I hold small businesses close to my heart. My father, Esteban Ramirez, had a Granite Fabrication and Installation business in Albuquerque, New Mexico, during the Great Recession in 2008-09. Back then, there was no way in knowing how the internet would benefit small businesses at the time. Hence, it left a vast number of small businesses to struggle or ultimately close their doors. Today is a different story. We understand how SMBs can utilize the internet, but the big issue is that most business owners underutilize the internet. In this article, I want to illustrate why and how to utilize the internet for your business if you start building your digital presence.
Personify your brand
A brand is a very widely talked about a word. Every “Marketing Guru” talks about having a brand. Still, the answer they give is either very diluted in meaning or does not make any sense for someone trying to grasp the idea of what a brand is. Here is what Branding means in the most straightforward and purest form,
A brand is the Unique Value of Promise you provide to your customers. It is the unique experience, the unique value that your customers get out of doing business; it’s what separates you from others in the same industry.
I bet the question that popped in your head is, “What makes me unique? “What separates me from all the other businesses in my industry?”.
I would be doing a great disservice to you if I did not help you answer this question. The answer to the question
“What makes my business unique then?”
“What separates me from all the other businesses in my industry?”.
The thing that makes your businesses unique is YOU. There are many businesses just like yours, but there is only one you with a company like yours.
Personifying your brand is essential. It’s nothing new for businesses to have a face associated with a brand, Shaq and General Insurance, William Shattner and Orbitz, Ryan Reynolds and Mint Mobile. W
What separates Ryan Reynolds from all other cell phone services is his likable personality. He personifies Mint Mobile; Ryan Reynolds puts a face and personality In a way that other cellphone services don’t do. Mint Mobile is one of many phone service carriers in the United States. Ryan Reynolds association with Mint Mobile led to revenue skyrocketing by nearly 50,000%.
This is why I’m a firm believer that the most significant thing you can do for your business is to be the face of your business. If you need help with branding your website, Here are four ways to help with branding on your website.
Social media is the best way to build a digital presence
Without a doubt, social media has been the most significant thing for small businesses to build a digital presence. Before the internet, A company would have to spend thousands of dollars hiring an ad/marketing agency to help build its brand awareness. Today, it takes $0 and a few minutes to create a social media profile. But the Catch-22 with Social Media is that not all social media is the same.
According to Sprout Social, as of 2021the current age groups for social media are:
- Facebook: largest age group are 25-34 (26.3%)
- Instagram: largest age group are 25-34 (33%)
- Twitter: Largest age group are 30-49 (44%)
- LinkedIn: largest age group are 46-55
- Pinterest: Largest are group is 30-49
- Tik Tok: Largest age group is 18-24
- YouTube: Largest age group is 15-25.
Depending on whom you want to target, it depends on what platforms you want to invest your time in.
Growing your online presence on social media is a must thing to do because you build trust, credibility, and reputation with the people you or your content interacts with. All three are essential to moving a person interested in your business to get them to buy from your company.
A digital presence requires you to produce content
You can either be a content producer or a content consumer. I bet you can guess which one you should be? Yup, to establish a digital-presence, you need to be a content creator.
Why is this?
Because content creation will build trust and awareness, it will also build authority in your industry. So your content needs to have the intent of relieving a customer’s pain/problem when they read or watch it. There are many forms of content you can create. Still, the beautiful thing is you can adapt the content you create for different mediums.
When picking a medium, you should play to your strengths and the best way to present your content.
The four main media types are:
- blog posts
You don’t have to pick just one to deliver content but pick one to create with and then repurpose it for other mediums.
For example, you are horrible at speaking on a podcast or recording yourself in a video, but you like or love to write. Then I would say create, write a blog article and post it. If you want to expand to video or podcast, you have a blog post that you can use as a script.
If you don’t want to write, but you like to speak or record, I would tell you to create a video or podcast, get it transcribed using software like Rev.com or Go Transcript and use the transcription as a blog post on your website.
The content creating doesn’t stop there. You can now use your audio, video, blog posts as excerpts, as social media posts.
A digital presence helps develop relationships
You’re branding and content creating for social media all lead up to this, developing relationships. When distributing content, your main goal is not to sell anyone anything because people don’t like to be sold. People want to have a relationship. They want to be heard, noticed, and needed. Your content should strike up a conversation, typically asking “what they think of this?” or “what do you do besides this?” At the end of the content that you publish on your social media page. The goal here is to talk to them when they comment. Many businesses do not take this step, and in the end, potential buyers start to think maybe they don’t matter as much as you made them feel. Ignoring commentators, you will lose thousands of dollars, and most importantly, this will result in lost opportunities.
There you have it; digital presence is essential if you want to survive in this day and age. You will be risking a lot not to begin building awareness around your business. Please do me a favor and share this article if you think it can help someone, or feel free to comment down below. Having conversations is one of my favorite parts of building a community.
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