Your ability to gain popularity and wield influence online directly impacts the way you sell your services or products and how fast you can grow as a company. Being able to collect first-hand experiences with your company and products directly from your customers also holds incredible value as it allows you to quickly fix problems and implement new processes to improve how your customers experience your business. Luckily, the ways to gain a greater online presence are usually easy and inexpensive:
Presence is power—but only if you show up. Neglecting your social media platforms, never updating your website, and rarely sending out email newsletters is the number one way to remain forgotten. Customers are constantly being bombarded with messages in every digital avenue from various companies and organizations. It may seem like you are just lost among the many voices, but keeping your content consistently present gives your customers and audience a way to engage with you and to remember you. Often, purchases are made after a customer follows a company for months, so stay consistent and present and you will be rewarded.
Know who you are.
Your customers want to believe in you. They want to be able to tell their friends and family members about what you stand for, who you are, and why you are the one they should buy from. The moment your customers feel like you are acting outside of who you have told them that you are, they are going to feel betrayed and confused. Before you start snapping photos and curating captions, take time to sit with your team and understand the heart of your company. What do you stand for? What do you refuse to stand for? How do you talk about mistakes, hard things, or huge accomplishments? All these things will impact how your customers understand you online and are the things that should stay the same over long periods of time.
Being present online and in the physical world means inviting opinions from others. This is such a good thing. Many people forget there was a time when you could get paid to give your opinion as a non-expert regarding different products or companies. In many ways, this market research is still done outside of the digital domain. Opinions are valuable and should be valued even if they do not make you feel positive or do not speak nicely about your company. The important thing to remember is that gratitude for engagement should be expressed and appreciation does not equal agreement. Let your customers know that their opinions hold weight, and they will remember, that even when they do not agree with you, their presence is valued.
This is the most important tip on this list. Nothing that you have done or will do matters if you cannot communicate your needs, desires, hopes, and pursuits adequately to your customers. Online, everything is immortalized even after it has been deleted, so everything you post should be thought of as a permanent testament to your company and how you want to be known. To communicate clearly, understand your message, find someone to help you craft words that adequately communicate your message, and be timely with the message you want to communicate.
Because you are reading this, it is likely that you have already done great things to build your online influence. What is the number one thing that has helped you grow online?