And sometimes they respond: “Okay, but do I really want the clients that find me on the internet?”
It’s like the Groucho Marx line: “I don’t care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members.”
Statistics show that, after email and social networking, the top two internet activities are shopping and research.
For many businesses, the internet is their primary sales driver. But there’s often an assumption that online buyers are only searching for the best bargain and that if your business provides a higher-end product or professional service, you’ll only be contacted by someone looking to low-ball.
That might be true in some cases, but consider the quandaries faced by Google-searchers:
- Who’s out there? A potential customer is willing to pay the going rate; but she doesn’t know who to ask for a recommendation so she’s starting on the internet.
- What have they done? Someone is considering doing business with your company but wants to find out more about you or about your business –expertise, work experience, clients, projects you’ve completed.
- Do I want to work with them? Your online marketing content – the business blogs, newsletters, articles, case studies, and testimonials you post, as well as information found on your social networks, not only convey the “personality” of your business – what you’d be like to work with – but most importantly, serve to accelerate the building of your company’s credibility and trust.
Yes, potential clients Googling you are, in some ways, shopping and doing research. You may be contacted by a few folks you’d rather not work with. But on the other hand, being found you on the internet could turn out to be quite profitable – it’s a club whose membership you probably shouldn’t ignore.
Want to join the club? Martha Spelman is a Los Angeles-based small business marketing, branding and social media consultant. To see more, click here.