Local SEO – Everything you need to know

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Local SEO is a great way for small business owners to boost their online visibility. Nowadays it is essential that your business can be found on local listings and directories. Google has been increasingly hard and expensive for website owners to optimize their rankings. This is the one of the many reasons why small business owners do not invest much on online marketing because they cannot afford it. Here are some simple ways on how you can improve your ranking through Local SEO.

main-image-1

How to get started with your Local SEO

Local SEO is pretty similar to traditional SEO, where you optimize your website for your main keywords but for Local SEO your main focus is your business name, address and phone number. This is a good way to tell Google about your contact details by using tags.

How to build your online brand popularity

From some aspects Local SEO looks like traditional SEO the idea behind it is to increase the popularity of your local business not only in Google but in various websites and services. Like for instance Yelp is the most popular website, which generates over 100 million visitors monthly only in US, getting your business ranked and reviewed on Yelp can be one of the ways you can increase your brand popularity.

The best part of Local SEO is that there are millions of websites similar to Yelp, some covering nationwide area and while other websites are targeted against particular cities or states. Getting listed on Local listings or Local directories sites will increase your online visibility.

How to start building listings

Starting with your own blog is always the best way to go for many reasons, some which are; producing fresh contents, engaging visitors and ability to establish yourself as an authority and lots of new qualified leads. You need to continue building your authority through local communities, blogs, newspaper, and pretty much every other place you can think about. Another great way to establish brand visibility is to engage your brand on social media and generate strong presence online. You can get started with your social media less than an hour and complete your online profile with the detailed information about your business which you can use later on for your Local SEO as well.

 

Local SEO tools that are very helpful

Although Local SEO can be done yourself, it is essential that you have a tool for it as there are millions of Local listing sites and getting your business information there might take a while. Here are some tools that could be useful.

BrightLocal – BrightLocal is a company based in UK however their major clients are from US, from small to large businesses. Their tools are very affordable and this can a complete solution for your Local SEO and can help you analyze and optimize your website, your Google+ account, track your Local rankings and also find opportunities based on competitor research. BrightLocal has every Local listing site on their list and they can bring your business on Google search page.

WhiteSpark.ca – which also offer advance tool for finding business listings, and again based on researching the top competitors for the provided keywords.

Yext.com- You can run a free search with your business details where you are listed and also Yext can give you lists of other new site.

Local SEO is a great way for small and medium businesses to boost their online visibility and also get the opportunity to be known by locals.

 

 

 

Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting

2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 344-7874
Fax: (202) 318-0689
rwhunni@socraticsbc.com
www.socraticsbc.com

 

SEO: Every Small business should know

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Internet marketing including SEO is ways to attract people who are already looking for their products and services.  Internet marketing is for optimal exposure for brand awareness and this should be done creatively and thoroughly. Here are some SEO tips every small business should know.

brand-awareness

User experience

SEO is ultimately about providing the user with the friendliest and fastest and best experience for their customers. Your goal in SEO is to give your customers the best and optimal experience, because a happy customer is a returning customer.

Exposure for brand awareness

Internet marketing is about giving your clients what they are looking for, including SEO. You need to present your company on Search engines, so your potential clients can find you. You might have invested on lots of advertisements online and offline for you company to be visible to the public, however without a marketing plan your campaign would not succeed.

You must also first take a good look at your website if it is optimized, which will automatically increase visibility, credibility and usability all of which increases the traffic to your website. Every small business website should take the opportunity Google Analytics presents; it is a tool that can ultimately track valuable information about your visitors.

Find out which browsers they use, which keywords are being typed, their geographical locations etc. this information will help you discover your target market and determine strategies based on facts.

Strong identity requires strong icon

In additional to advertising what else can you do to build strong brand awareness? The following can lead to repeated exposure:

  1. Extensive distribution
  2. Brand related articles
  3. Product placements in all area of advertising both online and offline
  4. Direct Marketing
  5. Web presence ( especially on social media)
  6. Online and viral marketing online
  7. Business card distributing
  8. Brand related contests
  9. Customer referrals
  10. Word of mouth marketing

Brand awareness, SEO and social media

A while ago SEM and SEO strategies are enough to rank a website on the top of search engines, today this is no longer enough. The internet marketing is about integration, which involves SEO, social media marketing, content marketing and digital or media marketing. Exposure continues to come up in conversation because it is the goal of every business.

 

Social media strategy: Word of mouth worthy

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

The best marketing for a brand is word of mouth marketing, once you have established your business online and have gotten a good reputation. You still need to go thoroughly with your posts, tweets and branding strategy. Word of mouth marketing can spread faster than any marketing techniques in social media. Which means that word of mouth marketing can either break or make your business?

What is word of mouth marketing

logo-header2

Word of mouth marketing is using your happy customers to promote your business, the aim in word of mouth marketing is to provide customers with such amazing and life affirming products and services that they can’t help but share with their friends, family and co-workers. Imagine how it will boost your visibility is one client share your brand to their friends and their friends share it to their friends and so the cycle goes on. Word of mouth marketing can be found in:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Online reviews
  • Blog posts
  • Brand mentions
  • Forums
  • Old school Chatter

Word of mouth marketing statistics

womgraphics

These numbers are pretty solid case for word of mouth marketing and it’s kind of cornerstone of every marketing strategies out there.

  • 20 to 50% are results of word of mouth marketing
  • 92% of consumers trust recommendations from friends, family and co-workers
  • Only 10% of consumers trusts brands without reviews
  • 70% of consumers read reviews online
  • 80% of consumers are influenced by friends social share about a brand

5 steps to improve your word of mouth marketing

Social network

Word of mouth marketing isn’t magic, begin your journey with these simple 5 steps to improve your word of mouth marketing.

  1. Give people reasons to brag about your service and friendly staff

Word of mouth is about customers promoting your business to their set of social network, which means that you need to give your customers something interesting to share, might it be an informative article that you write on your blog or simply a product that that have changed their lives. With this obviously your products needs to be strong, and it is important that your staff interacting with your customers and clients is on top-notch.

  1. Be unique

One way to generate word of mouth marketing is to be unique and different from your competitors, you can do this in such a number of ways, and here are some examples:

–          One of a kind product

–          Happy staff

–          Unique company culture

–          Creative marketing ideas

People appreciate what is out of ordinary, if you have a bizarre brand identity you need to be proud of it.

  1. Be an industry expert

It is important for people to trust is you first establish yourself as industry expert through articles, podcasts, webinars and video tutorials. Being an expert requires a lot of effort from you as the business owner.

  1. Create a good name for yourself and your brand

People appreciate a business that is honest and fair, grow your reputation by being respectful of your customers and treating them right.

  1. Be active and engage on social media

Your business, brand, products and services may be well known on social media, but what people really appreciate is having the owner of the company to be seen on social media as well. You can develop a community by:

–          Encourage dialogue

–          Host contents

–          Host webinars

–          Organize events offline and online

–          Loyalty programs

 

Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting

2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 344-7874
Fax: (202) 318-0689
rwhunni@socraticsbc.com

Marketing plan for Small Business start-up

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Promotion seem to be a struggle for every Small business start-up, you are competing with a tons of others including major corporations. There are few things you need to do before you start your big promotion either online or offline. Here are some few tips on how to get you started on your marketing plan.

Know your products and services first

small_business_products_services_marketing

Off course you know your business well and you products and services. But there is more into knowing your product and how you can deliver the best marketing strategy to gain more clients your way. A big part of promotional campaign needs a big preparation. Lots of business owners plan and prepare their field before they even start their campaign.  Know your products by delivering the best images, description and keywords, you cannot jump right ahead on your campaign without preparing the tools to get the job done.

  1. Prepare your text and product image
  2. Test out your images on different browsers or ad campaigns
  3. Gather at least 3 testimonials from your current clients

Narrow down your target client and find your niche

design-market02

Know your brand and know what makes you different and special from the rest, you should have an official website with professional photos, image and design. You also need to narrow down your target clients and find your niche, think of all the options that you could offer them that they do not get from your competitors.

By each marketing campaign you need to define your target clients, for each product you promote your need to find your target clients. When creating content for promotion you also need to define your target audience and stick to your niche.

Make sure to have a consistent branding point

3362696

Consistent branding means that you need to dress up for your brand, not physically but with your website, image, color scheme etc. You need to be consistent to claim the brand that you promote. You will make more impact on your target client if you are consistent with your brand color, fonts and images. Consistent branding also means, updating your website, have professional photos on your site, biography, current events, social media info, mailing list and blog. These are the basic of consistent branding, it makes you look professional and your target clients need to have a place to bring traffic back to you.

Create goals and budget for your marketing

It is very important that you create goals and budget for your marketing campaign, how many clients do you want to reach within a month? How many products do you want to sell in a month? The next thing you might want to look at is how much is your budget for your marketing. Here are some  few questions you need to ask yourself before starting your big promotion:

  1. Number of sales
  2. Number of new clients
  3. Material costs
  4. Budget promo services
  5. Research budget
  6. Website and logo budget
  7. Offline advertising budget
  8. Budget on PR ( Press Release)
  9. Budget on Marketing or SEO outsourcing
  10. Budget on Digital distribution

Conclusion

These are the most important part of starting marketing for your small business, the key is to plan ahead and define your goals. You need more than just campaign for your small business and more than just branding tools, you need to always set goal on every marketing campaign you want to run.

 

Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting

2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 344-7874
Fax: (202) 318-0689
rwhunni@socraticsbc.com

Customer relation management – how to connect with your customers

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Successful companies are the ones who connect with their customers. Getting the right connection with your clients needs a better understanding of your clients needs. Focus on your value proposition and expressing as well as delivering your value to your client will get you more happy client and more referral to grow your network.

Client Focus

Slide1

Focus hard on your clients needs and interest like creating more helpful tools or giving more alternatives. Customer need to be exposed to more world class customer service, there are more technologies to help you connect with your client better.

Your brand should not be focus on what you can deliver and what your values are, but rather what it means to your customers. Later on your brand is going to change, it will be about what you do, what you can do, how you do it, how you deliver, your pricing, your competitor and most importantly how you your client define your business.

Understanding and communicating with your customers

Slide3

Your customers are always right, even if they are not. It is important that every business know their customers inside out, to build a strong and long term relationship with them which will increase loyalty and revenue.

When you are engaged with your customers:

  1. 300% more likely to recommend you to others
  2. More likely to become repeat customer
  3. Most likely to check your website frequently for updates
  4. Are not price sensitive towards your products and services

Companies with great customer relationship most likely to outperform their biggest competitors, because 90% of buyers will pay more to ensure superior customer service experience. 80% of consumers quit doing business with a company due to poor customer service.

Customer research is critical for every Small Business, but this do not need to be a painful experience for small business owners. Understanding your customer’s value and what they want to accomplish will give you an idea on how you can best create a value proposition.

 

Meaningful expressions

Slide2

Some people say communication is not a hard thing, but effective communication is. The more you understand your customers and their needs as well as their interest, it will be easier for you to assist them and build a proper communication with them. So what is your brand trying to say to them? How are you going to say it? How do you know your customers understand you?

You need to be creative with your communication ideas, communication travel far physical or digital. You have 3 options on how you can communicate with your customers, and you will need to prepare your company with these 3 ways. Personal, Physical and digital!

Physical Expressions comes through products, services, stores, showroom and other selling environment that speak volumes.

Personal expressions are your foundation of brand experience, means that the people who have used your products or services will have a personal attachment to you, this is the part where you need to focus on. What is the best and what is less attractive about your products.

Digital Expressions are important, customer service on screen are serious efforts to interact with your customers. Investing digital customer systems for every type of screens mobile, desktop and social media will maintain the connection you have with your customers.

 

Conclusion

If you are alone in your Small business, you need to align tools and team you cannot do everything at once.  As for every small business, there is always a good investment and waste investments. When you invest on your customers they will 300% invest on you as well? That is called return of investment and which every small business owner is most interested in.

So wait no more! Create a perfect website for your Small business and gain those clients, give them the website and customer service they have not gotten from your competitors. Win them with a great customer service experience. Contact us today for more info about Website creation, logo creation, Graphic Design package with free mobile website.

 

Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting

2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 929-6395
Fax: (202) 318-0689
rwhunni@socraticsbc.com

 

Graphic Design – How Important is it?

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Strong visual balance is a gift that maybe few could actually have in their lifetime. Some of us would leave with great awe as to how graphic designers can able to pull out perfect harmony of contrast, theme, emphasis and communication towards their subject. However not all artists can be efficient when it comes to the best visual representation to ones business. Graphic design package is one of the most in demand outsourcing job today and to further understand why here are some reasons below.

 

Business Owners are not Designers

Graphic design package

This is definitely an obvious reason and that hiring graphic designers will make things easier to achieve. Business owners will be given enough time to focus on their personal errands especially if they have hired credible designers.

 

Graphic Designers understand Visual Balance

business website

As mentioned, there should be visual balance as it will contribute to viewer’s eyes and perception. The best image is the ones that speak for it and that is a prime goal why hiring professional graphic design team will help on your business trademark.

  • Distributing the elements of design and maintain good harmony on it would make a light appeal to viewers. This means to say that just by looking on your visual representations they know then that your company is worthy of trust.

 

On Trademark Use – Be on the safe side!

logo

Starting up a business whether for local and online base requires permits that should be strictly followed. One of the known requirements is the trademark use. There are so many points that would best fit in good trademark such as:

  • The uniqueness of your company logo. This does not have to be overly designed logo but meant that it has to be yours and yours only. Businesses of the same niche often have similar company logo but all of which are unique because if not then it could lead to violating trademark policies.

 

Low Cost Services when Outsourcing

Graphic design package can be outsourced these days which help a business owner to save good amount of fee for the services.

  • First, you do not have to provide an office for your graphic design team and let them work on a limited timing. This will further save you for general billing such as light, water and other office expenses.
  • Outsourcing benefits you in a way that they could meet your needs the soonest possible.
  • Graphic design have deadline and you do not have to keep your employees long enough and let them be paid even without projects.

 

Graphic design plays vital role in a successful business but it does not have to owe you mounting fees. Double checking the background of a company will ensure how credible and reliable they are for your business’ graphical needs.

 

Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting

2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 929-6395
Fax: (202) 318-0689
rwhunni@socraticsbc.com

What experts have to say about setting your Business Plan for a Profitable Outcome

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Many of those businessmen who would want to start their firm the soonest may seem to have an allergy for business plan. This is normal most especially that the excitement seems to overcome the right track for business taking.  But if you just take time to analyze and do personal research to its advantages, you will see how incredible the power of planning. Bouncing from one step to the next is as well a common mistake when it comes to planning so I found it very convenient to simply refer to what experts have to say.

 

Know you Mission

Client focused

The title may seem direct but it’s not, mission should be focused on the market – specifically their response to your business offers. Quality products and services for queries or shipment options are two factors that can determine your mission.

  • Place in your marketing and business plan how you commit to your mission with excellence. Some fail on this since that they tend to drive for the first phase for planning and never did become consistent to their mission.

 

Reserve a Room for Creativity

Client focused 2

Planning matters and so is a room or allowance for creativity. To simplify this concept you can basically offer the standard and soon enough when the market’s respond became overwhelming then you can add creativity to it.

  • For instance, new variations of your products for more options you can offer to the market. You can as well extend your services such as going global and not just relay on local marketing. With this creativity addition, you can pretty make a good impression towards your consumers and they will look after it in the coming days.

 

Experts Include Planning Ahead – Marketing Calendar

clients3

Make a list of events that your followers and loyal consumers are looking after. Add to your business plan some doable offers and list them down in your marketing plan so you wouldn’t miss a thing for follow ups and updates.

  • You can post over your online accounts these upcoming events so that your customers will spare such time to look over it on due time.
  • Marking events can be done on known occasions like Christmas offers or holiday treats.

 

 

Target Expansion – plan for growth

 

Overlap

Lastly, when you have reached the point where your small business became a profitable firm then it is time to plan for an expansion. There are many options for this such as franchising, distributors and new branch opening – this depends on your business type.

  • The profitable outcome of your business will become twice or more with target expansion so as early as possible include it in your business plan.

 

Roderick Hunnicutt

Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting

2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 929-6395
Fax: (202) 318-0689
rwhunni@socraticsbc.com

 

Get your FREE eBook here

laptop

 

Important Tips you need to know when hiring a Branding Consultant

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Building a business with ideal market impact requires fresh ideas and insights to anticipate. Failure to provide business planning is like heading outside on heavy rain without bringing an umbrella. Nowadays it is a test of luck to be able to rise above your competition without considering creative thinking. This is a core reason why successful businessmen need expert assistance from a branding consultant. This person will serve as your protector when going further to your business and they will be the one to warn or else encourage you to take a particular action. These are just standard information when considering this level in your business career. Read further as this blog will give important tips you need to know when hiring a branding consultant.

 

 

Do not just settle for a consultant rather go for a creative business consultant

Maggielamarre-roadmap1

Most businessmen fail on this part because they rather tend to be aggressive and be overwhelmed with things they are about to discover from a business consultant. What they never realized is that rushing things up would only create a mess than having a smooth flowing venture taking. It is still wise to find someone who you think is smarter than you are as they are purposely hired to give ideas out of the box. Creativity is not something learned overtime oftentimes it is a natural gift. It is a fact that some people no matter how hard they try to get this subject perfectly could still fail as this is somewhat a talent. Your branding consultant must know the ways around organization structure and can creatively respond to unexpected market changes.

 

 

 Test their skills in any branding needs

522287_495532387138526_848629984_n

As you can see ideas wouldn’t be all enough without implementation and as for your branding consultant he must have that confidence as edgy on this subject. Skills test usually assigned to them is how they will be able to come up with the best possible options you can pick with for your professional logos. The themes, colors and even shape selections must coincide with the business meaning, services and products offered. Colors apparently contribute to give that impact for potential customers it will give convincing powers to where people would be attracted and would want to try on your offers.

 

 

Business consultant on his stand with company website designs

images

As mentioned these people are getting paid to stimulate the market’s senses and make them say “yes”. Company website designs are as important when executing content marketing. Visual representation can already convey words enough to let people feel the need to be involved with your company. Test skills is again required here, you can already idea whose got the best company website designs when you set up a trial task for each of your applicant with same conditions and time frame.

 

 

Get your Graphic Design Package from Socratic SBC| Small Business Consulting, and get a creative and affordable website and logo with 30% discount.

 

Roderick Hunnicutt
Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting
2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 929-6395
Fax: (202) 318-0689
admin@socraticsbc.com

How Important it is to Know the Different Marketing Strategies to Increase Customers

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

There are lots of firms that successfully execute ways to catch customers’ attention through seeking competitive advances. One good example for this is innovative strategies that do one thing in common which pursuit long term business success. The customer must serve as the primary reason for every action about to be taken in such firm. From planning to accounting and everything in between must be considered. When you are a beginner to any business then now is the perfect time to know how important it is to know the different marketing strategies.

 

 

 

Marketing Plan as a way to get advantage from the competition

  images

Oftentimes, successful businessmen knew from the start that they have an advantage over bigger companies. The way we see this picture then there will be increasing ideas till we meet creativity at it. Marketing strategies have the capability to anticipate clients’ present and future demands. However some business starters find better convenience in considering marketing plan made by experts. They will ask effective plans from experts in the industry so as they can come up with ideal information about common clients to serve for the future.

 

 

Relating to market through Analysis Plan

tumblr_m2mtri33Ad1r7ub2p

A good advice you can take is that most basically large companies often focused on wider market coverage as their target. Therefore, do not go this way instead make your customers feel special through attending to them for both needs and demands. Find out how essential it is to take time in getting to know your potential customers and everything about them. This is a part of your analysis plan wherein you need to think as if you are the customer and what are the things you might want to be offered with.

 

 

Successful marketing strategies idea must encompass keys in answering business queries. The first one is what are the kind of products could meet the needs of your customers. This goes the same thing with the services you have.

Next, as to how you can effectively distribute these products and services efficiently to generate more clients.

Lastly, how you can come up with sales and marketing strategies through sending out promotional messages to maximize your business potentials.

 

 

Contact us today for small biz packages, such Business & Marketing plan, Website creation & Logo Creation.

Roderick Hunnicutt
Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting
2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 929-6395
Fax: (202) 318-0689
admin@socraticsbc.com

webmodel2

 

Marketing Strategies: Making your Facebook Page Appealing to Potential Customers

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinby feather

Are you a business owner struggling to increase your firm’s popularity and you have thought that perhaps social media sites could help a lot then this blog is for you. There is no easiest way to get business advantage than to be in popular social media sites such as Facebook. It is no longer a shock to us that most of the world’s population have a Facebook account others have multiple accounts and even engage into page creation. For business owners having an official Facebook page could help them increase business popularity or else constantly gain customers. However, millions of others have tried their luck on this which is it can be frustrating to reach fans effectively. There can be limitless interests to share about but  we cannot tell how would actually react to these. So here are marketing strategies to make you Facebook page appealing to potential customers.

 

Picture sharing – conveys message that is interesting for many

facebook-management

Business pages are now having great insight sharing just by pictures conveying message. These pictures draw fans in most especially if it is relatable and within today’s trending. It is an analysis plan wherein you get to consider plentiful of feeds to consistently get their attention. Graphic representations with little humor are top photo sharing concepts nowadays. If someone has clicked on the like button and shared it with friends then it will drive page visitors. They will search for other pictures that are as interesting as the ones you have shared.

 

Good branding through Timeline updates

facebook-business

If you are an active Facebook user you know then what people crave for in terms of idea sharing. Your marketing plan here would have to be in allowing images as parts of words which people would not want to hear or read. It will be easier for others to look into your shared images as is it voices out business branding without too much wordings.

 

Problems and Issues solving as strategic Marketing

facebook-page-mistakes

Other great marketing strategies using Facebook is when you get involved with current issues. You can either give advices or give an opinion into some topics currently on hot issues. This strategic marketing will open good conversations and people sharing ideas with which a good chance for your Facebook page to be noticed. Setting up positive attitude will create an impact to your fans making you more reliable for them.

 

 

 

 

Conclusion

First of all decide the reasons why you created a Facebook page, just like any marketing methods, it is important to understand the reasons why you are marketing at all. Like Facebook marketing, what are your goals and develop a strategy around those goals. Your target audience will appreciate updated facebook page with quality posts and content sharing. The best way to get your audience to interact on your facebook is to make your facebook shareable and turning the fan activity into advertising.

 

Get a chance to start your business with a reliable marketing and business plan, Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting now offers 30% discount on all packages, grab the offer today and start your business well in 2014

 

Roderick Hunnicutt
Socratic SBC | Small Business Consulting
2 Wisconsin Circle Suite 700 Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Office: (410) 929-6395
Fax: (202) 318-0689
admin@socraticsbc.com