For today’s businesses, having a strong online presence is a vital part of every marketing strategy. It doesn’t matter what industry you belong to or what the size of your business is, merely having a website just doesn’t cut it anymore.
Creating your business’s online presence is necessary to connect your message to the right people, and win more customers as a result. So, where do you begin?
Most organizations start by putting strategies and tools in place, using SEO to light the way. Which is smart – while it’s not easy to do, a recent study by Chitika shows that getting your business to rank organically on the first page of Google is well worth the effort.
But getting your business to rank requires more than just a good marketing strategy and SEO tactics. It takes nuance, too.
Overnight success is a myth. Successfully building and growing a business’s online presence doesn’t just happen at the drop of a hat. And while there are plenty of things you can do to strengthen your reach and grow, it’s the subtleties that truly set your business apart online.
In fact, for most businesses, finding success online has less to do with tools and tactics used and more with who they are and how they execute.
Let’s dive in.
To create a successful online presence for your business, you’ve got to:
1. Be dedicated
As the ancient proverb goes: You want it, you got it.
Before you can build your business’s online presence, you’ve got to want to succeed. Entrepreneurs are made and broken by this attribute. Dedication is a willingness to put in the long hours and the (hopefully proverbial) blood, sweat and tears to get where you want to be.
To do it right, you need balance. All work and no play don't just make Jack a dull boy; it also gives him burnout. And when a business leader is burnt out, the business starts to fizzle, too.
Here are a few ways you can stay vigilant and avoid burnout
- Always keep your end goal in mind. Once you’ve set realistic goals for your business, everything you do should align with that end.
- Make time to GSD. Prioritize what’s most important to achieve your ultimate goal.
- Don’t discount the smaller victories. It’s easy to get frustrated and feel like you’re getting nowhere if you don’t have milestones in place.
- Remember to take breaks. When you’re feeling tired or unmotivated, give yourself some time to renew your energy and start fresh.
Dedication is a one-day-at-a-time process. Use these to accomplish more every day.
2. Be flexible
It’s a fact that the Internet is an ever-changing landscape with many moving parts.
When you do business online, you’re bound to battle with uncertainty and have more than a few curveballs thrown your way. Even so, because everything is so fast-paced online, it’s a great place for businesses to be. There are tons of avenues and channels for us to explore and potentially reach new audiences.
When it comes to growing your reach online, flexibility is crucial. It takes a lot of flexibility to be willing to try out new things, be okay if they fail and not let the failure define you. At HeadsUp, we rely on an agile approach to marketing to get things done – and one of the core principles of agile revolves around not being afraid to risk failure.
Being agile isn’t about risking failure so much as it is about knowing to take what you’ve learned from your failures and apply them to your next endeavor.
3. Be proactive
This final piece is necessary for you to see your online presence take root and grow. Organic growth can take months. If you only sit back and wait for the results to pour in, chances are you’ll get frustrated a lot more quickly than you’ll get conversions.
This is where it pays to be proactive. To get momentum building in your favor, you’ll need to start reaching out on your own. Come up with an outreach process that aligns with your end goal and start executing it. Get yourself out there: whether it’s through email outreach, making phone calls or attending networking events.
So, yes – when it comes to growing your business online, it helps to have Inbound marketing and SEO strategies in your corner. These are incredibly useful tools to develop your message. But you need to have the more intangible stuff, too.
You need to be dedicated to following through with what you set out to do, have the flexibility to adapt to the ever-changing space online and be proactive. Putting yourself in front of prospects and those you want to do business with is intimidating… but it’s also worth it.
Outside of using the right tools, dedication, flexibility, and a proactive spirit will help you shape your business’s online presence and find success in what your organization is doing online.
Editor's Note: This post was initially published in April 2017 and has been updated for clarity and accuracy.