Small Businesses Compete With Giants on the Internet
The small business owner has to do whatever he/she does better than the competition does. Successful marketing efforts in the current marketing environment need to address the consumer of today who is drastically different than the consumer of yesterday.
Today's consumers are not interested in being preached at. They want two-way communication channels, hence the rise of the importance of social media. Today's consumer no longer blindly believes business owners; they want businesses to prove themselves and earn their loyalty.
Small business owners have to "play" in the same arena their potential customers are "playing" in. They need to be accountable and have a presence. They need to capitalize on their marketing strength/advantage/edge. They need to engage their target or niche on social media platforms. They need to listen to what the consumer wants and needs, and be sure they are addressing those wants and needs.
It is a tough time, but the savvy business owner will realize the importance of relationship building in business and focus his/her attentions on the relationship, both on and off the Internet.
The Internet has become important, making it easier for the small business owner to find out exactly what and where the competition is, and that is exactly where he/she needs to be too. There are some really neat free social media marketing tools like Howsociable and Socialmention that can help you monitor what your competitors are doing in the social networks as well as your own traction on the social Web.
Small companies can create a large presence on the Internet thereby putting them in the same playing field as the larger companies (unless the players are major well-renowned brands like Coca-Cola and Dell).
The power of the Internet is boundless. There are so many free ways to reach a target market. For instance, Google and Bing Listing Center offer free local listings. Merchantcircle is another free site with an option for an upgrade for a fee. Manta is an outstanding marketing resource because it offers a platform for businesses to provide company details such as company name, address, number of employees, estimated annual sales and more.Continued on the next page