Online Marketing For Off-line Businesses

I’ve lived in both worlds. I have owned—and still own—some brick-and-mortar physical location businesses, and I currently spend most of my time in the online marketing world.

The owner of a physical location spends much of his or her time maintaining, stocking, and cleaning the facility; coaching the staff; and serving customers. This needs to be done by people who are physically present in the building.

These tasks cannot be outsourced or delegated to a virtual assistant.

When it comes to marketing, people who own businesses with a physical location tend to want someone to do it for them, and they just want it to happen.

The challenge with online marketing is that it takes time and involvement from the business owner, and usually, there isn’t anyone approaching them to do it for them.

The lure of online marketing is its low cost, the large number of people you can reach affordably, and its apparent ease.

Sales strategies involving e-mail, Facebook, and other social media platforms sound so easy. Just write an e-mail, send it to your list, and—voilà—business shows up.

Oh, you don’t have a list?

  • How am I supposed to get one?
  • You say I need to write an article every week?
  • Who has time for that?
  • Didn’t you see the list of things I have to manage and do at the beginning of this article?

You want me to post how often on Facebook?

What am I supposed to talk about?

You mean people can say things on my page that may not make me look good?

I have to answer comments and questions how many hours a day? I’m supposed to do that?

I won’t get into the other social media platforms that all have similar challenges.

Now that I’ve brought up all these challenges, I want to encourage you to move forward with your efforts to use online marketing in your business.

Here’s some of what it takes to be successful using online marketing.

  • It takes commitment from the business owner or manager.
  • It takes studying and seeing what’s possible.
  • You need to find a teacher or mentor to guide you in doing what you need to do to get the best results.
  • You need a social media budget. It doesn’t have to be large, but you’re going to need some money available.
  • You need to be willing to leave your comfort zone and try new activities and techniques.
  • You need to test and implement one thing after another.
  • You need to get your existing staff behind the efforts. The real power in using online marketing in your physical location is when you combine the two. You promote your online presence in your business and you promote your business online. This is where the magic happens. Your results will start strong and improve rapidly.

There is magic in using online marketing for your physical business location. You can expand your reach for very little money. Keep reading over the next few weeks, and I’ll expand on these issues and help you work through the aforementioned challenges one at a time.

There is gold in mastering the skills needed to use online marketing for your off-line business, and you’ll find that you already have many of them from talking with customers. You just have to apply and use these skills differently.

Till next week.

Have a great week.

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