall ranking. Here is a handy and invaluable guide on when and how to ask for online reviews.
6. Use Your Data
Although less common in the digital age, some companies still don’t use business data to its full potential, or at least know how to. Determining KPIs and metrics you need to monitor and review is the ultimate hack to success. Based on the success of these metrics, it will allow you to understand how to better answer key business decisions.
7. Grow Your Email List Subscription
Email is not dead. In fact, it is far from it. Email remains one of the most reliable ways to build a community around a business. In addition, businesses that nail email marketing right use it for both marketing and branding.
Establishing an online presence is majorly about connecting with as many individuals as possible. Since people still value email and consider it even more personal than social media, it remains the best way to convey a targeted or personal message.
The best way you can build an email list today is through newbies. This can be anything – from discounts and offers on products to items of value such as ebooks and subscription vouchers. Nevertheless, the email list remains the go-to channel to establish and reinforce a business idea.
Establishing and maintaining an online presence has become the surest way to get on top of the market and outdo the competition. It is also the only channel to sustainably spread an idea or cause.