How to make Internet Marketing work for your business
Can you imagine how many people go online each and every day for many different reasons? Some have to go online for work, others do it so they can socialize and still some go online to shop. There is an incredible number of people searching for specific things and because people are actually telling a search engine what they are looking for, providing them with a high quality answer to their needs is what internet marketing is all about. It is the new means for business owners to reach their target market.
So the question is - what are the advantages of internet marketing over traditional marketing?
The first main advantage is the fact that it can be done so much cheaper than traditional means. Can you imagine just how much you would need to place a TV commercial? The time when they show it also dictates the cost per placement. You can also go for a radio commercial. But for both the production process entails added cost, let alone the broadcasting. Its also very broad, untargeted marketing.
Internet marketing can be so much cheaper as there are barely any production or transmission costs, and it is so effective primarily because it is targeted specifically to the online user searching for an item at the time they are interested.
If a person is searching for products or services, they are looking to buy, and through referrals you can even utilize the popularity of social networks and do targeted advertising there at a minimal cost or even for free!
Another great thing is that you can get the feedback of your target market in a snap. They can comment and ask questions about your post very quickly. That way, you can communicate with your customers faster and the sooner that you convince them to purchase the product or service that you are promoting, the better. It can also be very interactive. When you air a commercial, you need to conduct a survey to find out what your audience has to say about it. Online it is so much simpler because you can skip the survey procedure and still get honest feedback.
Word of Mouth
Never underestimate the marketing power of word of mouth. Traditionally, it was said to be even more effective than actually launching an advertisement. That is because people would rather hear a recommendation from a friend or someone who has used the product rather than an advertiser.
The birth of social media marketing multiplies the power of word of mouth because instead of just telling people one at a time, the internet allows a person to reach to as much as hundreds of people at one time. One Facebook wall post can make or break your brand and the product that you are selling because of the many people who will hear from it. One email can immediately trigger a chain reaction. Hence, utilize the marketing power of word of mouth in your internet marketing - it will surely affect the sales of your brand. Who knows if it will supersede TV commercials, print ads and radio ads but one thing is certain, it is a great way to speak to your market and engage them with your business.
How to apply Internet Marketing techniques in your Business
The internet has become a revolution in marketing. Certain methods such as bulk email cost you next to nothing, but can bring in $1,000's in sales.
A recent campaign by a large eDIY customer at cost of only a few dollars in time led to their largest Father's Day sale ever.
Using a clever YouTube video concept, a one-off attractive special deal and a bulk email campaign to over 23,000 recipients, they achieved a huge increase in the number of people coming to their Christchurch and Auckland based stores in September of 2011.
So, how can you apply these strategies in your business? There are so many options! This is a good thing, as different stategies suit a variety of business needs.
Bulk Email Marketing
If you already have a large number of subscribers to your business mailing list, you don't need to spend much to reach a targeted audience - just think of an offer that your customers would have trouble resisting, and send them an email. The bulk emailer tool built into the eDIY system allows you to see who responded to your offer - who opened the email, and what link did they click? This is useful information as it enables you to re-focus your efforts for future mailouts. A big advantage of bulk email is the very low cost of reaching people that have indicated they are interested in your offerings.
Search Engine Optimisation
This is a board topic, covered in more detail in our Search Engine Optimisation section. It relies on providing more details to search engines so that your product and service content is more useful to your visitors than your competitors web sites. We have some search engine optimisation hints for you in our article section: Tips on Improving your Google Search ranking, and 7 Tips on Search Engine Ranking - contact us if you'd like more help on this topic.
Social Media Marketing
People like spending a lot of their time on social media sites, and with a clever campaign you can reach an enormous number. For example, the CDC (Center for Disease Control) in America had it's finger on the pop-culture fad of zombie movies, and using just $87 in staff time, got themselves $3 million worth of TV airtime because they re-branded their stock "how to protect yourself" material to also cover a "Zombie Apocalypse".
Pay Per Click Marketing
A way of getting new clients on to your subscriber list is to use Pay Per Click advertising, still a targeted means of getting your offer in front of potential new clients. This is more expensive, as you have to pay the advertising network (such as Google, Facebook or Bing) for every click, but if you think about it long term, you're aquiring new email contacts as well, so the cost of re-marketing to these clients drops over time.
The important thing to have for a Pay Per Click campaign is a focussed message, and a "landing page" that targets that customers needs - eg If the advert is about an offer that you have created, make the click on the ad land on a page with that offer front and center, so that your chances of engaging the potential customer are improved. You don't want to have them land on your home page, only to have to look for the little button that takes them to the offer page.
Internet Marketing Tips and Tricks
Find your customers with one click
The problem with offline advertising campaigns is that you're sending out thousands of flyers hoping that at least 10% will reach people who are actually interested.
The interactive nature of Internet advertising in terms of providing instant responses is the unique qualities of the medium, and a quick search on the Internet leads you to existing communities. For example, if you sell hand-knitted baby clothes, then you have a higher chance of reaching customers at parenting forums or websites that cater to pregnant moms.
From there, you can inquire about a banner ad or sign up and include your business name and address in your member signature. However, don't spam the forum with unwanted product announcements. Use the forums to network with customers; reply to posts and give feedback and support.
So, when you actually post any announcements related to your businesses, you have a loyal base of supporters.
Marketing to other businesses
Visit websites for small businesses. Many of these offer opportunities to talk to fellow business owners. You can exchange ideas, and even find potential partners and suppliers.
Some websites also have free applications or templates that you can download and useful for preparing documents, organizing files, making presentations, or even doing accounting.
Capitalize on Internet Newsgroups
Newsgroups and chatrooms are a great way of networking with potential customers. As with joining website forums, don't start selling right away. You will gain more in the long run by presenting yourself as a source of information and support. Remember to put your business information in your signature.
Set up an Email Address List
Get the email addresses of your customers and send them regular updates on sales, promos and new products. You create opportunities for repeat business, plus emails are easy for people to forward so this is a great way to market your product by word of mouth. eg you can offer a discount or free product for every successful referral.
Set up a Facebook account
Social networking sites such as Facebook and Google+ are a free way to stay in touch with your customers and advertise your product to their friends. Post albums of your products and tag the people you think may be interested (it'll appear on their profiles).
Do it yourself or get our help
There are built in internet marketing tools in the eDIY Website Builder software. Detailed visitor stats, a bulk emailing system, click tracking and split testing systems are available for you to use with your eDIY website.
There's a lot to consider when first starting out with marketing your business online, and we're here to help. eDIY can help you with all aspects of internet marketing, from planning your advertising campaign to executing search engine, video, email and offline market strategies.
We have an in house team of web designers and copywriters and know how to get you noticed online. We can also help with video marketing and social media marketing - let our experienced team of internet marketers get you started on your path of Search Engine and website promotion.
Contact Us today for a no obligation discussion as to how we can help you with your online marketing needs.