Thursday, February 16, 2012

Using Online Communities To Create Brand Awareness - Part 1

We should always endeavor to connect with our customers.  Isn't that one of the great goals and mysteries of marketing and branding?  What is the best way to connect with our customers?  How should we convince them to purchase our products?  How can we spend AS LITTLE MONEY as possible doing this and still make a profit?

It seems that many small businesses, and even large ones, still have not discovered the online community "gold mine".  Being a part of online communities is necessary, because it gives you a direct opportunity to build credibility, build awareness, create SEO-aware content, and address customer service issues.

Online communities give you a direct way to connect with consumers and build credibility.  Online communities allow you to present yourself as a subject manner expert.  By answering consumer's questions and helping them solve their problems in a friendly, non-pressured manner, you present yourself as a credible and knowledgeable, even though you are somewhat biased towards your product as a solution.  With a good attitude, and a friendly, clear writing style, you can present your product and brand as the wise solution to their needs.

As you are helping community members meet their needs, you are constantly building awareness.  Your participation helps to show others their potential need for your product.  Also, your participation helps to inform others of the existence of your product who may not have known about you.  Online communities also provide you with a great opportunity to receive feedback about your product.  If you are an advertiser in that community, you can also build awareness by posting news releases about new models and product updates.

Next time we will discuss using online communities to create more SEO-aware content and help create positive brand experiences via customer service.


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