“As a small business, your objective is for your customers to find you as easily as possible.”

While the move to online services is a driving force for many businesses across Australia, print directories are still a critical source of information for many consumers and businesses, particularly in regional areas.

According to recent research, the Yellow Pages® book reaches more than 11 million people across Australia and of those people, 69% who found a business contacted them with 60% going on to make a purchase.

While many businesses transition to online models, there are still many regional areas in Australia where internet access isn’t always possible. The tyranny of distance also means people have to travel distances often in areas without mobile coverage.

As a small business, your objective is for your customers to find you as easily as possible. This is why it’s still important to have a mix of traditional and digital so your potential consumers can find you easily whether it’s in the print directory, online, mobile or social networking sites.

These days more than ever you need to think strategically about your marketing approach regardless of whether you operate from an online store or a traditional bricks and mortar shopfront.

Creating a consistent brand perception for your existing and potential customers across these varied channels is a challenge so here are some extra tips for doing it well:

Embrace social media

If your business doesn’t have a presence on social media already what are you waiting for! According to the Sensis e-Business Report 2014, 39 percent of SMEs use social media in their business with the majority indicating it had a positive effect on their business.

Build a great website

Your website is your virtual shopfront, so the first impression it makes on your potential customer could be the difference between making that sale or not. DIY templates offer a great range of design options, but you should focus on the simple things, like making sure your website is simple to navigate and your contact details are easy to find.

Encourage online reviews

If your customers loved your product or service, make it easy for them to tell their friends online. Our Yellow Social Media Report 2014 found that 30% of Australian social media users provided online ratings and reviews in 2014, up from 25% in 2013.

Explore online advertising

If you want to operate online, it makes sense to advertise there too. Options for online advertising are endless and include avenues such as social media, Google AdWords and banner ads on popular websites or blogs. There are a number of benefits to online advertising, namely that it provides you with a cost-effective method of advertising and allows you to strategically target your campaign directly to your niche audience.

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