|Improve Your Online Small Business Profits
Wow, this summer is flying by! It feels like just yesterday was the 4th of July!
If you’ve been working on the marketing checklist I’ve been sharing, you are probably feeling as busy as I am. There are only a few more weeks until September so now is the time to line up your fall promotions. Fall is the biggest season for the Internet profits and a great time to let the world know about your business.
So where should you spend your time and advertising dollars for the best return?
Before I reveal the 4 best profit pulling promotions, I want to encourage you to follow through on the entire marketing checklist. These 4 promotions will have the most impact if your site is prepared.
To prepare your site here’s a quick review of what we’ve covered:
Steps 1 and 2
* Review Competitors
You have established a unique selling proposition for your products / services
* Review Your Web Site
Your copy converts visitors into buyers
Steps 3 and 4
* Email Review
Your email list is growing and building rapport.
* Search Engine Optimization
Your keywords are in places and your site submitted.
Only after you’ve completed the above 4 steps are you ready for the final step 5.
What promotions are you using, if any, to get the word out about your site?
With the millions of sites on Internet, you must do more than simply create a site, optimize it and then hope for visitors. You have to regularly let people know you are open for business. While there are lots of promotional strategies you can use there are 4 tactics which have proven themselves again and again. You should focus your marketing on these promotional avenues:
a) Pay-Per-Click Search Campaigns
A pay-per-click campaign will generate immediate traffic to a new site or a pre-existing site.
When you run a pay-per-click campaign, start out small. Your initial campaign should be tightly focused on your most relevant keywords. You should stick to one major search engine. You should test ads, test landing pages and test keywords to find out what works and track result to ensure profitability.
Only once profitable should you broaden the campaign to other engines and more keywords. But be certain you’re always analyzing your ongoing results.
b) Press Releases
Press Releases are a tried and true marketing strategies. They can drive a significant number of visitors to your site and they have the added advantage of generating lots of back links to your site.
A press release strategy involves more than sending out a single release about your site’s launch. Rather an effective press release strategy will regularly distribute news to media outlets. Your press releases should have topics which are timely, personal, and specifically relevant to your target audience.
An effective tactic for getting coverage is to use stories about a particular person, a particular place or a specific event. Stories almost always perform better than sending out a general "announcement."
For instructions on how to write and distribute a press release be sure to check out this free toolkit from Canadaone – Press Release Builder
c) Ezine Advertising
Ask any Internet marketer and they will tell you ezine advertising works. Sponsoring ezines was effective in the early days of the Internet and it still works today.
When running ezine ads consider these points to ensure the best results.
* Use proven ad copy with a strong headline
* Avoid hype and be sure to have a call to action
* Target your audience. Use ezine directories and search engines to find ezines who cater to your target group.
* Before placing an ad in an ezine, subscribe to it and read several issues. Make sure your ad is a good fit.
* Run multiple ads. Studies show consumers need to see a marketing message as many as seven times before they will respond.
* Create custom landing pages for each individual ezine ad campaign.
* Have a form to capture the email addresses of visitors who click through to your site.
* Use an incentive. Give readers a reason to click your ad and check out your website.
Lastly realize that ezine advertising does have a learning curve. It is not always an instantaneous success. Just as you track and test with a Pay-Per-Click campaign you should try different ads and publication to find the right match for your offers.
d) Reciprocal Linking
Getting incoming links to your site can have a considerable impact on your traffic. You gain traffic from the sites that link back to you directly and you improve your search engine position.
The key to getting reciprocal links is to have "valuable content". Other sites are more likely to link to your site if you have good information to share. Or if you provide interesting content to other sites, they’ll link back to you as the source.
If you don’t have any content, develop some and then work on getting links. Where do you get good content? Check out this article from a previous issue of DEMC on developing quality content: Here's the 1 Marketing Secret You Need . . .
What other tactics can you take to gain links:
* Submit your site to as many directories as possible
* Write articles and send them to other website owners to reprint in exchange for links back to your site.
* Compete for online awards programs.
* Put in place an affiliate program. Your affiliates will then link to your site
* Request reciprocal links. Contact related sites and personally ask for a link.
* Participate in online communities like discussion forums and email lists.
* Offer reviews or testimonials to businesses in exchange for a link back to your site.
To improve the results of your links focus on getting incoming links with relevant link text. Relevant link text describes your site and includes key words. For example rather than a link that says – SendFree.com, we would want to get link text that say: Free email autoresponders.
For even more information on linking check out the article in this week’s issue:
Everything You Need to Know About Linking
There you have it - the top 4 most effective promotional methods for massive traffic and results!
Take time over this summer to review and implement the 5 step marketing checklist and jump start your marketing. I’m going through these same steps myself. While a bit daunting, the improved marketing results will be well worth the effort!
I’ll be sure to keep you posted on my progress. And please feel free to share with me any improved results you experience from implementing some or all of the strategies discussed.
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