Steps to Building a Brand OnlineIf you are just starting to build your business or brand online, it doesn’t need to cost you an arm and a leg to do some online marketing. Most people, don’t know where to start. These 4 steps for building a brand online will help you get moving in the right direction.  As you continue to work on building your brand online, you will improve on these items and find new ways to market your business.

Step 1 – Build Your Website

Having a website is a must have to build a successful brand online. With consumers searching the web for products and services every second, you need to claim a piece of that action. To start, you need to build a website that tells visitors more about your business, while being search engine friendly.

Your website should consist of content, images, page titles, keywords, and descriptions that help answer the 4 W’s visitors need to know.

  • Who you are
  • Why they should pick you
  • What you can do for them
  • Where you are

Keep in mind who your customer is, how they would search for you online, and write content and SEO that is engaging, while informative. Also, don’t just build a website and let is sit, come back to it often and make revision to keep it fresh.

Step 2 – Start Getting Social

Social media should be like any other part of your marketing strategy. You just do it! Most businesses don’t have the resources to dedicate a full-time person to social media, and that is okay. You do what you can, with what you have.

  • Understand how much time a day you can give to social media activities. If you can only give 15 minutes a day, then restrict your social media activities to one platform and don’t spread yourself too thin. Anticipate that for every platform you manage for social media or blogging, you need at least 15-30 minutes a day.
  • Determine which social media platforms work best for your business based on what your target market uses. Once you select the social media platform(s) you want to use, create your account, setup your profile, include links to your website and other contact details. All major social media platforms are search engine friendly and they will help boost traffic to your page.

Step 3- Build Inbound Links

Inbound links are links to your website, from other websites. The more inbound links you have will improve your SEO and gets your website in front of potential customers. Building your inbound links does take time and it can be challenging. Depending on your industry, business and target market, you need to determine what other business websites are out there that you want to have inbound links to your website.

The types of websites that you should focus on getting links to your site on are

  • Your partners, and sometimes even customer websites
  • Social media pages and blog
  • Groups you are a member of like Chambers or Industry organizations
  • If you sell products or services on sites like Amazon, Craigslist, etc.
  • Sites like Manta and Yellow Pages

Step 4 – Email Marketing

Most businesses don’t have a huge email list that they can use when they are just starting to build their brand online. If you are lucky and have an email list, then you can use that to start an email campaign to drive traffic to your website, or social media pages. Even if you have email addresses of friends, family, partners, contractors, or other contact emails, you can use this to start with.

When you create your first few campaigns, you want to focus on how to get the readers to click through to your website or social media pages. The components of your email that you want to focus on are

  • Subject line, should be catchy and get them to want to open the email, but not sound like spam
  • Content, should include your logo, maybe an image, links to your website or social media page, clear messaging, and a call-to-action (what you want them to do)
  • Footer or signature line, you should have a standard signature on all emails that includes your business name, email address, website, phone and address if it applies

Be sure to check out this article on 5 Tips To Drive Traffic To Your Website  which has more information on how to improve your inbound marketing.