Online Business Directories: A Helpful Marketing Strategy for Small Businesses On a Budget

They say print is dead. As more and more print publications close the book on their inked pages, the Internet continues to gain more power as the number one source of information at your fingertips. Magazines have gone digital and so has the archaic, five-pound phonebook—or what most consumers recognize as the “Yellow Pages.” Now, all the information you seek is just a click away on the Internet. There are numerous business directories online where your small business should be listed. If you begin listing your business on these online directories, the amount of traffic to your Website will definitely increase.

For example, let’s say you’re a wellness chiropractor based in Los Angeles and you don’t have the additional spend to invest in paid online and/or social media ads; however, you want your business to show up organically via leading search engines when a potential client searches keywords relative to your industry. Sticking with our aforementioned example, if someone were to search “wellness chiropractor Los Angeles,” you would want your office to show up, right? Lucky for you, there’s a cost-effective way (mostly FREE) to make this happen. All you need is time and this handy blog post created by Snap Recordings.

It would be nice if we could just snap our fingers and all of the busy work would be completed. In order to reap the benefits of listing your company in online business directories, you need make time to put in the hours. It doesn’t have to be done all at once, you can schedule an hour a day as an on-going process or maybe set aside weekend time.

At Snap Recordings we understand how difficult it can be to market your start-up and that’s why we’ve created a list of online business directories in which you should add your business. But before you start tackling this task, set up a document that answers all of the following questions below. You will need this information when adding your business to these online directories, not to mention you want your brand to stay consistent with its messaging across all Internet placements.

      • About – create a brief bio about your company.
      • Founded – what year was your company founded?
      • Mailing Address
      • Phone number
      • Toll free number
      • Fax
      • Email
      • Website URL
      • Blog URl
      • Social Media Profiles (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.)
      • Hours of Operation
      • Payment Options
      • Languages Spoken
      • Brands/Products Carried
      • Category/Industry Vertical (i.e. tech, marketing, health, etc.)
      • Keyword/Tags
      • Media – Some directories allow you to add various attachments to boost your credibly.
        — Logo
        — Storefront photos
        — Product photos
        — YouTube video URLs
        —  Additional screenshots of credibility (magazine placements, testimonials, etc.)

Once you have all of the above items ready to go at your disposal, you can begin adding your company to our list of online business directories below.

1. Google
2. Bing
3. Yahoo!
4. Yelp
5. Merchant Circle
6. CitySearch
7. LinkedIn
8. Angie’s List
9. YellowPages.com
10.  Mapquest
11. Crunchbase (great for tech)
12. Whitepages
13. Supermedia
14. Yellowbook
15. Biznik
16. Local.com
17. ThinkLocal
18. CitySlick
19. USYellowPages
20. SuperPages
21. Outside.in
22. Dex
23. BizJournals.com
24. TeleAtlas
25. JustClickLocal
26. Discover our Town
27. Metrobot
28. EZ Local
29. twibs
30. LocalEze
31. Kudzu
32. CityVoter
33. Manta
34. Zipweb
35. MatchPoint
36. UsCity.net
37. Local Site Submit
38. InfoUSA
39. Axciom
40. Infignos
41. Yellow Assistance
42. Get Fave
42. My Huckleberry
43. GenieKnows
44. MojoPages
45. Brownbook
46. Magic Yellow
47. CitySquares
48. TeleAtlas
49. Navteq GPS
50. Judy’s Book
51. Foursquare
52. Facebook (company page)

This all takes time, but in the end it’s worth all the organic search mentions and strengthening your business’ online presence. Please let us know in a comment below if we missed any business directories.

Also, if you’re looking to give your business instant credibility when a potential customer calls, check out our professional voice recordings packages (they start as low as $50). Don’t lose customers while you place them on hold, visit us at www.SnapRecordings.com to make the most of that hold time.

Online Business Directories: A Helpful Marketing Strategy for Small Businesses On a Budget

Snap Recordings Voice-over Talent Spotlight: Milton Lawrence

Voice Over Talent Milton Lawrence Snap RecordingsWe’re very happy to share our first “Snap Recordings Voice-over Talent Spotlight” with one of our busiest vocal talents, Milton Lawrence. For over 25 years, Milton has been lending his remarkable voice to a large variety of media from television and radio, to animation and narration — Milton has been a powerful staple in the voice-over industry.

Born in Los Angles, Calif. and raised for some time in Houston, Texas — Milton was inspired at an early age by watching the Carol Burnett Show and the Johnny
Carson Show. He would imitate all the characters on T.V. for hours on end. Milton got his start with voice talent in broadcasting for one of the largest media companies in the country. He has since done stunning work for TARGET, National Geographic
Channel, Discovery Channel, The Cartoon Network and more.

In his spare time, Milton enjoys taking his son and Golden
Retrievers on scenic hikes and to the beach. He also enjoys playing tennis.

So how does Milton keep his voice so fresh and appealing? His secret is, “lots of green tea, mint and ginger.” You can listen to a sample of Milton’s voiceovers below!

To learn more about Snap Recordings, visit us at www.SnapRecordings.com. To become a voice-over talent with Snap Recordings, please fill out our online form by clicking here.

Snap Recordings Voice-over Talent Spotlight: Milton Lawrence

How To Market Your Small Business On A Budget

How To Market Your Small Business On A Budget

So you have an incredible business idea, you get the courage to implement your idea and thus start-up your first small business — but how do you market your product or service without breaking the budget? It’s not always an easy task to figure affordable ways to advertise your new business, but with the broad spectrum of the Internet, you now can market your small business with little to no cost.

At Snap Recordings, we understand what it takes to get your small business off the ground and flying into the heads of prospective clients. We’re all in this together and we want your small business to succeed. Below are five ways to market your small business on a budget.

Become a Voice In Your Industry
What better way to build your online presence and start executing a content marketing strategy in your industry than by having a company blog and connecting via social media. People are constantly searching the Internet for content and helpful tips to help them succeed in their industry. Whether your small business is a broad industry vertical such as Website design, or as niche as vegan bakery treats — become an expert in your field and start updating and creating blog posts about things relevant to your industry. Additionally, through building social media profiles on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and more — you can connect with those similar to you and form a solid network of cross-promoting. Not to mention, the information you create and share can give you an enormous amount of credibility in your field.

List Your Company in Online Business Directories
This is an extremely helpful and usually FREE marketing tool that every small business needs to put to action. Oddly enough, listing your company in various online business directories is a common blunder that most new businesses seem to overlook. When someone searches your industry, or better yet, hears about your brand and decide to search you on the Internet, you want to make sure you’re listed properly and plentifully.

A few business directories you want to make sure you’re placed on are as followed: Google Places, Yahoo! Local, Bing Local, Yelp, Angie’s List, City Search, Merchant Circle and many more. Be sure to create accurate entries with direct links to your Website, phone number, social media profiles and blog (if applicable). If the site already has your business listed, don’t just move-on to the next. Make sure you’re represented the way your small business should be. You should claim your business by adding more details to the existing entry and making sure you company profile/about section is consistent with other online placements. This all takes time, but in the end it’s worth all the organic search mentions and strengthening your business’ online presence.

Cultivate Twitters with Clout
There’s no better way to receive an endorsement that comes from a source outside of your company, than from a trusted blogger or Twitter account who has a lot of clout. It brings your brand greater value and reach than anything you can send through more traditional channels. Their stamp of credibility and large following can help your small business go viral in the ever-growing and strong Twittersphere. Although you can’t control what the online social world says about your brand, you can influence their decisions by getting on these powerful brand ambassadors’ good side. You want their social clout to work in your benefit so start finding, following and interacting with them. Don’t underestimate, you never know what high-profile Twitter account may take a liking to your product/service and/or content. This is the kind of publicity that no paid advertising strategy can compare.

Run a Contest/Giveaway
Everyone loves free stuff and what better way to inform potential customers about your company than with a giveaway. Not only will this please the winner(s), but if done correctly and done well, a contest can greatly boost your social media mentions. When creating a promotional giveaway for existing and potential  fans/customers of your small business, you want to get the most reach as possible to promote your campaign. Create a blog post or Website landing page that gives all the details of your contest: how to enter, eligibility, deadline, rules, etc., and be sure to use keywords that will boost your search. Promote your contest via various social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, etc. — whatever profiles you have set up, use them to promote your contest.

Create a Facebook ad to run during the duration of your promotion. Be sure to target it towards those that would benefit from what your small business is giving away, and also make sure your ad directly links to a custom Facebook tab or an outside URL that provides all contest details. To grasp an even larger audience, partner with a similar company or two. You can each run your individual giveaways and trade to include each others’ products/services in your respective giveaways. This is a great way to add more value and cross-promotion to your initial contest.

Interact on Blogs and Forums
Aside from posting your own blog content, try guest blogging on other high-traffic blogs that would benefit your small business. Provide them with a blog post of pertinent information that will be of value to their readers while slightly tying in your brand. The trackback and online credit to your small business alone can work wonders for your Website traffic. Additionally, start reading other like-minded blogs and create discussion through leaving comments with your small business’ name, URL and/or a trackback to a blog post of yours their readers may find helpful. Just be sure to not make your comment look like SPAM, otherwise your comment will not be approved. You can also search the Internet for popular forums and online communities that are relative to your brand. Don’t be shy! Join in on all applicable discussions and be sure to provide your small businesses’ information in your custom signature.

Snap Recordings wants your input! Do you have other ideas and strategies that have helped your small business grow? Please share them in a comment below. You can also visit us at SnapRecordings.com to take advantage of a valuable offer and discount we’re currently running. Let Snap Recordings help you brand your company’s voice with the credibility it deserves.

How To Market Your Small Business On A Budget

Snap Recordings Featured in GetVoip Blog

Snap Recordings Featured in GetVoip Blog

Snap Recordings Let Your Customers Know You Mean Business

SnapRecordings.com is a self-service, one-stop website for businesses looking to make that first and lasting impression. In the past, I can say that I’ve called into businesses, and a a clearly jaded (presumably by default) employee’s apathetic recording comes on. Not every workplace is so fortunate to have dazzling voice talent, able to enunciate crisply, and deliver options clearly. The scenario becomes even more uncomfortable when these individuals (who are obviously not native speakers) make a valiant effort to speak “s-pan-yole” and follow with directives indicating you should “mar-key dos”. Some voice recordings are well beyond phonetic nightmares, but I’d rather not discuss it further. Really, I can go on about for hours, but I’d rather let you know about this service, which makes sure your customers are warmly greeted when they call in. RingCentral are proud to work with and highly recommend Snap – here’s exactly why:

The professional recording team at Snap features more than 80 different voice talents, both male and female, along with 500 background tracks for on-hold music, etc. The site is adorned with samples, for the actors, the music and more. All of Snap’s voice talent is broken down by gender and accent, including American (US), Australian, British, Canadian, French (Canadian) and Bilingual. I was especially impressed by the last category, being the same actress/actor seamlessly flexed their ability to deliver concise speech in multiple languages – not a common skill. I quickly realized that I’d spent a solid ten minutes listening to the samples, thoroughly convinced that Marv’s grizzly voice would be a great weapon to sell mattresses with [for some inexplicable reason]. Once I got over conjuring up theoretical applications for each of the actors, Snap Recording’s grand design became even more apparent: quite literally, they have something for everyone, and every business/industry.

Even if you’re not the most creative, listening to the industry examples they have on their site can really steer you in the right direction, plus they have a wealth of phone script examples. There’s plenty of options whether you’re making announcements/voice prompts for your Auto-Attendant, IVR or PBX System. There’s a bunch of packages and options, not to mention a music library that covers all bases. Once your script is written and submitted over to them, the selected actor deliver’s it, and they mix and master it – a very necessary step in creating a pristine audio file. Snap also provides proofreading services, so you can be certain your recording is perfect before it’s actually made. Be forewarned that your are “responsible for any errors in the script or lack of pronunciation notes”, which translates to unnecessary mistakes that will justifiably incur a fee.

To read the entire article of Snap Recordings’ feature in GetVoip blog, click here!

Snap Recordings Featured in GetVoip Blog

4 Ways to Market Your Brand Through Your Business Telephone

4 ways market your brand through business telephone

Like an elephant in the room, voice branding for your business telephone has been an overlooked yet extremely powerful tool for marketers. Whether you’re a Fortune 500 company or a Mom & Pop shop where your existing and potential customers can be placed on-hold for a long duration, this is valuable time wasted if you’re not implementing an on-hold marketing strategy.

Citing a recent AT&T study, 70 percent of businesses place callers on hold with an average of 45 seconds. According to a CNN survey, without on-hold music or announcements nearly 60 percent of business callers placed on-hold will hang up and 30 percent will not call back. So how much business is your company losing?

Below are four ways to market your brand through your business telephone. Follow these effective marketing strategies to make the most out of your customers’ time while trying to get a hold of you.

Custom On-Hold Marketing Messages
A wealth of selling opportunities are present when a customer is placed on-hold. Instead of having your potential clients endure a frustrating silence, take advantage of this opportune time to sell more or your products and services. Through creating custom on-hold marketing messages, you can alert your on-hold customers about upcoming promotions, new products, events and more. Dependent on your industry, you may have a customer on-hold for a long duration; keep them informed and on the line — don’t let them hang-up.

Appropriate Selection of On-Hold Music
Do you enjoy listening to boring elevator music that loops every 30 seconds while on-hold? We didn’t think so. Without messages or music, the callers you place on-hold are likely to hang-up according to the aforementioned CNN survey and a large sum of those callers will not call back. Select a genre of on-hold music that represents your brand and will entertain or comfort your customers while they wait to speak with you.

Professionally Recorded Voice Greeting
Gone are the days of muffled telephone voice recordings that come off fuzzier than an ancient CB radio. Why settle for second-rate voice recordings when you can represent your company with crisp, clear and attractive narrations custom fit to your company’s brand. Invest in studio-mastered messaging that will give your telephone system the high quality tone and credibly it deserves.

Clear and Easy-to-Use Menu Options
Again, with the use of a professionally recorded telephone greeting, you’ll want to create an easy-to-use menu that will direct customers promptly to the department they desire. Similar to the ease of visiting a Website with an easy-to-navigate menu, you want your telephone customers to move swiftly from point A to point B. Additionally, you might want to add a menu option where customers can listen to a recorded announcement for exclusive discounts and promotions.

With Snap Recordings, you create exactly what you want with our easy-to-use online voicemail recording platform. From greetings, on-hold messages, voice-prompts, announcements and more — our professional, studio-mastered messaging will brand your company with a masterful and appealing voice. Click here to get started.

4 Ways to Market Your Brand Through Your Business Telephone

Holiday Telephone Greetings and On-Hold Holiday Music and Messaging

Holiday Telephone Greetings On-Hold Holiday Music Messaging

Is your business phone ready for the holidays with holiday telephone greetings and on-hold holiday music and messaging?

Thanksgiving came-and-went and now it’s time to prepare your business telephone system for the holidays. With the busy holiday season generating an abundance of traffic, it is vital that your business’ telephone lines are ready for the holiday rush.

The holidays can be a tumultuous and stressful time of the year for many shoppers. With streets and shopping malls flooded with traffic and online orders being much less than perfect, you want to make the most of your existing and potential customers’ shopping experience by having your phone ready to ease customers’ needs.

Aligning your phone system with a smart strategy during this lucrative time of year will give you more time to focus on your customers, employees, and all the many holiday celebrations. Below are some helpful tips to help you prepare your business phone for the holidays with seasonal greetings, festive on-hold music and custom holiday marketing messages. Follow the steps below and coast your way through the holidays.

Create a Professionally Recorded Holiday Telephone Greeting
The holiday season is the busiest time of the year where your business will expect high call volumes. Keep your customers at bay with a professionally recorded holiday greeting. Don’t bother with second-rate home recordings that may come off muffled and give your company’s voice an unprofessional image—you want to implement a studio-recorded telephone greeting that callers can comfortably hear before you take their call. Providing a friendly holiday greeting can be a prime opportunity to express your gratitude to your customers while also putting them in a warm and festive mood. Remember, you want to KEEP customers while they’re on-hold, not frustrate them to the point of hanging-up.

Promote Holiday Specials Through Custom On-Hold Messaging
What better way to take advantage of on-hold time than to promote special promotions and up-coming sales your business may have lined up. During this bustling holiday season, a customer can be on-hold for a long duration—setting up a custom on-hold message that features your current holiday promotions can work in your favor and increase sales. It’s a very powerful marketing tool that has proven success.

Select Festive On-Hold Holiday Music
As Andy Williams sung, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” Choosing a fun and warm rotation of holiday songs your customers can listen to while they wait to speak with you promotes a sense of happiness. Combine this feature with custom on-hold messaging promoting your seasonal specials and you’ll be well on your way to new sales.

Provide a Holiday Out-Of-Office and Special Hours Message
Don’t leave your customers in the dark and wondering when you’ll be open for business again. Create a professionally recorded holiday message that specifies any day your business may be closed or if you’re offering any extended holiday hours. Keeping customers up-to-date with your holiday schedule is a valuable courtesy that they will greatly appreciate and it will cut down on the number of questions you’re fielding from them about your business’ availability.

Use Call Forwarding
With so many holiday parties and the many business and personal preparations that come along with this time of year, you’re not always going to be available to take calls. Dependent on the size of your business you may want to forward your calls to an available line while you’re away from your desk or storefront.

Don’t wait until the final minute to get your phone system holiday ready. The last thing you want is a sloppy last-minute rush to get the schedules modified and the recordings made. Snap Recordings is offering a special holiday promo just for you. You can purchase any professional voice recording for your business at 15% off! As an added value, we’ll throw in a free holiday message on-hold pack ($400 value) featuring three different holiday greetings and music.

Just order any voice recording and enter promo code “SNAPHOLIDAY” at checkout. This offer is valid for only one purchase and will expire on Dec. 15, 2012. Click here to get started with your professional holiday telephone voice recordings.

Holiday Telephone Greetings and On-Hold Holiday Music and Messaging

Small Business Saturday: Get 15% off Your Telephone Greeting, On-Hold Messaging & More!

Small Business Saturday: get 15% off your telephone greeting on-hold messaging and more

To celebrate Small Business Saturday, taking place this Saturday, November 24th — Snap Recordings is offering a special discount to support small businesses and help them strengthen their brand’s image and retain more customers through effective and professional telephone greetings and on-hold messaging.

With our Small Business Saturday promo, you can purchase any professional voice recording for your business at 15% off! As an added value, since the holidays are near — we’ll throw in a free holiday message on-hold pack ($400 value) featuring three different holiday greetings and music. Whether you want to wish your customers a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah or Happy Holidays — you will have three festive greetings to feature.

Simply, order any voice recording and enter promo code “SNAPSBS” at checkout. This offer is valid for only one purchase and will expire on Dec. 15, 2012. Click here to get started with your professional telephone voice recordings.

Small Business Saturday: Get 15% off Your Telephone Greeting, On-Hold Messaging & More!