Have you wondered how your company can leverage the power of the internet to acquire more clients, sell more product, and generally ramp up profits? There are no magic formulas but the net does offer solid opportunities to those who are patient, willing to learn some core techniques, and have the perseverance to stick though initially slow weeks while strategies take hold. Some methods work better for service-based firms while others work better for product-based ones. The good news is that you can combine the techniques, test out a few that you think might work for your industry, and discard the ones that produce weak results. A trial and error approach pays off here because you’ll likely find a strategy to meshes with your corporate mission and company identity. Here’s a short review of the top net-based strategies that have the potential to expand your customer base.
Use Content Marketing
Content marketing is an inexpensive way to bring attention to your brand and company. You can either write targeted articles yourself or purchase them from a content-creation company. While the latter approach is more costly up front, writing the pieces yourself does have a time expense that can be even more pricey. One of the core principles of effective content writing is using targeted terms and phrases that the major search engines recognize. That’s one way of getting your writing to or near the top of query results.
Webinars, also called web-based seminars, are inexpensive ways to put your business name in front of the public and offer an interactive event at the same time. You can either use an in-house expert or hire someone to be the main speaker for the event. Think of webinars as long-form advertisements that deliver high value for viewers but draw attention to your firm’s products and services. For example, law firms have honed this technique to a fine art by presenting webinars on topics like bankruptcy, divorce law, medical malpractice, and accident litigation.
Offer Online Coupons
One of the oldest marketing strategies of all time is coupons. If your company wants to bring in new business relatively quickly, consider circulating online coupons via your social media accounts, in chat rooms, or on dedicated coupon websites. The old criticism of coupons, that they only brought in temporary clients, doesn’t apply to net-based versions. That’s because cyber coupons can be directly tagged to identifiable customers, who must opt in to other email promotions in exchange for the discount. There’s an art to using coupons to generate business, but thousands of companies use them to great effect. Be careful to keep discount amounts and percentages small enough that you’re not just giving stuff away.
Use Professional Transcription Services
Transcription services can instantly create written documents from audio or video files. In other words, they transcribe M4A to text. That means you can turn any company-produced webinar, presentation, recorded conference, TV appearance, or speech into a word document that can serve multiple marketing purposes. At in-person industry conferences, for example, it’s nice to have a hard-copy version of a recent company president’s talk. You can give it to interested parties, who will often read it on the plane as they travel back home. Remember, it’s not always possible to access online resources while flying, which makes paper documents that much more valuable as potential sales pieces.
In addition to that technique, transcribed talks and speeches are ideal for use on social media as tantalizing snippets of video presentations. Sometimes it pays to use key portions and highlights of longer pieces to draw potential clients toward the entire online video clip. Services work in more than 119 languages, help automate your work flow, are fully editable, save time, and reduce expenses on other, less effective marketing materials.
You need not be a top-flight novelist in order to crank out an eBook on a topic closely related to your company’s products or services. All you need is a relevant topic, an outline, and several hours of time to create the book. Or, you can hire a ghostwriter to do the job for you, assuming your time is better spent on other tasks. What is the benefit of an eBook? It’s like a powerful version of a business card, with a bit of traditional advertising thrown in for good measure. For example, if your own a CPA firm and are on the hunt for fresh clients, you might compose a short eBook on a topic that appeals to your potential customers, like “How to Maximize Your Tax Refund,” “How to Save for Retirement,” or “Is it Possible to Pay No Taxes?” The point is to come up with a catchy title and some relevant, though not necessarily unique ideas.
Run an Online Charity Drive
For maximum positive exposure in a local, national, or international community, choose a charitable cause that meshes with your company’s mission and arrange to match individuals’ donations up to a certain amount. This simple, effective marketing strategy doesn’t cost as much as you might think. And in terms of the publicity you receive for the money spent, the return can be quite high. Some organizations choose to align with a single charity year after year, which helps build a sort of brand loyalty among people who already support the charitable entity. In fact, some corporations have had great luck by pairing with major philanthropic entities that fight world hunger, battle social ills, or raise money to find cures for life-threatening diseases.