In addition to guest posting on the UpCity blog, 3 Media Web is featured as one of the Top Digital Marketing Agencies in the United States. Check out their profile!
Have you been trying to decide what is best for your businesses and your customers during this difficult time? What is the best way to market yourself, position yourself, keep your customers happy, and in general what you should be focusing on as a priority?
All the information on marketing out there seems to be mostly “your company” centric, “do this for your company, do that for your company”. Things like; “get reviews from your top customers, create content for yourself, improve your social media channels, and so many other things we all aspire to do and get off the bucket list.
We can do all these things, but what if we took this model a step further and applied it to help other businesses, including clients, partners, community businesses, and aspirational customers. Use these methods to build on the relationships we have now, which will carry us well into the future.
Here are five great things you can do, (let’s call them “ handshake niceties”) for your clients, potential clients, partners, and other business owners you care about. Many of these niceties can also have potential reciprocal marketing results, and I’ll explain how.
1. Give Reviews.
Yes, I said GIVE not GET.
Writing reviews for trusted contacts is an integral part of a “do nice” business development strategy. You can easily become a Google Expert Guide or Elite Yelper, which gives your reviews higher authority than the average user. On Yelp many reviews get “filtered” because they are not regular users. So if you are not a regular user, Yelp might not be the best platform for you.
The reason Google and Yelp are two of my favorite review websites is because I can add photos, something many businesses don’t even do themselves. There are many more review websites to consider including the Better Business Bureau, and industry specific review websites, that can be really helpful to have reviews on, such as UpCity. When reviewing businesses, only review ones you have used or done business with.
Many times as a bonus, I’m able to even add photos of my team, an event I’ve organized or attended, food my team has eaten, or products and services we have acquired for the business. So this is a bonus for me also. My photos on Google from reviews have had over 30,000 views. Most of them include my brand, people, logo or caption. *extrabonus
Two birds. One stone.
(Note: We can’t do this on Google right now due to Google’s Coronavirus Review Freeze)
Don’t forget other ways to review including recommending people on LinkedIn, or writing Facebook Reviews. Those are also very valuable depending on who your client is. And your client might reciprocate without asking. If not, the favor won’t be forgotten.
Taking the time to do something like this for your circle of contacts, goes a long way. You are helping them with an already difficult task, giving them some content they can use in other places, and possibly gaining them new customers without even knowing it.
You can take it a step further and share their reviews on your social channels. Give them a mention and they will notice. You will also share a great business with your audience.
Final tip, send them an email and let them know that you left a review. Convey other ways they can use the review, such as “Hey, if you ever need a reference,” or “Would you like the photos I have to use for your own purposes?” Giving goes a long way.
2. Guest Posting
Share your Knowledge.
During this tight time, many companies may have to decrease their marketing budgets (I don’t advise it, but in many cases it is necessary). Offer to help that business with some content as a guest blogger with useful information for their customers.
I had been blogging for MassVacation.com for many years in the past. We all know Tourism is struggling right now, so when resources opened up in my company recently I reached out and asked if they were interested in some content around Tourism and the Coronavirus. I got a big yes, and along with helping them, it’s a promotion for the Tourist Attractions I covered in the article.
Looking for “ Daycation Ideas in Massachusetts ,” here you go.
I also employed a ghost-writer who is out of school at the moment. So I got to kill two..no three… birds with one stone. Oh and did I mention that high-quality blogger guest link that was included? *extra bonus
Go the extra mile and feature those blog posts on all of your social media channels, make sure you mention them and any other businesses covered in the blog post, and promote everybody. It’s a great way to make new friends!
3. Feature Them
They are why you are successful. Remember that.
You can feature your customers and partners in your newsletter, blog, website or industry case-study related publications.
Have a special client story or experience? Take the time to feature one using the many promotional vehicles available to you.
Clients love to hear stories about other clients, and exposing your clients to each other is just great relationship building.
You can share client wins, a project case-study, or just a featured client story of the month. Spin it how you like, just make sure it is someone you would truly recommend to your customer base.
We make sure they are mentioned on social media channels regularly and we provide them with links and content so that they too can use it in their own promotions or share themselves.
If you are featuring them in the newsletter, make sure they know in advance and that they are on the recipient list. If you have a newsletter archive that is even better, you can send them the link to the archive page to share with their trusted business circle. Also in the newsletter, don’t forget to link to their website.
4. Share their content on your social channels.
Help them spread their message. It’s an abundant world.
We’ve talked about sharing the promotions we create for them on our social channels, but you can take it a step further to promote their own content on your social media networks.
Recently I asked an agency partner of ours if she wanted to give me a list of her top content for me to share. She sent me a full word document of links that I scheduled into coschedule for both our company and my personal Twitter. My partner was very grateful because they have really great content and the more people who can find it, the better that is for them. They are a terrific content agency if you need one.
5. Keep them in mind for opportunities you see, even better refer them business.
Give business and opportunities away, because it feels good.
I do a lot of networking, relationship building, talking to reporters and influencers, and pitching stories to the media. I always keep an eagle’s eye out for opportunities for businesses and individuals I know.
Put some special folks on your radar. Connect with a few people daily and see how it is going with them and keep them at top of mind for anything you can.
Two days ago a trusted contact asked me for an agency referral for a small website, I sent her to one of my trusted confidants I knew she would be happy with. I helped two people. I love when I can help more than one person at the same time.
Another situation, I was talking to a partner I had referred to another agency friend. Sadly the connection didn’t work out for reasons that were not business related, but had I not spoken to her I would never have known this. So I checked in with my agency friend to make sure everything was ok, I came to find out his wife is ill. Not fun, but I’m glad I knew and could send a note.
On the flip side, I introduced her to another partner that seemed to fit the bill she was looking for. They hit it off and she sent me a note excited about connecting with him and thanked me so much for the introduction.
Pitching the media last week, I saw a reporter looking for a podcast guest in an area of web technology that was not my cup of tea. Instead I pitched another agency owner I know and got him on the podcast.
Why? I have no idea, but we have a meeting tomorrow to discuss how we can help each other further during this time.
Should you try to measure results?
Nah, just do it because you are a kind human.
There is no real way to measure this kind of handshake marketing. You do it because it feels good, you do it because you can and you do it with no expected return on investment. You are just a human helping out another human, especially now during this difficult time. Feeling good will inspire you to think of even more ways to keep helping moving forward.
Helping people out goes a long way in customer success, marketing, brand, trust factor, and so much more! Add helping your trusted circle of clients and friends to your daily task list.
Who do you plan to help out today?