[vc_row full_screen_section_height=”no”][vc_column][vc_column_text]While it’s important not to obsess over what your competitors are and are not doing online, it’s important to always be ahead and find ways to ensure your business stands out.
We work with various businesses in many industries online and one of the strategies we look at is how we can be better with our online presence compared to our competitors.
Listed below are some very common areas we see businesses missing out on when it comes to creating, enhancing and growing their online presence. You will find tips for turning each of these areas into your business strengths.
Building online credibility with testimonials and referrals
Whether you are a service provider or sell a product, referrals and testimonials are the easiest way to win new customers or clients. When you master this strategy the sky is your limit. In most cases, it all starts with asking…
Referrals can give you an easy win. The prospect has already heard great things about your business from the referee and in most cases, is ready to buy. You can capitalise on that by ensuring they have the best experience with your business from the start.
How do you get referrals? Just ask. I know asking for a referral from a customer or client doesn’t come easy for a lot of small business owners, however it’s one thing many of your competitors aren’t doing. Word of mouth is priceless, so be brave and ask your clients for referrals.
Some ideas to make asking for a referral easier for you and that you can incorporate into your customer journey are;
- Creating a referral program and campaign. E.g. offering a monetary award for referrals.
- Create a client information pack for new clients and add an additional one or two brochures for them to share around. It’s a subtle way of asking for referrals.
- Create a network of promoters among the businesses and people you work with to help you spread the word online. Some people do this as part of their networking strategy but it can also happen organically. When you develop it as a strategy, you give help to the people you work with and earn help in return.
If testimonials and reviews are not currently part of your marketing strategy; they should be. And here’s why!
- 97% of consumers look at reviews before purchasing.
- 50% of consumers visit a company’s website after reading a positive review. (HubSpot)
- Testimonials can increase conversion rates on sales pages by 34%.
- A single good review can increase conversions by a whopping 10%!
- Improving star ratings from 3 to 5 increases organic clicks in Google by 25%. (BrightLocal)
How can you get more testimonials? Discover how in this article about how to get five-star reviews in 3 easy steps.
Follow through leads with various touchpoints
Gaining leads is hard work and for some, it can be a very costly exercise. So, when you get some engagement with your post or your business, follow it through. Then you have a higher chance of turning them from a cold lead to a warm one.
There are a lot of small businesses we see missing out on these opportunities to connect with their customers as part of their buying journey.
- When a new person who doesn’t “like” your Facebook page likes a post, do you invite them to become a follower? Note – They may already follow your pages however when someone likes a Page, they’re showing their support and that they want to see content from it. When someone follows a Page, it means they may receive updates about the Page in their newsfeed, giving you a regular opportunity to engage with them.
- Do you connect with people who download your lead magnet on LinkedIn?
- Do you have an automated email campaign of value that backs up your lead magnet campaign?
- Do you follow through polls, answers to questions and messages with another touchpoint in your business?
- Do you participate in groups on Facebook and LinkedIn? For some industries, this is more valuable than others however the real value for your business lies when you give value.
- Follow through with your testimonials and referrals online. A simple acknowledgement and thank you go a long way.
Respond on social media.
People spend a lot of time on social media these days and it’s becoming quite common for potential clients to contact businesses by posting, asking a question or even by sending a private message. Have you ever done that? How long did you have to wait for a reply?
Too many businesses simply schedule their posts and don’t bother to monitor their pages. They don’t see their customers reaching out so they can’t give them what they want.
If you’re going to have social media pages, make sure you are present. This is an ideal opportunity to build a community and create relationships with your followers. When you take the time to answer or at least acknowledge the comments, you show you really care about what your customers’ needs are. You don’t have to spend all day on social media but make sure you check the page every day.
Standing out from your competitor online is more than just your content strategy and requires some work from you to really stand out and shine.
If you would like some help to incorporate these tips and more into your online marketing, feel free to get in touch. Our team of online marketing specialists will ensure you are enhancing and growing your online presence in no time.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]