Let’s Talk Marketing

Submitted by Ken Ivey, Living Water Digital, and member of The Chamber’s Marketing Advisory Committee

“Google My Business” – Why It’s So Important to Your Business 

(This is the first installment of a three-part article series on marketing your business online with Google My Business.)

In the course of my business day, I talk to a lot of business owners and entrepreneurs. I’m often asked – especially by new or struggling owners – “How can I get more people through the door with the web? I’m absolutely clueless and have no budget.” I’ll attempt to answer this question in this, and the next two articles.

Does your business have a Google My Business listing? (It was formerly called Google Places.) If you answered “no,” then you need to get on the task of setting up your listing, and right now. If you need some convincing, then you should look over this list of reasons for why having your business on Google My Business is so important:

 The “Yellow Directories” are largely obsolete. Studies show that 97 percent of all consumers use the Internet to search for and choose local businesses. Most of those people haven’t touched a Yellow Pages book for years, and if you’re thinking their online offering is any better – well, I’ll address that in another article! Look at it this way: If 97 percent of your potential customers are searching the web for businesses just like yours and you are not there, you are missing out – plain and simple.

Your listing will work for you, even when you are sleeping. The Internet never sleeps, and your page is always accessible to potential customers, even long after you shut down your shop. You can even link your Google My Business page to your website, so that customers can make transactions while you catch your Z’s.

Branding. Google My Business is especially effective when it comes to your business branding (which, in today’s market, is essential to your business’ success). By uploading photos and videos, and customizing your content to speak to your unique client base, you can go a long way in strengthening your brand.

Reaching your target market. You can create content for your Google My Business listing that speaks specifically to your target market, and then count on the Google search engine to deliver targeted traffic straight to your door. There are very few types of advertising that enable you to reach exactly who you want to by means that are largely within your control, and Google My Business is one of them.

Google My Business is free advertising. Regardless of how successful your business is, you have a business budget . . . and you simply cannot argue that many of your business choices come down to the bottom line. Unless you have a limitless marketing budget (and who does?!), you need all the free help you can get. It just doesn’t make sense not to take advantage of such a powerful marketing tool when it won’t cost you a single cent to get involved.

Sound interesting? Visit www.google.com/business to get started.

Part 2:  The 5 Most Important Components of Your “Google My Business Listing”
Part 3:  Five Easy Steps to Keep Your “Google My Business” Listing SEO Optimized

About the Author:
Ken Ivey, affectionately dubbed ‘the Web Czar’ by peers, has been helping businesses embrace technology for 30 years. Contact him at  ken@livingwaterdigital.com or call (920) 645-2700.