Websites, Social Media, Blogging, Podcasts, YouTube…and the list goes on. Suffice it to say, it’s quite easy to get overwhelmed in the world of online marketing. Online marketing has taken off at a substantial rate over the past couple of years, especially with recent advances in technology, and so it’s important to at least have an elementary grasp of the basics of online advertising in order to be able to successfully and responsibly maintain an internet/social media presence and to cultivate and advance your brand’s online reputation.
Below you will find each category of online marketing and strategies that you should utilize to meet the aforementioned goals. Obviously none of this is mandatory; however, utilizing them have proven to be very beneficial for generating business for new and mature companies everywhere.
*Note: As you know, Broga Yoga has its own website, Facebook page, and Twitter account which are managed and monitored by the company to create a national and international brand presence. All subsequent local online marketing activity done by you should be linked in some manner to these already established company accounts. One major theme that you will notice throughout the following notes is that we do not want to sacrifice the global market positioning of the company for the marketing of an individual practice. In addition, marketing the Broga brand (by bringing more traffic to our website and social media sites) and tying this to your own practice will prove to be more fruitful than simply advertising your classes. The company has greater resources established at its disposal and can more effectively and efficiently reach a wider audience than any one teacher.
Creating a website for your Broga practice will prove to be time consuming as well as costly. The Broga Yoga website already has a headshot, bio, and your class information posted, so creating an additional website is unnecessary. We recommend that, instead of building a separate website, you utilize the other forms of online marketing listed below. However, if you already have an established website feel free to continue using it and try bringing more attention to the Broga company by providing a link to the Broga Yoga website. Remember, competing domain names are not permissible.
Social Media– Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn:
Facebook, Google+, and Twitter are three social media sites- the key word here being “social”. In the same way that it would not be cool to interrupt a group of friends in a social setting who are having a conversation by trying to sell them something, this should not be your aim with Facebook and Twitter. Don’t try to sell a product, but instead join the conversation and promote our brand and the spirit behind our company. Or stated a different way: “By publishing the right content in the right place at the right time, your marketing becomes relevant and helpful to your customers, not interruptive” (source found at this link: Hubspot blog). The key words to note here are in italics.
Although it seems like social media sites are only for teens or for people trying to enhance their social lives, it has quickly become so much more than that. Utilizing social media is a very easy and thrifty way to market your practice online to people around the world.
We definitely encourage you to use your own personal Facebook or Google+ page to market your business; however, one of your main goals here should be to direct traffic to the Broga Facebook page and website. Posting class times, related yoga stories, or health tips for your clients on Facebook is a good strategy and one that we recommend, just make sure to include a line at the end of the post saying, “for more info, check out the Broga Yoga website and Facebook page”. Check out the Broga Yoga Facebook page for examples of good, brand enhancing posts.
Twitter is another useful social media device that you definitely should learn to utilize. Create a personal Twitter account and use it like Facebook to grow your network, build brand awareness, and create relationships with your current and prospective students. Tweeting is all about creating a “conversation”. A tweet is a quick snippet of information, composed of 140 characters or less, and using hash tags (#). Hash tags are related words or phrases that allow people on Twitter to track the conversation surrounding the subject matter. For example, if you were to end a tweet with #yoga, people could search for the conversations revolving around yoga and find your tweet. This helps steer the right traffic towards your account and thus increases your connections and subsequent business. Much like Facebook, tweeting links to inspiring fitness articles, class times, or promotional offerings is a good strategy for Twitter.
You should make sure to follow the Broga Yoga Twitter account and tweet at them (@Broga) often to bring focus to the company Twitter account, as well as follow other related yoga twitter accounts, popular news outlets, and current and prospective students. Also don’t forget to promote your business partners whether that be an established gym, community center, or other location you use to host your classes by tweeting at them, re-tweeting any of their Broga-relevant tweets, and including links to their websites in your Twitter/Facebook posts.
Some examples of promotional (Outbound Marketing) tweets are:
- “Have you heard about @Broga? We’re taking #yoga to the next level and changing the way men and women think about their #fitness”
- “Join hundreds who are taking control of their #health and #fitness by heading to a @Broga #yoga class today. Visit brogayoga.com”
- “Check out the #Broga class times for this week by going to www.brogayoga.com/classes/…not your average #yoga class”
- “Do you want to get #realfit? Join a #BrogaYoga class today (brogayoga.com) and check out other #fitness classes offered at *@Ballys” (*or whatever gym you host your classes)
Some examples of content/conversational (Inbound Marketing) tweets are:
- “Have you read this article on the benefits of #yoga for #athletes? Check it out (provide link) and spread the word #BrogaYoga”
- “Just got done teaching a #BrogaYoga class. Feel fresh and alive. Ready to tackle the stresses of the day #bringiton #namaste”
- “Loved the way @JohnSmith and @JaneDoe took it to the mat hard in the #Broga 1 class this morning #cantgetenough”
- “5-10 minutes of #Broga #yoga a day can literally change your life. Read this article on yoga’s effects on the body (link)”
If you are not familiar with this social media platform, don’t get too frustrated, it’s less complicated than it seems. Just take some time to peruse the website (twitter.com) to get a better grasp of the world of Twitter. This link provides a particularly insightful and easy to follow article on using Twitter for business and marketing. Also, check out the official Broga Yoga Twitter account for more examples of appropriate, brand enhancing tweets.
LinkedIn is more generally known as a personal business networking device as opposed to Facebook and Twitter, which are more company brand promoting tools. But like Tip #4 states in the “12 Tips for Running a Successful Business” section, you are your business’ number one marketing tool. Build your business network by creating a LinkedIn page and connecting with local business owners and clients who will be able to enhance your exposure, promote you to future prospective clients and other business professionals, and increase your business.
Blogging gives you a platform through which you can have a conversation and build a strong rapport and reputation with your target market audience. The content you “blog” can basically be described as a longer and more structured Facebook post or tweet. Blogging, much like using Facebook and Twitter, is especially beneficial to younger, smaller businesses because as a business manager, you are able to introduce yourself and your brand to your audience in a less formal and more personal manner than in newspaper advertisements or flyers. The key to blogging is that you aim your blog posts at your target audience and give them information that is relevant to their lives and aligns with the Broga brand. As you know, Broga already has an official blog located on the Broga website. Check out our blog entries for examples of quality blog posts.
You are welcome to either contribute to the official blog or create your own blog; however, if you do choose to create your own, make sure to promote the official Broga blog in your own posts. You also must be sure to be creative and disciplined with your blogging; you must make sure to post “new and newsworthy” content often enough that people find it worthwhile to follow.
Podcasts and YouTube:
Podcasts and YouTube allow you to post audio and video entries to the internet with the same objectives in mind as blogging. These two forms of online marketing are not necessarily important to your local Broga practice right now. We are in the process of formulating a strategy to take advantage of these advertising forums, and more information will be posted later.
To sum it up, the basic Inbound Marketing strategy of any social media marketing is to be relevant with your posts. Though promoting your Broga classes outright is effective, try to be more creative in the ways you advertise by posting content rather than promotional jargon. The more practice and familiarity you get, the easier you will undoubtedly find this to achieve. For more information on online marketing strategies, check out this interesting infographic about how to build a strong, responsible online brand presence.