Each day I read a number of articles about online PR and small business marketing to keep my finger on the pulse of business. I pass along to you some I found helpful.

Today’s articles offer great advice about increasing your sales and developing a strong online presence to attract more business.

1. The Top 5 Ways to Increase Sales, by Ivana Taylor

Taylor’s guest article on Charlie Cook’s popular small business marketing blog advises all you need is one or two good ideas to jump-start sales. She lists her five favorite ways:

  • Get on your soapbox – tell people what you believe about your industry, your product and how you solve customers’ problems.
  • Build your lists – help people keep in touch with you by regular communication.
  • Use videos – people love ‘em, and they help with search engine ranking (you don’thave to go Hollywood).
  • Productize your service – if you are in the service business, package your service as a product so people can identify with it. One of my clients developed a service agreement “product” for his air conditioning a plumbing business and called it BAM! – Berkeys Automatic Maintenance.
  • Mobile marketing – the Web is going mobile. Don’t fight it, get on board.

Full Article Here

2. Online Marketing for Small Business the Right Way, by James Debona

DeBona discusses the central role a website plays in marketing any business, and says, “It’s not enough just to have a website anymore.” He offers a 5-point approach to make that happen.

  • Have a plan – what do you want your website to do – get leads, make sales, build a community or something else?
  • Deliver a consistent brand message – all parts of your online and offline marketing must have a consistent look and feel so people identify you with it when they see it and know what to expect (a MacDonald’s is a MacDonald’s is a MacDonald’s).
  • Continuously engage – you can’t “set and forget” your online presence. Things change, be prepared to invest some time to get a big return.
  • Social media cannot be ignored – use social media to build a community as part of your business; people who know, like and trust you. This also requires some time, but very little money.
  • Optimize your presence – to get your website found by search engines you have to optimize everything on it, and you have to keep adding content of interest to your audience on a steady basis.

Full Article Here

3. Twitter and LinkedIn: Small Biz’s Best Growth Tools, by Adam Hartung

Great article on Forbes.com that shows the power of Twitter and LinkedIn to help smaller companies take sales leadership away from traditional competitors. It outlines how Jefferson Financial grew more than 55% in one year by combining high tech and hi touch marketing.

Hartung offers this nugget: “Today customers demand 8 touches (or contacts) to make a buying decision; whereas prior to 2008 they required only 5 touches.”

Full Article Here

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What topics would you like to see covered in future articles? Please send me a note at ONLINE_PRescriptions@ThePRDoc.com.

Thanks for your time!

Jim Bowman