The upending of normal life as we knew it a few months ago resulted, very naturally, in many people going into one of the ancient coping mechanisms that have served us well: freeze, flight, fight.
While these worked pretty well when we were being chased by the saber-toothed tiger, they aren’t so good at helping us stay strategic in the midst of new-world stress.
We believe this: the recovery is coming. And the digital economy will only grow larger. Businesses that embrace the need to be online and increase their digital presence and marketing will be many steps ahead of those that don’t.
So let’s get to work and start our reboots for the rebound. Here are 29 things you can do to slingshot your business ahead of the curve.
We’ve broken them into four sections:
Let's get started.
Digital Channels and Platforms
Social Media: Facebook
Tip #1: Update your main header image
Take a fresh look at the first impression of your Facebook page. Does the image reflect what you offer — and the benefits you provide your customer? If your main image is a photo of your building (unless you’re an architecture firm and you designed the building), make this your first retool project!
Tip #2: Update your "About" and "Our Story" sections
These sections are frequently overlooked, but they can be helpful business tools. Your About is limited to 255 characters, but you can still share a colorful description focused on benefits to your customers. The Our Story section can be much longer. Use this space to share the heart of your business:
- why you started it…
- how you want your business to benefit your customers…
- what’s special and unique about your business.
Don’t be afraid to add personality here.
Tip #3: Create a pinned post with new business information
📍 A pinned post stays at the top of your feed and allows your customers to see the latest important news about your business without scrolling. Share updates about your business’s reopening plans, new ways to order or pick up, etc.
And when you’re fully open, share that great news!
Tip #4: Add new posts
Create a series of posts with updates about your business status, staff, and more.
Tip #5: Review and respond to reviews
When your customers take time to leave a review, respond with appreciation and thanks that your business is helpful to them.
Social Media: Instagram
Tip #6: Update your Profile
Instagram gives you only a few words to describe your business, so make them count! Descriptive, customer-centric, and fun. You can use emojis to help explain visually what you do.
Tip #7: Update your Bio Link
You get one link on your Instagram profile. The default most businesses use is linking to their business website. The problem? Your customer then has to figure out where to go on your website to find your special offer, event registration, etc. Instead, use an Instagram landing page tool (sometimes called a link tree) that allows you to create a page with lots of different links (make it easy for your fans to find your content and offers).
Tip #8: Weave in video
Explore using video to share your message and the personality of your business. Instagram Stories are 15 seconds long. Do you need more than 15 seconds? Just keep talking — Instagram will automatically cut it into 15-second segments. And don’t worry about perfect: Stories disappear in 24 hours.
Tip #9: Create "Stories" categories
While Instagram Stories are meant to be temporary, you can save the best ones in static categories that fit your business.
Google My Business (GMB)
Tip #10: Update your GMB listing
Keep the information in sync with your website details: (N.A.P.) Name, Address, Phone.
Tip #11: Add new photos
Show your business and products.
There is a monthly report that shows you the number of photos compared to similar competitors. Also, put out the photos you want to represent your brand and business.
Adding new photos for your products, services, team, and events will freshen your profile(s) and give people a new view of your business (worth 1,000 words!)
Tip #12: Review and respond to GMB reviews
Remember, these show up in Google search and Google Map search results. This is a great opportunity to build engagement and interact with your customers (and provide social proof of how much your customers appreciate your business).
Tip #13: Add new posts
Did you know you can add posts to GMB?
These are great to increase visibility, plus you can add both photo and video posts about your brand, services, or upcoming events.
These give extra traction and views to your Google Map views as well as provide trust within Google search (SEO pixie dust goodness).
Your (Marketing-Focused) Website
Tip #14: Secure your website
🔐 If your site isn’t https:// it’s time.
Tip #15: Check for broken links and images
Here are a few options to check your site for broken links:
- Check links manually. Depending on the size of your site and depth of content, this can take a while. So grab your favorite beverage and enjoy the process.
- If you use Google Search Console, you can check for broken links using these basic steps:
- Log in to your Google Search Console account.
- Click the site you want to monitor. The Search Console page appears.
- Click Crawl, and then click Fetch as Google. Here, you can request Google to crawl any specific pages on your website. This takes a little time (even up to a week).
- To access the results after Google crawls the site, click Crawl, and then click Crawl Errors. This appears under URL Errors, and here you can see broken links that were discovered.
- Use a link checker website like WC3
Also, be sure to have your 404 page assigned for your website in case anyone gets lost. By the way, you can have a little fun with your 404 page. Here is ours!
Tip #16: Gather and post testimonials.
Include your reviews from Google My Business and Facebook.
Tip #17: Review your blog content
- Review your stats to find your best content. Use it to springboard more content ideas or products.
- In each blog article, be sure to ask for newsletter signups or point them to other internal or external authority content.
- Write a few new evergreen pieces that fit your services and are tapped into your niche keywords.
Email Marketing / Newsletters
Tip #18: Update your email sign-up form
Use new verbs for your call to action (CTA). Make your form pop. Make it prominent, provide a promise, and give proof.
Tip #19: Tune up your pop-ups for the newsletter sign-up
Review trigger timing, message, where it leads after subscribing. You want to avoid causing friction for your reader.
- Review and improve your “thank you” message or page. It’s the reader’s first impression of the information they’ll be getting, so make it personable, focused on the benefits for them, and engaging.
- Add newsletter sign-ups as a Google Analytics goal.
Here’s a good example of an effective newsletter sign-up form:
Tip #20: Update your auto-responders
Refresh (or create your first) auto response email and short series. Start with your Welcome and sign-up confirmation email, then create a short series of relevant and helpful emails.
Tip #21: Create a new (or your first) lead magnet
Tip #22: Refresh your newsletter
- template (simple, short, attractive)
- adjust content with your brand, message, and services: provide valuable information to your reader; don’t just always sell, sell, sell
- reconsider your frequency and type of content
- review your open rates: if some newsletters performed better, try to see if there’s a pattern
- be sure to add UTM codes when sending traffic to your website so you can get better data on where people are coming from to your content
What is a UTM code?
A UTM code is a simple code that you can attach to a custom URL in order to track a source, medium, and campaign name. This enables Google Analytics to tell you where searchers came from as well as what campaign directed them to you.
Tip #23: Clean up your email list
If subscribers haven’t opened an email in a year, send them an email asking them if they still want to receive the newsletter. If you don’t hear back, omit them from your active list.
Wherefore art thou, Content?
Content and how to use it effectively in different platforms is crucial — and too big a topic for this article.
Here’s more in our article on content strategy.
Tip #24: Confirm everything is in Google Tag Manager
Google Tag Manager is a tool that gives you have a centralized place to store all your marketing and code tags without having to know code.
We use this also for the most basic tag/connection of setting up our Google Analytics connection as well as setting up additional ways to provide analytics with better data.
Tip #25: Review Your Google Analytics Setup
Is it set up AND getting the data you need? Here are the top questions, at a high level, you want your data to help you with:
- What are your top performing pages or blogs?
- What are people searching for on your site (and is this search set up in analytics)?
- Is your navigation working (or NOT working)?
- What pages are frustrating your customers?
- Which social media sites are your customers linking out to?
- Are your goals set up (e.g., newsletter or sales funnels)? Top importance for the website is that we are getting people to take action.
- Knowing how many people are coming through and % conversion is super important and helps fix any issues or drive more traffic if there is a good conversion rate. (Hint: don’t run ads against a badly converting page.)
Final Ideas & Integration
Tip #26: Search (Google) your brand
What shows up? Do you show up for your exact business name?
This is a great way to see how you are represented when people are searching for you online.
Also good to also do a search for your the top keywords in your industry and see where you show up in the results (“If you ain’t first (page), you’re last – Ricky Bobby“).
Tip #27: Audit your technical services and SAAS
How much do you spend monthly on software tools? Do you need all of these? Can you simplify?
Do your tools and forms connect together? For example, do your webinar sign-ups capture the attendee’s email and add it to your email list?
Tip #28: Update your sales pages and thank you pages
Are they still relevant? For your thank you pages, what is the message or feeling you want to leave your customers with? Are you missing any opportunities?
Tip #29: Review your basic funnel
Draw out your content on platforms: where you want to lead them, and then lead theminto your sales pages.
Seeing the forest at a higher level helps you look for opportunities and identify holes in the customer journey. Where does the journey lead them to? (And is this where you intended to lead them?)
Also look for places where you can automate. This can be through automated responses, chat bots, better landing pages. Be creative and see what else is working for other businesses in your industry. Even better, look outside your industry and tweak successful ideas to use in your business.
The (Digital) Sun Will Rise Tomorrow
While the future may look different than it did on those oh-so-simple-in-retrospect days of early 2020, there are opportunities to find new customers, nurture current customers, and do business in a way that makes sense for the new reality.
Yesterday was the best time to begin. Today is the next best time. Are you in?
We're here for you.
We believe in the power of small business and the vision of entrepreneurs like you. And we’re passionate about how a strong digital presence can ramp up your business — no matter what industry you’re in.
Let’s talk and create a plan to reboot your business for the future.