A Successful Business Person Wears many Hats!
A business person needs to wear many hats to run a successful business. For instance running a restaurant means more than just hiring and producing good quality food. You’ll need to understand finances in order to have the money to buy your supplies, pay your employees, bills, taxes and so on. You must also be able to manage people with differing personalities and work ethics. You’re also part designer; after all a seafood restaurant won’t sell much seafood with a Mexican décor!
Marketing Your Business
Oh wait there is one more thing……………..MARKETING your new business! After all if you don’t market your business how will people even know you exist. While there are many forms of of marketing you can choose from there are four in particular that form a well rounded relationship. In fact they create a rather symbiotic relationship between them with each part playing a supporting role. Now I’m not talking about a “symbiote” like Teal’c from Stargate SG1 had in himself, but the relationship is much the same.
Local SEO – Google+ Local
With Local SEO you’ll want to claim the free business listing that Google gives all brick and mortar business which allows the business owner the opportunity to upload pictures or their business. You can also add video’s, announce special deals, give your hours of operation, a link back to your website and allows others to post reviews of your business. If you haven’t claimed your listing yet do a search for your business name in Google and look for your listing.
Onsite SEO – Optimizing your business website
While I’m not going to go into all the details of optimizing a personal business website here I will say it’s important to make sure you have good content on your site. Also be sure to have a good title tag and that doesn’t mean a title tag of “Home” for your home page! If you’re a seafood restaurant in Seattle then maybe a title tag such as “Pepys Seafood Bar & Grill Seattle WA” could work. In reality it takes some keyword research to get it just right, but needless to say having proper SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for every page on your site is very important to getting good rankings in the search engines.
Social Media Marketing – FaceBook, Twitter etc
Getting the word out on social media sites can be a great and cheap way to get customers through the doors. I’ve seen on some of those chef shows on TV where the restaurant folks good up a bunch of samples of their food then go to a busy part of town and give away free samples with fliers letting people know about the restaurant. The fliers can have your FaceBook page and Twitter account information where you can let people know if they “Like” your FB page they can get a free desert or something like that and those likes will show up in their own FB pages which all their friends then see. Of course again there is a lot more to using social media marketing, but that’s a quick example of the possibilities.
Reputation Marketing and or Management
When all is said and done the one thing that may be the most important of all is your reputation. Did you know that 9 out of 10 consumers trust “earned media” such as referrals and reviews? Ben Franklin once said “It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it”. Think about this; if your restaurant looks great, your website is ranking high in the search engines, you have lots of people friending you on FaceBook, but the reviews on your Google+ Local page and other review sites are giving you poor ratings because your staff is rude, your food is bland and your prices are too high then none of these other things are going to matter. The reason is that studies have shown that 80% of people do a search online before buying and they are specifically looking for online reviews. You’ll want to be monitoring your reputation online because what you don’t know can certainly hurt you.
Symbiotic Relationship between Onsite SEO, Local SEO, Social & Reputation Management is one you can not afford to ignore. A successful business owner can’t afford to drop the ball on the other aspects of their business (people, finances, inventory, etc) and that same mindset must be matched when it comes to the marketing side of their business as well.
-Stephen C. Dayton