My goal with this post use to help you understand what tools in resources we’ll make it easier for you to achieve business success online.
The key to business success offline can be summed up by saying location, location, location. If you had a brick and mortar store, you need to set up shop in front of your target audience and if you are online you need to put your website in front of your target audience.
Who Is Your Target Audience?
Your target audience depends on the niche you are in but I’m willing to bet that the majority of your customers are going to be between 20 and 50 years of age.
Do you realize that most of this age group uses social media as readily as their parents used the telephone?
Where Can You Find Your Target Audience?
Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin are the three most heavily used for a variety of activities. Forums, MySpace and other places get activity but the first three are the top dogs.
I like to think of this social platform as headline news on ANY subject by anyone using the service. The 140 character limit on this micro-blogging platform is why the headline type messaging is used and this makes relationship building more important than selling.
Think of it like this. When you go to a party and tell a friend you are looking for insurance, that friend may recommend a company or know another friend that has connections in the industry.
The 500 million or more users of this service are there to connect with family and friends. Many never leave the Facebook world to visit the rest of the Internet.
This is where professionals make connections that may lead to more business or their next job.
You NEED to have a presence in each of these services if you want to connect with your target audience before and after the sale and you can automate part of the process with the right tools.
These people still use keywords and keyphrases to find information within their chosen social platform so you need to know and practice the basics of copy writing and search engine optimization.
You need to know how to structure your blog and money pages to get the biggest possible benefit from your traffic. Blog Blueprint offers training that novice bloggers through experienced will find useful. They do offer 2 upgrade levels and both are worth the money if you intend to make a living with blogs.
You need a steadily increasing of backlinks from off site resources. Submitting your RSS Feed to RSS Feed Aggregators is a great way to do this but static websites usually don’t have RSS Feeds and WordPress traditionally has just one RSS Feed. The solution to this dilemma is a WordPress plugin and standalone program called Web Traffic Genius.
Web Traffic Genius creates a new feed for each post you publish and it has an extra feeds feature which, when enabled, adds a random number of additional posts to the newly created feed. This is a VERY important feature and I know of no other RSS submitters that have it. (It is important because the best RSS Feed Aggregators often view feeds that contain just one post as spam and discard these feeds without publishing the submission.)
You need to be using both YouTube videos and self-hosted videos AND you need a video sitemap that’s submitted to Google and Yahoo. There are free WordPress plugins that index videos on your blog and then create a video sitemap which they submit them to Google but I haven’t encountered a free video sitemap plugin for Yahoo. Video Traffic Genius is a premium plugin but it is the only plugin I have found that lets you enter the information Google looks for such as title, description and tags then submits the created video sitemap to both Google and Yahoo. Self-hosted videos that are properly submitted using a video sitemap often rank well even for competitive phrases because so few marketers properly create and submit video sitemaps.
When it launches on May 17, 2011, you need to add Auto Link Juicer to your list of must have tools. This WordPress plugin will help structure the internal structure of your blog so more of the traffic to your blog is directed to your money pages.
The social sites need regular updates and there are both free and paid options for this.
You need to regularly create and submit videos to YouTube since close to 30 percent of all searches originate within YouTube.
Your business needs a Facebook fan page. The current New WordPress Plugin fan page was created using a plugin that’s being given to anyone that likes the page. It is a good option for a single page but I think WP Fan Pro is the better option because it lets you pull a whole blog into the fan page. This means you have the ability to do just about anything you on your fan page you can do in WordPress.
The foundation for almost everything I mentioned is a self-hosted WordPress blog that powers your website. Without this foundation, the premium plugins that will help you in the search engines, quality content you add on a regular basis and an interactive community, the business success you seek is going to be much harder to achieve and maintain.
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If You Are Doing Business Online, You Need…