How Internet has changed things and how you can make it BIG
Do you remember the times when the Internet still wasn't big and all the marketing efforts mainly meant expensive advertisements? It was like companies trying to fight for getting the best TV program's schedules for releasing a short advertisement. And of course, big companies had advantage over the little ones in terms of money. Now all of that have changed. And is still changing.
The Internet had changed the way people make business and how they grow. The essence and strategical thinking remains but there are new tactics and new players. In today's world, if you are starting up a company and want to make it big, you actually can.
According to Internet Live Stats, which is a site that shows all statistical data relating to Internet used by people around the globe, around 40% of the world population has an internet connection today, this is a bit more than 3 billions of people. Only in 1995, these number was less than 1%. So, in 10 years things have changed massively.
Image Source: Internet Live Stats
How does this relate to you or your business?
Easy. Back in the 80's, you needed a good budget for marketing efforts to start growing slowly. Now, in 2015, you can easily set up social media profiles for your business (aka Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and more), spend some bucks for some ads on those platforms and you are almost ready to go. This sounds easy but it's more complex than it seems. Internet also has created a new area for your business and something to study in schools or in the Web, making it easier than ever for you to promote your business with the best and affordable practices. Here are some ways to use Internet in favor of your business:
Wether you already know what your business is about or still have an idea, it is very important to validate it. In past times, you specifically needed to conduct focus groups or surveys to get an idea if people can / need / want to buy your product or service. For sure there's nothing bad with these methods nowadays, and some companies still use them, but - being realistic - this costs a lot of money and you need to hire an specialist if you want the best results.
Now you can validate an idea with Internet! Just by creating a landing page with a headline and an email form, then driving traffic to that page and finally measure it. If you like polls, there's also a site called PickFu where you can ask questions like “Which book title is better?” and give 2 options so people working at PickFu (from all over the world) can vote and give feedback. Another site more popular than PickFu is Quora, you can ask anything about everything and people will give completed answers. We can talk more about this in another post. Validating an idea or business by asking questions online or landing pages is way simpler and easier than ever.
Image Source: PickFu
Specialized News Sources
While before you needed to fight for the best TV or radio schedule segment to announce your business, now you have many specialized news sources in different industries which can help in your marketing: Tech, Automotive, Health, Entertainment, etc. Even they have niche areas within themselves. We are talking about media sites that are today's digital news, such as: Techcrunch, Reddit, Hacker News, Mashable, Digg, Huffington Post, etc. There are even sites like ProductHunt where you can post your product/service and you'll be reaching out people. It's crazy how something can go viral from there. So, now you can connect with them or simply upload something (in some cases) and you'll be reaching out people... For FREE. However, it is important to follow relevant tips for performing a successful strategy on those sites. There's the magic. (For sure we will dedicate a complete and ultimate post to all these tips you can use. Stay alert!). Instead of paying hundreds of thousands of dollars for a TV commercial, you can just use these sites and also even make an introductory video about your business on Youtube.
Image Source: CaptainDash
Yes, the famous social media. This doesn't need any kind of introductions. In today's world, apart from having your business web page, you need to have social media profiles for interacting with your customers and for building engagement. For crazy as it sounds, it is a must-have. We know how complicated things can get when managing your social media accounts, hopefully you wouldn't like to end up like the girl in the picture. That's why you can also outsource this at an affordable price to social media specialists. However, it is so important to take care a lot this part and knowing all that is happening. Even though in today's world is easier than ever to interact with your customers and reach people globally, any bad interaction with your customers can cost a lot.
We know it's hard to adapt, specially if we are talking about a huge change that just happened in the last 10 years and is still changing. That's a lot to think about. Even more when you are not technology-friendly. Internet has changed our lives and the way we interact with each other. With all its strengths and weaknesses, we don't have another choice but to adapt, and make the best use of it. We invite you to take advantage of the Internet's power for the sake of people and your business.