Often times when people start an internet business they don't have a clue how to go about their marketing campaign. They end up posting ads aimlessly to places that do nothing but send them spam and waste time and money. Then, after a couple weeks without results, they give up. It almost happened to me and I know it happens to others everyday. So, in order to help the newbies, I decided to give a quick overview of some of the widely used techniques for marketing your business. When used correctly these marketing techniques will dramatically increase traffic and sales without emptying your bank account.
Here they are, in no particular order:
1) PPC's (Pay Per Click) - These are a very widely used method of getting traffic to your website. Pretty much everyone uses PPC's at one time or another. The concept is really simple… you bid a certain amount on keywords related to your product or service. Then when someone searches for those keywords they find your ad (assuming you bid high enough). Finally, they click on your ad and you pay the amount you bid. This is great because you only pay for traffic that actually goes to your site and all the traffic is targeted.
PPC’s may sound intimidating because of the word "pay" but you can usually find keywords to bid on for a very low amount. The highest bid I have on a PPC right now is 25 cents per click which is actually considered high for some. You can also frequently find deals where you get money put into your account just for signing up. Then the traffic you get doesn’t cost you anything. Send an email to email@example.com and I will send you a list of some PPC’s that do this.
For a list of the top PPC's go to www.payperclicksearchengines.com
-Note: Google Adwords is not listed in their top 10 but it should be. Overture and Google are widely considered to be the two best. You can find Google Adwords at http://www.google.com/ads/programs.html
2) COOPS - This one is also really simple. You just pay a certain amount for guaranteed prospects. Usually someone that generates very high amounts of prospects, due to their marketing efforts, will allow you to participate in the coop for a small fee. They are also a super time saver because you don't have to do anything to get the prospects, except pay a little. Coops are a really great deal when you are new because you typically aren’t real great at getting your own quality prospects without spending a lot of money or tons of time.
3) Article Writing - Writing articles is another great way to generate a lot of quality traffic as well as make a name for yourself on the internet. All you do is write on a topic you know about and submit it to places that accept article submissions. This one scares people at first because they don’t think they can write. Trust me it's not as hard as you may think to find a topic you know something about. Then just write a couple pages about it. For example: I never used to think I could write articles but you are reading this one right now, aren’t you?
4) Forum Submissions - Basically all you do with this one is go to internet business forums and post answers to people’s questions. This one is more for making a solid reputation for yourself as a knowledgeable and trustworthy individual.
I have already written an article on this so I won’t go into much detail here. The article will give you a lot more info, you can find it at http://www.work-at-home-jobs-iowa.com/forumsuccess.html
It tells a lot about what to do and not do in the forums as well as provide you with some good forums to get started in.
Note: Do not post ads in the forums. The only way this technique is effective is to offer answers and advice to people. This is also a really great way to learn a lot from the masters just by reading the posts.
5) Link Exchanges (for search engines) - This technique is only effective if you have your own website. You search for sites related to yours (such as “work at home”) and then you place a link to the website into the links page of your website. Then you ask the webmaster to return the favor by placing a link to your site on theirs.
Link exchanges are great for getting your website ranked highly in search engines such as Google. Then when people search for your keywords they find your site. This takes a lot of time and work but is great for a huge amount of targeted traffic in the end.
6) Ezines – Ezines are one of the best sources of information on the web. They can make a huge impact on your marketing success if used correctly. Most Ezines offer ad space that you can buy for fairly cheap. Some even accept ads for free. You can also write articles (explained above) and submit them to Ezines to get free exposure.
The Directory of Ezines (DOE) is well-known as the premier resource for the best Ezines. You can find the DOE at http://tinyurl.com/39do4
To help ensure you find quality Ezines to advertise in you should check to see how many subscribers they have. The more the better but make sure their list is 100% opt-in because some will try and make themselves look more popular than they really are. Also, make sure there aren’t too many ads to compete with. Some Ezines will accept virtually unlimited ads. Your ad will probably never be seen in an Ezine that allows this. I really like the DOE (link above) because they have already checked the Ezines for quality to make it much easier on you.
7) Word-of-mouth - Well, this one’s easy. Tell everyone you know or meet about your business and tell them to tell everyone they know about it too.
Here is a great article about this topic: http://www.work-at-home-jobs-iowa.com/300rule.html
8) Fliers - Post fliers in places where a lot of people go. Supermarkets, sign poles, under windshield wipers in large parking lots (you might want to ask the owner of the lot before doing that), universities, anywhere else you can think of---you get the picture. You can also just hand them out to people at large events.
9) Ads on high ranking sites – Similar to classifieds… there are many websites that offer space for people to place ads. You can usually get an ad for a very good price. Just search for websites on your topic and if they offer ad space then ask them about it. If they are in the top 10 on the search engines for the keywords you type in then there is a good chance they get a lot of traffic. Your ad could be seen by thousands of people every month.
10) Classifieds – There are many classified ad directories on the internet. How popular the site is will usually determine how much you pay for an ad. Most places offer pretty fair prices. There are also plenty of places to post classified ads offline such as newspapers.
There are tons of classified sites so it’s very easy to get confused or overwhelmed when trying to figure out what ones to use. You should definitely do some research on the site before you spend money to advertise there. Here are a few things to look for – Number of visitors to the site (the more the merrier), make sure your ad will stay visible without being pushed off the page by other ads, and make sure the site offers value to visitors, meaning it isn’t just full of ads and nothing else.
What NOT to do when promoting your business – Do not send out unsolicited (spam) emails to people. All that will do is get you in trouble and won’t produce very good results anyway. Don’t post to FFA (free for all) sites. All you will get back from them is a bunch of junk in your inbox so it’s not worth your time. Also, don’t use unethical business practices of any kind. If you are not sure about something then ask someone. Always use your better judgment.
Well, that’s all I have for now. There are many more marketing techniques that you can use so don’t assume that this is an all-inclusive list. The promotion methods above are just some of the more commonly used ways to get traffic/customers for your business. I didn’t go into detail on any of the techniques because this article would have turned out to be a book. If you need any more information or help with anything send me an email and I will answer your questions or direct you to someone that can.
Finally, please remember that any business online or offline takes hard work and time to build. Do not expect to be making a lot of money in a short amount of time. Put in the effort and you will be greatly rewarded in the long run.
Copyright© Trent Brownrigg
I grant permission to publish this article, electronically or in print, as long as the bylines are included, with a live link, and the article is not changed in any way (grammatical corrections accepted).
Trent Brownrigg is a successful internet marketer, webmaster, and author of business articles. He will personally help you build a secure financial future. Visit http://www.work-at-home-jobs-iowa.com for more details.