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DeathAre you a small business owner looking to jump on the social media bandwagon? Are you confused about social media and not sure which sites to join? If so read on. Today's Internet technology has changed companies' marketing strategies. Traditional marketing direct mail are all but dead thanks to the internet. Facebook (Fan Page), LinkedIn, Twitter, Blog (Blogger or WordPress) and YouTube are free social media sites that can potentially help you market your business for free. Social media has changed the way small businesses market their products or services.

Social media is free but it does require time to manage and it's about building relationships with potential buyers by providing helpful information. Position yourself as the industry expert. Provide readers with helpful information about your product or service and you will form a relationship with them which can lead to a sale. If you come on heavy with a strong sales pitch you will only turn people away. Most social media sites are indexed by search engines which increases your visibility. Even if you don't plan on immediately using any of the above mention social media sites at least reserve your company name on the respective site.

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web2.0Traditional marketing is in decline, trade publications are getting lean, and direct mail is dead thanks to web 2.0 web marketing techniques. Websites, search engines social media and e-mail marketing are changing the way we promote our products. Just about eveybody uses search engines to find or research a product or service and social media is a free and new way to promote good or services. Below are eight web 2.0 techniques you can use to promote your company & social-media efforts.

1. Create Google Adword Account If your website does not come up in the Google organic search for a product you sell, then set up a Google Adword/Pay Per Click Account. Adwords are the advertisements that come up on the top and right hand side of a Google search. Your will only get charged when a browser clicks on your ad. Since there is no contract, your can end your Google ad campaign at any time.

2. LinkedIn About It Let your LinkedIn connections know that you what is new by updating your LinkedIn profile and RSVPing to the show in the Events section.

3. Flickr It Take photos of your company, products and employees, tag them, and post them to your website as well as Flickr.

4. YouTube It Shoot video, tell the world why your products and services are the best and post them on YouTube. Add keywords so browsers can find your videos in YouTube search.

5. Tweet It Tweet about It - send out Tweet updates about your company news. Add the # hashtag in your Tweets so Tweeters can search for keywords in your Tweets.

6. SlideShare It Upload that cool Power Point presentation that you created for the show to SlideShare and share it with your customers, sales staff and dealers.

7. e-mail newsletter Without a doubt e-mail newsletters are the best bang for your buck. It keeps you connected with your customers and prospects and is a great way to let your users know about your products or services. E-mail service providers (ESP) like Constant Contact, Vertical Response or SwiftPage make it easy to create your e-mail newsletters.

8. Create a Show Page Attending that big trade show. Create a page on your website (www.companysite.com/showname) and post content about what your are exhibiting at the show, demonstrations or special promotions. Optimize the page around IMTS2010. Be sure to add the show name to your title and URL tags. Depending on your competition, the search engines may index your site on the first page of the SERP resulting in free PR. Don't send your web visitors to the show website where they will be leaving your site and probably check out your competition.

9. Create an e-mail signature Have your IT dept. create a e-mail signature on your company's outbound e-mails. The signature should include your website URL, media sites and your company blog. Skip the images since some e-mail clients will not read them.

10. Run a print/digital ad. Many trade show publications are e-mailing out a digital version of their printed issues. With the "value added" digital issue your ad can be hyperlinked back to your website where the browser can request more info or even order your product or service.

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Mistakes Website#1.Flash. If you have it then get rid of it. Might look really cool the first couple of times but then it will get old and annoying.
#2. You are all about yourself. We are the best , were number 1, we won awards, we sold 20,000 widgets. This means nothing because you have no relationship with the browser and trust has not yet been built. One way to begin this journey is by offering helpful data on your site that will help educate the browser in his/her purchasing process.
#3. There's no SEO. What good is a website if no one can find it.
#4. Your nephew designed your site and your design looks like a kid did it.
#5. No call to action, 800 numbers, or means to request a quote.

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Online DirectoriesGenerate more local business with BtoB directories and industrial websites. Are you a manufacturer that produces unique parts for other businesses and are looking to get more online quotes than what your website generates? Then subscribing to some of the following BtoB online directories and manufacturing websites may be the solution. Most of the following online manufacturing related directories include both a free and paid listing. Paid listings get you listed quicker, provide inbound SEO link juice and results in a better rank. Online directories level the playing field for companies who do no rank high for certain organic searches. Also included are manufacturing related websites that connect buyers and sellers. 

1. ThomasNet ThomasNet is the world's largest sourcing destination for industrial buyers & engineers. A free listing is available but the ThomasNet editors decide your category listing. A paid listing will move you to the front of the product categories that you select. The amount you pay for a listing in a selected category is decided by what other companies are paying. Category positioning is similar to Google Adwords. Inbound links are included with a paid listing resulting in quality SEO link juice.

2. MacRaes Blue Book is very similar to ThomasNet. Based in Canada, this searchable online directory serves 85% US and 15% Canadian industrial BtoB companies. Potential buyers can link to your website directly, call you or request a quote.

3. Zycon  is an online source for technical buyers, purchasing agents, and engineers to locate manufacturing companies. Free listings can take months and will expire after a year. Yearly, Platinum, Gold & Silver listings decide your category rank. Platinum listings will cost the most but rank you higher resulting in more website traffic and online quotes. The Logo program is a less expensive option which gives you 20 product listings and an inbound link to your website.

4. Manta If your company is not already listed with this directory, you can get listed for free. A premium listing will cost $125/year resulting in more traffic since your listing is moved to the top of the product categories and is viewed without the Google ads.

5. IQS is a directory of industrial supply, manufacturers, purchasing, services and components. It includes a Metal Process section for browsers who need quotes ranging from CNC milling, die casting, EDMing to water jet machining. For a fee, your machine shop can get listed in this directory.

6. Kelly Search is a business to business supplier search engine that brings buyers and sellers together. Free and paid advertisements are available.

7. GlobalSpec.com GlobalSpec is a search engine and information resource for the engineering, industrial and technical communities. The site helps engineers find industrial parts. As a job shop you can submit a free listing at http://www.globalspec.com/submit-site.

8. MFG.com is not a directory, nor a search engine but a website that connects buyers with suppliers of manufacturing services. MFG.com supports over 300 manufacturing categories including machining, fabrication, molding, casting, extrusions, forging, metal stamping and contract manufacturing of electronic components. If an item needs to be manufactured, it can be sourced through MFG.com. If you're a manufacturing shop that does outside work it may be worth subscribing to MFG.com.

9. JobShop.com is a paid online directory. The site website connects buyers of custom contract manufactured parts with job shops who produces these parts.

10.  Super Pages is the online version of the old Yellow Pages phone book. There is a free listing but a paid listing sends you to the front of the line resulting in more traffic. For example, Super Pages can tell you how many monthly searches were made (on SuperPages.com) for machine shops in a particular city or county. For $99/month and 1 year subscription, your company listing can show up in selected categories. Select up to 5 cities or 1 county.

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Because of limited resources, it is difficult for these size companies to manage their marketing activities which have expanded with the popularity of websites, e-newsletters, social networks and search engine...

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Contact Info

FusionTech Marketing Inc.

P.J. Naughton

  • City: Park Ridge, IL
  • Cell: 847-532-0812
  • www.fusiontechmarketing.com
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