When starting my online business, I often look at external sources for inspiration. Before the internet, you only had brick businesses and flourished. If you look closely at them, you’ll learn a lot from them about customer service, branding, locality, and how to run a successful business.
Think about companies like Pepsi or Apple, and what they accomplished before the internet even existed. It’s amazing so you should look at them when coming up with ideas and on how to run your business.
I’ve often explored offline when looking at ways to market and how to attract an audience. One of the best examples of this is a hotel business. They know how to attract customers, take care of them, and market so they rarely have an empty room. Let’s look at what you can learn from hotels when starting online.
It’s amazing how 75% of the business in hotels comes from a repeat customer. It’s just as amazing that bloggers depend so much on repeat customers to build their business too. Bloggers depend on loyalty amongst readers to get a competitive edge and work hard at gaining it. For example, why do you think both hotels and blogs have email lists and provide some sort of rewards? It’s because they know this will build customer loyalty long-term.
Both work hard at branding their business because this goes a long way. As soon as I say the word “hotels” what brands come to mind? Marriot, Hilton…right? I’m sure in blogging, you think about a handful which has built up their brands throughout the years. Your brand is your identity and this will always give you a competitive edge over your competition.
Just like hotel logo designs, bloggers will spend hundreds or thousands of dollars coming up with unique logs. These designs will represent your business going forward.
In both businesses, it’s important your customer service is top notch because this affects your sales and new customer acquisition. Word travels and those businesses who don’t know how to take care of their customer base will lose a competitive edge. Hotels spend millions of dollars getting to know their customers so they can tweak products and services to fit their needs. The same can be seen online with top bloggers spending a lot of money surveying readers on what type of content they prefer.
It’s all about the marketing, and both businesses use creative ways to get their brand across. For example, have you noticed how hotels have ads posted online? They’ll resort to PPC, social media, and email marketing to attract customers. This is the same approach used by bloggers because we all have social media, and have tried other forms of marketing too.
Utilize search engine’s
Both types of businesses will utilize whatever tools are available online. Think about how many businesses are listed with local directories and how big this is for their business. You even have a dedicated Google hotel finder to help people find locations close by. But, hotels have taken a proactive step in making sure this type of tool was available to them and made sure they were listed within it.
This has all been possible by sophisticated search engines so Google and other popular ones are to thank. However, it’s the online and offline business who have made it a point to utilize them.
By comparing two different types of businesses, you can learn a lot about what makes them successful. You’ll also get some great ideas on what strategies to apply to your new business. This will save you both time and money not having to try things that have failed for others.
DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation in writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.
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