A New Social Audience for SMBs

Emineo Media, Scholarship PromotionsSmall and medium size business owners: Have you’re figured out (yet) how to make your voice heard among the thousands, if not millions of online conversations occurring all at once?

The whole buzz about using social media to get new awareness and create a following is real, but you have to be remarkable. If what you’re saying is the same as 10 or 100 other businesses out there, why should anyone zero-in on what you’re saying?

In order to garner someone’s attention you have to either make a loud a statement, or just have something they absolutely want or need – or both. So how do you do that? Give something away!

With over 70% of consumers researching products and services online before making a buying decision, what do you think they are searching for? Certainly they’re trying to ensure that what they are about to purchase is a quality product from a verifiable business. But what they’re really searching for, more now than ever is a discount or a way to save a few bucks. EVERYONE wants to cut costs. And don’t mislead yourself into thinking that wealthy people don’t care about savings. A majority of the wealthy became so through frugality.

So if you truly want to be found online, make it easy for someone to find you. Offer steep discounts for a trial period. The relatively new and still growing coupon site is all the proof you need.

But there are other ways too. If your product isn’t a consumable, how do you attract your target audience? How do you draw in an audience that could one day need your product or service? The short answer is, branding and awareness – right? Those typically take a lot of time and a substantial investment. Who has that? SMB’s need and want the exposure in real time.

What’s the hottest electronic device on the market today? Try offering one or two as part of a giveaway promotion and watch your traffic explode. Sweepstakes and giveaways are good short-term attention getters. But there’s actually one addition tactic that produces both short and long term results. Scholarships.

Business branded scholarships haven’t been a common term in the SMB vocabulary until lately. Historically, larger corporations have held the term and used scholarships purely as a way to give back to their loyal customers.

With the growth of the internet and social media sites, SMBs can also capitalize on the fruits that scholarships produce. Those being a constant flow of fresh new leads and traffic to your business and social media websites; visits by friends and relatives of those applying for the scholarships because they want to help the student and/or they need it just as badly; and, long-term commitment. If you’re questioning long-term commitment, consider this. Have you forgotten the name of the first person who either extended or gave you financial support?

The going-to-college audience, 18-30 year-olds is the next generation of consumers. The sooner you can get to know them, and them to know you and your business, the sooner you can begin to instill your brand and its commitments in their minds.

What are you doing today, to reach the audience that will propel your businesses through tomorrow?

2 Comments
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