Occasionally the ROI Hunters are asked to provide newsletter articles for their clients. Below is an example we provided for Here-4-You Consulting. We always want our clients to succeed, after all hunting ROI is not for the selfish.
I would like to begin with a simple question. “If no one knows you are there, will they ever find you?” As leaders of our organizations, we have learned that we must go beyond the simple act of ‘putting out a shingle’. We have learned that phone book listings, TV commercials, newspaper space, billboards, and other means are needed to create public awareness that we are ready to meet their needs. What happens if a new way of locating your company suddenly becomes available to the public and begins replacing the old methods? The internet and its tools are becoming crucial in business and companies can no longer ignore or refuse to embrace it. The numbers alone should convince you of this.
First some statistics
According to Nielson/NetRatings there is a 135,827,206 active at-home Internet audience. This number does not include the folks that use company resources for internet activities. In another study, DoubleClick estimates that 30% of all active internet users utilize search engines on a daily basis to conduct research on products and services, or to satisfy their information needs. That is approximately 40 MILLION people each day searching for products and services, maybe a product or service that your organization offers! So what are these 40 million people doing?
Searching for products or services
Studies show that the internet is replacing traditional means of identifying companies and providing information about their products and services. People are first turning to their internet connected computers to fulfill their information gathering needs. Since the internet is so vast and expansive, these users have become dependant on aggregators of information, or often called search engines. These search engines traverse the internet cataloging everything they come across and can help searchers find people, places, and things.
As an example, let us say your organization is an adoption agency. A phrase that is often associated with your service is ‘adoption agency’. I can tell you that this phrase is searched about 2692 times per day. The search using that specific phrase pre-qualifies the person and thus is a perfect prospect for your agency. A company that uses this internet tool wisely can gain significant interest in their services.
So what should your organization do?
We are beyond the days of “build it and they will come!” Since the internet is beginning to replace other forms of locating your company, it is important that your web site be designed to support your organization’s goals while also making sure you can be found. Here are the items we often ask our prospects or clients to focus on when beginning down the path of internet marketing.
- Understand and measure all your tactics of generating new leads or prospects so that you can adjust spending levels, as some will prove more successful then others.
- Set goals for each, and especially the web site as it should compliment all your other methods.
- Build the web site so that it causes action – no use having someone show up at your door and having him or her walk away not knowing what to do next.
- Build the web site so that it can be found – internet search engines are powerful tools and should be considered when designing web sites and web pages.
- Consider email marketing – if possible, you want to keep an open line of communications with your visitors and valuable clients, so having a monthly newsletter or special announcements is the best way.
The internet can be intimidating, but should not be avoided. Each day more people are becoming dependant on the internet as a key and primary source of information. Companies that avoid investing in this area risk the chance of losing their future clients, donors, and customers to their competitors. Spend some time thinking about the phrases people associates with your products and services. Using those phrases you have identified, see if you can locate your company with your favorite search engine. You may be shocked or surprised.