Here you are, a not-so-big company ready to reach the world and let them know what you offer. You have a marketing plan for your business and what seems like an adequate budget. You even have a great content plan.
Yet, the competition is heating up locally and it seems like only the biggest websites and media outlets rank on Google searches and only the biggest social media influencers get all the love.
To make matters worse, you’re struggling to find the time to keep up with the demands of that content plan you carefully crafted. It seems like everyone is getting ahead and you’re barely keeping your head above water.
Don’t give up! You can still reach your clients and make your products and services more visible alongside the bigger companies who stand online.
Together, you become more powerful.
Many smaller companies who band together can become exponentially more powerful. It’s called leverage, and it works. It’s this combined power of collaboration: Working with like-minded vendors can make you the David to the Goliath of huge, powerful companies and online influencers.
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Here’s how you and your colleagues can work together to wield a mighty impact in your industry.
Give credit with shout outs & @mentions
Giving credit is not just a nice way to acknowledge vendor colleagues and generate goodwill. When done purposefully and collaboratively, it can boost reach on social media and elevate search engine rankings. It’s one of the most effective ways to beat algorithms because algorithms are looking for engagement and popularity of posts and articles.
When you @mention or link to a colleague's website, of course they benefit, but they also get a notification about your mention. Often, they’ll go to the post and like it, share it and leave a comment. Because the algorithms favor engagement, this helps get your post seen by more people.
Similarly, if you link to a colleague’s website, email them and let them know you’re promoting them. They will often return the favor. While mutual linking isn’t as powerful as it once was, it can still help with search rankings as links build up over time.
Pro Tip: Don’t wait for your colleagues to get pinged. Email them with a link to your social media post and let them know you are promoting them. Most of them will check it out and engage.
Engage with online content
Engaging online is a close cousin to giving credit. When you take the time to like, comment, and share other people’s content, colleagues are more likely to refer you. It also encourages others to return the favor, which, again, helps to beat the algorithm.
Also, engaging with other social media accounts online gains you exposure to new potential clients who are following those accounts.
Most importantly, modern couples expect companies to be transparent and available online. Engaging daily with comments and DMs that come into your own feed is a great way to set yourself apart and build real relationships with potential clients.
Network & cultivate references
The top two ways that clients find and book vendors is first through friends and family referrals, and second through vendor referrals (Source: 2018 Global Wedding Insights).
Get together with five or six colleagues in person once a month to discuss upcoming editorial content, and collaborate on how you can complement and support others in your band of collaborators.
Become a local expert
The size of a big media company can also be its greatest weakness. What they gain in widespread reach, they lose in depth. You and your colleagues have an opportunity to gain meaningful attention by going after more specific and highly local content.
Remember, people do a lot of searching. They aren't just searching for the big general keywords, like "Houston Wedding Planner." They have other questions and needs.
By collaborating, you can create a network of knowledgeable local experts who can answer those specific questions and concerns, and rank for those topics.
It can seem intimidating to face off against the big names and the powerful players in your industry. Pulling together is not only an effective way to beat the big companies, it creates a network of support and friends to help buffer all your marketing challenges. Don't be afraid to reach out and create a network of your own to increase your reach and your advertising power.