Ten Essentials for On-Line Marketing, Part 1

If you were to read five “how to” articles for growing your business on line, I expect that you’d find at least five different strategies.  Lost in all of the rhetoric about this “new” channel for business growth is the fact that the fundamentals of marketing are consistent on or off line.  Yes, you have the opportunity to meet many more people with your on line and social media marketing strategies.  But it is a mistake to assume that you can throw together a web site and a few squeeze pages, link them to a couple of social media platforms, and have all kinds of new customers seeking your product or service.  The fundamentals of marketing that have proven effective for decades must be adhered to in this new medium as well. 

Beginning with today’s post, and continuing with the next, we’ll look at ten marketing essentials that must be in place if you’re going to enjoy the success that is possible with your on line marketing.

1. Are your goals and objectives relevant in today’s marketplace?  Why are you in business?  Are you keeping current with the needs of today’s prospects and customers?  Do you offer a valuable product or service that is priced right?  Is it time to reevaluate your brand or give your business a facelift?  With our consulting clients we refer to this as your “inside reality.”  Use the opportunity of launching an on-line marketing effort to carefully analyze your company.  Perhaps it’s time to innovate in response to the demands of today’s marketplace. 

2. Keywords.  What are the most effective keywords for your business?  Hint:  this doesn’t automatically mean those that have the highest search numbers.  There are many keyword analysis tools that can help you determine the best for your specific situation.  Once you understand them, make sure that the new content of your online presence utilizes these words and phrases effectively.

3. SEO.  Search engine optimization is essential for on line success.  Make certain that the person designing or reworking your website understands the major components of SEO and direct response web marketing.  Your objective should be to make your site organically searchable to achieve higher free rankings, and to quickly facilitate visitors taking action.  Integrating a forum or other method for creating back links to your main website will enhance your SEO efforts. 

4. Why you?  What makes your company, product, people, and service stand out from the competition?  What image of your organization do you want the visitor to your site to take away?  In offline marketing we call this your “unique selling proposition.”  Guess what?  It’s equally important for online marketing that your position in the marketplace be stated clearly and consistently.  If you’re in the product business, make certain your visitors know how your widgets will outperform the competition, are easy to use, and priced correctly.  If you’re in the service business, find a position that obviously recognizes the needs of your customer and how you offer the best solution.

5. Market constantly.  Your site should be visually appealing, easy to navigate, and offer some sort of incentive to keep visitors engaged and easily direct them to your conversion pages.

Offering an easy to take next step that helps your prospect in their educational process is critical.  A free report, video training session, subscription to a series of helpful emails…all are effective strategies for keeping prospects engaged with your brand. 

Successful web-based marketing requires the same focus on fundamentals as your other marketing channels.  Next post we’ll continue looking at these essentials.

Posted in Web Traffic