Small Business Owners are constantly trying to share their story. Who they are, What they do, and what makes them special. They tell any number of people in the hopes of connecting with prospects in need of their offering. When you visit their website, there are no indications of any ‘unique selling propositions’. No mention of successful case studies or client ‘wins’. The time invested in multiple networking groups is minimal to the amount of time people can engage your online presence. I beg the question, ‘What’s Your Story?’
I’ve been going to numerous Networking groups, meetups, lectures, etc… while trying to engage business owners in the hopes of sharing my service. Both civic, commercial, and philanthropic groups have been researched, joined, and lurked to determine what the best way to build my business is. This encompasses not only Arlington Heights, but Cook and DuPage Counties also. I see hundreds of people a month and see nominal return on these efforts.
The primary returns of personal networking are:
I can measure ¾ of those items listed above, but Increased Awareness doesn’t really have a metric, and what product or service am I measuring for. In addition, at the end of the month, how many people do I have to see to generate one phone call? What about the number of people to produce a face to face meeting? Like all marketing, these things take time and I don’t recommend eliminating networking as an important part of your Marketing Mix.
I personally advocate a strategy that leverages web development and engagement in social media to create content targeted at your ideal consumer. You know, the person that is a loyal advocate of your brand, someone who spends significant amount of their time engaged with your products or services, and also has the disposable income to become a paying customer. Create client personas around a few of your existing ideal customers and start to think how someone similar to that would find information about your business using search and social media.
I hope you are beginning to understand. In today’s environment, people are inundated with information about products, services, pop culture, politics, etc… How are you going to stand out amongst the volume of information. With more control over the content they read, just having a website online isn’t enough to draw people in.
So I’ll ask again, ‘What’s Your Story?’ Is that what people are seeing when they visit your website? Does your ‘digital profile’ accurately depict who you are, what you do, and what makes you special. If not, then why are you steering people there?