If you’re tired of local SEO agencies or social media management companies reaching out to you and pitching services for the umpteenth time, then this article is for you. The reality is that a ton of the digital marketing strategies that they deploy are not sustainable. They end up leaving you with having to pay a platform like Facebook or Google in order to get in front of your customer.
Strategy 1: Document Your Before & Afters
The first strategy is to document your before and afters. If you’re in a service, this is one of the best ways to drum a business. The reason why is because it shows you the clear effect that you have on other people that you’re serving. Let’s think real quick as to why this is so effective. What is more powerful? If I tell you that I give you great haircuts, or if I show you some of these sick fades that I can give you? The latter of course.
So if you’ve never collected testimonials now is the time to do so. Start to take before and after pictures of your customers and show how happy they are with your work. You probably have one of these phones, which means you have everything you need to create content.
Digital marketing doesn’t have to be complex. Think about it this way. If you just take 10 before and after pictures, you can string those together in iMovie and have a one-minute testimonial video of all the work that you’ve done for your customers. All you need to do from here is tag on some bumping tunes, and then you’ve got yourself a great video that you can promote on your website, send via text message to new inquiries, or just send to general people that you are trying to share your services with.
Strategy 2: Claim Your Business Profile Pages and Focus on One Channel
The second strategy for today is to go ahead and claim your business profiles and focus on just one channel. I get it. There are a ton of websites for you to create a business profile, but what matters is that you have at least one really good business profile and not necessarily five really bad ones.
The benefit of focusing on just one of these channels is that you can start to build up some meaningful clout in one of these platforms, as opposed to spreading yourself too thin. What is better if you have a hundred good reviews on Yelp, or if you just have five reviews on Yelp, five reviews on Facebook, as well as five reviews on Angie’s list. What’s clearly better is the first case. And so aim to focus all of your attention on one channel when you are starting out.
If I were you, I always start with your Google business page or your Yelp business page. Don’t focus on Facebook because when was honestly the last time that you found a business that you were interested in engaging services with through Facebook? I can’t think of the last time. Google is a great place for you to start. So feel free to build up your Google profile. Yelp is another great place in the case where you run a restaurant or something in the service industry. In some cases, people might go directly to Yelp instead of Google.
For example, recently I had to hire a moving company, and so I went directly to Yelp and typed in moving companies to figure out the best one for me. You remember focus on just one channel. Small business owners like yourself don’t have time to build up multiple profiles. So just focus on one channel.
Social proof really matters. So hopefully you have some testimonials or customers that are happy to leave some reviews for you. And in the case where you don’t offer them something in return for their time and taking the time to write that review. If you need help with that, check out my recent article on how to get more customer reviews. I share about the ways that I got 50 plus G2 reviews for my company in under a month.
Strategy 3: Answer Customer Questions and Publish in Public
The third strategy for today is to answer customer questions and to publish in public. Regardless of what small business you run, you are bound to have questions that your customers are always asking you. So the trick here is if you ever find yourself answering the same question twice, I want you to record the answer to that question or to write it down in some sort of blog post.
Here’s the reason why you want to do this. If you do this once you can just direct future people that ask you this question to that resource the next time around. This is incredibly powerful because it leverages your time. Instead of having to answer that question 10 times, you’ve already answered it and reuse that one time that you have answered it.
Want to see the strategy and action? Just check out Bob and Brad’s YouTube channel. They call themselves the world’s most famous physical therapist. And if you dig back in their profile as to their earliest videos, you’ll see that they were answering common questions that their customers had for them.
10 years ago, they started with a simple video that was named two exercises to stop grandma from falling. From here, they just kept making videos that answered other common questions around pain that their customers were having. So, what I want you to do is grab a pen and paper and think about five questions that customers have asked you in the last week.Now you have five potential content ideas that you can create videos or write articles in helping your potential customers.
Answering customer questions is one of the best ways to build authority in public. For example, if you just have your Yelp business page right now, you can answer questions that people have about your services, and it’ll look a lot better than the profile of businesses where the business owner does not answer questions from the community.
Strategy 4: Host Regular Free Online Events
The fourth strategy that I’ll share with you today is to host free online events. Now before you go ahead and say, Will – that stuff doesn’t work. I want you to think back in college, when you were sleuthing around for free food events, it really didn’t matter if you had to sit through the most boring lecture, as long as there was free pizza involved. Oftentimes in the real world, the same principle applies. People love free.
The principle of freeness is really valuable when it comes to digital marketing, as long as you do it regularly. The keyword though is to do it regularly. People try these events once or twice, and then they give up because they don’t actually build a meaningful audience.
You have to commit to a ton of these free events on a regular basis in order to see conversion from these opportunities. Just think about it. If you were running a yoga studio in your local area and you hosted a free weekly 30 minute session for everybody that they could participate from the comfort of their home, then you would become known as that studio that offers free 30 minute sessions every Friday to de-stress from the stresses of the workweek.
From here, you could reach out to a ton of different office managers in different companies and have them promote your event, which they’ll be happy to do so because it’s free. And so from this promotional marketing, you would have a ton of new opportunities to convert new clients.
All you do is give this 30 minute free workshop and then at the end of your workshop, tell people that if they really enjoyed themselves, that they can join you for your paid sessions on Tuesdays or whatever day, it might be.
The beauty about doing these sorts of things online is that you get to broaden your reach, your distribution expands exponentially, and you’re not limited to your physical location.
Who knows. You might even be able to charge for this going forward once you’ve built up your following and your free followers want you to run an hour and a half session later on. To do this sort of strategy, check out websites like Luma. I’ve used them to host online events and they are great for integrating with Zoom and making it super easy for all of your attendees to leave feedback for you, pay you, and all that jazz in terms of event management.
Strategy 5: Reprint, Repurpose, and Repeat
The fifth strategy is to reprint, repurpose, and repeat. If there’s just one digital marketing strategy that is incredibly valuable, it is hammering this one down. Ultimately, whether you’re a small business owner or just running a side hustle, you don’t have a lot of time to do everything. So you need to find the ways to leverage the things that you are actually investing your time in.
What I want you to do is any time that you are doing something, think about how you can potentially reuse that work again. We’ve gone over a few of the strategies already today, like taking pictures or videos or writing down answers to questions that you commonly answer. Any time that you do something inherently valuable, I want you to think about how to document that so that you can repurpose that work.
For example, if it’s not sensitive and your clients are open to it, record your coaching calls. So you can share that on your website and your social media platforms. That way people can get an actual taste of what it’s like to work with. You don’t need a digital marketing agency to take care of this for you. All you need is a virtual assistant and some good standard operating procedures.
There are two things that I want you to remember from today’s article:
- The first one is you do not need a consultancy in order to take action in digital marketing. All you need to do is think about what sort of thing is low-hanging fruit for you, and start to publish that work on a business profile or on your website.
- The second big takeaway is don’t forget strategy number five on re-purposing. If you do something once, think about how you can leverage that action to expand the distribution of that particular effort that you did.
If you liked this article, be sure to check out my YouTube channel to get new videos every single week. I’ll help take you from zero to self-starter as you grow your business, get more customers, and hone your business acumen. Also, feel free to share this with anybody that you think might benefit from learning why digital marketing is a good career choice.