Every day it seems the Internet changes in some way. Google algorithm updates, social media updates, the way we share information, it’s all transforming before our very eyes. But even though the Internet keeps changing, many SMBs are keeping to the same old online marketing techniques. If your business doesn’t change with the times, you’re only going to be left behind. Let’s look at five ways the online business world is changing forever and how you can alter your approach to go with the flow.
1. Let’s Get Personal
The days of the faceless figurehead with no personality are over. These days people want to know that they’re getting their products and services from an actual person. With video chat becoming more popular, your audience is soon going to expect an actual face-to-face conversation.
How You Can Change: Start using your personality more on social networks and start making use of all the technologies at your disposal to engage. Blogs, Facebook posts and tweets are great, but video chats and webinars will always be more effective.
2. You Don’t Have To Be Huge
The major publications used to control the media, but not anymore. These days a simple blogger can influence hundreds or even thousands of people. Readers of a blog actually care about what that person thinks. So if you have a loyal following and you start recommending products and services that your die-hard audience is interested in, you can have much more influence than a generic ad in a newspaper or major magazine.
How You Can Change: Pay attention to your blog and social media comments and take the time to engage your audience. When your followers, friends and readers see that you actually care, they’ll begin to pay attention to everything you publish online.
3. Don’t Lag Behind
The old way of doing business was to be cool, calm and calculated. Before a marketing campaign could be launched it had to be tested and approved, the legal department had to get involved and lots of red tape had to be navigated through before the campaign saw the light of day. By this time, your competitors could have already launched their campaign to trump yours. Your audience isn’t going to wait for your next message. They want information and they want it now.
How You Can Change: Update your content often and outsource your content creation and social media postings if you’re able to. The faster you post your content, the more your audience will pay attention and the more information they’ll crave. Post quickly and with calculation and your competitors will begin to wonder what you’re doing to gather such a loyal following.
4. Do You Care?
When writing content, posting on social media or engaging in voice or video chat, you must care. You can’t pretend to care. Unless you’re a great actor, your audience will take notice and your boredom or lack of empathy is going to come through in your writings/voice/mannerisms.
How You Can Change: Ask questions of your audience and take an interest in what they’re going through. When you take the time to actually get to know your prospects and customers, online business will become much more fulfilling and you’ll deliver the personal touch that savvy consumers truly respond to.
5. The Pitch Is Dead
The Internet is full of sales pitches at every turn. People are sick of it and your audience may turn on you if you become aggressive with your intentions. If your product or service is good, your audience will find it eventually. Your job is to educate your audience and entertain with all of your content and all of your social media posts. If you provide value, you’ll attract your audience to you instead of having to pitch them at every corner.
How You Can Change: Try to get influential people to discuss your products and services. This way you are taken out of the equation entirely, at least as far as pitching your product is concerned. If you can get blogs and your followers and friends to hype up your brand, people will start paying attention in droves.
The Internet is constantly changing. Are you stuck in your old online marketing ways? Let us know what you’ve done to change to prepare for the future of online business.