July 30 workshop levels the Internet marketing field for small businesses


To many small business owners and marketing managers, the mere prospect of competing in the Internet marketplace is daunting.

US advertisers will be spending $46.5 billion on digital advertising – everything from website display ads to Facebook, Twitter, mobile, e-mail and then some – this year, and by 2016, that should reach an even $62 billion.

From 300,000 tweets per day in January, 2008, Twitter grew to 400 million per day as of October, 2012. And the end is nowhere in sight.

Internet marketing is so huge that last year alone, mobile advertisers lost the cost of 1,925 Lamborghinis just on accidental clickthroughs.

No wonder small business feel just a wee bit intimidated. But there are several reasons they shouldn’t be.

One reason is that as a local small business owner, you don’t have to compete with all of America’s corporate giants. Quite often, the “competition” is your target audience’s ignorance of what you sell and why they should buy from you.

Another is that, unlike, say, print or television, media can be either free or dirt-cheap – especially when you’re marketing on a neighborhood or local level.

Come Tuesday, July 30, there’ll be another reason for small businesses to compete on equal terms. That’s the SmallBiz Internet Marketing Basic Training workshop that international Internet marketing consultant Akiva Ben-Ezra and I will be conducting.

In one business day, entrepreneurs and their marketing managers will learn, hands-on, how to implement their own sales-building local social and marketing programs.

Right away.

Without paying “experts” hundreds of dollars a month or more to do things you’ll know how to do yourself.

And without putting your business at the mercy of so-called digital marketing experts who know lots about the digital part but next to nothing about the marketing – and whose blunders as a result of this ignorance can cost your business lots more than their fees.

Ben-Ezra is the owner of Israel-based Ben-Ezra Marketing, which helps small to medium businesses, both in Richmond and worldwide, to gain market share worldwide. As a speaker and panelist at international Internet marketing conferences and through webinars, he teaches non-experts how to understand difficult web concepts and methods and put them to work building revenues and sales.

Specifically, he’ll be demonstrating

  • how businesses can set up and maintain effective SEO programs.
  • how to claim placement on Google Places and use this free search feature to drive traffic.
  • how and why to use apps, text message marketing and mobile websites to capture the attention of an audience on the go.
  • how to build your business with Facebook posts, ads, contests and business pages.

Of course, making your business visible on the Internet and attracting audience traffic is wasted effort if your content doesn’t motivate your target audience once it gets there.

That’s why I’ll be explaining stupid strategic and executional mistakes to avoid and more than a dozen smart, low-cost tactics you can employ to build your sales and revenues.

The workshop will be from 9 AM to 4 PM at Kitchen Thyme, 7801-25 West Broad Street. More information, registration and payment of the $99 admission are at SmallBusinessIMBasicTraining.com

That’s about the cost of one week’s third-party search engine optimization. And it’ll leave you ready to punch above your weight in SEO, apps, text, mobile,social marketing, online advertising and more in the battle for Internet sales.

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