Today’s guest post is by Anand Srinivasan, an internet entrepreneur who writes interesting web related statistics on his blog, TechCrunchies.com. He is also the founder of an upcoming knowledge portal, KnewThis.com
>> Read Anand’s full bio here
The internet is one of the finest mediums for consulting businesses to build their brand and visibility. Unlike traditional TV and Print media, the internet has a low upfront cost to set up a business and this has been the reason for a terrific growth in companies establishing an online presence.
However, with the increasing presence of businesses online, the struggle to stay afloat and be seen is becoming a tough job. It is here that positive references from other businesses in the upstream or downstream of the supply chain help. For example, if you are into consulting for foreign trade, a good deal of references from importers as well as local exporters brings a great deal of credibility to your business.
How do you get these businesses to recommend you on their websites? As always in any business, it is the contacts that matter. The first step forward in gaining reputation is getting your own customers to vouch for your credibility on their website. As a business, this is the easy part because any happy customer would be more than be happy to write about the positive experiences they have had in their business.
The tougher part is when it comes to contacting the people who are actually the authorities online. To be honest, most brick and mortar businesses do not necessarily have a great online presence, and testimonials on their websites, though recommended are not always rewarding enough.
However, every domain has their share of authority portals – websites that cover the industry online and those that can make or break businesses. It is links from these businesses that matter the most as a positive recommendation from these websites can go a long way in establishing your authority.
From my experience with businesses online, there are two methods to effectively be seen in your industry.
Case Studies are seen to be unusually effective on the web because they give an opportunity for websites in the domain to analyze how you have built up business and achieved results effectively. Even mistakes in business, if portrayed as a positive learning experience in your case studies can bring about a great deal of analysis and in turn exposure.
It is always recommended to hire a tiny team of market researchers for your company. Their task is to primarily come up with reports and statistics in your industry based on your industry interactions. Let us suppose you are into Supply chain consulting. How about a free report on ‘Current customer perception on third party logistics’? A periodic free report will not only be discussed fervently in the authoritative sites, but also be freely distributed across your target group which will bring about a lot of exposure.