8 Marketing Strategies Your VoIP Business Can Start Todaysstoveld
As cliché as its sounds, competition in today’s VoIP market is fierce and there’s no indication of it slowing down. Yet, despite the new and existing competitors out there, working as a VoIP distributor, reseller, or service provider is still a rewarding and lucrative career. If you’re looking to stand out amongst the other VoIP providers, but don’t know where to start when it comes to marketing, here are eight ways you can jump on it today:
- Develop Your Brand’s Persona: You sell VoIP phones & equipment. Great…but so do the other guys. If your brand was a person, is that the only defining trait he’d have? Creating a brand persona means developing a brand’s personality – the brand’s attitudes, values and strengths. By creating a character for your brand, you will begin creating a brand voice – one that will sound more genuine to customers & resonate better. Building a brand persona is not the easiest task, but it can be done by following a step-by-step process.
- Segment Your Market: Before you can develop a solid marketing strategy, you need to analyze your market. In many cases, your market needs to be segmented – or broken down – either by demographics, industry, or customer type. These segments may have varying needs, and you have to create value that will appeal to these particular customer desires. Once you’ve determined what each segment is looking for, you can then create valuable marketing content.
- Create a Valuable Content Strategy: Content Marketing? We hear this word thrown around a lot, and in all honesty, it’s easy to define. Content marketing is essentially creating, publishing & distributing valuable material, via the Internet (videos, blogs, social media), that promotes your company’s products or services. There are a lot of concepts in the VoIP world that could be confusing to your customers. Simplify those. Make things understandable. Write down “what do my customers need to know and understand?” and generate a list. From that list, start brainstorming ways you could teach, inform, and advise your customers on these things. You can then create content from your (hopefully) successful brainstorming session.
- Utilizing Social Media: Social media is free, for the most part, so use it. Use what you’ve developed for your content strategy & post. It’s not necessarily easy to gain followers, but if you develop valuable content, share frequently, connect with others, and even pay for social media ads (which I’ve done before & saw great results from – thanks, Facebook), your follower count will increase. Get more tips from Forbes here. Also, be creative with your social media strategy. Create a custom Snapchat geofilter for your booth for a tradeshow. Demonstrate a product “live” on Facebook Live. Get customers involved in a conversation about a new product through scheduled Twitter parties. Or create a giveaway that involves following your page, liking specific content, or posting to your page.
- Optimize Your Website: I’m by no means an SEO strategist, but when I saw traffic to my company page was down YTD and our page wasn’t ranking high on a SERP, I knew it was time to contact an SEO expert. If you don’t want to dish out the cash, you can run a free SEO audit on your page and you’ll be able to begin starting your on-site optimization. So, jump on Google Analytics and take a look at your traffic patterns. If your numbers look weak, it’s time to investigate into some SEO.
- Take Advantage of Email Marketing: Email is another potentially free avenue you need to explore, if you haven’t done so already. Make it simple by subscribing to an e-mail service, like MailChimp or Constant Contact, which will also provide you with e-mail sign up tools for your website. Start building your e-list by utilizing current customer contacts, sign-ups at events, and your website. As your list starts growing, begin distributing value content (think step #3!), including announcements on new products, monthly newsletters, and upcoming promotions. If you haven’t been in the email game before, services like MailChimp will make it easy with beautiful, customizable templates, assisted marketing automation, A/B testing options, and even an optimal send time option! And if you’re still doing it the old-fashioned way through your company’s e-mail server, at least make sure you’re sending those e-blasts mid-morning during the work week (my track record shows Tuesday through Thursday between 10-11 AM is a pretty prime time).
- Networking on LinkedIn: Your employees have their own LinkedIn pages, so why are you not capitalizing on that? As a marketer, meet with your sales team and teach them the ways of building relationships and distributing marketing content on LinkedIn. LinkedIn for Small Business provides the basic tips and tricks for networking on LinkedIn, so pass it along as a helpful guide to your co-workers.
- Invest in Digital & PPC Ads: It’s a tale as old as time: spend money to make money. Investing in digital advertisements and PPC ads can help drive brand awareness and boost your website traffic. If those are some of the KPIs you’ve determined as part of your marketing strategy, I recommend consulting a Search Engine Marketing (SEM) specialist. I’m certified in AdWords, but I felt that a true SEM specialist would be the best route for me. They’ll assist with setting you up on Google Adwords and will help you determine which short tail/long tail keywords will give you the most bang for your buck. Monitoring your website on Google Analytics, along with consistent attention to you Adwords dashboard, will help you see if the ads are getting the needle moving. Digital advertisements, on websites & social media pages, can be determined based upon your market segments, where you need the most visibility, and what sites people in your industry are visiting. With how connected everyone is in 2017, you’re missing an opportunity if you neglect digital advertising altogether.