Is your business taking advantage of Yahoo Groups to promote your business in Northern Virginia?
While many businesses are focusing their social media marketing efforts on Facebook, Twitter, and Linked-In, Yahoo Groups offer a marketing opportunity you should not overlook.
What is a Yahoo Group?
A Yahoo Group is a self-selected group of people who share a common interest. Yahoo group membership is free and open to anyone who has a Yahoo account, registers for membership and is approved by the group moderator.
The Fauquier County Yahoo Group is an active forum of 976 members who regularly post and share information about local community news, activities, events and resources. The Fauquier County Yahoo Group members frequently ask each other for recommendations to reputable local businesses that other members know, like and trust.
I monitor the Fauquier County Yahoo Group message posts and respond on behalf of my clients whenever I see people looking for the products or services my clients sell.
Recently, a local resident posed this question on the Fauquier County Yahoo Groups:
“I am looking for roofer recommendations: Who to get a quote from and who to stay away from.”
As you can see below, Paul Henry’s Windows benefited from the endorsements and recommendations he received from members of this group:
Yahoo group roofer recommendations
Online Word of Mouth Recommendations
We all know that people prefer to do business with businesses they already know, like and trust. Nearly every day, Yahoo Group members ask each other for word-of-mouth referrals to trusted and reputable local businesses. Alert business owners or employees can join in these conversations and attract more customers with thoughtful responses.
You can probably find other Yahoo Groups serving residents of your own town or local area that work the same way. It’s easy to join a Yahoo Group and get on the mailing list for real-time message alerts, or daily summaries of messages posted.
Do you own a local business serving a local clientele? (i.e., most of your customers live within 20 miles of your business location).
Do you know how to leverage the internet and social media to reach more people who want and need your products or services?
The Three Most Important Things for Local Business Marketing Online
Do you have a social media marketing plan for 2012?
Are you wondering if — and how — you should be using social media marketing to grow your business?
These 20 questions will help you get started with your social media marketing plan for 2012:
1. Do you have – or do you plan to develop – a comprehensive social media plan for your businesss?
2. How much time do you plan to allocate to social media marketing each week?
3. What is your monthly budget for social media?
4. Do you have a Facebook business page?
- If so, have you created a custom welcome page?
- Have you created an opt-in form on your Facebook page to collect names and email addresses of Facebook fans?
- How frequently do you (or will you) post to your Facebook page?
- How will you engage your Facebook fans through your Facebook page? What are the best kinds of information to share — and the best ways to share that information — through Facebook?
5. Have you claimed your Google Places page? Do you understand why you need to claim your Google Places page and how to complete your Google business profile to help you reach your target market?
6. Have you set up a Google Plus account? Do you have a Google Plus business page?
7. Have you set up a Google Plus business page? Do you know how Google Plus business pages differ from Facebook business pages?
- See questions as 4a – 4d above as they relate to Google Plus.
8. Have you set up a LinkedIn account?
- Have you joined any LinkedIn groups for purposes of growing your business?
- Do you understand LinkedIn etiquette and how to use LinkedIn for networking?
9. Have you set up a Twitter account?
- Will you link and automate your Twitter posts — or will your Twitter content differ from your Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, and blog content?
- Do you understand Twitter etiquette?
10. Have you created business profiles in at least 10 other local business directories? Have you set up your profiles to link back to your website?
11. Do you have a website with a built-in blog?
- Do you blog regularly? How frequently?
- What kind of content will you develop through your blog?
- How will you structure your blog to cultivate relationships and convert prospects to customers?
12. Do you know what tools you can use to help you efficiently implement and manage your social media marketing campaigns?
13. Do you own a smartphone? Do you understand whether and how your target market is using smartphones and mobile phones to find and research competing businesses?
14. Do you know what a location-based check-in service is? Are you using services like Foursquare to encourage customers to check-in and raise awareness of your business within their circles of influence?
15. Do you use online services for special deals and coupons? (Groupon, Living Social, etc.)
16. Do you know what a QR code is?
- Do you have a QR code? Do know how to use QR codes to promote your business?
17. Is your business listed on Yelp?
18. Do you have a plan and process for encouraging online reviews from your best customers?
- Do you have a plan and process for letting prospects know how to find and read your online reviews?
- Do you prefer to discourage online reviews because you are afraid they can damage your reputation?
19. Are you using video to promote your business?
- How do customers and your target market find your videos?
- Do you know how to optimize your videos to maximize your visibility online?
20. Are you interested in learning more about:
- How to promote your business using social media?
- How to set up your Facebook Business Page and use it effectively to grow your business?
- How to make and post a video?
- How to create and manage a blog?
- How to set up and benefit from free business profiles on different social media sites?
What are your most pressing social media questions for 2012? Let me know – submit your questions and comments below and I’ll do my best to answer them in future posts.
Success Tips: QR Codes for Local Business Marketing
QR Codes — those funny looking black and white square images you are seeing more and more in newspaper and magazine ads — can be a powerful, low-cost marketing tool for local businesses in Northern Virginia — if you know how to use them to drive traffic to your business and motivate more people to buy what you are selling.
These 2D Bar Codes let your customers and prospects access and view your business information online in new, fun and engaging ways.
Smart Phone Usage is Exploding:
QR Codes Help You Tap This Market
QR Codes can help you reach more customers
through their smart phones
As you can see from the graphic to the left,cell phones now outnumber computers 3:1. No doubt you have used your own cell phone to locate and call local businesses when you are on the run and away from your computer.
The skyrocketing use of mobile phones for local search is the reason why you need to (more…)
Herbst Marketing is creating a series of web videos as part of our ongoing internet marketing and search engine optimization work for Warrenton VA window replacement contractor Paul Henry’s Window Installation Service.
We used the Sony Webbie HD camera to film this video in Paul Henry’s Culpeper, Virginia showroom.
I was concerned that the video sound quality might disappoint us, since the Sony Webbie does not allow for (more…)