Ok, it is truly time for the SMB’s of the world to take this internet marketing thing very seriously. If you have been dabbling or have considered dabbling in the past it’s time to get in the game for real.
Why the urgency you ask? Well, the Yellow Page sales people are coming! Run for the hills! Hide the women and children! There will be no prisoners taken because these are desperate times for Yellow Page salespeople and their companies alike. To find out more on the state of the industry check out my post on Marketing Pilgrim today.
As for how to handle the latest push you are likely seeing or hearing from the Yellow Pages? As always it’s for you to decide. If you are looking for advice I certainly have some: Find a better place to spend your money. I still don’t understand the value of having your company listed with ALL of your competition without having a real chance to look different. Is it just to say that you are there? I think there are other places where saying that would be more beneficial, like the SERP’s (search engine result pages) for relevant local keywords and key phrases.
Remember that your web site is your focal point. It is your landing point for all of your advertising efforts. No matter where the SMB advertises (newspapers, radio, magazines etc) the prospect will go to your web site to make a further assessment of your capabilities and may even go to the search engines to see how THEY see you.
Look this is simple. Spend your time, money and effort on optimizing your site. SEO for the SMB market is certainly an investment but one that generates results when done well. Spend money on paid search campaigns. It’s hard to find a more targeted advertising vehicle these days. Do things that will bring you business. Doing something because you have always done it that way is just plain irresponsible and dangerous especially during these times.
SMB Takeaway: Resist the ‘pitch and close’ approach of your Yellow Pages sales attack dogs. They are desperate and need you A LOT more than you need them. Use your marketing dollars wisely by spending on your web site and its presence in the search engines. You’ll thank me later.
Thanks and have a great day!