Why should I have an online presence for my business? Well an Online Presence includes having a website, some social media accounts, posting content and interacting with people. So by the very nature of what an online presence is, there are numerous reasons that an online presence can benefit your business.
Did you miss our article clarifying this? Check out: What is an Online Presence
But WHY should I have an online presence for my business? Especially if I’m:
- a brick and mortar business that does everything else offline
- a home-based business doing home parties and were given a corporate affiliate website
- a home-based business who creates hand-made products that you only sell at craft markets or trade shows
- an author selling through Amazon with an Author Profile Page all setup
Not all businesses want to, or need to, sell online. So why should I have an online presence?
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Think of an online presence the same way as you would think of networking, trade shows, and marketing strategies. It’s simply another means of getting in front of your customers and prospects.
It’s pretty rare for a business to open their doors and then sit back and do nothing while they wait for customers to come walking through the door or phoning them.
I can recall the old days of starting a new business. I would start by focusing on print materials and various directories. I’d make sure I was listed in the phone book, maybe the yellow pages, I’d print business cards, some additional flyers and brochures; then I’d do some mail outs, run an ad in my local newspaper and make sure that all my friends, family and anyone who would listen, knew that I’d opened a business.
In reality, the traditional methods of generating awareness and a “presence” is quite expensive and often rather time consuming.
Then there were the face-to-face meet ups! Not only did I have all the prep-time of what I wanted to take with me and planning what I hoped to achieve, but I also had to load up the car, travel to the location, unload the car, engage in some general mingling while waiting for things to get started; then there was the actual face-to-face time, followed by the wrap-up, saying good byes, packing up, travelling back to my office, unloading the car and putting everything away. This would often result in a 30 minute meet up taking a good 2-3 hours of my time (or more).
When you consider it from this angle, leveraging an online presence for your networking and certain forms of marketing can be a massive savings in time and money.
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When you “meet up” with someone online (aka: virtually) you don’t need to have business cards or brochures printed out to hand to each individual. Instead you can share a single digital file with as many people as you want. Or you can send any number of people to a specific page of your website. You only need one digital copy of the material and you only need to create it once.
There’s no packing up or travel time involved and you can have more meaningful conversations with far more people in that same 2-3 hours than a face-to-face could ever allow for because for more than half the time you’re not even connecting with people. Whereas online you can be.
It’s also much easier to sneak in 15 minutes of effective virtual networking pretty much any time in your schedule that works for you. You really don’t have that kind of option offline.
But the major consideration in answering the question: WHY should I have an online presence for my business is simply because your customers are online. And the golden rule of marketing is to be where your customers are.
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We’ve had people argue that “not everyone is online” and they’re right. The Internet doesn’t have a 100% adoption rate. However, offline tactics also don’t have the ability to reach 100% of prospects.
We’re not saying abandon all offline practices and convert to online 100%. Not at all. We’re simply saying that an online presence is something every business needs to have in addition to their other practices and in SOME cases perhaps in lieu of some of their other practices.
Why leave money on the table when it can be some of the low hanging fruit that could give your business a little boost here and there. It’s an incredibly efficient way to reach and connect with your prospects and customers on multiple levels.
Up next in Fundamentals:
How will an online presence benefit my business?
Gain even more with our Facebook Group
To offer the most possible benefit to you on this journey, we’ve also setup a closed Facebook Group that we invite you to join, where you’ll be in a safe and friendly environment, surrounded by supportive people just like you. So go ahead and join our Facebook Group with the link below:
Getting Going Online Facebook Group
Get started with right tools!
Every Online Presence needs to have eye-catching images and graphics. But not everyone is a photographer or a graphic designer. Fortunately, we have a solution and the awesome part is that it’s FREE. We’ve put together a free course that will teach you right from step 1 how to use a web-based application called Canva, which is a free tool. This course will make sure that you’re setup for success right from the start and we include some valuable resources on where to get images, completely for free, to get you started without delay.
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