With all this talk of doom and gloom there is a bright spot in the US, and perhaps global economy. The social web.
By adapting existing marketing and public relations strategies to include social media, your company can stay in the forefront and on the minds of spend-weary consumers.
Here are four areas businesses need to look at to help improve their competitiveness and ensure a softer landing out of the recession:
- Improve your website’s user interface. This may be a costly endeavor, but that depends entirely on your existing site and how many improvements you need. Never the less, cost should not impede redesign efforts if your website is not structured in the most user-friendly manner. How do you know if your site is user-friendly or not? Ask your customers. You cannot afford to drive consumers away and miss the few opportunities that remain, because of a horrid web site.
- It’s a good time for SEO and SEM. We’ve all seen the numbers on where online advertising is going compared to other channels. Radio, print and television advertising dollars are going down, while online is going to stay relatively positive. The reason is simple: people are using the internet more to search for the things they want and need. What’s more, they are not just using their computer to search – they are using their phones as well, which makes search even more critical than ever before. By implementing some basic SEO techniques on your website, and running a few SEM campaigns, you can start to build on your brand and content.
- Which brings us to #3 – content. Businesses need to start producing content. If every core marketing professionals job is to create demand around their company’s products or services, then there has to be some content that can be produced. Everyone from a technologist to a dry-cleaner has a story to tell. Now is the time to tell your story.
- Lastly, we come to email marketing. If you do a good job segmenting your email and not overloading people with irrelevant messages, email marketing remains, pound for pound, the most cost-effective marketing tool you can utilize today. With a variety of email distribution tools out there (I use ConstantContact) at affordable rates for any size business, you should look at improving both the quantity and quality of your outbound marketing via email.
I realize this is just a start. I will look to add more ideas over the next few weeks. In the meantime, please feel free to comment or offer your own ideas. Tweet me via Twitter at: http://twitter.com/hackmer