“Things are going to start happening to me now!”
The clip ends with “Things are going to start happening to me now!” OK, that is from a 1979 movie and it is certainly exaggerated. When you get a new phone book now, do you even open it? When was the last time you used it to find a company to help you?
Most people now use the Internet to find a company to solve the current issue. Often the search is done on a smartphone which means that keeping a phone book in your trunk is no longer needed. But if someone tries to find your company on the Internet, are they going to find you? If you are found, what will they find?
Now let’s talk about the money that businesses once budgeted for ads in the phone book. In talking to a printer in the Seattle area, their quarter page ad cost them around $900 per month or $10,800 per year. When the phone book was no longer delivering customers to their shop, they had that money already budgeted for marketing.
Obviously, a great replacement for an ad is a great Web site. It can deliver far more information than you could fit into a static ad. While building a site does have an upfront cost, the monthly cost to keep the content fresh doesn’t have to be expensive. In the case of the printer, it is less than $200 per month.
While the Web site is great, it is important to get people to the site. The printer runs ads on Google, Facebook, and Yelp on a regular basis to bring potential customers to the Web site. Yes, that advertising costs money. I’m going to guess they spend around $500 each month for online advertising. Often I’m asked for more ways they can advertise their business.
Those of you who have had a business for many years will certainly understand the money you once budgeted for an ad in the phone book. Replacing that expense with online marketing expenses can give you wider exposure and still be a smaller investment. If you started a business more recently, it is still important that you allocate money (and time) each month to promote your business.
Do you have a Web site? If not, you really should consider investing in even a very basic site. When was the last time your site got any significant updates? If it was more than a couple of years ago, you really need to look at updating your site to work with today’s devices. Now determine a budget to invest in a new or updated Web site. It doesn’t have to be a large number. That investment can pay off when more customers find your business.
Once the site is all set, make sure you have a good presence on at least a couple of social media platforms. Facebook is important for almost all businesses. The second or third choice can vary based on your business. Also, consider a monthly budget to promote your business online. Once again, it doesn’t have to be a big number if you choose the right platforms.
Need some help with your Web site, social media platforms, and online promotion? We’d love to help you. Just give us basic information about how we can help, and we’ll use our online marketing talents for your business.