Are you an ISO who is just starting out in the payments industry and are looking for tips to jump start your business? Or perhaps you’re an established ISO that needs new marketing techniques to stand out from competition? In an industry that is hard to differentiate, it is imperative for ISOs to broaden their knowledge and learn new ways to market themselves.
Take a look at Part 1 of our blog series on marketing tips for ISOs in the payments industry:
How to Establish Your Business as an ISO
The first step of starting your business is establishing your companies name/brand. Do your research and make sure your company name is unique and pertains to your business. Once you are set with your company name, register your domain and trademark. This can be done at sites such as GoDaddy.com and USPTO.
Next, be creative and come up with a logo. Keep it simple with 3 colors being the maximum in your logo. Most top brands only have 2-3 colors and as a result, come across as more professional and clean. Be sure to add a tagline to your logo, which can be a single sentence or phrase that embodies your brand value.
How to Claim Your Space Online
The next step is creating an online presence for your business so that it is easily searchable on the Internet. Thankfully, there are free and simple ways ISOs can increase their SEO exposure/rankings, which can be implemented within a day or two.
Here are some of the main factors than can affect your search rankings, whether you have an existing website and want to do an audit or when creating a brand new site from scratch:
- Content needs to be organized and useful.
- Ensure good page load speed.
- Optimize your images – Use keywords as their file names.
- Header tags – Relevant headings and sub-page headings.
- Outbound links – Sites connected to other like-sites get more juice.
- Different types of multimedia – Be sure to include videos, slideshows, and audio files beyond just text.
- Fix any broken links – 404 error pages bring your ratings down.
- Make it readable – Check websites like Readability-Score.com and The Readability Test Tool.
- Contact Us Page – Associating your web contact info to your listing’s builds credibility.
- Mobile Optimization – Make sure your site is mobile responsive. Google will penalize your site if it isn’t.
The Importance of Social Media for ISOs
Social media is a great way for ISOs to add credibility to their business and a way to communicate and engage with customers and prospects. In addition, as an ISO, social media gives you a great outlet to promote new products and offerings to your follower base. Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are the main 3 social media sites most ISOs use to market their products and services and would be ideal to incorporate.
Once you have established your social sites, be sure to have a consistent content stream. Partnering with a payment processor will allow you as an ISO to have access to a multitude of content to use and share on your own social media site and website – including blog posts, instructional videos, payment infographics, and more. Other resources for content include payment websites that share relevant payment industry news such as PYMNTS.com, Digital Transactions.Net and Paymentssource.com.
To help manage all of your social media posts/content, it would be best to use a social media management tool, such as Hootsuite.com or SproutSocial.com These sites will allow you to schedule your social media posts in advance by each social media network and allow you to create a social media calendar.
Why ISOs Should Claim Online Local Listings
Establishing local listings is another big way ISOs can cheaply and quickly set up authority in their local community and with Google search engines. It adds credibility, makes your business findable online, and improves your SEO rankings significantly. List your business on as many sites as possible and be consistent with using the same name, phone number, and address on each site.
Here are some of the main sites ISOs need to list their business on to improve their SEO rankings and get noticed online:
- Better Business Bureau
- Angie’s List
Stay tuned for Part 2 of our Marketing Tips for ISOs in the Payments Industry soon!