The Internet is the great equalizer for all businesses because online everyone can compete. Your success depends on your online activities. There are 2 windows of opportunity for businesses online in Madison for companies:
1. Search engine optimization
2. Social media
Everywhere I went the last week in Madison, business owners were asking what SEO stood for. They weren’t doing it, hadn’t heard of it and wanted to know how.
“Search engine optimization, aka, website fuel,” I said. “What does that mean exactly?” I was asked.
Search Engine Optimization
SEO is a lot of things a variety of activities that if done daily drive traffic to your website. You can be taught some of the activities, but it needs to be done by someone with experience and it needs to be done daily.
Google suggests an hour a day. Your SEO activities can include:
- Sharing a link to that article via social media including:
- Google Plus
- Adding a picture to the article
- Recording a video about that product or service
- Writing an article about your business or service
- Sharing and interacting on social media (liking, following, answering)
- Reading and commenting on business-specific websites
“SEO is your online marketing activities that help drive traffic to your website,” I said. “Things like video, writing articles, social media–”
“I don’t do social media. Can’t stand Facebook. I don’t want to Tweet,” I was told over and over again.
You Don’t Have to Like Social Media
You don’t have to like social media, but you do need to do it–everyone is on it including your competition. As business is done online people look for you there first. It may be on Facebook. Maybe Twitter, LinkedIN, Google Plus.
Actually, first they’ll go to your website and see if you’re on social media.
Setting Up Social Media
Setup the accounts and at least post once a week. Just like the website you have to keep social media updated. How do you setup a social media account? You open accounts by using an e-mail address and a password:
- Use your business e-mail
- Pick an easy to find username that includes your business name
- Include website
- Short business description
- phone number
Popular Social Media Accounts
- Google Plus (must first open a Gmail account)
- Google Plus for Business
Update Your Website
Add photos, video, new articles. Your competition is doing it. Lots of businesses are doing it. Google, Yahoo and Bing are expecting it from Madison businesses who want to be found online and compete beyond the local market.
Many businesses ARE doing SEO. But there are many small businesses who are not doing SEO or social media in Madison. You need to try it and you need to work with someone you feel comfortable with who can understand your business target audience and who will portray your business responsibly.
The Marketing Square builds and rebuilds websites for companies that have been in business 10-35+ years. We work in-person with Madison Wisconsin and Florida clients who need help getting new business in a tough economy. We write a marketing plan for every client no matter what service we provide.