Planning an Internet Marketing Strategy
Planning an effective Internet marketing strategy is essential to the growing success of your business. Getting high targeted traffic (visitors) to your website is like fuel for your car. Traffic is the driving force to the success of your website. Instead of limiting your business to one Internet marketing strategy, use various marketing strategies to ensure a steady stream of visitors. Find a way to keep track of where your visitors are coming from to determine your most effective methods of advertising.
Before you start utilizing these Internet marketing strategies, be sure to market a product or service of good quality. It would be a waste to get a steady flow of valuable traffic when you are just marketing a useless product like “Learning how to read E-books“. Sure you probably heard the story of that guy who sold a 100 year old potato chip for hundreds of dollars on E-bay but those instances are very unlikely. Don’t try selling lemonade in the North Pole; if you have a product or service that nobody wants an Internet marketing strategy won’t make a difference.
Internet Marketing Strategies
SEO- Search Engine Optimization– Optimizing your website for the Search engines can be a hugely effective Internet marketing strategy. Hundreds of thousands of people use search engines such as Google each day in search of products and services they need. They type in a specific keyword of a service or product they are seeking such as “barber in New Jersey” or “Christmas gifts” and a list of related websites is displayed. Getting high rankings for your website can make the difference between getting a regular flow of targeted visitors to your web site and not getting any. Search Engine Optimization can be quite useful in bringing in traffic but it is often times costly. You can find Search Engine Optimization companies by searching for this term in search engines such as Google. Before hiring a Search Engine Optimization Company be sure to look at their portfolios and prior work to see if they were successful in getting high rankings for prior projects.
Local Searches– This Internet marketing strategy can be beneficial especially if your business is seeking to attract local customers. When buyers search for a business in a certain area such as “barber shop in Newark, NJ” in the search engines a list of local businesses show up along with the address and phone number. You can include your business in these local searches for your particular location. To add your business to the Google local search, enter the term add business to google search in Google.com and click on the first link. To add your business to Yahoo local searches click here.
Forums– People use forums to seek information and advice whether it’s about a problem they have, a product they are interested in, or services they seek. Forums can help you gain a better understanding of what people are seeking and issues they are having. You can discover various forums targeted at your specific audience by doing a quick search on Google for “your keyword” forum. Viewers may be already talking about your product or service on forums. There’s no such thing as bad publicity right?…WRONG! Forums can be an effective internet marketing strategy but it can also be destructive to your credibility if is puts to light negative aspects of your business. If unhappy customers start complaining on forums or blogs about how horrible your product or service is, this will chase away truckloads of potential customers. Take this very seriously.
Blogs-Blogs used as an internet marketing strategy can attract a group of dedicated viewers. Blogs are online journals of thoughts, stories, ideas and comments. With their popularity steadily growing Blogs are taking over the internet, covering almost every topic imaginable. Information on Blogs are considered by viewers to be much more credible then ads. As a result many internet marketers are focusing their energy more on blogs rather than ads. At Blogger.com you can have your very own space to blog. Just keep in mind that people are interested in credible information and useful advice not another marketing pitch!
Tips for keeping a successful blog:
- Be sure to continually update your blog. Your dedicated readers will expect you to keep them up to date with the latest information.
- Your blog must have a purpose. If you are trying to promote your business or product through your blog, you will have to be creative when brainstorming topics for your blog. Blog about a topic readers want to read about or information that can be useful for them such as your journey starting a small business or how your small business is coping with the economy.
- Get your friends and employees to contribute to your blog. You don’t have to be the only writer for your blog; ideas and comments from different perspectives can add a little spice to your blog.
AdWords– Adwords are an option when developing an internet marketing strategy. Google is the most popular search engine and therefore the leader in search engine ads. When someone types in a keyword and searches it on Google the paid for adwords will appear on the right side of the results. You pay every time somebody clicks on your ad. Costs per click can vary anywhere from 1 cent to $25.00 or more depending on how much your competition is willing to spend. An advantage of adwords is that you are seen only by your target market, since it will only be shown after your selected keyword is searched for. When purchasing adwords make sure to make your keyword as specific as possible to ensure only your target market is clicking on your ads (you pay per click, so you don’t want non-potential clients wasting your clicks). Instead of choosing a broad keyword such as “shoes” choose something like “pink tennis shoes”. Learn more about Google’s Adwords by visiting Adwords.Google.com. However adwords is not a wise internet marketing strategy for all businesses. If your business has a small marketing budget, you are better off sticking with other internet marketing strategies. Seek advice from an internet marketing consultant for building a successful Adwords campaign and for constructing an effective internet marketing strategy for your business.
Forming an Email Newsletter– Recurrent customers are valuable customers and that’s why email newsletters can be an effective internet marketing strategy. On your website entice your viewers to subscribe to your email newsletter by offering incentives such as updates on new products or useful information. For example if you are an internet marketer you can entice your viewers to subscribe to your Email Newsletter by offering “Internet Marketing Strategy Revealed!” Make sure to provide informative or entertaining information on your newsletter; if it sounds like a sales pitch, people will regard it as spam.
Banners– Paid online banners is one way to get the word out there about your product or service. However online banners are not one of my preferred methods of internet marketing. When people click on a banner they are more close minded, and ready to fight off any marketing pitches thrown their way. Visitors are more likely of purchasing your product or service if it is referred from a credible source rather than a banner.
Press Releases– Writing a press release can attract attention for your business both online and offline. Make sure the information you write in your Press Release is newsworthy. Create an eye catching headline. Don’t make it sound like an advertisement, make it something viewers will want to read. Make sure it is well written. Get someone to proofread to ensure there is no grammar or spelling mistakes.
Yellow Pages Advertising– Business owners are probably familiar with the yellow pages in the phone book; that big book you get every year that usually ends up lost under the bed or deep in the shelves. Entrepreneurs use the Yellow Pages to advertise their services and businesses for a certain area. These yellow pages advertisements can generate loads of new clients. Did you know that there is an online version of the Phone Book’s yellow pages? That’s right, for all the people like me who just can’t seem to find where they put that Phone book, there is an alternative online. It’s called YellowPages.com. On YellowPages.com you can add your business to the listings for free or you can choose to pay for a higher listing.
Offline Efforts– You don’t have to market your website just online. Offline promotion can be highly effective especially if you are targeting a specific area. For example Silvana, owner of SilvanasCleaning.com has a house cleaning service in Manhattan, NY. To promote her small business and small business web site she produces flyers and business cards, all containing her website address. To promote your small business you could also give out free goods such as t-shirts, key chains, coffee cups with your business name and location.