Because of the Internet, the business and marketing arena has become flat for all competitors. In other words, even if you’re running a small business, you can still effectively compete with the big ones when it comes to promoting a brand or product to potential customers online. Small business owners and entrepreneurs already have the access and power to reach their targeted market through various online marketing strategies and tactics. If they can’t afford expensive advertising campaigns, like billboards ads, TV commercials, and printed ads on widely circulated magazines and newspapers, they can run on the Internet to unleash various cost-effective online marketing campaigns. If you want to be competitive, here are 37 Internet marketing ideas for small businesses that you can try to implement to grow your small business and achieve success.
1. Build a website for your business. If you don’t have any knowledge in website design and development, then you can hire a website designer or developer to create a website for your business.
2. Submit your business website on business directories. Start expanding your online business presence by listing your company website in various online business directories.
3. Promote your business through blogging. You can integrate on your website a blog that is regularly updated with interesting content. Here are “12 Reasons Why You Should Blog about Your Business“.
4. Create unique and engaging content on your blog. Create more and more unique, relevant and useful content on your blog so that Google and other search engines will index more pages from your blog.
5. Optimize your blog pages for the search engines. Implement effective SEO (Search Engine Optimization) techniques so that you website or blog will rank higher on the SERPs (Search engine results page). Check out these “20 SEO Tips for Your Small Business Website”.
6. Build quality links to your website and blog. Natural quality backlinks boost your search engine ranking making your site’s pages more visible on the SERPs. To learn more, here are “12 Ways to Get Natural Backlinks to Your Website or Blog”.
7. Visit other blogs related to yours and leave comments. Start creating good relationship with other bloggers, especially those who are blogging on your niche, by leaving engaging comments on their blogs.
8. Encourage your website or blog visitors to subscribe. Ask your visitors to subscribe their emails on your feeds and updates. This will let you have an email list of relevant people, whom you can send important updates of your products and other related promotional messages.
9. Encourage your visitors to share your content on social media. Put social media plugins on your website or blog to encourage your readers to share your content if they like it.
10. Get your website and blog measured. Get your site measured, reviewed and ranked on different web metric sites, like Alexa.com, Compete.com, Quantcast.com, WOT.com (Web of Trust), and other ranking sites that are relevant to your niche. They help your site increase visibility on the Internet, attract more traffic, and boost reputation
11. Join online forums. Join actively on online forums that are related to your niche and where your target customers hang out. Share ideas and help answer their questions to boost your reputation as a business owner or as an expert.
12. Promote your business on Facebook. Create and maintain an updated Facebook page that regularly interacts with its followers.
13. Promote your business on Google+. Create a Google+ page for your business. Promote your brand by sharing interesting information about your business and other things.
14. Promote your business on Twitter. Create an official Twitter profile for your business. Tweet and share important updates of your products to your followers.
15. Claim your business listing on Google Places. List your business on Google Places to be found easily by local searchers looking for business establishments near their place.
16. Claim your business or venue on FourSquare. Let FourSquare.com users check in to your business using mobile phones and let others notice their reviews and experiences.
17. Promote your business on Pinterest. Use targeted interesting images to promote your brand and products on Pinterest.com.
18. Promote your business using Youtube. Broadcast your business in the world’s most popular video sharing site by creating interesting videos about your brand and products.
19. Promote your business on other top social media sites. Also explore and promote your business on other top social networking sites, like Linkedin.com and StumbleUpon.com.
20. Create viral videos. Use your talent on videography and your creativity to create videos that can be shared by many people on social media, like Facebook and Youtube.
21. Create viral photos and infographics. Use your creativity and knowledge to create interesting and sharable images, infographics, memes, and the like that will create a good buzz about your business.
22. Start a cause. Be socially responsible. Through social media and your blog, promote a cause, such as promoting our environment and culture, to earn more respect from the netizens.
23. Join social media groups related to your niche. Be more sociable by joining groups that have the same interest with you. You can also create a group if the group you’re looking for hasn’t been created yet.
24. Increase your personal social media connections. Increase your personal popularity by increasing your Facebook friends, Twitter followers, Google+ circles of friends, Linkedin connections and other connections to have a larger audience when you promote your brand on your personal social media profiles.
25. Write guest posts. Boost your authority and visibility as an expert in your field by submitting guest post to reputable blogs that are related to your niche.
26. Consider buying Google AdWords. If you can spare some money, you can try paid search engine marketing by buying PPC ads on Google.
27. Consider buying Facebook ads. You may also try Facebook ads, aside from Google Adwords.
28. Consider buying banner ads from related websites. If you think the cost of advertising on other related blogs will give you revenue in excess of that cost, then you can try banner ads from related blogs or sites.
29. Sponsor online contests. Bloggers who are running contest on their blog are looking for sponsors who will provide the prizes. You can be a sponsor to increase your brand exposure online.
30. Run your own online contest. This will create a buzz for your brand and reach more potential customers. You can run contest on your blog, Facebook page, and other social media pages.
31. Join online contest or nomination. You can also join relevant contests or awarding. If you will win, this will be a good exposure for your business and brand.
32. Host webinars. Teach and educate people virtually, while promoting your business and product to the participants online.
33. Invite bloggers on your product launch. When launching a business or a new product, invite bloggers who own blogs related to your brand, and encourage them to blog about your business or new product. You can give free samples or freebies for them to taste or try.
34. Try affiliate or referral marketing. You can let other online publishers or bloggers to be your affiliate members who’ll promote your product or service in exchange of a commission income per lead or per successful sale.
35. Build an online network for your brand. Build an online empire which is composed of websites, blogs, social media pages, social media groups, online forums and communities, and other online source of followers and influence. Let them work as one.
36. Follow successful Internet marketers. By following Internet marketing experts and reading their blogs, you can learn more effective Internet marketing techniques that you can use to grow your small business online. See this list of Ad Age top 50 marketing blogs updated daily.
37. Maintain quality business and service. Always maintain quality in doing business and in serving your clients online or offline. Remember that no matter how powerful your Internet marketing campaigns are, if your customers will not be satisfied on the products and service they’ve paid for, your online marketing efforts will not succeed in the long run.
Remember to be consistent in your Internet marketing implementations so that they would all work effectively and efficiently as one, hitting the bullseye of your business goal.