Do your Customers use Internet Search to find Products and Services?

For most people today the first place to look for products is the Web, and 50% of all searches are done on Google. As a local business you have an advantage and can be on the Top of the First Page
  • Google is the new yellow pages when it comes to searching for local businesses.
  • Google reports that millions of people conduct Google Maps searches everyday and they are looking for businesses just like yours!
  • Business listings in the top ten search results get most of the business!
  • Google Maps gives businesses tremendous opportunities to promote their business with photos and video, and so far it is still free! It's like getting a full page ad in a phone book and/or a free TV commercial.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Advertising Age says you are the Social Network you use...

Advertising Age had an article about the work of Anderson Analytics identifying Social Network users' likely interests, buying habits, media consumption and more for marketers. The research shows that restaurants, and other social facilitating businesses should participate in Social Networking

Below are some interesting excepts from the article

...Today 110 million Americans, or 60% of the online population, use social networks, and that number is fairly conservative, because instead of counting unique users or everyone who has an account, as many estimates do, the Anderson study counted only people who have used a social network at least once in the past month....

...Some 52% of social networkers had friended or become a fan of at least one brand.....

....Anderson's research breaks down general social-media users into four categories: business users, fun seekers, social-media mavens and late followers. Of those, social-media mavens are the key group, not only because of their high incomes and decision-making power at companies but also because their large social-media footprints can make them brand allies and evangelists....

.....they (Non-users of social networks) say they don't use social media for three basic reasons: They don't have the time, they don't think it's secure or they think it's stupid. While the first two groups -- which Anderson labels "time-starved" and "concerned" -- may be swayed to join eventually, don't hold out much hope for the last group: 94% said they will never use social media.

About 22% of time-starved people said they'll be using social media within three months, and another 27% said they probably will within a year -- when they get the time that is; they're more interested than all others in pursuits such as exercise, entertaining, music and movies...

....Twitterers are the super-user group. Twitterers are more interested than the others in many subjects but skew particularly high in all news categories, restaurants, sports, politics, personal finance and religion. They also especially like pop culture, with music, movies, TV and reading, ranking higher than average. And their buying habits mirror that. They're more likely to buy books, movies, shoes and cosmetics online than the other groups.....

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Taking Control of Your Internet Presence is the most Cost Effective way to get new Customers

Step 1 - Stop Internet Business Identity Theft and take control of your web presence on sites such as Google, MSN & Yahoo
Step2 - Start a blog on Google (
Step 3 - Get your business / products reviewed on Google, Yahoo, & Yelp
Step 4 - Use tools to track where your leads are coming from and going to on your blog / website
Step 5 - Create a customer Data Base - Email information is a must for the next steps of your marketing effort

Sunday, June 7, 2009

How to Add an Image to a Post on Blogger

Two minute video about adding pictures to a post on your blog. When the video starts you will see an Ad on the bottom getting in your way to see the whole thing. Click on the "X" near the words "Ads by Google"

How to Login in and Post - The Video

I found this video about logging into Blogger and doing a basic post. Best yet it comes with snappy music.

1st Help info for New Blogger

Dave’s cheat sheet for blogging

OK, I have set up your blog, quickly gone over the work I have done and your head is spinning.

I have put together this email so that you can have the key documentation that you will need to Post on your blog site. I have linked the info in the Google Blogger Help that I think that you will need.

I have listed it in the priority that you should use. Start with just making text posts, then progress to putting in links and pictures. If you create posts I can access them and edit/ put in links and posts.

Please give me feedback if this is helpful in your efforts to be self sufficient in posting.

Step 1 - Posting Help – You should do this first and get good at it.

What is a URL?

What is a post?

How do I post to my blog?

How do I edit what I've written?

How do I delete a post?

How do I label my posts?

How do I make a link to another webpage?

How do I post pictures?

How do I delete a photo I have uploaded to my blog?

How do I edit my profile?

This is a nice overview. But has more info that what I selected above

Getting Started Guide

Step 2 – Video from YouTube or your own – This is more advanced, but you are capable

How do I post a video to my blog from YouTube?

How do I post audio/music to my blog?

Step 3 – Changing the look of the Blog – This is advanced. Do it with caution.

Layout Guide


Troubleshooting picture upload problems

Friday, June 5, 2009

Microsoft agrees - Local Search is King

Microsoft continues to lag behind Google and Yahoo in the Search Market. Their newest product Bing was launched last week. Like Google and Yahoo, Bing emphasis the local content of its search ability

Satya Nadella, SVP of Microsoft’s Online Services Division, gave the morning keynote at the Microsoft Bing Summit in Carlsbad, CA last week. It was an introduction to Bing. The main reason I am highlighting this discussion is that Nadella explains that people engage in long search sessions when making purchase decisions. Almost 50% of time spent searching is spent during sessions longer than 30 minutes.
The slide shows 66% of people are using search more frequently as a decision-making tool; and in their strategic verticals:
  • 75% product purchases
  • 62% Local activity
  • 45% Flight or hotel
  • 43% Healthcare
It just keeps getting better for local business on the internet

Making it Easy for Customers to Review your Business

As small business owners become aware of all the information about their enterprise they can find both good and bad news. They are irritated that somewhere there is information about their sales revenue, who owns their business or other things that they view as company only information.

Google local is an amazing tool for promoting local business, but search engines like Google bring all the information together and takes away the ability to own the perception of a company. Hopefully business owners are pleasantly surprised that people have positively reviewed their business. But what gets most business owners attention is the negative review. Those negative reviews are out there and being spread across the internet. Unfortunately they are also listed on a company's Google Business listing. It is not all bad and here is a nice article discussing this issue: (Good or Bad - Reviews are important). Business need to embrace internet reviews and motivate their happy customers to review.

The natural way of life is that customers are more motivated to complain than praise. Many customers want to help local businesses, but for the customer there is a effort involved in providing a review. Most review services (Yelp, Yahoo, Google) require registration to provide a review. It is my experience that registering is too high a hurdle just to provide a positive review. The angry customer is more that motivated, but the good customer has better things to do.

So what is a business to do? How does sites like Amazon and Ebay get people to review others. The answer is they are already have an account and can simply write the review. Using that information, you can greatly lower the hurdle of reviewing a business. If a small business gets 4-10 reviews a year, they are way ahead of their competition. The secret is asking your customers with Gmail (Google) accounts to review on Google, your customers with Yahoo accounts to review on Yahoo and so on. My experience is if you have 1,000 emails around 200 to 300 of them will be either Gmail or Yahoo accounts. Getting 1-2% of these customers to favorably review your business should be easy, if not, you have greater problems than building a positive internet presence.