As the pace of the world’s economy is on a constant change, online marketers also have to be alert all the time and follow these trends. Since everybody is turning online, the rules of the virtual world are also rapidly changing and what used to be rule of thumb yesterday is mentioned no more today. Everything that is going on in the virtual world is a part of the virtual space, which can be imagined as an enormous invisible cloud of information and data. Due to the fact that earning money online is largely based on finely devised marketing, it is no wonder that one of the ideals for the next few years will be integrated marketing cloud features, provided by different companies. As it seems now, large companies are getting ready to unite all the marketing features for handling business online into one integrated platform. Likes such as IBM, Oracle or Salesforce have employed hundreds of experts to make their own special marketing cloud platforms that will enable their users to access the online market(ing) in an unprecedented way. While end-user large companies will definitely be able to pay for such services, let’s see what small businesses can do to catch up with them in affordable ways.
What Tools are for Small Businesses?
The basic needs that small businesses have online do not differ too much from the ones of large companies. They need tools to manage their online content in order to make a content that will entice the visitors of their sites of social group profiles. So, a small business needs to look for a low-cost or even open-source service that makes it able for it to create a website and gives it enough space for appropriate content. WordPress is one of the most popular options for such purposes. On this site you can create your own website with an effective content management system (CMS). With an add-on called Mailchimp you will round off a low-cost but efficient website on which you will be able to manage the content and have an e-mail platform.
In addition to this platform, small businesses can look for their place under the sun (or rather the cloud) by utilizing some other multi-purpose services, such as Adobe FormsCentral, which alleviates the process of making online forms for social groups or website of small businesses. Except from that, this service has a handy Business Intelligence add-on, which is a superb data analysis tool. This service can have a significant role in creating cloud marketing decisions for small businesses.
Every small business should also aim at getting advertised in the social network marketing cloud. Thanks to the nature of social groups, you can advertise your business through accounts and various connections.
The Role of Vendors
Small businesses have to insist on confidentiality and strictly follow the rules of the contract between them and cloud service vendors. Knowing that vendors can easily enter your website and scrape the data that might be interested to your competitors, you have to insist on a detailed agreement before you sign anything. Make sure that you create a service-level agreement to keep the power in your hands. Also, to increase the site performances and increase protection and security, you have to form a small team within your small business which will be in charge of handling the supervising the cooperation process with the vendor. In addition to that, you have to know the location of the server that is in the background of the website hosting provider that you opt for, so that you know where legal jurisdiction for any potential breaches of your contract lies. You business might be small, but you have to treat it with highest respect possible.
Small businesses should exploit the power of groups like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to the maximum. We live in an era in which people give away information about themselves for which only twenty or thirty years ago a market research company would have to employ hundreds of workers. Thanks to this trend, every business, no matter how small it might be can gather interesting data in social media about habits of their potential clients. Also, every small business should have profiles on all of these social groups so that they place themselves at the well of events and information. That way you every small business will have access to thousands of potential clients, which is of huge importance in the clash for the marketing cloud dominance.
About the author: Dan Radak is VPS security specialist. Currently employed as a consultant in a couple of Web Hosting companies. Also, he is a web writer and co-author on several technology websites. In his free time he makes homegrown beer. You can reach him on Twitter.