How to Increase Online Visibility for Your Small Business Like Big Brands
The internet has, in some ways, evened the playing field for startups and small enterprises to gain exposure, drive traffic and generate sales for growth. For small businesses, increasing online visibility like big brands do requires a well-thought-out digital marketing strategy and implementation.
A Conductor survey done in 2022 revealed exactly what big brands are focusing on when it comes to digital marketing, then, and moving forward into the future, and it’s all about search visibility and credibility.
Here are the top digital marketing channel priorities for big brands:
1. Digital advertising – think social media, newsletter sponsorships and even banner ads.
2. Website user experience – if customers can’t use your website seamlessly, they will bounce. If it’s too hard to buy or get what they want, they will bounce to a competitor.
3. Content marketing – generating useful, meaningful and relevant content addressing customer search queries.
4. Email marketing – most consumers prefer the flexibility that email offers over sales calls, which feel intrusive. Consumers have more control over their response and email can offer visuals that create an emotional desire that non-visual forms of sales contact cannot.
5. Organic search – which equals authenticity, presents expert authority on topics and drive website traffic that is interested and looking in that moment for products or services.
When you think about this list, this strategy is very attainable for startups and small enterprises and offers a way to compete like never before.
Here are some key steps to follow:
Define Your Brand Identity: Clearly define your brand's identity, including your brand values, target audience, and unique selling proposition (USP) – who are you, why did you create this product and how will it change lives? This will help you create a strong brand presence online and resonate with your audience. It shows them that you understand their challenge and that your company offers the solution.
Develop a Responsive Website: Your website is your online storefront, so make sure it is responsive, user-friendly, and visually appealing. Optimize it for search engines by using relevant keywords, meta tags, and creating high-quality content that is authentic, expert in nature and can become a destination for customers. Today, AI offers the opportunity to assist customers immediately with a chat bot that can also filter more complex issues to the someone at the company. Immediate response rates improve the odds of sales.
Build a Plan and Work it: Running or marketing a business without a plan is like a rudderless ship headed in circles. Developing a plan for your online marketing is key to success and reducing stress. A good plan helps you stay on target, manage your time and budget more efficiently, and mostly know where you’re going and how you will get there.
Create Quality Content: Content is king in the online world. Create high-quality, engaging, and relevant content that resonates with your target audience. This can include blog posts, articles, videos, infographics, and social media posts. In following many large brands, we know that they have rethought their blog to become a magazine sharing topics, advice and more that is relevant to their brand and answers the many questions customers have. Keeping in mind the nature of how people use search today, can help you develop high-quality content that will bring more traffic and customers to your website. Amplify your content by sharing it across your social media channels to increase your online visibility.
Embrace Search Optimization: Optimize your website for search engines to improve your organic search rankings and increase the odds of being searched and discovered. This includes optimizing your website structure, URLs, title tags, meta descriptions, headers, and incorporating relevant keywords in your content. While this may seem confusing and too technical for a novice, it need not be. Over the years, we have curated a strategy around search best practices that keeps it manageable and focused on what you really need to do to increase visibility. As shown by big brands embracing organic search through content, keeping your website up to date with relevant and useful information via a blog or blogzine concept can increase your search ranking and visibility.
Leverage Social Media: Social media is ideal for startups and small businesses and can offer a range of exposure that is more authentic than any expensive paid programs. Understanding how social media works and maintaining it can feel overwhelming and stretch of your time. Keep it simple and don’t push your brand 100% of the time. Use the 80/20 rule – 80% pull content from other sources that are relevant to your brand or audience and 20% push rule. This creates engagement and helps build your audience so when you are ready to push brand messaging or a promotion, people are more likely to listen. Share regular updates, give followers a behind-the-scenes look at your business, engage with your audience, and use social media advertising to boost content that performs well. Use data collected on posts to determine what performs best and then offer more of it.
Collaborate with Influencers: Collaborations with individuals who have created an audience for their message do not need to be expensive or difficult. The rise in micro-influencers shows that brands can get more meaningful engagement and better results from promotional programs than with more prominent influencers. Moreover, micro influencers are willing to do more, giving a collaborative programs longevity over a one-hit-mention. Partner with influencers or bloggers in your niche who have a strong engagement with followers. Affiliate programs also offer affordable access to paid influencers who will try, review and promote your product positively. A lot of media, today, rely on affiliate programs to drive their revenue.
Monitor and Analyze Results: Regularly monitor and analyze your digital marketing efforts using analytics tools. Adjust your strategy based on data-driven insights to optimize your online visibility continually. Determine what is working, what isn’t working and make changes as needed. The beauty of this strategy for digital marketing and increased search exposure is that you can easily locate data that will provide powerful insights and help you make the best of your online marketing efforts. Whether its email marketing, blogzine statistics, search results data that show your customer journey and behaviors, you can learn to better understand your customer and how you can improve engagement with them.
Consistency is Key: Lastly, be consistent with your online marketing efforts. Building a strong online presence takes time and effort, so stay committed to your strategy and consistently implement your digital marketing plan. Since startups and small businesses lack the team to manage all of this, we recommend focusing on customer engagement and questions first and then pick one day to focus on creating content or even working a PR strategy. Either way, consistency is key when it comes to staying top of mind with customers and staying visible in search.
By following these steps and implementing a comprehensive digital marketing strategy, you can increase your online visibility and create a strong brand presence similar to big brands. Remember to understand your audience, create engaging content, optimize for search engines, leverage social media and paid advertising, engage with your audience, and consistently analyze and adjust your strategy for optimal results.