Online Marketing MixWhen it comes to marketing your business online, a lot of business owners say the same thing, “I’d love to, but I just don’t have the time.”

Unfortunately, saying you don’t have time to do any online marketing is like saying, “I don’t have time to save a ton of money on advertising.” While saying you don’t have time for social media says, “I don’t have time to listen to what any of my customers have to say.”

Online marketing and social media are some of the greatest tools to come along for small business in decades. But just like the other business tools available, you need to choose the right mix for your industry and business.

Foursquare, for example, is a fun FREE tool for business owners who want to encourage loyalty and repeat business. It’s tailor-made for restaurants and many retail outlets, but a poor choice law-firms or oncologists.

Some of the online tools YOU might want to consider are:

  • Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn (a.k.a “The Big Three”)
  • Email Marketing (with an avg. ROI of $46 for every $1 spent you can’t beat it for cost and efficiency)
  • Foursquare, Yelp, Groupon, Google Places (good choices for location-based businesses)
  • Blogging and Article Marketing (to establish credibility in your niche and increase your search engine ranking)
  • Banner Advertising & Pay Per Click Marketing (via Google OR Facebook)
  • Web-Based Events
  • Video Marketing

…and the list just keeps on growing in the wild and wonderful world of online marketing.

But how do you choose the right mix for your business? Before you can answer this question you first have to:

1) Know your USP (unique selling proposition). What makes your business special and what “messages” would you like your potential customers to hear from you?

2) Know your Customers. Where do they “hang out” online? Where do they go for information and what do they consider valuable?

3) Know your Competition. Who are they? What promotions are they running? Is there an unfulfilled need in the marketplace you can meet?

4) Know your Keywords. Spending the time to do keyword research for your business will help you target the right customers and rank well on Google.

By defining these four items FIRST, you will learn:

  1. What you should be talking about online with your potential clients
  2. Which online mediums your clients use to find businesses like yours
  3. Which social media outlets your competition are utilizing
  4. Which keywords potential clients use to find businesses like yours & which keywords your competition is trying to rank for.

As a certified social media specialist & certified internet marketing specialist I develop online and social media marketing strategies that integrate with your offline marketing world and help you to achieve your marketing goals. I show you how to measure your success and track results in terms that matter to your company.