I just came across this nifty infographic by GoGlobe.com, Amazing Things That Happen Every 60 Seconds on the Internet. Looking at these numbers, there’s no doubt the online world is a big place, and getting bigger every day.
If you have a business that you’re marketing on the Internet (and I’m going to assume you probably do, or you wouldn’t be reading this blog post), here are my 3 key takeaways from this infographic. I hope they can help you to take meaningful action to grow your business online.
Disclaimer: I’m going to skip talking about Google and Facebook today. Not because they aren’t important, but because if you still need to be convinced why your business should be found on what are respectively the most popular search engine and the most popular website in the world, then this post probably can’t help you.
3 Key Takeaways from What Happens on the Internet in 60 Seconds
1. Answer questions
Stat: 140 questions get asked every minute – and that’s just on Yahoo! Answers and Answers.com. The true number would be astronomically higher, after taking into account platforms such as Facebook Questions and Wiki Answers, and of course local Australian forums like Whirlpool and InTheMix.com.au.
Action: As the voice of your business, you have specialised knowledge that you can use to answer questions from people seeking information about your products, services or industry. Use it to connect with the people who are interested in those subjects, in whichever platform/s you feel is most appropriate for your business. Don’t hard sell; just give the gift of your expertise.
Why: There are several benefits to answering questions. One, being active in the online social space helps your SEO campaign. Two, as you build a reputation as a trusted source of information, creating a two-fold flow-on effect of more people willing to do business with you, and more people talking positively about you online. Three, well, it’s actually a three-fold flow-on effect: the more people talk about you online, the better your SEO results will be.
Talk about a virtuous cycle! Don’t overlook the value of asking questions on social platforms either; it’s a great (and free) way to do market research.
2. Publish videos
Stat: 25+ hours of video are added to YouTube every minute. And here’s another stat: YouTube is the second most popular search engine in the world after Google, meaning that millions of people search its database of video clips when they are looking for information.
Action: Register a free YouTube channel for your business and publish video content. The videos do not have to be expensive, and you don’t have to be in them. The relevance and usefulness of the content is much more important than perfect lighting and professional editing. You can make a video with only your smartphone camera or laptop’s webcam. Or if you are camera shy, try using animated video production tools such as Animoto or screencasting tools like Jing to create your videos.
Why: With the increasing popularity and affordability of mobile tablets (guess how many thousands of Australians would have been given an iPad this Christmas?), leading content marketing experts know that 2012 will be the year that online video explodes. But don’t take my word for it – Frost and Sullivan’s Australian Online Video Market research report is just one of many that are predicting that the video future is all but upon us.
That it’s much harder playing catch up than running with a head start is a universal truth, so don’t put off getting yourself in the video game!
3. Go beyond Facebook
Stat: 320+ new Twitter accounts and 100+ new LinkedIn accounts are created every minute, showing that while Facebook is undoubtedly the reigning overlord of the social media world, there are other popular fast-growing channels in which to see and be seen.
Action: If your business has a Facebook page, and if you are actually active with it, then the next step is to widen your online social horizons with Twitter and/or LinkedIn. The good news is, you can quite easily repurpose much of your Facebook content for these platforms, opening up your brand to entirely new audiences. In other words, if you already publish your company blog posts, product updates, special events, promotional activities etc to Facebook, simply push them out on Twitter and/or LinkedIn as well.
Why: You’ll get the same SEO and trust benefits by gaining links and mentions of your brand on social networks that I discussed in the first takeaway. Another advantage is audience segmentation targeting: using Twitter and Facebook together is ideal for B2C companies, while combining Twitter with LinkedIn can be a B2B goldmine if done correctly. By formulating your message to suit each audience segment, it will have a far greater impact.
Ultimately, with the ongoing integration of social with search, it’s no longer enough to rely only on SEO and/or PPC to get the targeted traffic your online business needs to flourish.
In closing, I’d like to emphasise that most (if not all) of what your business does in one Internet marketing channel can be repurposed in another, with the outcome that you will reach ever greater numbers of potential customers. Made a video for YouTube? Post the link on Facebook! Wrote a terrific blog post? Let your LinkedIn followers know about it! Having a Facebook competition? Put the word out on Twitter!
You get the idea … maximise every cross-platform opportunity, and your website and business will soon feel the ripple effects of more traffic, more credibility, and more visibility all over the Internet. After all, there’s a lot that happens every 60 seconds around this place, so you’d better make sure you’re getting your share.
To learn more, I recommend checking out Social Media Marketing for the latest news, guides, and case studies from around the social web.