So you started a new business and you want to make it known to the world?
We’ve rounded up the best ways to introduce your business to the world—and sorted them from easiest to hardest. If you want as many potential customers to find out that you’re open for business, then read on.
Get Listed on Google
Google, the number one search engine on the Internet, is one of the most important channels through which potential customers become aware of your company. And you can get listed there for free by creating a Google Business Profile.
To create a Google Business profile, go to google.com/business and add your business to Google. Add essential info, such as your address, phone number, and business hours. To stand out from the crowd, add your logo and photos of your storefront or office.
Once you’ve created a Google Business Profile, your business will show up in local searches and on Google Maps.
Get Listed on Business Directories
Just opened a service business, like a restaurant, a bar, a barbershop, or a nail salon? Get listed on Tripadvisor and Yelp. Do you own a machine shop or maybe even a small factory? Get on Maker’s Row.
In every niche, there are at least a few online directories where customers looking for products or services can find the ones they like best (usually, these are the ones rated the highest and reviewed the most, so good customer service is non-negotiable).
Find out which of these directories apply to your business, then get listed there and stay active. Respond to customer reviews—both good and bad—and ask your customers to leave a review if you’ve worked with them.
Update Your LinkedIn Profile
If you’re in a field where most people use LinkedIn for professional networking, don’t underestimate the power of sharing your story and introducing your business to the world on LinkedIn.
Post your story and ask your professional network for support, whether it’s connecting you with people who might be interested in your services or simply liking and commenting on your post (so that more people can see it).
Create a company page for your business on LinkedIn, then go to your personal profile and update your professional experience by announcing yourself as the Founder, Owner, or CEO.
Meet Customers in the Area
Suppose you’ve opened a pizzeria where you sell pies by the slice. Your customers are all around you!
Go to the other businesses in your area to introduce yourself, tell them you’ve opened a pizzeria, and invite them to try your pizza, along with a special 25% discount for first-time customers. You don’t even need flyers, just good ol’ conversation and promotion through word of mouth.
Consider offering permanent discounts to—or creating special menus —small businesses in your area. Not only will this make them feel special, but you will also gain loyal and hungry customers who will want to eat lunch as long as you keep your pizzeria in this location.
Create a Website
These days, you don’t need to know coding or design to create your own website. Website builders like Squarespace and Wix make it easy for you to sign up, choose a template, and then design it to your liking.
Sign up with one of these services and take a day or two to get up to speed and build your website. You don’t need anything sophisticated, just a Home page that describes your business, an About page that tells your story, and a Contact page with your address and contacts.
When describing your business on your website, be sure to include the name of the business, the products and/or services that you offer, and the location and region in which you operate. For example, “The Stonos Landscaping Co offers landscaping services to home and business owners in Atlanta, GA.”
Get Active on Social Media
Create social media profiles on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and/or Pinterest for your business. Then think about how you can build a following there and keep your audience engaged.
Tell the story of your business by taking photos and videos. Even better, turn your social media presence into a platform where you can give voice to your customers and partners. For example, if you opened a farmer’s market, go to local farmers and ask them to show you around their farms.
To save time and money, sign up for Canva, the world’s easiest to use graphic design tool, and use the pre-made templates to create eye-catching posts, even if you know nothing about design.
Pitch Your Story to the Media
Journalists, whether national or local, are always looking for a good story. If you have one—for example, that you quit your high-flying Wall Street job to start a fruit farm in Utah—go out and tell them about it.
For this to work out, you want to: (a) craft your story and write your pitch, (b) create a list of journalists’ contacts, and (c) call or email them to pitch your story and ask if they’re interested in covering it.
When creating your list, look at journalists that write about your industry in big-time media outlets, industry and trade magazines, as well as local reporters in newspapers and TV channels in your city or state.
Start a Blog or YouTube Channel
We want to be upfront with you about this: It’s *not* easy to start a blog or a YouTube channel, and it takes a few months of hard work and at least a few months of waiting to see any results at all.
But once you get the ball rolling, potential customers will discover and rediscover your business day after day in Google searches and on YouTube. Not all of them will visit your website or come to your store, but some of them will, and over time that number will add up.
If you’re a plumber, consider creating a blog post or YouTube video titled, “What to do if your sink is leaking?” Continue to create content that answers your customers’ questions, and don’t be afraid to promote your business and services if they want the help of a professional.
Related: The Best Blogging Courses
Do a Case Study
Now, this isn’t for every type of business.
With that being said, if you’re in the service industry and you want to promote your business and its services to the world, one of the best ways to make it happen is to create a case study to solve a specific problem that most of your potential clients have.
Pitch the idea to the editor of a trade journal and offer them the exclusive right to publish your case study throughout its duration, as long as your company’s name is prominently mentioned. The editor gets interesting content for their readers—and you get a platform to find potential customers.