Risk & Business Magazine Hardenbergh Insurance Group Magazine Summer 2018 | Page 9
BUY OR BUILD?
blog posts, informative articles, photos,
videos, reviews and testimonials, content
published to social media channels, they
“check in” and “check out” at locations on
mobile devices, actively search for special
offers to take advantage of, and respond to
different types of banner ads.
To Buy Or To Build,
That Is The Question
Expert Tim Miller Weighs In
hould you buy or build your
online presence? Should you
count on organic or inorganic
growth in your presence? That’s
the age old question in business,
and an important question specifically
when considering the web presence for
small businesses. Believe it or not, online
presence affects credibility, reputation,
professional relevance and referral power!
To be successful today, SMB’s need to grow
their online presence beyond a basic website.
So, to what extent should you buy vs. build?
To answer this question, I talked to Tim
Miller, CEO of Local Search Essentials,
a leading online marketing firm. Here is
what he shared:
Starting out, a small business essentially
needs to consider:
(1) “Buying” immediate visibility via paid
advertising opportunities and
(2) “Building” a strong web presence, which
includes listings in directories, reviews and
testimonials, and social media sites.
Everything needs to be professionally
branded, mobile friendly, and have a strong
focus on generating phone calls and emails.
Every industry is different, and certain
geographic areas are more competitive
than others. It’s important to understand
how competitive your industry and
geographic area are to know how much it’s
When we begin working with a new
customer, the first thing we do is evaluate
the SMB’s target customer, so we can
understand their “buying journey” and
develop a custom strategy that will
generate visibility, convert prospects to
customers, and then delight and engage
them on an ongoing basis.
IF TIME AND RESOURCES ARE LIMITED,
WHAT IS THE #1 THING SMB’S SHOULD
DO TO MARKET THEIR BUSINESS
going to take to compete!
A small business should work with an
expert who is experienced and can easily
evaluate opportunities, competition, and
determine a mix of strategies that make
sense according to the goals, objectives and
budget of the SMB.
MAINTAINING SOCIAL MEDIA SUCCESS
Your business needs to generate engaging
content that existing followers will find
interesting and that will help educate and
convert prospects to customers. There
has to be commitment, and you need to
use a mix of tools to measure and analyze
results, and identify opportunities for
improvement on an ongoing basis.
WHAT APPEALS TO A SMB’S CLIENTELE
ONLINE TO KEEP THEM ENGAGED WITH
This is a tough question, and is going to
vary depending on the industry and type
Consumers interact and engage with a
number of different types of elements
including paid ads, websites, local listings,
Eighty-eight percent of consumers read
online reviews before they purchase local
services, and 92 percent believe what they
read! As such, an SMB’s online reputation
can literally make or break it. Having a
plan, executing it, and monitoring results
and responding when necessary are all
essential factors that determine success.
Search engines reward companies that
actively build and market their online
reputation with increased visibility.
In addition, the reviews educate and
convert prospects into paying customers
by increasing confidence. Without a
reputation marketing plan, results from
any marketing activities (both online and
offline) are going to be limited.
SO, BUY OR BUILD?
The truth is, you need to do BOTH in
order to be successful. If you have the time,
building an organic presence online can be
extremely valuable. But by spending money
on advertising, and even on experts like
Tim, you can speed up the growth of your
online presence. +
Dave Kerpen is the CEO of Likeable Local. He is also
the co-founder and chairman of Likeable Media and
the New York Times best-selling author of Likeable
Social Media and Likeable Business. Want to learn
about how to grow your business using social media
in two minutes? Visit DaveKerpen.com
BY: DAVE KERPEN,
CEO, LIKEABLE LOCAL