Top tips for online marketing on a shoestring: Tip 6

Online marketing is an invaluable tool for businesses looking to increase awareness of their product and engage with potential customers. With an understanding of the resources available and a little bit of creativity, an online marketing campaign can be one of the most cost-effective ways of maximizing your business’s potential. During the Business Startup show at London’s ExCeL centre in May, Simply Business partnered with PR agency 3 Monkeys and SEO agency Distilled to discuss some of the top marketing tips for people starting out in business. We have taken some of the top tips from the day and added some of our own and will be publishing them as a blog series over the next week. You can read the sixth tip of our seven-part series below.

6. Harness the power of your customers.

A satisfied customer can be one of your most valuable assets. People interact and share experiences online, and if you can find customers who are willing to share a positive experience they had with your business, then you have acquired one of the best marketing tools—completely free of charge.

The first step, of course, is to encourage engagement by providing great service. When you do receive positive feedback, use those comments in a way that benefits your business. Post customer testimonials on your website, and ask clients to write reviews about you on Google. Set up accounts with sites like Qype, Tipped, Yelp, and TouchLocal, which allow users to review and recommend local businesses. Positive reviews on these platforms will both bolster your reputation and increase the searchability of your business.

Remember also that you need customers to be able to easily find your business online after reading a review. By creating a free account with Google Places, a search for your business will yield a listing with your address, hours of operation, a map of your location, and storefront photos. Google Places also operates as a business review tool, providing yet another way for happy customers to rate your service and share your business with their friends.

Helpful links from this section: Qype, Tipped, Yelp, TouchLocal for London, BView, Rated People, and Google Places.

Read Tip 1: Get a website

Read Tip 2: Learn the ins and outs of Google

Read Tip 3: Understand and measure who is using your site

Read Tip 4: Engage through social media

Read Tip 5: Blog to bolster your authority

Read Tip 7: Remember that paid search doesn’t need to break the bank