If you’ve read any of our blogs at TLM, you’d know that we love to harp on the importance of building your email list. And in 2024, we probably will bang that drum again because it remains the best way to stay in contact with current and potential leads.

But as Chat-GPT and Google’s Search Generative Experience continue to change how Google ranks your website, it will be critical that you place yourself as an authority and even more importantly, implant your brand as an active participant in your digital community.

A few years ago, an article on Hacker News proclaimed, “Reddit is the most popular search engine.” This summer, the Washington Post agreed, “They…append the word Reddit to the end of their Google search, knowing that a post on one of the platforms’ many forums may have a more useful answer than what Google can dig up on its own.” As months go by, the sentiment grows.

How Does This Affect Your Business?

The problem with Google is that people simply do not trust the information delivered to them. Audiences are aware of A.I. assistant writing and have dealt with low-quality information for years, and now turn to community resources like Reddit in the hopes they find helpful information they can trust.

For you as a business owner, what this means is that you have an entire audience waiting for your specific knowledge on Reddit, message board forums, LinkedIn groups, and Facebook groups. These people believe that Google isn’t presenting them with the right information, so instead, they seek information from like-minded communities.

Google isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, but engaging with digital communities allows you to interact with audiences interested in what you offer and the authority you bring.

So What Should I Do?

Use the last few months of 2023 to start thinking about the digital communities that exist in your industry. Maybe there’s a subreddit for your job, or perhaps homeowners are looking for how to fix something broken. 

If you’re an e-commerce business, what groups of people are buying your products? I guarantee there’s an online community on Reddit or Facebook that is all about sharing information and helping others.

Don’t immediately start posting your products or ads. A recent survey revealed that 70% of users believe that ad publishers don’t respect their online experience, and the reason they’re going to these other websites is because they don’t want to feel like they’re being sold to.

If you deliver valuable content and helpful solutions to their problems, they will likely want to know more about your company, services, and products. The process will take time to build trust but will work in the long run.

Let 2024 Be Your Most Successful Yet

Ready to grow your business in 2024? Schedule a free consultation, and we’ll show you exactly how partnering with TLM will help your business attract new leads, level up your brand awareness, and increase sales.

author avatar
Elijah Litscher
Elijah Litscher is an author, educator, entrepreneur, and marketing innovator with over 18 years of experience in digital marketing. He has traveled extensively as a professional speaker while educating thousands of business owners across the country in online marketing best practices. Elijah is committed to empowering small and medium-sized businesses to reach their full potential online as founder and Chief Digital Strategist at The Loop Marketing Inc. in Chicago, Illinois.