Internet Marketing Tools for the small business owner
As a real estate agent, I use this time of year (December-January) to look for new tools and tips which will help my business grow in the following year. While many of the following tools are not ‘new’, they are new to me, and worth a look for any small business owner, real estate agent, or anyone wanting to get more business from social media and the internet in general.
While some of these services are free, most offer the better features in their “Pro” or “Business” plans, ie: they charge for them.
In no particular order, they include:
I had heard about this for a couple of years, but never looked into it. My mistake! This is a great and FREE site which will let you set up automated process to help you achieve multiple steps on the internet. Example: “IF I post something to my facebook page, THEN post it to twitter as well!” The numbers of options are almost unlimited, and very easy: just select from the list of ‘Recipes’ and authorize your various social media accounts. Easy and Free!
If you’re serious about internet marketing, or even get people to sign up for anything like a newsletter, or e-mail list, having a proper landing page is important. You can create your own from scratch, but if you don’t have the time, (or talent) there are other options for pre-designed landing page providers. [tweet_dis]Lead Pages has many special features[/tweet_dis], some of which are available at the lowest price point of $17 per month (if you subscribe for 2 years). But things get real interesting in the Pro Level account for around $40 per month. Not cheap, but effective.
PS: As you leave this page, the POPUP that appears was created with LeadPages.
Trying to get people involved in discussions and keep them on your website longer? Try introducing Polls. For this, I found OpinionStage a very helpful tool. They have a free-plan with plenty of goodies, and the Pro-Plan for $19 per month adds more options. Business Plans are available for $65 per month. Embeddable in your website, blog and facebook page (PRO plan and up). I was really impressed by the fast answers to any questions I had. Questions were replied within the hour, and sometimes even quicker.
EXCELLENT. Currently, this works only for facebook, but they’ve announced that they will be adding a web-based app and integrate with twitter and other platforms very soon. Here is how this works: It creates a tab inside your facebook page, and you can use it to find the top performing pictures, updates and links on facebook, and then schedule to share them onto your own page. By finding what is already working elsewhere on fb, and sharing that post or pic, you increase your chances of getting more engagement with your own fans. I am looking forward to the web-based app. They do have a free trial, after which the plans start at $29 per month.
Are you looking for low-cost but high quality photos to use in your marketing and social media accounts? [tweet_dis]Check out the Dollar Photo Club, where every picture is…….you guessed it, one dollar[/tweet_dis]. You have to create an account and sign up for the $10 per month membership, but that will get you 10 photos per month, (YOU select the photos from millions of choices), so it’s all good. Photos are high-res, and may be used in almost any manner (except, of course, you cant re-sell them). Photos are categorized and easily searchable. For example, the search “internet marketing” brings over 117,000 results, while searching for “houses” yields over 1 million photos.
Not-So-New but absolutely worth a look
I’ve been using Buffer for a while, but they recently added a “New Scheduler” which allows you to schedule the same tweet (you should alter them slightly) several times. We all know that whenever you send a tweet, only a small percentage of your followers will be online to read it at that particular time. This is why you should send out important stuff several times, at different times of the day, and on different days. Now Buffer’s New Scheduler allows you to do that fairly easily. Free with an option to upgrade to Business plan for around a $100 a year.
This has been one very helpful tool. Find an interesting article on the web but don’t have time to read it right now?Click one button and ‘Add to Pocket’ (formerly know as “Read It Later”. Then, when you have time, you can read the article on any of your other devices that have this app enabled. So you can save it from your desktop, and read it on your Iphone or Android, or on any of your tablets. Works across most (if not all) platforms and devices.
So, for example: use IFTTT to add this recipe: every time you Add To Pocket, it’s also tweeted out. (If it’s important enough for YOU to read, your twitter followers may be interested in reading it also).
Free, with an option to upgrade.
Now, it’s your turn!
Please comment below: Have you tried any of these? Or better yet, do you know of any other internet marketing or social media tools that should be on this list? Please let me know what works for you, (or what doesn’t). I am NOT getting paid for promoting any of these products….. simply passing along some information that I hope will help you make 2015 a great year for you!