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Your Host: Kip Russel

In episode #5 of Rediscover Your Brand Podcast, we are discussing the Top Website Marketing Trends of 2011, inspired by a recent posting from entrepreneur.com.

Transcripts

You are listening to Rediscover Your Brand Podcast brought to you by ArtVersion Interactive Agency. 

Welcome to Rediscover Your Brand Podcast, episode #5, brought you by ArtVersion Interactive. I’m your host, Kip Russell, and today we’re discussing the top website marketing trends of 2011.  

The days of putting up a website and buying Google ads are over. The market is super saturated, and today’s techniques require strategy, hard work and patience. 

As the global economy struggles to correct itself, and social media becomes a strategic imperative, small businesses will have an exciting opportunity to expand into new directions this year. 

The need for trust, value, and brand transparency, among other trends from last year, is just as important today. But the current shift to geotargeting, mobile marketing, and online reputation management requires that small businesses modify their plans to surpass competitors.  

Here are the top 10 marketing trends that small businesses should incorporate now to be positioned for success from the start. 

#1. Building loyal and reliable brand advocates. When social media first came around, people thought it was all about the numbers of followers you can amass and off-sites, Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, etc. Well, we’re now realizing that’s important to have loyal, reliable customers that care and become brand ambassadors and brand advocates on these sites that help spread the message, interact with what you’re doing, and become the best representations of your brand.

#2. Excel in one area or, in short, knowing your niche. In a world where people are trying to be all things to all people, we have social networks like Google and Facebook trying to become the Internet. It’s important to understand that having a niche in your marketplace will help you stand out in the over-saturated Internet. So find your niche, stick to it, and find your audience  

#3. Creating quality content is a viable marketing tool. We all know that content and social media work hand in hand. People spread content over the social web just like we do in real life. It’s important to create content for your business in order for people to spread your message around the web organically. 

On top of that, you build context if you’re consistent with your content over the years, months and dates. People continue to come back as your relationship grows. By then, watching and sharing your content. 

#4. Moving marketing dollars to social media. We all know if you look around while you’re driving that no one’s looking at the road or even billboards or ads anymore. What they are doing is staring at their phone, playing their own individual podcasts and things like that. It’s important to concentrate on the social media. In a few years from now, you won’t be able to buy your way into this marketplace because people will have established relationships on these social platforms and have years and years of context against what you’re trying to buy your way into. So start now and get ahead of the curve. 

#5. Tracking brand reputation on the social web. This could be the most important thing for marketing in the future. These social tools have given us the ability to find who’s talking about it, why they’re talking about it, when they’re talking about it, and what also makes them talk about our brands. Nothing can be more important to that as a marketing person.

So go out there; use Search.twitter, Hootsuite, TweetDeck, Spreadfast, and search for your brand. Listen, listen, listen, and learn what brings people to your site in the future. If video is the most talked about content, keep creating video. If people like your blog post or your informational content, keep doing that. Find out what works, how it works, and how you can reach your customer better by searching and finding your analytics. 

#6. Increased branded online experiences to meet diverse consumer needs. Simply put, having a Twitter or Facebook page isn’t enough this year. Small businesses need to have multiple branded online destinations, such as a blog, a LinkedIn profile, YouTube channel, Flickr, etc., etc. Define where their audience is and give them multiple options on how to interact with your brand in different ways.

People nowadays don’t want to feel bored and don’t want to feel routine, so they’re looking to find the way that the web works the best. In this fragmented environment, it’s important to have multiple places where people can be introduced to your brand. 

#7. Pursuing mobile marketing. Like I said earlier in the podcast, look in to a car next to you. Most people while they’re stopped at a light are looking at their phones. When you see him walking in the street, they’re staring at their phones and almost walking into you. 

It’s important to understand that these things, especially tied in with apps like Foursquare, Gowalla, and Facebook Check-In, that mobile is the future. Marketing companies are already using this to track where consumers are, how they are, offer them deals. And it’s just going to get more and more aggregated and more and more used in the future. So start thinking mobile. 

#8. Geotargeting and localized marketing will become top priority. We already know this with Groupon and Foursquare and Yelp. These super, uber-local niches are becoming very valuable in the marketplace, and more and more small businesses are going to need to find ways that they can attract people immediately when they’re in their location.

So geotargeting, and this will be huge in the future. I feel like we’re at our infancy here, and more and more places, apps, and developers are going to be concentrating on these uber-local markets that are the most vital to our economy. And also with the use of social media, things are becoming more small-town, more old school, more handshake, more like. And people are going to use these things to build better relationships and control their market locally, even more and more organically. 

#9. Push Marketing is a thing of the past. We all know when newspapers and radio and print dominated. All you had to do is get your message out there to as many places as possible and hope you can get as many eyeballs as possible.

Nowadays, it’s much more pull, much more interactivity. Much more being creative with cross-promoting and branded online destinations, discounts, contests, and events and all things that create multiple conversations on and offline for your brand. 

#10. Co-marketing to boost returns and lowers marketing costs. In this economy, where people are struggling to do different things, struggling to find their niche, and struggling to get the word of mouth out in this fragment in marketing environment, it’s important to form valuable relationships with people that work well with your businesses. If you own a restaurant and you’re BYOB, partner up with a local liquor store and help cross-promote each other by giving deals to both economies and both followings to draw more partnerships that not only lead to reduce costs, but also can lead to increased exposure for both your audiences.

This is an exciting year for marketing in 2011. People are starting to realize that social media is important and here to stay, and people are working with mobile marketing initiatives and localized and a variety of online different things. It’s important to get out there now, get out there fast, and start trying and really hybrid-ing what works for your business and start being creative. 

This is a very important time. 2012 is going to get even more uber-local and even more competitive and even more exciting for us marketers. 

So that’s it for episode #5 of Rediscover Your Brand. I hope you enjoyed this episode and please take a minute to write us on iTunes. Spread the word on Twitter at Twitter.com/art version or connect with us on Facebook which is facebook.com/art version. And once again if you have any questions or comments feel free to email me at [email protected] Please visit our website. 

Once again, I’m Kip Russell. This is Rediscover Your Brand Podcast. Thanks for listening, and see you next week. 

You have been listening to the Rediscover Your Brand Podcast made possible thanks to support from ArtVersion Interactive Agency.