The Internet and Small Business Marketing.

by J.Crawford on January 1, 2009

How can the Internet help my small business?

Before jumping into a world of gadgetry and technology a serious entrepreneur will likely have asked this question. The answers you may find, not clearly forthcoming, and a costs structure as vague as a classic car restoration.

So how can the Internet help your small business.  The first, and obvious to those who are “in”, is adding perceived value.  Often overlooked or at least shuffled into second place due to “market reach” or “branding”, communicating value is a job for the Internet does well.

What are some ways you can communicate value?

The transparency, for instance, that a small business blog offers can easily give a customer or client a sneak peak into your processes and challenges to deliver your product or service.

Its about changing perception.  Think of it this way.  Wouldn’t you agree a person who has watched a program or reviewed a website that covers the production of an automobile would have a greater appreciation for the end cost to the consumer.

When a customer is invited to dig deeper the will likely find their own reasons to buy.  Stripping commercialism and the marketing suit from your small business blog can have the desired effect more often than trying to manipulate the experience.  Also showing the “human” side of your company, the families, the successes, and the struggles often helps create a sense of ownership before a purchase is made.

The end product approach shoved in the customers face is getting dry and customers are responding differently.  Show ‘um how, they already have already decided on what.  Instead of hold the diamond in a different angle to the light, tell them the story of creating our supply chain.  Better yet, get your supply chain to tell it!

Imagine the shift in customer awareness when they were invited to look into the ore mines that the steel is fashioned from, and then the forge, and various distribution journeys that many of the parts must take.  Maybe a diagram of the parts coming into the end manufacturing plant from places around the globe.  And then finally the special processes you and your company use to deliver a quality product.  In this case a car.

Its endless really, in the methods used, but rest assured the Interenet is a great platform that your potential customers will USE.  On their own time, in their own way. 

Don’t be afraid to drop the sales pitch.  You have salesman and marketing brochures for that, and you don’t need another one.  Getting different results requires a different approach, not a new medium for the same old, same old.

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