No matter what line of business you’re in, if you’re a startup or simply lack the enormous advertising budget that’s available to your rivals, then it’s time to think outside the box a little and come up with some more creative ideas for self-promotion.
Advertising online is the obvious route to go down, but even this can be a rocky road for the inexperienced. The internet – despite being free – is a battleground for hundreds, if not thousands of similar businesses all vying for a limited amount of traffic. To make your business stand out you not only have to get traffic to your site in the first place, but you’ve also got to know what to do once they arrive.
One of the best ways to encourage people to re-visit your site is by asking them to bookmark it. By bookmarking and sharing your site, people will be able to access it easily whenever they need to (or whenever they’re bored), without having to type the full URL or do a clumsy Google search. You can simply post a message asking people to “Bookmark Us”, or add something more elaborate such as a Grafetee button which allows people to map your location, post comments and more.
There’s no two ways about it – fresh and compelling content is a strong driver for encouraging your site visitors to come back again and again. No matter what business yours is, there are very few that lack the potential for a company blog or regular news section. Blog posts should be fairly frequent, at least 3 or 4 a week so that people come back often to check for updates.
Websites that offer regular promotions like coupons or daily giveaways are much more likely to capture a regular audience. Let’s face it, some people are just suckers for freebies, and so they’ll keep on coming back in the hope of winning, so long as there’s something on offer. Moreover, giveaways and prizes are a great opportunity to showcase new products and services, and also share important company news. An example is that you might be a wine seller giving away a free bottle of wine – take this opportunity to spread the news that you have new varieties in stock.
One of the best ways to engage an audience is through a quiz that tells them something about themselves. For example, our wine seller merchant above might create a quiz along the lines of “what kind of wine drinker are you?” or “Do you drink too much wine?”. The quiz itself will be a short list of ten or fifteen open-ended quiz questions (no right answer, people just chose what best applies to them). A great little free quiz maker tool from Pro Profs means it’s possible to make a quiz like this in just minutes, then post it to your site, share on Facebook, tweet it and more.
An online chat tool is a great way to engage with customers. By adding a simple tool from Livezilla or one of the dozens of free services out there, you’ll be able to help out customers who are having difficulties with your site, gain feedback and insights and generally leave a much better, longer lasting impression on your site visitors.
Of course, there’s dozens more ways to “skin the proverbial cat” as they say. But, the aforementioned ideas should make for a good start in getting your movements more visible. Even the smallest business concern can leverage the ad power of the web without a huge ad spend budget. Sometimes you just have to start small, and work the way up. Add your suggestions to these.
Photo courtesy: photocreo – Fotolia.com
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