There’s a small family-owned café, a business that has been a staple in the community for years. They open at seven o’clock every morning, excited to see some new faces and old. The employees always ask how you’re doing, and will always have your order ready before you arrive. Their fresh baked goods are the best in town where you had to make sure you got there early; otherwise, they would be sold out. The cafe relied on the good word of people referring them to their friends and family, which allowed them to remain operational, giving them enough business to get by.
All of a sudden, it was the middle of March 2020, and the aroma didn’t seem as strong anymore. There were significantly fewer customers, almost none in fact, very little laughter, and it seemed as if the cafe was forgotten about. With no online presence, it seemed as if the small shop didn’t even exist anymore because people were staying at home.
It was May 15, 2020, and a regular customer decided to put on a mask, distance from people and walk over to their favourite cafe only to notice a sign on the front door that said:
Closed for business permanently. We will dearly miss you all and will never forget the last twenty years serving you. Stay safe. All the best.
The world is a different place. For businesses, it’s become survival of the fittest. Or has it?
The example of the small family-owned café has become a relatable reality for many small business owners who have relied on word-of-mouth marketing for years.
They never had to rely on the internet for business; to them, it was all just complimentary business. The reality for every business right now is that if you’re not marketing online, then there’s a good chance your business will face the same fate as the cafe.
Ranking TOP 3 on Google Maps
Open up the “Google Maps” app on your phone and type in a keyword related to your industry.
Where does your business show up? How many businesses do you see before you see yours?
The way Google determines the ORGANIC order of the businesses that show up is with web presence and trust, not who pays the most. This is what’s called Local SEO.
With COVID-19 isolating people at home, they have no choice but to “Google” certain products and services. Now when people search, it’s been proven that the top 3 businesses on Google get 75.1% of clicks.
Remember, there are many variations of keywords, categories, and phrases that you have to take into consideration, but right now, you HAVE to be marketing locally in order to gain steady business.
What Does Your Social Media Look Like?
If you’re reading this header and thinking, “social media only produces ‘cheap’ leads,” chances are that you did ads or posted a photo once and expected people to become customers because of that.
If done properly, social media can be a very powerful marketing tool.
Well, this should be a no-brainer, but Instagram is a phenomenal selling tool as it’s all about visuals! Every business in the world has a specific product/service, and with more people at home physically distancing, they are using Instagram more than ever to validate a business/purchase decision.
Now keep in mind it’s a lot more than just post a photo; there’s a lot of factors that go into ensuring that you’re getting real business from Instagram.
It’s not just for selfies and millennials. It’s now become your online storefront, so make sure it looks good.
We’ve all used Facebook Marketplace at some point, and we all know how effective it can be if done properly. It’s emerged as the new Kijiji in most cases, and during quarantine has become one of the primary ways customers will judge your business and its credibility. Running ads is a great way to show everyone your post for two days, but you’re not a two-day business. Targeting a specific demographic 24/7 will ensure great results in a timely fashion.
Not a primary source for clientele, but the viral effect it has with some businesses is un-ignorable. Twitter is all about being consistent with activity, and the more you expose in the right areas, the more your web presence grows!
Like your personal professional profile, it’s important to have a professional profile for LinkedIn. Your LinkedIn adds credibility to your business that you are actually operational. A smaller role but a massive role, as not having a LinkedIn can sometimes deter customers outside of the hospitality/food industry.
While the café was a fan favorite for many, it didn’t adapt to the times. The world has changed but not ended. A strong Google presence leads to a good first impression; once that impression is made, your social media will show a customer the “human-aspect” of your business. We can’t tell you enough about how many of our clients have told us about getting business from their online presence. After becoming a customer, they’ve created ample referral customers by simply sharing that profile with their network.
We hope you’re all staying safe, practicing social distancing, and pivoting instead of pausing with your marketing efforts.