We recently relaunched our website and began an inbound marketing program using Hubspot All-in-One Marketing Software. We have a very small presence on Facebook and Twitter and are just beginning to get our LinkedIn company page up and going. Like many other companies out there, OctoClean has been stuck in the old-world, pre-technology mindset of door-to-door canvassing and print advertising. For over 15 years this has served us well. The economy however has changed this approach as most front desk receptionists have been replaced by telephones or locked doors and decision makers now are busier

We avoided inbound marketing because the “old school” was working AND the belief that no one was using the web to find janitorial services. I surprised to discover, keywords (Search terms) like janitorial ,office cleaning and housekeeping services get combined over 20,000 global searches a month. Searching for these key words will likely occur because the searcher is well… “searching” for a service. Consequentally, we are all in. We’re looking to the Internet and social networking sites to apply modern, successful business practices to bring in more leads.

What we’ve learned is we do not have to be a graphic design firm, a tech start-up or a clothing line to have an appealing, modern web presence. We just need to have a web presence with a distinct, likable personality that offers a personal dialog with visitors. Here are a couple of tips on how you can connect with customers using the Internet:

Appeal to Younger Generations with Social Networking

The younger adult generation uses the Internet for social networking and entertainment.* This group has grown up with the Internet and is extremely savvy in the way the internet works. They’re looking for something more than a product when they’re surfing online. They want to interact with the company they’re going to buy from and know that the service or product they’re getting is “special”. They want to be able to share this special experience with their friends on social networking sites. For this generation of consumers, it’s extremely important to create a dialog with them via Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Essentially, they use social networking to show off the great services and products they’re using. Use this to your advantage. Give them the special experience they crave by acknowledging their complaints and praises online.

Reach out to 35+ Generations with Free Research and Advice

The older adult generation, on the other hand, is much more likely to use the Internet for research and shopping rather than social interacting.* In fact 75% of them will visit sites for the first time to research…not buy. Use this to your advantage and offer tons of free expert research and advice. This will keep this generation of users coming back for more and eventually bring them to the buying cycle.

Post Consistently and Often

There’s nothing worse than inconsistency on the Internet. Inconsistency will lose followers and customers. So, to develop a personality and tone of voice for your company, be sure to stay consistent with the frequency and quality of content you post on your website. Posting frequently will develop your company’s voice. At the same time, posting too often will get your customers annoyed with you. Here are some guidelines on frequency practices:

Blog: Your company should have a blog. If it doesn’t, create one. Blog posts should go up between (2) and (5) times a week.

Twitter: Posting every hour as well as responding to tweets that are directed at you allows you to be posting frequently enough for customers to see that you’re active.

Facebook: Post interesting, useful content once a day and keep up with personal dialogs. At OctoClean, we avoid silly personal status updates. Stay professional, but personal with posts that include original content.

Identify your Audience

The most important aspect to remember is to write content that resonates with your target audience. People whether young or old give very little attention to your message. After you identify the audience find out everything you can about them. It is not important to market to the masses if you have a niche that is listening. Social Media will allow your ideas to spread through the “fans” of your message.

Avoid “Garbage” Content

As you get started it is tempting to just get content up on your site (blogs) and through your media channels. You will need a healthy mix of quality and quantity. Be careful not to get addicted to just posting as this will water down your “voice” and alienate followers. Those early adopters are your gold mine as they will spread the word. Nurture them by giving great content that is relevant to their needs and wants.

Although the technology learning curve may be steep, it’s well worth investing the time and money to connect with current and potential customers. As a company our goal is to give our audience content that will solve their problems, when they want it and not by force. Share your thoughts by entering a comment below. Thanks for reading.

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