Brand building is a big part of making any business successful online in the long term (job boards included). And since there are so many different ways you can go about building your brand, the fact is that the process of increasing awareness of your business is quite simple and, at some times, even easy.
So without further ado, I present to you 9 different effective brand building strategies guaranteed to increase your business’s popularity.
1. Blog a Lot
I love business blogging (and not just because I’m a freelance blogger). There are just so many benefits to be had when you blog: traffic generation, successful content marketing, and authority/credibility building. But one of the biggest and most valuable benefits of all is the resulting increase in brand popularity when you blog a lot.
Some people criticize business blogging. After all, a weblog actually started out as nothing more than a way to express your opinion online. But over the years, it’s grown into much more that. It’s a versatile marketing channel that brings businesses 55% more visitors, 126% more leads, and 434% more indexed pages (ImpactBND).
2. Be Everywhere Your Audience Is
Slender man is everywhere his audience is. Are you? Image credit: mdl70 via Flickr.
On an Internet marketing forum that I once was active on, I remember a thread created by a rather popular user. He said the following (I can’t remember his entire thread, but here’s the gist of it.
He (let’s call him Bill) was an active member in his niche (online fitness): blogging, guest blogging, commenting on other blogs and participating in niche-related forums. One day, out of the blue, Bill got an e-mail via his website from a member of his target audience saying that the person had been seeing Bill “everywhere he turned”, and had eventually decided to purchase one of his products.
Neat, eh? Bill built his brand by putting himself wherever his target audience was — they couldn’t help but notice him and his products.
3. Run Contests
Ok, ok, I confess. I got this idea from a blog post I read over at Smart Passive Income on how Josh Earl grew his email list 3418% (that’s nearly 200K subscribers!) in just a measly period of 11 days.
How’d he do it, you ask?
He ran a contest. As simple as that (well, not quite so simple, as you’ll see when you read the post). But the fact of the matter is, running a contest is one of the single most effective brand building strategies around. It has the power to get tens or even hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of eyeballs on your website in an extremely short amount of time.
Granted, not all contests go viral, but reading Josh’s post above will give you a good idea of how to create one that does.
4. Conduct Viral Marketing
Although contests are a large part of viral marketing, they aren’t by any means the only part. Viral marketing can make use of many different traffic generation and marketing channels (even “conventional” ones like social media, article marketing, and eNewsletters). It’s all in how you do it.
When you’re trying to get your brand go viral, you’re going to need some sort of content as a base — whether it’s a social media update, blog post, or a syndication-ready article. And that content, somehow and somewhere needs to mention your brand. If you don’t include mention of your brand in it, you’ll get no brand building results if/when it goes viral.
Furthermore, the content needs to be shareworthy. Not only should it be easy for viewers to share (if the content is on a third-party network like Twitter or Facebook, there’s not much you can do about it. But if it’s on your website, then get some attractive share buttons that stick out like sore thumbs), but it should also incite emotion. According to the Moz blog, anger is the most viral emotion.
5. Create Coupons & Promotions for your Products
What do people do when they’re bored, trying to save money, and have a newspaper/magazine handy? They cut coupons!
Online, people also do pretty much the same thing. People are always looking for coupons and they always will be. I mean, who doesn’t love a 50% discount?
By creating coupons for your products and sending the codes out to popular niche coupon boards, you can get some eyes on your brand pretty quickly and maybe even a few sales. Those sales might be at a lower profit margin, but remember that those sales are from new customers whom you can get to buy from you again and again and again.
By conducting other promotions for your products and general brand, you can get your brand to spread like wildfire among your target audience.
6. Branch Out
Go back to your ideal customer profile. Head over to the section that details the likes, the wants, and the desires of your target audience. Are they into football/soccer? Some other sport perhaps? What are their favorite pastimes?
By branching out into those sports or into commercialized pastimes, you can show your audience that your brand is able to identify with them. That’s pretty much one of the driving concepts behind Super Bowl advertising (although you obviously don’t have to branch out that far).
The main point is to get out of your comfort zone and get your brand associated with whatever is hip nowadays. Stay with the trends and move with the fads, and soon enough your business will get noticed.
7. Be Social Media Geeks
According to survey data from Edison Research (the guys who do polling for presidential elections) just two years ago, only 33% of Americans have ever followed a brand on social media. That includes Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, every social media network. Since that data is two years old, I’m guessing that the actual percentage today is around 40%.
But still — seriously? That’s millions of people you can potentially reach.
Does that statistics prove that Americans (and all people in general) aren’t likely to follow brands on social media? Hardly. What it does prove, however, is that brands aren’t doing a good enough job reaching out to their target audience on the social media channels that are most relevant to their brand.
For example: if your brand is a restaurant or some sort of eatery, don’t try to reach people on LinkedIn. Bah. That’s for business professionals. Instead, become active on places like Pinterest where practically the only things shared are 1) pictures of slim people who sing the praises of p90x, 2) cats, and 3) recipes & pictures of delicious food.
8. Publish Videos
Video marketing is one of the most underutilized marketing strategies ever. Period. Not hardly enough business are producing videos to supplement their brands’ content.
Videos hold a certain power over people that other forms of content like blog posts and social media updates don’t have. Why? Because it’s so visual.
Even school kids prefer videos to text content — ask any 6th grader whether they’d like to watch an educational movie on platypus habitats or if they’d prefer to just read from their textbook. I’ll guarantee that not a single one will go for the latter option.
People. Love. Videos. There’s just no getting around it.
But something else you need to keep in mind is that just as your target audience will react positively to high quality, well produced videos, they’ll react negatively to low quality, unprofessional videos. So if you’re going to try video marketing on a skimpy budget, just forget about it. You’ll end up doing more harm than good.
9. Build an Army of Brand Evangelists
What are brand evangelists, you say? They’re people who evangelize about your brand (shocking, no?).
In short, they’re the guys who see your brand, love it, and then tell all your friends about you.
In long, they’re members of your target audience whom you have impressed. A lot. They’ve read through your blog posts (and loved them), watched your videos (and loved them), followed your social media profiles and interacted with your updates (and loved doing it), and who now try to get others to do the same.
Brand evangelists think your brand is awesome and are ready to tell the world about it.
Most of us are all brand evangelists, for some brand or the other. Me, I’m a huge fan of all of Neil Patel’s work: QuickSprout, KISSmetrics, CrazyEgg, everything. Consequently, I’ve linked to relevant posts of his in my blog posts many more times than I can count. I can safely say that I’ve probably driven hundreds, if not thousands, of new visitors to his collection of websites.
That’s what you need for your brand. You need to wow people so much that they can’t help but sing your praises all over the Internet (and even off the Internet as well).
What we’ve just gone through is a lot of brand building strategy to digest, so let’s quickly condense it into a short little recap:
- blog a lot (business blogging produces through-the-roof results)
- be omniscient (every which way your target audience turns, you should be there waiting for them)
- run contests (remember Josh Earl)
- do viral marketing (create and publish shareworth, emotion-inciting, viral traffic ready content)
- create coupons and run promotions (because everybody loves a discount)
- branch out (again, be and advertise where your audience is)
- be social media geeks (60+% of America is still unreached by brands on social media — reach them!)
- publish videos (visual content > text content, sometimes)
- build an army of brand evangelists (wow people so much that they evangelize about your brand online and offline)
Which of these strategies do you think is most relevant for your business? Which ones will you be implementing in your marketing campaigns today? Let us know in the comments below!
Of late, job boards have started to pop up everywhere online. There’s a steady incline in the number of online job boards, and that trend doesn’t seem to be going anywhere for the time being.
With the onslaught of hundreds of entrepreneurs tackling this niche, you must be asking yourself: why? Why are people starting job boards? What’s the point?
Sure, there’s money to be had (and yes, money is a large motivator of the trend), but there’s money to be had in every industry. Why start a job board to get the pie?
Well, I’ll tell you why. In fact, I’ll tell you seven reasons why.
1. Largely Untapped Market
Even though there are tons of people starting new job boards every day, the truth is that there is still plenty of space in the market for many more. Particularly if you specialize your job board in a certain niche (i.e. home decor jobs or jobs in a certain geographical area), you’ll have very few competitors to contend with for the attention of your target audience.
The fact that many new job boards are being created however, shows you that the market is fast filling up. If there ever was a time to get into the market and get your own piece of the pie, it’s now.
2. Evergreen Business
Job boards are an evergreen business. Image credit: Luke Jones via Flickr.
Quick general knowledge quiz: what’s one of the most popular issues in politics? Politicians give it big importance in their campaigns, and its sure to be mentioned once in every promotional rally or speech issued by a campaigner. (Hint: it’s got something to do with jobs).
The answer? Unemployment.
There will always be unemployment. No country or region will ever achieve perfect 100% employment, because of simple laws of supply & demand. There will always be people hunting for jobs, year-round, which makes starting a job board an evergreen business to get into.
Sure, you might have spikes in traffic and recruitment posts around the end of summer and other high-recruitment months, but there will be a guaranteed sum of both job seekers and job posters taking to the Internet every day of the year.
3. Large Volume of Traffic
There’s a significant volume of traffic for the keyword “job board” and related ones. “Job board” itself gets a steady 9900 searches per month, a healthy figure.
And remember — that’s just organic search engine traffic. There’s no telling how many visitors social media, paid advertising, content marketing, and other traffic generation strategies can bring in. But based on the 3-figure Alexa rank of indeed.com and the high ranks of similar job boards, it’s a lot.
What’s more, the type of traffic associated with job boards (primarily job seekers) is a recurring type. Meaning, even after the first visit, people will check back regularly for updates to your job board. So even if you only get a lower amount of first-time traffic, you’ll see high engagement levels, particularly in terms of bounce rate, pageviews per visit, and recurring traffic percentages.
4. Build a Personal Brand
When you’re an entrepreneur striking out in practically any industry, it’s important that you’re able to build your personal brand. You and your name should be recognized by other industry leaders and your target audience. In the Internet marketing niche, some big personal brands I can reel off the type of my head are Neil Patel of QuickSprout, Brian Dean of Backlinko, and Noah Kagan of OkDork.
The bigger and more identifiable your personal brand is, the more your target audience will trust you and buy from you.
Creating a job board is an easy way to make a name for yourself in the industry. Since job boards get decent amounts of traffic and it’s the type of website where people will remember the name of the founder, it’s an efficient tactic to quickly build up your personal brand.
5. Little Maintenance Work
Job boards involve very little “heavy lifting” maintenance. Image credit: USACE via Flickr.
A job board is super simple to maintain. With the right software, it can easily become one of those “set and forget” type things that can run on almost autopilot. At the very least, maintaining a job board is a lot less work than maintaining a blog.
All you have to do is setup the job board and then pretty much wait for recruiters to post their ads and job seekers to apply to jobs. All you’ll have to do is review each job listing that is submitted. Checking the background of the company to make sure it’s legitimate and proofing the job listing will take no more than 2-3 minutes per, tops.
The only thing that will require significant input on your end is the process of finding advertisers for your revenue stream. Additionally, the initial stages of marketing, while you’re still trying to get your job board to become a little more known, can be quite time-consuming.
6. There’s Money to be Had
Of course, this is the main reason why people get into the job board business: there’s money to be made. But we know that already, don’t we?
But the truth is, few people know just how much money there is to be had. The size of the online recruitment market is, in fact, in excess of $20 billion. That number also includes freelance recruiters and the like, but the major chunk of that figure is all for online job boards.
Even a teensy weensy slice of the market share can reap rich dividends for your website.
7. Multiple Monetization Strategies
We recently discussed monetization strategies for job boards here on the WP Job Board blog, and came up with 5 different ways you can maximize revenue from your job board. These included:
- setting up third-party advertising (ad networks like Google Adsense or Chitika and direct ad space sales are viable options)
- creating resources for recruiters (ebooks and other digital products on how to find the perfect employee or how to train a raw newbie)
- creating resources for job seekers (ebooks and other digital products on how to apply to job postings and how to outshine other job candidates)
Truth be told, the post only samples a small number of the ways that you can monetize a job board. In reality, the list goes on and on.
If those 7 reasons haven’t yet convinced you that the job board business is a great market to strike out in, I don’t know what will.
But for those of you who have decided to take a plunge and create your very own job board, make sure you do that by using our plugin, WP Job Board! You get nifty new features, unparalleled support, and general all-around awesomeness packed into a single plugin.
Don’t forget to share and leave a comment!
We’re in this game for the moolah. The money. Dollar, dollar bills y’all.
As such, anybody and everybody who owns a job board (or any sort of online business, for that matter) is constantly looking to improve their bottom line and maximize potential profit. To do that, however, you can’t just rely on a single monetization strategy (like a single payment per job listing) — you need to diversify your income to ensure that you aren’t putting all your eggs in one basket.
Why Diversification is So Important
Never put all your eggs in one basket.
We hear that a lot, don’t we? But how many of us truly understand what the proverb means? Not many, I’m willing to bet. And even fewer follow up on that advice and actually do spread their eggs around in multiple baskets.
To show you first-hand the importance of diversification of monetization strategies, here’s a fictional example.
Joe runs a job board. He knows that he should be diversifying his income and setting up multiple channels through which income can flow in, but he never really got around to it. Then one month, Joe’s job board takes a huge hit in organic traffic. After investigating, he finds out that one of his competitors conducted negative SEO on his site — cleaning up the mess is gonna take him some time.
However, the only monetization strategy he has set up is a pay per job listing. And since so few job seekers are visiting his site, his customer base is also taking a hit. Joe needs every dollar he can make to pay his bills and rent, but his only revenue stream has all of a sudden dried up.
So what steps could Joe have taken to make sure that his entire income stream didn’t take a hit? For one, he could have had a membership packages available for job posters and seekers with 6-month or 12-month contracts that provide him with recurring revenue. Or, Joe could have setup third-party advertising on his website to ensure he was milking every dollar possible out of his job board.
A lot of people say that you should play to your strengths, and leave your weaknesses alone. While that’s a correct proverb and one that I fully support, the only way you get to know what your strengths are (notice the plural) is if you diversify and test enough monetization strategies.
Has the importance of spreading your eggs around sunk in yet? Good. Without further ado, I present to you 5 monetization strategies for job board owners.
1. Membership Packages
Image source: Howard via Flickr.
We briefly discussed this monetization strategy with the example of Joe. Frankly, it’s one of the most effectual (though highly underused) income streams around for job board owners.
I love memberships because they provide you with recurring revenue. That means money heading to your bank account on every single month … practically on autopilot, because the only thing you need to do is get a customer to sign up and then convince them to stay on.
Don’t know what you could charge a monthly membership fee for? Here are a few ideas:
- resume access (e.g. $0.10 x number of resumes you have per month)
- regular job listings (e.g. 5 job listings per month)
- access to a forum where like-minded recruiters & employers share time-saving hacks and tips for sifting through job applications
- access to educational resources concerning recruiting/employee training, etc. (provided by you)
Chunk that all together, and you have a nice little membership package you can charge a premium for. For multiple levels of membership, just give access to more or less items.
2. Third-Party Advertising
I also mentioned this option in Joe’s example. Whenever I do, people are quick to point out to me that hosting third-party advertising on your site can quickly repel and drive away potential traffic and customers. Because no matter how professional your website looks, hosting ads always makes you look at least a teeny weeny bit unprofessional.
But you know what? Sometimes, you just have to be okay with that.
It’s not the end of the world if you lose a couple hundred visitors or repel a few customers. Why? Because the money you make with the ads could easily offset your losses and leave you well in the black.
It’s all about the bottom line, people.
I wouldn’t recommend signing up for Google AdSense (or most ad networks), however, as they are notorious for serving up irrelevant ads which a) don’t get you many clicks and b) can drive away more customers & traffic than you can afford.
The simple alternative is direct ad sales, where someone with a business relevant to your job board pays you for ad space upfront. The same process can happen through a third-party program like BuySellAds.
3. Featured Listings
I know, I know. Featured listings is old news, right? Practically everyone who’s updated their job board after 2007 has them.
But hold on — don’t tune out just yet. While you may have an extra payment process for featured listings in place and may even be making a little extra money with it, the fact is that you could be making a lot more by offering multiple levels of featured listing.
I got this idea from a job board that I personally frequent as a freelance blogger. When posting a listing, a recruiter can opt for different levels of “featuredness” with differing amounts of payment. For instance:
- highlighted for thirty days ($50)
- highlighted and at the top of the list for 5 days ($50)
- highlighted and at the top of the list for 10 days ($100)
Image source: Steve via Flickr.
Remember though, you don’t want to have too many choices, because that could kill your conversion rate.
4. Resources for Recruiters
As a job board owner, you may have a lot of first-hand experience and knowledge about recruiting and employment under your belt. Experience and knowledge that people are willing to pay for.
Jot down the advice you would give to a new recruiter or a small business looking to train or hire new employees, and turn it into a digital product — a series of videos, an eBook, whatever. Can’t write? Hire a ghostwriter. Can’t shoot videos? Hire someone who can.
Not only will selling such resources help you to increase income, but you’ll also be earmarking yourself as an industry expert.
5. Resources for Job Seekers
On the flipside of the coin, you might be an experienced freelancer who, over the years, has applied to hundreds of job listings and applications. You know what works in an application, and you know what doesn’t.
Let me tell you from personal experience — new job seekers will kill for that info.
Well, to be honest, they might not kill, but they sure will pay. 🙂
You can package up your advice as an eBook, video series, or (better yet) a mentoring/coaching package where job seekers pay by the hour to talk to you.
If your job board hasn’t been producing the amount of revenue you originally thought it would, it’s a safe bet to assume that you haven’t diversified enough. Invest your time and money into setting up another revenue stream, like membership packages, educational resources, third-party advertising, or multiple levels of featured listings.
You might just find yourself looking at a skyrocketing in your revenue.