A Digital Foot Print? And why is it important to my business?
Everyday, whether we want it or not, intend to or not, most of us are contributing to the collection of data – the expansion of the portrait of our activity on the internet. We would probably be shocked to find out how public this portrait is. Ofttimes we are reminded of how public it is when we see websites and product offerings that seem to appear on our phones and/or computer screens for weeks of something we just did some “casual” shopping for. That happens to you too, huh!? Kind of scary isn’t it!?
Let’s define Digital Footprint – then look at how you can take advantage of this phenomenon as a marketing tool. According to TechTerms.com, a digital foot print is: “. . . a trail of data you create while using the Internet. It includes the websites you visit, emails you send, and information you submit to online services.”
We all have a “passive digital footprint” – or the stuff we unintentionally leave online. For instance, your search history, which is saved by search engines while you are logged in. In fact, we have all became aware of how the websites we want to be part of all require a login, that is done with an email address, your Facebook account, or some other internet account that now associates all of our activity on that account with us.
There is also an “active digital footprint”. This is the one we are going to look at. It is the crumbs you leave on the “internet trail” that you want people to find, so they can become a friend, a prospect, a customer, or a referral partner. I have found in working with many owners of businesses and professionals that many of them have not taken control of this. I contend that in today’s enormously active online marketplace that this “business internet portrait” can be critical to the health and long-term growth (or decline) of our business.
The following are some of the on-line activities that can start having an impact on your business digital footprint:
- Determine your ideal audience – and where do they spend their time on the internet?
- Have a strong well written internet marketing profile .
- Search for yourself and make sure you know the sites that are showing up with information about you – Google, Yahoo!, Yelp, Manta,
- And for real estate professionals – Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, Homes.com, Movoto.com, and there are many more.
- Be purposeful about “capturing” the information on these sites. If you don’t have an account, set one up. You will start getting junk mail from them. That can be easily ignored, but the value of maintaining an accurate digital footprint will start reaping benefits for your business’s visibility.
- Be active on your audience’s favorite social media sites – with valuable “comment and share worthy” content. And be consistent with this.
- Blog – if you haven’t started, you should. You have the most control over the information about the expertise you bring to your industry by sharing it.
- Become a master of video creation. Video is the most powerful content showing up online.
David Redabaugh is a digital marketing expert and helps businesses, professionals, and entrepreneurs find solutions to custom create their authenticity for impact with their online branding. His job is showing, helping, and training his clients to market effectively on-line.
As a trainer for Cindy Bishop Worldwide, LLC, he has been able to form a niche working with real estate professionals to create the strategies for their internet marketing that deliver results and create meaningful client and referral relationships. Dave brings extensive training experience from his corporate marketing and advertising experiences to guide his clients through the processes that help them create and maintain impactful social media and website strategies.