This article was written by Pete Lisoskie
Our world has shifted. As business owners, we’ve gone through a tough recession. While the economy faltered, technology did not and your customers changed the way they found, evaluated, and decided on their product or service purchases. They went from offline advertising to local online advertising. Don’t believe it? Yellow page companies are going bankrupt. Newspapers are going out of business. When you go into Starbucks do you see more newspapers or laptops?
Let’s look at some startling statistics that are impacting your business as you read this article:
· There are more than 2.6 billion local searches each month on the internet.
· 30% of all search engine queries contain city, state or zip code.
· The internet surpassed yellow pages & newspapers for local consumer information.
· 70% of U.S. households use the internet when shopping locally. Do you?
· 54% of search users have substituted internet search for the phone book.
· Consumers are doing product research online, but 67% of the purchases by consumers are made offline locally.
· 34% of bloggers post about products and services: what they are saying about you?
· Facebook tops Google for weekly traffic in the U.S.
· If Facebook were a country, it would be the 3rd largest in the world
· YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world
· Every minute 24 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube
· A new member joins LinkedIn every second
· Groupon will reach $1 billion in sales faster than any company in history
· 90% of consumers trust peer recommendations from Yelp, City Search, and Google
Social media, internet search, and online evaluation are the very fabric that your existing and new customers are using to find products and services. If you are not online now or have a strategy on how to do this, most likely your business will not exist 5 years from now. You don’t really have a choice on whether you have an online presence; the question is how you do it? The answer: Authority Marketing. Remember, good marketing is good marketing online or offline. All customers go through a 3-Step psychological buying process of Search, Evaluate, and Decide. Most Search Engine Optimization companies cover search to get you on page 1 of Google or have a social media presence, but they are not helping you convert those prospects into customers. This is where Authority Marketing is powerful. As a business owner, you MUST become the Online Authority so customers choose you. What is Authority Marketing? It is an integrated marketing approach using keyword strategy, social media, videos, articles, blogging, coupon sites, Google maps, email, and text messaging. The outcome is your customer taking a Call to Action, CTA. A CTA is a phone call, email, service request, or booking. In future articles, we’ll cover each piece of Authority Marketing so you can implement it into your own business.
About the Author: Pete’s 14+ years experience in small business and entrepreneurialism helped him to create business startups from financial services, publishing, seminars, recruiting, construction, network marketing, radio shows, and internet-related products and services. Lisoskie founded beLocal and the exclusive “Authority Marketing Program” for local small business bricks and mortar.