I gave a speech to the local Business Improvement District in Hackettstown titled, “Marketing and Your Online Presence.”  I thought I’d share my talk in a few parts to everyone!  Take a look at Part 1 and stand by for Part 3!

Pictures (Aesthetic)

Sometimes I’ll show a client a ‘demo’ of what their site will look like. I can follow that template to a ’T’ and then at the end, the client says, “It doesn’t look like the demo.” I usually reply with, “You gave me pictures off your iPhone.” High quality pictures can enhance website like no other. I urge people to spend the $800 – 1200 bucks to get a photographer for the day. It will not only make sure you website shines, but you also have a TON of ammunition for your other social media. Your header images, profile pictures, instagrams and everything else will be enhanced.

Wanna Start A Blog?

A blog can be something magical but, and I can’t stress this enough, it’s not for everyone. When someone tells me they want a blog, I tell them I’ll give them a blog if they get me 5 blog posts ahead of time. 99% of the time the blog never gets on the site. When you have a blog that the last post was from a year ago…that actually hurts you.  The fact is that 1 in 4 Google searches are for local businessesYou can generate a lot of traffic for your site if you have a blog.

If you are writing blogs posts, a lot of people have trouble coming up with content.  It is time consuming and sometimes you just don’t know what to write about.  I find myself forcing myself to write content sometimes…just to keep my blog relevant.  Here’s a list of some ideas you can use to fuel your inspiration for your next blog post:

  • What’s Common To You Isn’t Common To Everyone
  • Your Opinions Matter
  • Customer Service On Your Blog
  • History Matters
  • The Resources You Respect
  • Be Selfish
  • Picture Perfect!
  • New! New! New!

The great thing is that you can just sit on your couch, open a Word document or Google Doc, and get your ideas out while you’re watching TV at night.

A lot of times I’ll just get a WordPress plugin that will make their Facebook look a blog posts. This is because a typical blog post should be between 400 -600 characters.  A lot of people writing skills for that, even once a month.  New and updated information is important to any business, so if you’re writing ‘shorter’ updates, then it might be a good idea to just post your Facebook posts to your website.  To do this, all you have to do is copy and paste from Facebook Page Embedder.

I write my blog posts to be informative and to serve anyone who wants to learn about something web, marketing or online related.  I recommend adding a passive, soft sell call to action at the bottom of your blog post.  Take this SSL article I wrote (that is mentioned above.)  You’ll find a passive call to action on the bottom that basically says, “If this seems like this is overwhelming, let I Heart Blank, LLC help!

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Domain names are a great way to help your next promotion or advertisement!  .com domain names cost anywhere between $10 – $15 a year (mostly) and can be a great way to help promote your business.  Here are a few examples of why you might want to purchase more than one domain name:

  • For a single product, service or package
  • To make your marketing (& advertising) more memorable
  • Wit (aka – for the hell of it)
  • If you own a franchise
  • If you have a potentially confusing website or business name
  • SEO optimization
  • Fans for domains

What kind of things should you think about when getting ready to buy a domain name?  Actually, quite a few!  First is picking your TLD or Top Level Domain.  This is the .com, .net, .local, .lawyer or whatever you might be thinking of.  The super short answer is you should always try to purchase a .com.  It’s what everyone remembers.  Most people are trying to remember what to type in and aren’t really thinking about the TLD.  If your perfect .com is taken, there are somethings you can attempt (if you really want a .com).  Here are some ‘tips’ are also great for if you’re picking a secondary domain:

  • Three word rule
  • Visualize the domain
  • ‘Hear’ the domain
  • Be careful of numbers
  • Be careful of variable words
  • Try adding an SEO word
  • Be weary of the “-“
  • The old standards
  • Suggestion tools

Google Map Packs

At this point, we know how important being on Google Maps is.  Local search results bring up Google Maps on the top on mobile…and that’s for good reason.  Again, remember what I said before, Google wants to bring relevant information to the top.

Another solution, to help with your general SEO and overall visibility for your business are services that ‘manage’ your social media and online presence.  For a couple years, and you might have heard them on the radio I offered the ‘Going Social‘ media package where I’d set up 5 social media sites for $250.  I got a call one day to be a ‘Yext Reseller’ and heard the guy out.  Basically, Powerlistings submits and manages around 70 of your social media and directory submissions from one dashboard.  I’ll admit, this isn’t optimal for every small business…but it can be very beneficial for certain business types, mostly service-type businesses.  The fact that you can update all your information across 70 social media and directory sites is pretty cool and happens almost immediately.  We just did it with Aquatech who moved to Valentine Street.  I logged into Chris’ Yext account, changed the address and…BOOM…updates happened immediately on all the sites he appeared on.