Promoting Your Business in Jax – There’s an App for That

By Carl Weiss
Courtesy of intoGo.com
When it comes to using apps to promote a business, the first thing that comes to mind for most business owners is Google Adwords or Facebook.  That’s because Google has 71% plus of the search traffic and Facebook has more than 2 billion users.  They also have an advertiser interface that’s is relatively easy to use.  A manager sitting at a bar can literally control and Adwords Express campaign or tap Boost on Facebook to advertise and after entering their credit card number, their advertising starts running.  Whereas with other apps, like Yelp, you must claim your business, then you have to contact an account representative and do more labor to spend money on ads.  This goes for other apps as well.
Is What You See, What You Like?
While there are a number of ways to use the apps mentioned above
Courtesy of Flickr
to incentivize existing followers, the most common way used is to target new prospects with pay-per-click ads.  However, this isn’t always as successful.  That’s because while a follower who likes you might be interested in an offer or coupon, a complete stranger may not.  Get this formula right, and it’s off to the races.  Get it wrong, and you can burn through a pile of money without seeing much in the way of results.  In fact, it isn’t uncommon with businesses that have a substantial social following to be unable to convert that audience into customers, even on their own social nets.
So, what’s a business to do?
The first thing a business owner or manager needs to do is determine which of the social networks work best for their business model.  Facebook might not be the best marketing channel for a local restaurant or retail establishment.  On the other hand, an e-tail business could prosper there.  Let’s face it, nobody goes to Facebook to look for fine dining.  Even if a Facebook user sees an ad for a local eatery, they may choose to ignore it, since that’s not why they are there.
For businesses that do use Facebook’s PPC ads, you need to know
Courtesy of Flickr
the platform, and you need to know your prospective customers.  A supper club is more likely to succeed if they post their ads at 5 pm. Likewise, a lunch spot is more likely to succeed by posting their ads at 11 am.  Regardless of that, in order to succeed, an offer has to be compelling enough to warrant action.  This means an offer for a free soft drink is less likely to cause customers to stampede to your eatery, whereas a Buy-1-Get-1-FREE on entrees or a “Free Glass of Wine” with every meal is more likely to compel a customer to act.
Show Me the $$
The other thing that deters many business owners from playing the PPC game is the cost.  While boosting a post on Facebook costs only a few dollars, if you are going to test the water in any PPC arena, you really need to spend at least $500 per month.  For many small businesses, this is a tough pill to swallow.  Especially when you realize that all you are paying for are clicks, not results.  Still, any business that does door hangers or buys into coupon magazines realizes that promotion doesn’t come cheaply.
If your business has a tight budget and it is located in North Florida, there is an app in town that offers advertising that works by focusing on consumer interests. It’s called intoGo. The platform works by allowing users to swipe through fun things to do and places to go in the greater Jacksonville area. More importantly, the system is designed to learn what a consumer likes.  For a business owner, this means they can better target consumers who like what they sell. 
Watch - How to use the intoGo app
IntoGo also allows consumers to geo-target things to do and places to go within a limited geographic area.  This means if they want to grab lunch within 2 miles of where they work, all they need to do is open the app, tap on “Let’s Go” and then hit the button marked “Lunchtime.” The slider at the top of the page lets them set a search area as small as a mile or as large as 50 miles.  Every independently owned and operated eatery within that distance is then displayed to the user.  When they tap on a listing, everything from a restaurant’s address, hours of operation, their menu, Facebook pages and Yelp reviews are displayed.  What could be easier?
Whereas Facebook is built to help you connect with friends, intoGo is designed to help locals find things to do fast.  That’s because intoGo has partnered with Visit Jacksonville to become “Jacksonville’s Official Destination App” - Visit Jacksonville.
Building an App that Works is No Easy Task
Speaking of apps, businesses that have tried to develop their own
Courtesy of Pixabay
apps many times find that it is an expensive and not always successful endeavor.  That’s because while building an app can be fairly straightforward, developing an audience who use the app is not.  That’s another place where intoGo shines as they have legions of consumers who use the app daily.
For businesses that offer food, entertainment, and events, "intoGo" is a match made in heaven.  Instead of spending thousands of dollars to develop their own app, for as little as $69 per month, these businesses can promote themselves on an app that’s designed to match consumer wants with businesses that provide the very things they want. (Watch the video below to learn more about how the intoGo advertising platform works.)


Watch - How the intoGo app Advertising platform works.

There are several other features on intoGo that businesses should take advantage of such as adding coupons to bring people in the door. It can even notify your fans whenever you upload a new coupon.  Want to add a call to action, or a “Buy Now” button to your page?  No problem.  intoGo also has a complete suite of analytics that allows you to monitor and improve your page’s results in real time. 
Best of all, unlike typical coupons or pay-per-click ads, intoGo matches businesses with consumers in their locale who are looking for their products and services.  Hosting an event?  You can not only let all of North Florida know when and where it is scheduled to take place; you can sell tickets in-app.  How cool is that?


Using intoGo for Events in Jacksonville Fl

The beauty of online technology is that it is constantly evolving.  That means there are ever more ways to promote your business.  When it comes to using the Internet to help you generate more customers, all I can say is “There’s an app for that” and it’s intoGo!
This article discusses how apps can be used to drive consumer traffic and grow a business following using the Official Destination App for Visit Jacksonville called intoGo. This article provides information on how businesses can geo target consumers interested in their product or service for as little as $69 per month. Videos and other reference links are included.

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Carl Weiss is CEO of Working the Web to Win, an online marketing company based in Jacksonville, Florida.  He is also co-host of the weekly Working the Web to Win radio show that airs every Tuesday at 4 pm Eastern.

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