Free Webinar will present proactive approaches to managing Customer Ratings and Reviews
May 7, 2012 (Birmingham, MI/Houston, TX): Melih Oztalay, CEO of Smartfinds Internet Marketing (http://www.smartfindsgeographicmarketing.com) and Paul Segreto, CEO of franchisEssentials (http://www.FMDpro.com), will present a webinar discussing Customer Ratings and Review Management for businesses. Interested parties can register at https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/875579678 for the May 22, 2012 one hour free webinar.
6 in 10 consumers make their buying decisions based on the experiences from your customers who have posted their ratings about your business and their reviews about the experience they have with your staff, products and services.
In addition search engines are and will be basing their decision to rank a local business listing or website based on the star ratings, which are quantitative and make for a easy mathematical equation.
How does a business manage this very overwhelming problem when there are over 200+ websites and databases in geographic marketing for local business listings for consumers to post their ratings and reviews?
Smartfinds Internet Marketing (http://www.smartfindsgeographicmarketing.com), an Internet Marketing pioneer for more than 20 years and leader in web marketing including Geographic Web Marketing and Local Web Marketing, will present the issue and solutions by Melih Oztalay, CEO of SmartFinds Internet Marketing.
“As a web marketing agency working in an ever changing environment of web technologies and requirements, we have to find solutions that will support businesses not only in their search engine rankings, but also in their online reputation.” said Melih Oztalay, Smartfinds CEO.
franchisEssentials (http://www.FMDpro.com) CEO, Paul Segreto, and Founder at both the FranchisEssentials Media Group and FranSummit, brings unique perspective, entrepreneurial spirit and extensive industry experience to franchise management, marketing and development. For over twenty years he has exclusively served the franchise industry as consultant and coach, senior-level corporate executive, advocate, multi-unit franchisee and area developer.
“We have been experiencing growing concerns over customer ratings and reviews over the past 5 years, since they were first introduced to the internet community by franchise owners.” said Paul Segreto, franchisEssentials CEO.
The webinar event will be recorded and available for download after the event for all registrants. While we will have a focus on franchise owners, businesses in general are invited to learn more about the proactive approaches to managing customer ratings and reviews. The idea of passively waiting for customers to control your businesses online reputation is no longer an option.
You can register and learn more at https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/875579678.
About Smartfinds Internet Marketing
The most critical element of SmartFinds Internet Marketing services is the creativity and imagination to apply the technological aspects of the digital marketplace to the marketing objectives of a particular business. Initial research provides SmartFinds the ability to develop a digital strategy that can be measured every step of the way to insure business growth and revenue generation. Some of SmartFinds’ clients have included ComForcare Home Care, Delphi, Flagstar Bank, Guardian Industries, McCann Erickson, Penske Automotive Group, Soave Enterprises, Wendy’s, Ziebart and others. You can learn more about SmartFinds at http://www.smartfindsmarketing.com and their Geographic Marketing website at http://www.smartfindsgeographicmarketing.com
Dedicated to franchise success at all levels, franchisEssentials CEO, Paul Segreto consults with founders and franchise executives of start-up and emerging franchise concepts, current franchisees experiencing difficult challenges in their daily operations, and with independent small business owners discovering franchising as a business expansion strategy or income diversification plan.
Understanding the franchise sales process from lead generation through franchise award, and the importance of forming an interdependent relationship between franchisee and franchisor, Paul has successfully developed and executed marketing and development strategies for franchisors across a variety of franchise segments. As franchise candidates and consumers have become more sophisticated and technologically advanced, Paul has embraced social technology and social media marketing, and has identified both as essential to future franchise growth at all levels.
Filed under: Blogroll
, Franchise Business Marketing
, Franchise Marketing
, Geographic Marketing
, Google Places
, Internet Marketing
, Local Business Listings
, Search Engines
Google has been allowing for web pages to be previewed before clicking on a search result for quite some time since 2010. Equally we have seen a number of changes taking place during 2011 in Local Business Listings from Google’s Places and Maps. These changes have include the removal of third party reviews, layout changes to what information is viewable and a strong focus on securing ratings and reviews.
Google Places results which provide local results before national results now received the instant preview feature too and are displayed on the first page of the search results. This is a new functionality that will further encourage and require businesses to take control of their Local Business Listings to insure local customers get the marketing information the business wishes to provide.
What is probably more important is has been enhanced with multiple layouts and provides the searcher more information than the organic results of general websites. You can hover over a Google Places listing and see everything from Maps to Videos, Photos and more in the right column. What is probably more surprising is that the ads are replaced with the preview information. The implications of the Adwords Ads being replaced with the preview information certainly has other implications that we will have to discuss separately.
The following information is provided by Google’s Instant help page:
- Before Google Instant, the typical searcher took more than 9 seconds to enter a search term, and we saw many examples of searches that took 30-90 seconds to type.
- Using Google Instant can save 2-5 seconds per search.
- If everyone uses Google Instant globally, we estimate this will save more than 3.5 billion seconds a day. That’s 11 hours saved every second.
- 15 new technologies contribute to Google Instant functionality.
Let’s take a look at the information included in the instant preview of Google Places Local Business Listing.
While the general search results always show a map with all Google Places Local Business Listings, if you hover over a listing you will see only the listing you are hovering over. The map links to Google Maps where you can then obtain more details including directions.
Customer Ratings and Reviews
Recent studies have shown how 6 in 10 customers make their buying decisions based on what has been posted to the local business listings. Of course this goes well beyond Google and becomes equally important to insure satisfied customers have posted positive ratings and reviews while the business manages the process of tending to negative ratings and reviews too.
Images, Photos, Videos, Coupons, Offers, Promotions
This is where the marketing content a business provides within their Google Places Local Business Listings for their local store becomes very important. Whether it is products, services, advertisements, coupons, offers, discounts, etc. Taking the initiative to secure your local business listings by claiming them and then managing them with regularity.
Probably not as well known is the panoramic photo that is provided by Google for that businesses address. You can get a 360-degree view of the area by hovering over this panoramic photo. Some street view images have one for the interior while others only for the exterior. Eventually this will play into the integration of Google Places with Google Earth.
Web Page Preview
If Google can identify a web page for the business, the thumbnail of the business web page is displayed. This thumbnail appears to be a live snapshot and is directly linked to the web site. From a marketing perspective this the first impression a prospective customer will have with the business.
Additional Details Included
Prices, Hours of Operation, Public Transport, Reservations, Menus, Feedback to Google, Report a Problem, and links to additional third party ratings and review websites. Of course not everything here is applicable to all businesses and are displayed based on the information provided from the Google Places Business Management Console.
As you can imagine the instant preview gives user the ability to “view” without having to click and this will directly impact the number the click through rate (CTR) of any individual listing. Most likely the CTR will go down in this case.
With the ongoing changes by Google to the search results page along with the Google Places Local Business Listing, the industry continues to push hard for businesses to not only manage their local business listings, but to start focusing on store level marketing and store level reputation management (aka public relations). We can expect to see more changes and requiring businesses to add the appropriate policies and procedures to include this area as part of their web marketing strategies.
Certainly your time resources are limited and Geographic Marketing Solutions for multi-location companies are provided by Smartfinds Internet Marketing. Let the experts of over 17 years Internet marketing experience help you use this local business marketing tool properly through monthly management marketing services and broadcast data services for mass business data distribution.
Smartfinds Internet Marketing
330 East Maple Road #503, Birmingham, MI 48009
Toll-Free: (866) 501-5758
Fax: (866) 501-5758
We certainly agree with the comments made in LinkedIn groups wondering why car dealerships are not getting the volume of leads they used to or the quality of leads they used to from national lead generators. Our own experience with Penske car dealerships have seen very similar results from national lead generators. Leads from the OEM websites, the dealerships own website, Google Adwords far exceed that coming from national lead generators.
We need to augment and expand on the discussions in LinkedIn automotive groups and break them up into three major groups. There is no one silver bullet to answer “why”, rather there are multiple elements that make up the total answer.
1. Search Engines
Search engine maps and their listings have been evolving since 2007. By the end of 2008 they were in the first page search results. Unfortunately, the financial meltdown that caused many businesses to hold on their budgets in 2009 and most of 2010 kept them away from seeing the evolution and maturity of the Local Business Listings as a marketing tool to reach local consumers.
At the end of 2010 major changes from Google pushed local results before national results. This includes geo-tagged web pages / web sites and local business listings (aka Google Places and aka the interactive yellow pages).
An organic web marketing strategy has to focus more on local over national with websites, web pages, micro website strategies, and local business listings. Please note this is about “marketing” not “advertising”…web marketing has a shelf life of years! …web advertising has shelf life of a few seconds and only good as long as you put money into it.
Two Google issues also play into using local business listings:
A. Google Places is not about what you do on Google, but also Google validating your information on other websites, known as citations. Too many companies focus only on Google Places and can’t understand why it doesn’t work.
B. Amongst various data point, one of the data point Google ranks local listings on is customer ratings and reviews. It is important to actively manage these, not only for negative ones, but securing positive ones and facilitating positive re-enforcement.
2. Mobile Marketing
Mobile searches have not only been increasing in usage, but the searches are showing better quality of leads. We are seeing this in our managed Google Adwords campaigns in which mobile clicks are outperforming non-mobile clicks and are also costing less. An Google Adwords strategy that encompasses keywords, ad extensions, image ads, and also are all equally prepared for mobile, will show better results than national 3rd party lead generators.
3. Hyperlocal Advertising
Hyperlocal Advertising is the next main growing element in reaching local consumers. Ex-newspapers journalists have been opening up their own city or neighborhood websites with local news and information. Larger entities like AOL have been growing their Patch.com websites and this industry also includes websites like Examiner.com. Amongst the local journalist and these national hyperlocal sites consumers are responding very well to them and in fact have browsers opening to them as their initial home page.
Focusing on editorials and advertising (text, image or banners) becomes part of the web strategy in reaching local consumers for local stores. Particularly for national companies with stores nationwide whose business revenue is dependent upon the local consumer.
If you look at all three elements (Search Engines, Mobile Marketing and Hyperlocal Advertising) we will see that there is no one single answer as to why national 3rd party lead generators are not as effective. Perhaps had the 2008 global financial bankruptcy not happened and business continued as usual, many businesses would have realized these changes much sooner.
The ongoing evolution, maturation and technology changes/additions that takes place on the web create a very dynamic and fluid environment that is not necessarily comforting to business. Nothing is ever stagnant and one has to always adopt technologies early to take advantage of reaching consumers that have no problem adopting technology changes earlier than business. Unfortunately, business tends to take its time in making these decisions and also expect that their investment in “one thing” will continue forever. Neither which is true or good for the business.
For this reason it all comes down to ongoing education and communications focusing on the marketing processes versus just executing silvers of technology tasks. The difference between a marketing agency versus a technology company is well apparent because of the communications. Marketing agencies are focused on pushing ideas and marketing strategies with ongoing communications with clients. Technology companies tend to wait for orders from their customers, who unfortunately, many not know what they should request or what they are requesting.
Certainly your time resources are limited and Geographic Marketing Solutions for multi-location companies are provided by Smartfinds Internet Marketing. Let the experts of over 17 years Internet marketing experience help you use local business marketing for national company stores through monthly managed marketing services, broadcast data services for mass business data distribution, and our Mobile Locations Finder mobile app.
Smartfinds Internet Marketing
330 East Maple Road #503, Birmingham, MI 48009
Toll-Free: (866) 501-5758
Fax: (866) 501-5758
“What’s the Online Buzz?” is the third and final installment of the DMCVB membership educational series focusing on business ratings and reviews by local customers
September 26, 2011 (Birmingham, MI): Smartfinds Internet Marketing (http://www.smartfindsmarketing.com ), an Internet Marketing pioneer for more than 20 years and leader in web marketing including geographic marketing has been invited as the guest speaker for the Detroit Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau’s (DMCVB, http://www.visitdetroit.com) educational series for their members. The event focuses on learning how to manage the business online reputation at the local geographic level.
“As our Geographic Marketing Solution and Services has expanded over the past years, we have had to engage in helping businesses not just monitor, but also manage their ratings and reviews being posted by their local customers in the business’ local business listing,” said Melih Oztalay, Smartfinds CEO. “Geographic web marketing is a fast growing industry making it easy for local customers to post their positive or negative experiences with a local business store either through a web browser or through a mobile phone. Knowing how to approach the process of managing these ratings and reviews is an important factor to insure continued business to the local store by future prospects.”
The DMCVB’s 2011 Membership Educational Seminar will end with “What’s the Online Buzz?” as the third and final installment in the membership educational series. In the blink of an eye customers can share their opinions and experiences online, and you need to be aware of what they’re saying about your business. Learn how to manage your online reputation with presenter Melih Oztalay, CEO of SmartFinds Internet Marketing. Melih and an all-star lineup of panelists will discuss the latest ways businesses are monitoring their social brand image, attracting new customers through favorable reviews, responding to criticism, turning negatives into golden opportunities, and more!
Following the presentation a panel will convene for open discussion that includes representatives from Yelp, Motor City Casino, and WDIV.
The event is held on Thursday, September 29, 2011, from 2 – 4 p.m., at the Best Western Plus Sterling Inn at 34911 Van Dyke Avenue, Sterling Heights, MI 48312. You must be a DMCVB member to attend. You can contact Angela Gillis at the DMCVB for further information by phone at (313) 202-1973.
Geographic web marketing as a solution for multi-location businesses from Smartfinds Internet Marketing expands not only beyond Google Places, but also encompasses other elements that include Geo Tagging, Citation Marketing, QR Code Marketing, Consumer Rating and Reviews Management along with a Mobile Locations Finder mobile application. Geographic Marketing is a way to attract local customers online through strategies that leverage a business’ physical location. When a local customer searches online via mobile, web or GPS, a map appears with business listings related to the search criteria. When fully leveraged with the company’s marketing content, pictures, logos, videos, events, coupons, promotions, customer reviews and more, it helps to create a micro website for the client across each of the search engines.
About Smartfinds Internet Marketing
The most critical element of SmartFinds Internet Marketing services is the creativity and imagination to apply the technological aspects of the digital marketplace to the marketing objectives of a particular business. Initial research provides SmartFinds the ability to develop a digital strategy that can be measured every step of the way to insure business growth and revenue generation. Some of SmartFinds’ clients have included ComForcare Home Care, Delphi, Flagstar Bank, Guardian Industries, Soave Enterprises, McCann Erickson, Penske Automotive Group, Wendy’s, Ziebart and others. You can learn more about SmartFinds at http://www.smartfindsmarketing.com .
About The Detroit Metropolitan Convention and Visitor’s Bureau
The Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau (DMCVB) is the only organization that promotes metro Detroit regionally, nationally and internationally as a convention, business meeting and tourism destination. To achieve this goal of soliciting and servicing the area’s second-largest industry, the DMCVB works with the Detroit and Windsor area business community, civic organizations and local government offices in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties. You can learn more about the DMCVB at http://www.visitdetroit.com .
New Release Contact
Melih Oztalay, CEO
Smartfinds Internet Marketing
Direct: (248) 568.2241
330 East Maple Road #503, Birmingham, MI 48009
Toll-Free: (866) 501-5758
More than 750 locations to offer local business listing management nationally.
July 13, 2011 (Birmingham, MI): Smartfinds Internet Marketing (http://www.smartfindsmarketing.com), an Internet Marketing pioneer for more than 20 years and leader in web marketing including geographic marketing has officially formed a strategic partnership with Proforma (PFG Ventures L.P., Cleveland, Ohio, http://www.proforma.com) as a Preferred Limited Partner. The partnership will allow for Smartfinds’ Geographic Marketing Solutions, as well as, local business listings monthly managed marketing services to be offered across more than 750 Proforma locations across the North America.
“We are thrilled to partner with Proforma to bring our geographic web marketing expertise and help their Owners to expand their portfolio of web marketing services,” said Melih Oztalay, Smartfinds CEO. “Geographic web marketing is a fast growing industry and it makes sense that Proforma offers their business clients (national and local) a valuable service that every business will need to attract local customers.”
Proforma’s 750 plus Owners are located across North America, offering business clients marketing related services including promotional products, printing services, multimedia and eCommerce. With the addition of geographic web marketing services, each of the Proforma locations will now be able to offer web marketing to attract local customers. Specifically, Proforma will offer their clients a packaged marketing service for their Local Business Listings at a lower partner preferred cost. The geographic marketing package includes both broadcast data submission services to over 200+ websites plus monthly managed marketing services with major websites including consumer ratings and reviews, marketing content, and measured rankings and analytics.
Geographic web marketing is a way to attract local customers online through strategies that leverage a business’ physical location. When a customer searches online via mobile, web or GPS, a map appears with business listings related to the search criteria. When fully leveraged with the company’s marketing content, pictures, logos, videos, events, coupons, promotions, customer reviews and more, it helps to create a micro website for the client across each of the search engines. Geographic web marketing as a solution expands not only beyond Google, but also encompasses other elements that include Geo Tagging, Citation Marketing, QR Code Marketing, Consumer Rating and Reviews Management.
“Our goal is to help Proforma’s clients maximize their marketing dollars for reaching local customers whether the business is a national company or a local company. Afterall all business is conducted locally,” said Mr. Oztalay. “Our marketing staff is experienced with creating and managing Geographic Marketing that help a business stand out, support higher rankings and build their local customer traffic online. Businesses adopting Geographic Marketing early will generate higher rankings as their competitors continue to fall behind in a fast moving industry segment.”
About Smartfinds Internet Marketing
The most critical element of SmartFinds Internet Marketing services is the creativity and imagination to apply the technological aspects of the digital marketplace to the marketing objectives of a particular business. Initial research provides SmartFinds the ability to develop a digital strategy that can be measured every step of the way to insure business growth and revenue generation. Some of SmartFinds’ clients have included ComForcare Home Care, Delphi, Flagstar Bank, Guardian Industries, Soave Enterprises, McCann Erickson, Penske Automotive Group, Wendy’s, Ziebart and others. You can learn more about SmartFinds at http://www.smartfindsmarketing.com.
PFG Ventures takes its customers’ businesses forward with Proforma. The company franchises more than 700 Proforma locations across the US and Canada, offering an array of office supplies (such as forms, labels, and stationery), customized promotional products, and printing and e-commerce services. The company has served more than 50,000 clients in a range of industries, including education, finance, food and beverage packaging, health care, manufacturing, and retail. Clients have included Honda, Beck’s, the University of Minnesota, and the New York State Nurses Association. After establishing Proforma in 1978, Gregory Muzzillo formed PFG Ventures in 1994 to help franchise the brand. http://www.proforma.com
New Release Contact
Melih Oztalay, CEO
Smartfinds Internet Marketing
Direct: (248) 568.2241
330 East Maple Road #503, Birmingham, MI 48009
Have you noticed the number of commercials being run by high-profile tier one companies and websites that are in the local listing industry?
For example you may have seen TV commercials for Angie’s List, SuperMedia, Yellow Book, and of course AT&T. If you add Internet advertising that includes but not limited to Google, Yahoo, Bing, Merchant Circle, Yelp and Citysearch many others, you have to start wondering how all these websites can attract a finite number of businesses and visitors to use their website. The other more significant question is how a business will manage their local business listing at all the local listing websites?
History of Local Business Listings
As a business, if you have not kept up with the evolution of local business listings you will need a quick primer to know where things started and where things are today.
The origins go back to the early 1990s when search engines had directories listing businesses by categories in addition to their basic search results. These basic business listings gave way to business directories giving the business the opportunity to add more information to their business. Of course, while this evolution was taking place so did having the yellow pages on the web. Business directories then gave way to the idea of rating a business with companies like Angie’s List, Merchant Circle and Yelp in social communities. In 2007 business listings began showing up in search engines and consumer reviews were already showing up in these local business listings.
So, in summary, a local business listing is a combination of yellow pages information, business description, business marketing information, consumer ratings and consumer reviews.
Local Business Listings as Interactive Yellow Pages
Calling these listings a business directory does not do them justice considering all the content that is available. Not only is this about getting your business marketing information into these listings, but they also become mini-websites for your business and more importantly allow consumers to quantitatively rate and subjectively provide commentary about their experience with the business, products and services.
Local business listing websites that are social communities allow customers and consumers to collaborate. We are distinguishing between customers being B2B and consumers being B2C. We will discuss B2B customer comments in a future article.
Live social communities that provide location based services like Four Square, Twitter and Facebook create instantaneous feedback to friends, family and followers alike. This collaboration not only allows for ratings and comments, but the information is posted permanently. This will require a business to ask satisfied customers to post commentary and manage those postings that are negative…..at multiple local listing websites.
Manage Your Local Business Listings Everywhere!
Unlike the traditional yellow pages where business information was located in a single source, the Internet lets business information be found everywhere. With so many sources, it becomes imperative for a business to stay on top of its information, description, marketing materials and consumer reviews at various local listing websites.
If you wonder why, the answer is simple. Your business information shows up in search engine results, mobile search results and is available to mobile application developers for mobile apps. Since you don’t know what source your local customers or mobile application developers are using, you need a way to manage many sources simultaneously.
Select a Company to Help
Whether we are talking about website local optimization, local business listings, mobile marketing or geo-social marketing, a business needs proper support to succeed in this new era of local business marketing. You need a partner with experience and expertise in multiple digital marketing fields and can adapt to the progression of new technologies that will become available over the next few years.
Some key elements for a company to provide local business listing marketing services include:
- Claim your local listing at multiple local listing websites
- Providing both data and marketing services
- Update your basic business data information monthly
- Update and manage your business marketing information that include photos, videos, coupons, offers, discounts, and events monthly
- Consumer review monitoring and management monthly
- Analytics review of local business listings analytics and the appropriate changes to your local business listings monthly
- Expertise in Mapping Technologies and GPS
Certainly your time resources are limited and Local Marketing Services are provided by SmartFinds Internet Marketing. You will find this to be of great benefit to your time resources and the low cost service may eliminate your yellow page ad costs. Let the experts of over 16 years Internet marketing experience help you use this local business marketing tool properly and prevent brand security issues from occurring.
Bill Hagen’s Out The Window Advertising partners with SmartFinds Internet Marketing to introduce businesses to the benefits and components of Geo-Marketing, including Geo-Listings, Mobile Marketing and Geo-Social Marketing
FLAGSTAFF, ARIZONA & DETROIT, MICHIGAN – July 28, 2010 (OUT THE WINDOW ADVERTISING | SMARTFINDS INTERNET MARKETING) – Out The Window Advertising (www.reachoutthewindow.com), a full service Arizona-based advertising agency, and SmartFinds Internet Marketing (www.smartfindsmarketing.com), a metropolitan Detroit-based agency which provides businesses with Internet marketing services and solutions, have recently partnered together to provide businesses with an opportunity to learn the many ways that Geo-Marketing can positively impact their bottom line.
The benefits and components of Geo-Marketing, include Local SEO, Geo-Listings, Mobile Marketing and Geo-Social Marketing. Geo-Marketing helps consumers to find local businesses, products or services through web searches, mobile searches and mobile applications. Geo-Listing Security, Consumer Reviews, and Reputation Management are additional components of the services offered.
“The partnership between Out The Window Advertising and SmartFinds Internet Marketing is an exciting opportunity to effectively introduce Geo-Marketing services to our clients,” commented Bill Hagen, President of Out The Window Advertising.
Most recently, Out The Window Advertising was ranked the 5th largest ad agency in Arizona by the Phoenix Business Journal. The team at Out The Window excels in the planning, development, placement, and creative execution of Television, Radio, Print, Direct Mail, e-commerce, social media and customer retention campaigns for over 90 clients nationwide.
Out The Window Advertising’s impressive client portfolio includes automotive dealerships. Commented agency President Bill Hagen, “Our car dealership clients are eagerly aware of the need for local marketing, local business marketing, and local dealership marketing.” Hagen added, “It’s interesting that the automotive industry relies on early adopters of automotive technology, and in the case of Geo-Marketing, car dealerships are themselves early adopters of Geo-Marketing technologies. The dealerships understand the importance of being found quickly by mobile and digital customers.”
SmartFinds Internet Marketing CEO, Melih Oztalay, stated “We are excited to partner with Bill Hagen and Out The Window Advertising in our effort to share the benefits of Geo-Marketing. We are currently working with Out The Window Advertising’s client base to claim and update local listings on behalf of 150+ car dealerships. Car dealerships are just one of many local businesses dependent upon local consumers for their revenue.”
Melih Oztalay has over fifteen years experience with Internet and digital services in developing strategies that utilize all facets of the World Wide Web. As a Internet marketing agency, SmartFinds Internet Marketing’s major focus is to develop multi-directional marketing campaigns to drive traffic to client web sites from more than just search engines.
Anyone interested in learning more about the ways in which businesses can use Geo-Marketing to be more easily located by local consumers may visit www.smartfindslocallisting.com. For more information about Out The Window Advertising, please visit www.reachoutthewindow.com.
About Out The Window Advertising
Out The Window Advertising was recently ranked the 5th largest ad agency in Arizona by the Phoenix Business Journal. The team at Out The Window excels in the planning, development, placement, and creative execution of Television, Radio, Print, Direct Mail, e-commerce, social media and customer retention campaigns for over 90 clients nationwide. For a true “one-stop shop,” Out The Window Advertising offers the use of their “In-House” production facility for all client projects. For more information about Out The Window Advertising, please visit www.reachoutthewindow.com.
About SmartFinds Internet Marketing
The most critical element of SmartFinds Internet Marketing services is the creativity and imagination to apply the technological aspects of the digital marketplace to the marketing objectives of a particular business. Initial research provides SmartFinds the ability to develop a digital strategy that can be measured every step of the way to insure business growth and revenue generation. Some of SmartFinds’ clients have included Delphi, Flagstar Bank, Guardian Industries, Soave Enterprises, Detroit Convention and Visitors Bureau, McCann Erickson, Wendy’s and others. You can learn more about SmartFinds at www.smartfindsmarketing.com.
Contact: Esther Lastacy, 330 E. Maple Road, Suite 503, Birmingham MI 48009, 866.501.5758, email@example.com.
As the local business listings on the Internet become a bigger local marketing tool for businesses, it is inevitable for all businesses in the U.S. to ultimately engage in this process. The question that arise is why will all businesses pursue local business listings as part of their local business marketing.
Certainly the simple answer is that any business – large or small – that is dependent upon the local geography for their revenue will be or has already sought out traditional yellow page alternatives. The Interactive “yellow pages” of the Internet, aka local business listings, allow for updates within any 24 hour period allowing the business marketing to change as the business changes.
Local business listings will help promote a local business to local consumers through web searches, mobile searches and mobile applications.
Please view the presentation below to elaborate further on additional reasons by local business listings will be an important factor in local business marketing.
Geo-Marketing (or Geographic Marketing) is a new method of marketing a business and its website through web searches, mobile searches and social media. As you can see, the geo-marketing tools being used are digital and through the Internet or Mobile devices.
While geo-marketing’s definition is the association of data and maps in the traditional sense, the added convergence of local business listings, mobile marketing, and social media makes this method of marketing more powerful than ever before. This marketing tool is no longer just a large business marketing tool, but is available to small and medium size businesses too.
We should define what we mean by local business. A local business is any sized business dependent on the local consumer for its revenue. This means you could be a national company like Home Depot, U-Haul, or Best Buy or you could be a local florist or independent store only known to your local geography.
From a technical standpoint an Internet user’s IP address is tied to GPS data, like longitudes and latitudes, which are mapped with technology to geographies around the world down to the city and street level. While all this data may seem overwhelming, the good news is that most businesses do not need to concern themselves with this part of geo-marketing. Many of the tools already have all of this information built into their software or hardware technology so we can stay focused on how we will use geo-marketing tools.
The difficulty with any new marketing tool is a business’s inability to adopt the methodology early. When it comes to technologies and the Internet, in the past, by the time most businesses are ready to adopt a marketing tool, the industry has already moved on to something new. Being an early or at least an earlier adopter of marketing methods on the Internet and through digital devices can only benefit the business.
We have seen many signs over the past two years regarding the evolution of geographic marketing. When companies like Google, Apple, and the investment community of Wall Street start to put $100+ million and more behind a technology it will become part of our daily lives whether a business wants it or not. Consumers have and will be using more of these geo-marketing tools to find businesses, services or products near them.
Let’s take a look at the three main tools that consumers are using to find businesses, products or services close to their geography.
1. Web searches are the first and most obvious, however, these are web searches in which a map displays with targets the businesses that match the search criteria. Unlike the traditional yellow pages, these geo-listings (a.k.a. Local Business Listings) can be claimed and updated with your business marketing information in order to meet these search criteria.
While this may sound relatively easy, geo-listings also include: consumer reviews that need to be managed; the clean-up of duplicate listings; coupons; offers; discounts; videos; photos; citations; QR bar codes; and, hyper local websites. Understanding what to start with and how to strategically use these components can be done by a professional marketing firm that specializes in this area. You can read more about these components in one of our previous articles here.
2. Mobile Marketing is the next most significant geo-marketing tool in which SMS Texting, Mobile Applications, Mobile version of your website, and Mobile advertising are your key components. The starting point in this process will be with SMS Texting to get your alerts out to customers that subscribe to your short bursts of information. The reason why this is your starting point is that it will take time to build your list of subscribers.
3. Social Media Marketing continues to evolve and is, also, geographic in its targeting ability. Consumers are using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Wiki sites, Four Square, Instant Messaging and other social community tools on their mobile devices. While they use it mostly to find businesses, products and services, in the social communities they are seeking recommendations from their friends (near and far). They are, also, using these social communities to post their experiences with a business, product or service. For this reason you have to monitor the social communities in order to embrace any potential problem situations and work with them.
These three geo-marketing components are important to any business size – large or small – and each have their own sub-components that need to be well understood in order to succeed. Understanding the strategy amongst them; the acceptance and embracing them early; and, finally planning on a 3-year return will put you on the right path of geo-marketing.
Certainly your time resources are limited and Geo-Marketing Services are provided by SmartFinds Internet Marketing. You will find this to be of great benefit to your time resources and the low cost service may eliminate your yellow page ad costs. Let the experts of over 16 years Internet marketing experience help you use this local business marketing tool properly and prevent brand security issues from occurring.
The Internet has turned into a great local business marketing tool in the past couple of years. While local businesses have not yet adopted these tools into their marketing strategies, the technologies are moving forward with or without them. The convergence of Search, Social Media and Mobile Marketing is bringing business information with products and services into the hands of the local consumers.
Having had Internet business experience for the past 16 years, I can tell you this is probably one of the few times where we can put all the local business marketing puzzle pieces together and see what marketing tools we have available over the next 2 – 3 years. Let’s review each one so we can see how they come together.
Local Business Listings
In short these are the interactive yellow pages of the Internet. Interactive because as a business owner you can update and manage these listings at search engines, social communities, 411 web sites, GPS/Mapping websites and basic business directories. They are also interactive because consumers can post their experience they had with your business, products or services. In order to get started you need to claim, update, monitor and manage these listings at multiple local listing websites. Don’t have the time resources? Don’t worry, there are companies that provide local business listing management services.
Local Business Listing Marketing vs. Data Services
As a business you will want to seek out companies that provide the marketing services. The companies provide basic data services only push your information out, but they do not help you protect your listing from being hijacked or for that matter manage your listings for marketing purposes with various types of content like coupons, events, QR codes, consumer reviews, coupons and citations. The marketing services have a higher cost to them than the data services, because the marketing services are more effective and do more for your business.
This will be the first time that most local businesses dependent upon the local consumer for their revenue will need to manage their public relations. Consumer Reviews are not just about other consumers seeing the information, but too many negative reviews will adversely impact your website ranking position in search results. This is no longer about just consumers posting their frustrations to a website or blog, but directly into your local listing. As a business you will need to closely monitor these reviews and also begin to engage customers that have positive experiences to post their information as well.
Local Listing Coupons and Mobile Coupons
The Local business listing gives the business the opportunity of posting their coupons, offers, and discounts. They are then available for consumers to find through web searches and through their mobile devices. While this is not available through all local listing websites or available for free, this is in no uncertain terms the demise of the traditional coupons.
Events and Promotions
If you promote your business then you will want to use the Events promotion tool within Local Business Listings. You can include Specials, Events, New Products, General News, pretty much any alert you wish to make the local consumers aware of so they can find it through a web search or a mobile search.
These small square bar codes will allow you to program them for consumers to scan using their mobile devices. The code will then do whatever is programmed to them. For example, a coupon, discount, offer, event, website link. You can also use them on business cards, websites, traditional ads, store window, and much more.
This tends to add a level of complication for most businesses. If you’re familiar with the idea of inbound links, this is very similar only this time is not necessarily just about a link, but your company name, address, city, state, zip, phone and many other aspects that are related to what is known as HCards to include your longitude and latitude of your business address. Because this is a combination of marketing and technical expertise you may wish to get someone to help you with this item.
Websites that are hyperlocal give a local business the opportunity to highly target advertising and marketing geographically and demographically. While these websites are not as prominent for this purpose yet, this will change and needs to be planned for in 2011 and beyond.
Having had Internet business experience for the past 16 years, I can tell you that that geographic marketing is the direction of our immediate future. Hopefully I was able to portray to you some of the known components of local business marketing and how this local business marketing tool can be used to reach the local consumers.
Certainly your time resources are limited and Local Business Listing Management Services are provided by SmartFinds Internet Marketing. You will find this to be of great benefit to your time resources and the low cost service may eliminate your yellow page ad costs. Let the experts of over 16 years Internet marketing experience help you use this local business marketing tool properly and prevent brand security issues from occurring.