Tag Archive | "Marketing Methods"

How B2B Email Marketing Works

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How B2B Email Marketing Works


If you’re a company that operates in the Business to Business (B2B) industry, then you probably already know that email is a very important tool which can be used for sales, lead generation, follow ups, etc. There are many B2B companies which go ahead and set up email marketing campaigns. But not all of them are doing it the right way and reaping all of the potential benefits that this marketing method could bring them. Previously, we’ve seen a few things that you can do to make your email marketing campaigns better. But there is some recent news in the field of email marketing for B2B companies. The Pardot survey, which polled some 100 B2B marketers in the United States, sheds a lot of light on some of the most common email marketing practices in the B2B field.

 

Here are some findings from the survey and how you can keep them in mind when running your business:

 

  • Email is mainly used for lead generation in this industry

 

According to data collected from the 100 marketers, email is used mainly as a lead generation tool, rather than as their main sales tool In fact, 70% of marketers have responded by saying that they consider email to be one of their top lead generation tools. In the B2B industry, leads are extremely important. If you want to use email to its fullest advantage, then setting it up as a lead generation method may indeed work for you.

 

  • Email marketing is often a secondary marketing tool

 

65% of all B2B marketers polled say that they assign less than 25% of their total marketing budgets to email. Only 9% of respondents have stated that email takes up over 50% of their entire marketing budget. This isn’t really much of a surprise. For many companies, email is a secondary marketing tool that they use in conjunction with other marketing methods.

 

One of the reasons behind this is that to get someone’s email address, you will first need to draw them to your site or otherwise let them know that your business exists. Website traffic can be generated in various ways, such as by using search engine optimization or social networking on business networks such as LinkedIn. Once someone has shown that they have an interest in what you have to offer, then you should try to do everything possible to capture their email. You can then get in touch with them and also remind them that your company exists and that it can potentially offer them some very useful products.

 

But what about the smaller details about the email messages themselves, such as the content to include in the message, where to link to in your emails as well as the best times to send out a mailing? There is a lot of information on these as well, plus some interesting answers that were provided by the survey respondents. We will show you more information about these tomorrow.

 

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Keeping an Eye on Email Open Rates Crucial For Marketers

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Keeping an Eye on Email Open Rates Crucial For Marketers


If you use email marketing to promote your business online, one of the key metrics that you would want to keep an eye on would be your email open rates. These denote how many of the email messages that you’ve sent out have been read by the recipient. Of course, unless you have a small and very highly targeted email campaign, not all of your messages are going to be opened and read by the user, for various reasons. Some people just don’t pay any attention to marketing messages, no matter how much effort you’ve put in crafting a catchy subject line to get their attention. Others may not check their email inbox that often.

But in general, how is email marketing doing so far? We all know that it’s one of the most widely used online marketing methods, mainly due to the high conversion rates that it can bring to businesses that use it. Email marketers would often like to know what the general trends are for email open rates so that they can adapt their overall marketing campaigns. There are some numbers that were recently released by Silverpop as part of their 2012 Email Marketing Metrics Benchmark Study. This study looked at email messages sent in 2011, as well as the first quarter of 2012.

The mean email open rates for all of the regions that were studied was of 20.1%. In the USA, the mean rate was 19.9%, Canada stood at 20.7% and the region of Europe, Middle East and Africa was at 20.9%. This goes to show that there aren’t any major differences related to email open rates based on the geographic region where the recipient is located. The mean global open rate has dropped from 2009, where it was sitting at 22.2%.

But what about click through rates? Out of the people that actually take a few seconds to read your message, how many of them can you expect to click on a link in it and proceed to your site? Email marketing has been shown to produce some very good CTRs and the data from the most recent edition of the study seems to confirm this.

The global mean CTR is at 5.2%. For the United States, this number is slightly above average at 5.4%. Europe, the Middle East and Africa has a 5.1% CTR. What is a bit surprising is that Canada’s CTR is noticeably lower at 3.8%. Compared to the same study done 2 years ago, click through rates have increased. In 2009, the mean global CTR was at 4.5%.

Now that you have these details, you can get a much better idea of just how email marketing is performing around the globe. But you must remember that the results that you get will vary on many factors, such as the industry you’re in, your targeted demographics, as well as how you personalize your email messages and target the recipients. If you do your best, chances are you will see a great benefit from email campaigns.

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Most Consumers Want Marketing Messages by Email

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Most Consumers Want Marketing Messages by Email


There are many online marketers and entrepreneurs who are shunning email marketing, believing that it is ineffective or that consumers perceive any email they receive from a business as a “spam” message and don’t pay attention to it. However, the reality of consumer opinion is quite different from this.

 

According to a survey of 1 500 consumers in the United States related to how they prefer to receive marketing messages, a large percentage, 77%, have said that they prefer to get them by email. There is no close second place, according to the study. Email is still king with US consumers and this doesn’t look like it’s going to change much in the future even as other marketing channels are being developed in the world of online advertising.

 

Here are the numbers for the rest of the marketing methods:

 

  • Direct mail (physical letters, brochures, catalogs…) : 9 %
  • SMS messages : 5 %
  • Facebook : 4 %
  • Phone calls: 2 %
  • Twitter : 1 %
  • Mobile applications for smart phones : 1%
  • LinedIn : Less than 1%

 

In reactions to the survey, many marketers were surprised that social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have scored so low. The explanation is that while consumers will pay attention to the pages of their favorite brands and businesses on social networking sites, this is not the place where they want to receive commercial solicitations. Marketers need to remember that social networking sites were never designed as being a marketing platform in the first place. Rather, they are a place where individuals connect to other people that they care about. Users also like to use social networking sites for their integrated apps and games (horoscope, poker, Farmville, etc). They may check out some commercial pages, but they don’t like it when their news feed is filled with ads.

 

There are some who ask: even if email marketing is well received by consumers, do these people actually take any action in buying something they’ve gotten through email? The numbers say yes.

 

The survey done by Channel Preference has said that 66% of consumers purchased something as a result of a marketing message they’ve received by email. Results from other marketing methods are:

 

  • Direct mail (physical letters, brochures, catalogs…) : 65 %
  • SMS messages : 16 %
  • Facebook : 20 %
  • Phone calls: 24 %
  • Twitter : 6 %
  • Mobile applications for smart phones : 10 %
  • LinedIn : 4 %

 

While email may be the preferred way that consumers use to get communications from businesses, marketers should know that this applies to permission based mailings. Buying contact lists from brokers, even if that information was legally acquired in the first place, is unlikely to yield as good results as sending messages to consumers subscribed to your email list, or including a promotional signature in customer service or order confirmation correspondence.

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Tips for Online Entrepreneurs

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Tips for Online Entrepreneurs


Do you want to build an online business that is both successful and profitable? Many other people have the same objective. There are certain things that you can do which will increase your chances of building an online enterprise that will work well. Here are some of these tips:

  • Focus on building long term results

While this may seem to be common sense, surprisingly a lot of those seeking to earn money online don’t practice it. They spend countless hours searching for the best business type, the best product, the best marketing methods, etc. You may have considerable short term success selling certain products, that is if you manage to get in before thousands of people flock to the same type of business. After the sales dry up, you will however be back to the drawing board and searching for another thing to sell. Constantly chasing after a good product is not a good strategy, but it is nonetheless practiced by a lot, especially those in the multi level marketing sector.

But what many of these people don’t realize, is that those who use the internet to successfully market anything, whether its MLM products, affiliate offers, digital products, etc. always have several different products that they are promoting at the same time. They are also constantly thinking ahead and looking to add new revenue streams before current ones run out. Even though the online marketing world is seen as an ever changing one, where you can’t predict what will still work in a few years from now, by having long term foresight you can ensure the profitability of your business.

  • Look at successful people and follow their example

There are many kinds of online businesses that you can get involved in. Each sub type will have people who are highly successful and have built a solid reputation of earning big money online. Do you want to be like them? It’s possible. What you need to do is to study what successful people in your business niche are doing. How did they get to where they are now? And most importantly, what are they now doing? Look at the products that they promote, how they work, how much they sell for, as well as the marketing and advertising strategies that they use. By gaining an understanding of how other people have had success online, you have the potential of becoming successful yourself.

This doesn’t mean that you would simply be copying someone else’s business. You can take the lessons that you’ve learned and apply it to your own activities. You can take many strategies that other people do and then modify and adapt them so that they would be much more suitable for your type of business and more in line with the goals that you are trying to achieve online.

These two are some of the most important tips that can help you gain success online. But there’s more. Tomorrow, we will see some other strategies that are employed by some of the most successful entrepreneurs to keep their businesses running smoothly at all times.

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Are You Looking for Low Cost Marketing Methods?

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Are You Looking for Low Cost Marketing Methods?


If you use the internet to advertise your business, one of your main concerns would probably be the cost of the advertising and whether it would actually be profitable for you, in the sense that your online ads bring you more sales than what you’ve spent on them. There are many types of companies that use the internet for advertising purposes. This ranges from individual marketers, small businesses, to multinational corporations. If you operate a small business, some would say that you’re already at a slight disadvantage when it comes to advertising. See, large companies such as Coca Cola or IBM have dedicated teams which work around the clock to design, test and run online advertisements. They can afford to burn through millions of dollars in advertising budgets simply to “try” whether a certain strategy would be successful or not. Obviously, you don’t have this privilege.

However, this doesn’t mean that you won’t succeed. There are some advantages with are unique to internet marketing and that you would not find in any other type of advertising solution. First is the exposure. In developed countries, nearly everyone has access to the internet in some way or form. This means that no matter who your target audience is, whether it’s young adults, business men, car owners, retirees, people who travel a lot, etc. they will be found online and there is a high chance that many of them use the internet to find information or to buy products or services that they would need for any reason. The second advantage of online advertising is the accessibility. In theory, anyone can advertise in any form. Sure, television ads, billboards or full page magazine ads don’t have a rule attached to them that they’re limited only to large corporations or to brands that are already famous. But the main barrier here would be the cost. Few small businesses can afford to make extensive use of these advertising methods, mainly due to the high cost of designing and publishing these ads. But with online advertising, everyone has the chance to put their message out in front of millions of viewers, all of that at a much lower cost than with any other method that you can use. You will also find that there are certain advertising methods which cost nothing in terms of money to use. The only thing that you would need to invest is your time, which will help you make the right choices as far as advertising your business online goes.

The main question remains: how do you find advertising solutions online which are both low cost and profitable. There are various ways to do so. However, business owners need to understand that saving money on online ads goes far beyond simply looking for the cheaper prices and also involves reducing wasted money. There are certain things that you, as a business owner, should do before you even look for ways to market your business in the online world.

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Some of the Internet Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

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Some of the Internet Marketing Mistakes to Avoid


If you use the internet to sell, or promote anything, then there are many useful methods and strategies that you can employ to accomplish whatever you’re trying to do online. Reading about success stories, as well as understanding what successful online marketers do can definitely help you succeed and achieve your goals. However, knowing about some of the mistakes done by other individual marketers and businesses can also be very beneficial, as it will help you understand what should be better avoided. Here are some of the most common mistakes made when using online marketing methods of any kind and how you can avoid them:

  • Not planning or setting goals

This is a mistake commonly done by those new to the online marketing world. They simply go in, without any direction or any idea of what they want to accomplish, and most importantly how they will accomplish this. Before you get started, draft a plan, in which you put down in writing what you want to do online, what goals you hope to accomplish and by when, as well as the methods that you hope to use to accomplish these same goals. Remember, your plan can be changed at any time in the future. But it’s important to have a basic framework in place, whether you’re starting a new business, or are now using the internet to promote one that has already been in operation for decades.

  • Disregarding the competition

Large companies have an entire staff, plus million dollar budgets dedicated to following what their competitors are doing and finding solutions on how they can offer something better to their targeted market. While you may not have the same resources available to you, this doesn’t mean that you should simply go about your business without paying any regard to your competition. Take some time to see who the competitors in your niche are, what products they offer and at what prices, how their business operates and which online marketing methods they are currently using. This will help you stay one step ahead of the competition and develop strategies to make your business more attractive to people who are looking for it on the internet.

  • Lack of involvement in the whole marketing process

Many small business owners simply outsource their some or online marketing to a third party, such as an agency or individual, then just leave them to “do what they have to do”. While there are many competent agencies and individuals that can help you with specific areas of online marketing, such as SEO work, you’re still much better off being involved in the process yourself. This will allow you to monitor your progress, see if any new opportunities arise and make adjustments to your overall marketing strategy. Remember, nobody knows your business better than you do, so don’t be afraid to learn more about how online marketing works yourself, rather than leaving everything in the hands of outsiders, no matter how competent they may seem or the results they’ve given you in the past.

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Online Business and Privacy Risks

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Online Business and Privacy Risks


When it comes to doing business online as an online entrepreneur of any kind (e-commerce site owner, niche site operator, affiliate marketer, etc.) there are some people who have concerns about the privacy and security of their personal information. Of course, there are plenty of online marketers who don’t care too much and actually enjoy sharing the details of their personal life on their marketing related blogs, by plastering pictures of themselves, their family vacation, their pets, their cars (or assorted vehicles that they’re proud of: motorcycles, private airplanes and homemade helicopters, etc).

However, some others may not want to be too open about it and it doesn’t mean that they’re scammers or using unethical marketing methods. Signing up to various online services such as affiliate programs, domain registration, web hosting, etc. often requires sharing personal information in addition to payment and banking details. Unless you use WHOIS Privacy when purchasing a domain, your information (name, address, email, phone) will be visible to anyone that runs a query on a WHOIS search site, plus some WHOIS data aggregators actually make this even simpler, all someone would have to do is to Google the name of your site, or just Google your name and they would usually be able to locate some, if not all of the domains that were registered with your name.

Now some may ask: what is the problem? All legitimate online businesses have a privacy policy, so if you’re not doing anything shady, why hide? There are a couple of perfectly legitimate reasons as to why one may be concerned. Anybody following the news would see that there have been some rather spectacular security breaches in the past few months that targeted several companies that did business online, including, ironically enough, a security consulting firm.

Even though they may have a strongly worded privacy policy (which is often nothing more than a generic “fill in the blanks” template), many small online businesses such as start up affiliate networks or service providers may not have too strong standards of security. Furthermore, you need to remember that when a company you were dealing with goes out of business, their data doesn’t just magically vanish and you don’t really know where it could end up at that point.

There are other perfectly valid reasons to keep online business activities private. Some people who work at a day job may not want their employers to know that they’re running a side business. Webmasters who are involved in building and promoting adult oriented website may not want the entire world to know what kind of online ventures they’re involved with simply by doing a Google search of their name.

With all of this considered, there are some good methods to preserve some privacy and anonymity even as an online entrepreneur. We will see some good strategies on how you can do, no matter what kind of online business your run, in tomorrow’s post.

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Better Marketing Habits to Establish: Part 3

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Better Marketing Habits to Establish: Part 3


Are there any more online marketing tips that you should be applying to your business in 2012? Here is a final list of good pieces of advice that you can use to increase the results that you will be getting from your online marketing campaigns. As always, remember that these are just general tips and you can think up of your own online marketing strategies that will help you gain more from your online efforts.

  • Take Advantage of Different Advertising Opportunities

One thing that you should do at the start of this year is to review the online advertising and marketing methods that you’re using and see if they’re bringing you the success that you wanted. While it’s always a good thing to keep doing what works well, there might be some additional online marketing opportunities that you might want to explore to see if they would fit in well with the type of business that you’re running, as well as your budget and online objectives. For example, you could use social media marketing, video marketing, classified ads sites, media buying, etc. Do some research on the different advertising methods and how they work.

  • Create Both Short and Long Term Objectives

It’s important to have goals, but the term of these goals should also be considered. Make some goals for what you hope to do and accomplish now, within the current month. Then make some goals for the rest of the year. How would you want your business to grow? What other opportunities would you want to explore during the year? These are all good examples of what you could include in your long term online marketing plans.

  • Don’t Forget to Protect Your Data and Have Backup Plans

Nothing can ruin a business like data loss. While this isn’t a marketing strategy per se, it’s more of a business survival tip and is included here because many small business owners and independent online marketers don’t really do. Remember to make backups of both your local files on your PC, as well as of your business website. Viruses, hacking and equipment failures could have a disastrous effect on any business. Having recent and up to date backups can help minimize the damage and get you back up on your feet faster than ever. Having backup plans doesn’t simply involve protecting data, however. It also means knowing what to do when something unexpected happens. For example, one advertising network that you’re dealing with could go out of business. Or an affiliate network that you’ve been running offers for could go bankrupt and leave its affiliates holding the bag. Have some backup partners and marketing options that you could fall back on if something goes wrong with what you’re currently doing. Being prepared for the unexpected is a very good strategy, whether it’s for online business or any other line of commerce that you may be operating in.

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Which Changes Will be Brought to Online Marketing in 2012 – Part 2

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Which Changes Will be Brought to Online Marketing in 2012 – Part 2


As we look at the changes that are expected to take place in 2012, there are a couple more things that online entrepreneurs can expect during the 2012 year. It would be a good idea to review these changes and see if there is something that you can do for your online business which would make it more competitive, as well as take advantage of some of the marketing methods that are expected to get a high degree of popularity in 2012.

  • Mobile Based Marketing Solutions Will be More Popular

There is now an increase in the use of smart phones, as well as other mobile devices such as tablet computers. People who use these devices use them for a lot more than just communicating with their friends or playing Angry Birds… this is why online marketers have noticed them and are taking steps to profit from the rise in mobile device use around the world. Websites that are specifically targeted to mobile users are going to be built in much higher numbers. Applications of various kinds that run on these devices will also go up. Mobile based payment and transaction solutions, which are already seen in action, are expected to grow in 2012. We can now see some physical merchants experimenting with mobile payments, as well as mobile coupons. If you’re selling anything online, or even if you own a physical business, inform yourself more about the potential that mobile marketing can have for you. Many advertising networks such as Google AdWords are now letting their clients target mobile device users.

  • Online TV and Video Use Will Go Up

Online video isn’t exactly anything new and it has been a few years that video sharing websites such as YouTube have been in existence. What might change, however, is that an increased amount of commercial programming, such as live television as well as online video rentals, is going to occur in the next year. Many communications companies have implemented or are thinking of implementing IPTV, which is like regular television, but delivered over an broadband internet connection instead. It’s a bit too early to say whether IPTV is going to become a serious challenger to the currently used cable and satellite systems. It probably won’t take over completely in 2012, but this doesn’t mean that online video and television should be ignored by marketers and advertisers.

Websites that deliver video content, whether it is pre recorded videos, or live television streaming, offer some interesting advertising opportunities for marketers everywhere. This ranges from playing video ads before, during or after content has been played, to including text or graphic advertisements on the site itself. As more TV’s that are sold include internet functionality, combining traditional internet advertising with video advertisements will be something that is expected to be on the increase during the 2012 year. This means that online video will offer increased advertising opportunities, even for marketers that don’t have a huge online advertising budget.

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Affiliate Programs and CPA Networks: How to Recognize and Stay Away from Scammers

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Affiliate Programs and CPA Networks: How to Recognize and Stay Away from Scammers


Many internet marketers make their money by dealing with affiliate programs or with CPA networks that have various kinds of offers they can push in order to make money. Most of these companies are legitimate and will pay you the earnings that you have made on time, every single time. But there are a couple of bad players in the industry. Here are some ways to spot and avoid them:

  • Do some research first

Before even signing up for a network simply doing a Google search for their name can bring you a lot of information about the company. You will often find blog posts, forum posts and articles that mention them. Read these. See what other internet marketers are saying about them and look at whether the general opinion is positive or negative.

  • Be wary around “start ups” and smaller networks

If a company has not yet established their reputation in the industry, remember that things can go in two ways with them. Either they will grow to become a productive and successful network or they will fold. If it’s the second thing that happens, things are not likely to be pretty. There have been several cases of networks going under and skipping out on tens of thousands of dollars of payments to affiliates. The large majority involved CPA networks which were operating for less than a year.

  • Be careful around networks who seem to approve everyone

While there are some notable exceptions to this, such as Commission Junction and ClickBank, which are very reputable networks, as a general rule you should be quite wary around a network that seems to approve every publisher that applies without giving them a phone call or emailing them to ask them about their marketing methods. While you may think it is convenient, this can cause problems down the road, if large amounts of fraudsters manage to sign up and merchants start dropping the network.

  • Carefully check the terms of any offers that you run and ask questions if necessary

This is especially the case for “trial” or “membership” offers. While you may be offered a good amount for every sign up, some merchants have been known to use underhanded tactics if not enough of the sign ups that you refer have converted to full members on their end. Some may falsely accuse you of sending fraudulent leads or deliberately using bad quality traffic and refuse to pay you. For this reason, it is very important that you check the terms of the offer to see if the merchant has any special requirements with regards to the type of traffic you can send and its productivity.

  • Work with multiple networks and run different offers

It is not a good idea to focus all of your marketing efforts for the month on just one offer or on offers from only one network, no matter how profitable they may seem. Spread out your traffic around several different offers in the niche on different networks. That way, if there is any problem with one of them, you will still be getting paid by the others.

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Some Free Online Marketing Methods

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Some Free Online Marketing Methods


When you are looking to advertise online, you will find that there are plenty of ways to do so. But one complaint of many internet marketers is that they don’t have much of a budget for their marketing activities. But this is not a problem if you are serious about succeeding online. There are plenty of ways for you to get the word out about your website without you having to pay anyone. Sure, it will take a bit more work on your part, but the results will definitely be worth it. Let’s take a look at some of them:

Article Marketing

One of the most famous ways to get the word out about your business, product or website. All you have to do is to write articles which are related to your niche and include a link to your website either at the end of the article or in the body of the article (this depends on the rules of the site where you put up your articles). You would then submit them to various online article directories.

Video Marketing

Video marketing means creating videos about your business and then uploading them to popular video sharing sites such as YouTube. Users will then watch the videos and have the opportunity to continue on to your site by clicking a link if they like what they see. If people really like your video, there is always the possibility that they will share it with their friends, who will then share it with theirs, etc. This creates what is called the “viral effect” and means that your video could potentially be seen by millions of people everywhere.

Social Media

Social networking sites such as MySpace, Twitter and Facebook are being used by millions of people from all over the world. Creating a presence on these sites for your business is an excellent way to get visitors to your site. Remember, the traffic is already there on these sites. All that you have to do is to capture it.

Classified Ad Sites

These sites function in a way similar to newspaper classified ads, except that they are more flexible and powerful. On most sites, placing an ad is free. Certain sites allow you to include a link to your website, while others charge you a small fee for each ad in order to do so. Classified ad sites are definitely worth checking out to see if they are a good marketing tool for your business. These cost much less than newspaper ads and are much more likely to generate traffic and customers for your business than print advertising.

This is just an overview of ways that you can use to market your site. If you want to succeed in the world of internet marketing, you definitely should get familiar with them. Remember that these aren’t methods only used by “cheap” or small time marketers who can’t afford other ones. Even successful online businesses that make millions each year use them, so why shouldn’t you?

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Get More Traffic To Your Social Media Page

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Get More Traffic To Your Social Media Page


Starting a social media page is a great advertising method and has numerous advantages over other types of web marketing methods. But in order to make the most out of it, you need to take certain actions that will increase both your visibility and popularity on social networks. Sure, there have been some pages that were receiving virtually no traffic and then went viral when a user stumbled on them and shared it with his friends. However the odds of your page going from zero views to millions of them without action on your part are roughly one in a million. Here are some ways to promote your social media page:

Have a link or button on your main website.

If you have a quality business that brings in recurring customers, having a link to your social media page on your main site is a great idea. This will let your customers see your page and add it to their profile (i.e. “liking” your page on Facebook or “following” you on twitter.) In turn, this can generate an increased amount of traffic to your social media page as their friends see you and decide to check it out. They may also add you to their profile for THEIR friends to see and so on. Companies, big or small, are including a social media button or link on their site in increasing numbers. What are YOU waiting for? It only takes less than a minute to paste in a snippet of code.

Hold attractive promotions on your social media page.

This could be in the form of a discount, a free trial, a 2 for 1 special, etc. The possibilities are quite endless. If you own a brick and mortar retail business, such as a clothing store, you could also include a printable coupon for some merchandise. Many big name stores have started this practice, so why shouldn’t you? The amount of profit that you will make from increased sales due to a higher number of people finding out about your social media page will quickly surpass the small loss that you will take as a result of offering discounts.

Include it in your email newsletter.

If you have a mailing list and send out email communications to your users, you could include something about the launch of your social media page in your newsletter. Then, in subsequent newsletters, just include a small footer saying something like “Join ABC Inc. on Facebook!” or “Follow us on Twitter!” You might think that your users will be reluctant to use your social media page because they’re already receiving an email newsletter from you to keep themselves updated. This may be true for a few users. A good strategy to use then is to follow point number 2: offer them a unique promotion for joining you on a social network.

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Getting Started With Your Online Business

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Getting Started With Your Online Business


Recently we gave you some pointers on setting up your new online business. Once you’re all set up and ready to go, then what? There are some tips you’ll need to get off to the right start with your online business, and we’re going to share them with you now.

Take It Seriously

Just because you’re working for yourself, and you’re working out of a home office, that’s no excuse to slack off, and treat your work like it’s not important. Being your own boss requires a lot of dedication, and effort. You won’t succeed if you don’t buckle down, and work hard every day, just like you would if you were working for someone else. Once your business is up and running, and everything is going smoothly, you’ll be able to take the occasional long weekend, and be a little more flexible with your schedule, but when you’re starting out, you’ll have to work hard, and spend some long days working to get your business up and running.

Goals

It’s important to set yourself some goals to keep your efforts focused, and your business on track. That being said, it’s also very important to make sure those goals are reasonable. If you set the goal of making a million dollars in your first year of business, you’re probably not going to meet that goal. Instead, try to set goals based on your current business operations, and where you see them going in the near future. Instead of setting goals that are a year off, try to set goals that are only one or two months off. That way, you’ll always have an impending goal to work toward.

Budget

Running an online business doesn’t require a huge amount of money, but you will still need to spend some cash in order to keep things running. You’re going to need web hosting, and if you intend to do any email marketing, you’re going to need an autoresponder. Beyond that, your costs are going to vary depending on your marketing methods, and your overall business plan. If you have the budget to invest in high quality services, like video production, and professional writers, your business will benefit from it in the long run. Just be careful not to overspend. There are a lot of free services out there that match the features of the paid ones. For example, if you’re looking for software to manage your social media accounts, try Tweetdeck. It helps you to keep everything in one place, and you can run multiple Twitter, Facebook, Buzz, and Foursquare accounts from within it. Spend money when you have to, but spend wisely whenever you can.

Keep these tips in mind as you start out with your new business, and things should go smoothly.

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Be An Affiliate Marketing Success

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Be An Affiliate Marketing Success


Affiliate marketing can be a great way to bring in some money. There are a lot of affiliate programs out there that pay well, but if you don’t know how to use them effectively, you won’t get very far with them. There’s no single strategy that’s going to work for everyone, but there are a few things you can keep in mind that will help you grow your affiliate marketing strategy.

Relevance

When you’re picking an affiliate program, it’s important to choose one that’s relevant. You want to promote products that other people are interested in, and searching for. Take the time to do a little keyword research for any products you’re thinking of promoting. Get a feel for the level of interest that exists for that product before you dive in. You want something that gets a fair amount of searches, but it’s best to avoid extremely popular products. If a products is getting millions of searches a month, your marketing efforts are likely tog et lost in the sea of information that exists about that product.

Know Your Audience

Once you pick an affiliate program to work with, it’s important to understand the audience it appeals to. Do some market research and figure out who you’re audience is. You don’t want to use the same marketing methods to communicate with a 20 year old male as you would a 50 year old female. In order to craft an effective marketing strategy, you have to know who you’re target audience is first.

Potential For Profit

If the product you’re thinking about promoting has poor profit potential, then there’s no point in wasting your time on it. Products with lower demand but higher profit margins can be profitable, and products with high demand, and low profit margin, it can still be profitable. If the profit margin is low, and the demand isn’t very high, you should probably steer clear of the product.

If you take the time to find the right product, and do the research to determine your target audience, you’ll be able to craft an effective affiliate marketing strategy. If you’re selling the right products to the right people, you’ll be bringing in a decent amount of revenue before you know it.

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