Author Topic: Cost Effective Marketing  (Read 2696 times)

Offline Mark Austin

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Cost Effective Marketing
« on: March 09, 2011, 12:18:06 PM »
Cost Effective Marketing

As you already know, marketing your product anywhere costs money.  The amount of money it costs ranges widely, especially in terms of the "real" world offline.  Yet, online, you do not always have to spend a lot of money to make a good amount of money.  In fact, you may be able to market your product, no matter what it is, using a variety of the most successful marketing tools without spending a lot of money at all. 

It is often important to consider a few out of the box ideas for marketing in this manner, especially if your goal is to save money.  The first step is to know your product in and out, to know what makes it so good compared to other products out there and know why people should buy from you.  Knowing this will help you to be an expert on the topic, which means that anyone you come into contact with can be a potential client for you.

Once you have a foundation of knowledge, implement any and all of these methods to increase your product's sales-ability.

Getting It Online

Getting your website up and running should be your priority.  This can be done any way that you would like to. If you have the skill to set up a website on your own, go for it.  Remember to keep your budget low by not investing in a lot of graphics or over the top features you won't use anyway.

Good Content Counts - One of the key elements to selling your product will be to convince the reader who visits your website that you have something they can't live without and simply must have.  Therefore, as you create your website, keep in mind that you do need to have excellent content and all of the information they are looking for.

For example, if you are promoting a product that is an all natural solution to diabetes, you need to have pages dedicated to what diabetes is, symptoms and medications.  You then need to have information that depicts what your product is and what it can do for those who are suffering from this illness. 

Just as important is not to overinflate your product.  People are not dumb; they realize when someone is selling something to them and when they are getting a great product with good potential. Therefore, keep the banner ads and flash designs to a minimum. 

You also don't want to over sell your product by guaranteeing results that you can't possibly guarantee.  For example, you don't want to tell everyone that your product is capable of curing their diabetic condition within six months of use.  Not only is this false advertising, which could help you end up with a lawsuit, but it is not believable and will turn people away instantly. Give facts and figures you can back up.  This will impress them.

Keywords Are A Must - As most Internet marketers know, using good keywords in their product's website is important.  The keywords will help you to get online so that people can find you.  Later, you will find services to help you increase your product's website's traffic, but while you are creating your website keep keywords in mind.

If you haven't written anything for your website with keywords go back and fix this problem.  Most Internet marketers recommend at least a 2 percent density.  It is not important to go overboard with the keywords, just to include them so that the search engines rank you well. 

Those who are unsure of the right keywords to use for their product don't have to look too far to find the options they need.  Here are some ways you can beef up keywords without paying a lot for it.

A free keyword tool can help you to find out what keywords are out there that people are typing into search engines to find your product.  Some of these could be ones you haven't thought about which could give you an excellent advantage. 

One free keyword tracker tool used by many is Wordtracker's tool at: http://freekeywords.wordtracker.com/ .  There is no cost and it gives you a good place to start.

If you are very concerned about your competition, you may want to watch them.  Find out how well their website is doing in terms of keywords and traffic.  You can do this by using a couple options.  First, for keyword help try KeyCompete.com .  This is not a free service but one that is low cost and helps you know what's happening with your competitor.  Another option is Compete.com where you can learn how well your competitor is doing in terms of traffic.

Sales Pages - The key with getting your website online and running is just to do it.  You need to get it up there with great content first so you can begin to promote it.  One question often asked is if you should use a sales page.

This is really a decision you will need to make.  Some products do better with these long, sales ads.  They work well for those who are selling a product that is heavily available through other providers.  You may have luck with this product but only if it is written well.  In other words, have a professional develop a winning sales page for you.  This will need to be something that converts visitors.

On the other hand, you may want to develop a website around your product rather than just a landing page of information.  You can do this, especially if you are looking for a low cost way to get started and you'll be writing the content.   

Information is always a better tool than a sales based website.  Yet, you can use your homepage as a tool to sell your product and still have a website packed with information.

To Blog Or Not To Blog

Today, to be anyone online you have to have a blog.  Weblogs, as they are formally called, used to be a tool to convey just the news from person to person.  They became diaries that people use to simply communicate their own doings.  Today, they are much more, including a sales tool.

It is highly effective to have a blog if you are looking for a low cost way to promote your product.  Why is this?  Your blog is an easy to use, simple way to get traffic to your website that will sell your product.  Google and other search engines love blogs because they are packed with useful information and are updated often.  In short, without a blog, you could be missing opportunities.

Starting a blog is rather easy to do.  The process has been simplified from its original days.  Ultimately, you will need a blog that will allow you to have promotional material on your website.  Some companies will not allow this.  For example, if you plan to have a Wordpress blog, be sure that you can have the type of content on your blog fitting within their terms and conditions.

Setting up the blog is easy to do by using most blog's tutorial programs to help you.  Those with basic experience with websites will be able to get their blog up and rolling in a few hours.

But, from here, what should you do with it?

Content On Your Blog - Blogs are meant to be personal and you can use this to your advantage.  Allow your blog to talk all about your product or service.  Use it as a tool to keep fresh content on your website.  Fresh content attracts Google search engine spiders.  You do not have to fill it full of information right away.  Instead, start with this information:

- Provide information on what your product or service is, in detail
- Provide information about who you are (often, being the individual who has used and benefited from the product works well)
- Provide information on where people can find this product once they want to buy this (affiliate links, your store front, etc)

One of the best features about a blog is that you can easily add more information to it within just minutes through posts.  Remember that the key is to have continuous fresh information on a blog.  Therefore, short posts with information on your product are often the best tool here. Posts as short as just 250 words are all that is needed to really get results.

Schedule your posts to upload daily or at least three to five times per week for the best results.  You can do this automatically through the blog's management feature.  It takes minutes and gives you optimum results as well.

Why blog?

Blogging is a good way to keep people interested.  People are more likely to read your blog than your website's bank of articles.  Also, they are inexpensive to set up and run.  Some have websites with blogs on them to maximize the benefits.  Others have nothing more than a blog.  The choice is yours, but in both situations you have an excellent tool in a blog.

Promotion Methods That Cost Little And Deliver Big

Now that you have the website and blog up, you are ready to start selling your product. You should have incorporated a method to sell your product, such as a shopping cart, on your website (and perhaps your blog) so that the process is fairly simple.

Now, how do you let everyone else know that your product is out there?  You have to promote it.  There are many ways to promote without having to spend a lot of money.  One important concept to remember about promoting is something taught in any marketing course: word of mouth marketing is the best option for you.

Word of mouth is a simple term that simply stands for your ability to convey information about your product that is then passed around from person to person.  If you hear a commercial promoting the best diabetes drug, you may see it as just a promotion.  On the other hand, if your good friend Sam told you about it, you are more inclined to listen since you trust those who provide you with good information.  The same is true for Internet marketing: getting people to talk is the best way to get your product out there.

In this section, we'll outline a range of unique ways you can easily promote your product and service through your blog.

Attraction Marketing: People Come To YOU - One of the most beneficial types of marketing online today is the method of marketing through attraction marketing.  In this form of marketing, you allow people who are interested in your product to come to you.  Conversely, in traditional marketing you seek out the people to market to.  In this second method, you are going to have to sell hard and sell fast to get them to listen and buy from you.

The benefit of attraction marketing is that people are coming to you already interested.  The sales pitch does not have to be so dire now.  They already know what you are offering and they are interested.  You just have to close the deal.

There are several ways to use attraction marketing online.  One of the best is to use social marketing websites.  You may already be using some of them to help you promote yourself online.  Here's a rundown ...

Squidoo and Hub Pages - Those who haven't heard of these websites are behind their Internet marketing game. There is minimal cost to setting up yourself on these websites.  Why should you bother to do so?

The key here is not only to sell your product or service, but to create places where people will find you.  The more people that you can get to link to your Squidoo page, for example, the more interested people will be coming from that page to your website to make a purchase.  With attraction marketing, the goal is to get people to find you, learn about you then come to your website to buy from you. 

MySpace, Youtube, Facebook - Here are a few websites you have heard of and they are some of the best places to get information and give it.  You may not think of these websites as marketing tools, yet these are some of the best ways to get traffic to your website.

Getting your name out there again through these social websites is important.  It allows people to find out more about who you are and what you are offering.  Of course, Google loves these websites, too, because of their fresh content.  You are likely to get a good amount of traffic from them.

Setting up an account on any of these websites is simple and takes minutes to do.  Once you have done that, update your information to include information about the product you are selling.  Definitely include links to your blogs.

Bookmarking - A number of websites are going to help you to increase traffic simply by providing you with a tool to let others know you have something new to offer.  Two of the best social book marking websites are Digg.com and StumbleUpon.com.  How can they help you to promote your product?

Set up your free account (you just have to create a login and profile.)  Be sure your profile is designed to include your product information, who you are, and your website URLS.  Once you have done this, simply use the software on your own website.

If you post a new blog post to your blog, Digg it.  This submits your post to millions of people who are using the Digg.com website.  Let others in your family and friends know about your new posts, too, and encourage them to Digg it as well.  This creates an instant way for people to find your article and to read it, being interested and at your website, they will buy from you.

StumbleUpon works in the same fashion.  Here, you need only to submit your website article or blog posts to the company's system.  It creates a rolling bank of websites that have been submitted.  Those using Stumble will Stumble upon your website's article, read it and then buy from you.

Both of these particular social bookmarking websites are free to use and create good traffic.

Article Submission - Have you heard about article submission or article directories?  Here again you have a free service that allows you to increase the traffic to your website and blog.  This type of service is unique.  You will create a unique article that is NOT posted on your blog or website.  This article should be informational, not sales like.

You will submit the article through the article directory.  At the bottom of your article, you will include an author box which allows you to provide your links and information.  Once submitted, other website owners looking for good articles on the topic you have selected will take your article (along with the required author box) and place it on your website.  This creates a link from their website to your own. You have instant traffic from them, without paying a penny for it.

One of the best article directories is EzineArticles.com but there are others out there to consider, too.  It could take you an hour to write and submit the article, but from there, it is an unlimited number of website visitors already interested in your product.

Getting More People - As you can see, attraction marketing is highly effective at being a low cost way to promote your website and blog.  While getting these links out there is important and should be something you do daily, you also need to get even more people to your website.

To do this, you have to jump outside the box and really get to know them.  Find your customers yourself.  There is no hard selling required here, though.  Unlike marketing schemes, with these methods, you are simply putting yourself and your information out there and letting others come to you.  There are several ways that you can do this without paying anything for the service, but getting a lot in return.

Profiles - At each of the above locations, you can create profiles on these company's websites.  Why should you do this?  The answer is simple: you'll get more people to be interested in your product and service if you just get to know some of them first.

Some websites allow you to create a friend's list.  This list is an ideal tool for you because it will encourage people to get to know who you are and what you have to offer.  For example, when you develop a MySpace.com page, you will want to find people that you feel may be interested in what you have to offer and then become their friend.  You will need to get their permission (the websites make this very easy to do and people readily add friends to their lists.)

Once you have friend's set up, market to them indirectly.  A good example of this is using the website Digg.com for your articles and posts.  Once you have created a large friend's list (or even just one person) you can then send Shouts to people.  This alerts your friends that you have posted something new.  They head to the website to read it and Digg the post.  In return, even more people get to know what you are offering.

Still, this can go further.  Not only should you interact with and find friends, but you should also interact with and become friends with your friend's friends.  Sounds confusing?  The process is not and it allows you to gain an unlimited number of people to get to know your product.  Remember that they are doing the same thing, too.

Profiles and friend's areas are a great free way to get people to your website.  You should be readily doing this and working to create a large network of online people who know you are there.

Network Through Blogs - Once you fall in love with blogs, there is no stopping the number you will sign up with to receive their feeds.  Have you considered using your favorite blogs to help promote your product? 

It is necessary to make good decisions here.  You do not want the blog owner to start banning you from their blog.  Rather, you want to create links back to your blog and website by simply responding to their post.

For example, going back to the diabetic product you are selling, you visit websites where they are talking about diabetes and other illnesses.  You do NOT directly promote your product.  You interact with the blog owner, though.  The post they make may be about the symptoms of diabetes.  You create a link called a trackback from their blog to your own in a response.  As a result, people who are visiting your blog will be able to learn about the symptoms while you get to benefit from their traffic as well.

Additionally, you can get to know people within your niche and directly promote each other.  Just being online and a presence at the blogs where your niche is will help you to create an online presence that will sell your product for you.  As people click on your name to learn more, they are taken to your blog and then are able to learn about your product.

Message Boards and Forums - Another area to readily promote yourself is through the average message board.  These are locations where people go to talk to others on the topics that interest them.  There are several approaches you can take here, like with blogs.

For example, you can visit websites where people are talking about health concerns and interact with them with the knowledge that you have.  You do not and should not directly promote your product as this would cause you to be banned from the website. 

What you can do is to create signatures in your profile that allow for a link to your website and blog appearing under your name in the messages you create.  Why do this? 

Let's say you are visiting a message board on diabetes and someone asks a question about the symptoms of diabetes.  You know this information so you respond to them on their post.  Your website's link is at the bottom of your post and looks like "Herbal Diabetes Help" or something similar.  They can click on the link to learn more.  Not only will that one person do this, but so will all of the other message board visitors who do not take the time to interact.  In fact, most people "lurk" rather than post.  This allows anyone and everyone to find your information indirectly and of course they are already interested in what you have to offer.

As it is with all marketing methods, there is always a way to improve.  In fact, there are countless opportunities available for those who are looking for them.  It is always beneficial to keep an eye open for the next big online connection tool that comes up.  You may find it is just what you need to promote your business.

10 Ways to promote your business with little investment

Those who are looking for a rundown of the many ways that you can promote your business can use this top ten list.  Are you doing these to promote your product?  If not, you should be and you should be using them daily to do so.

#1: Get Viral - Viral media is the method of sharing any pictures, any videos and even audio that you can in as many ways as you can.  This is what people look for and want.  Plus, they are most likely to pass it on to others, too.

#2:  Keep Optimized - Be sure to keep your blogs and websites optimized so that search engines find you.  It is important to do this, but it is also very easy to do. There are no over the top keyword rules you have to follow anymore.

#3:  Be Part Of The Community - The more you interact with the Internet community, the more people that know you and the more that visit your website.  This translates into a better bottom line.

#4:  Be An Expert And Share It - You have to know your product so you can talk about it.  Check out how you can use website services like Twitter.com to communicate with others.  With your knowledge base, you will do well here.

#5: Find Out Who's Talking About You - Who is posting on their blog about you?  Who is creating a backlink to your website?  If you do not know, find out and be sure that you interact with them regularly.  This is one of the best ways to promote your product without doing anything.

#6:  Draw People To You - As opposed to the sales page, create a website full of information.  Become the authority on the product or on the topic.  This will encourage others to use your website as a base for information on their website.  Encourage people to link to your website like this.

#7:  Do Teleconferencing And Live Events - If you love to speak in front of others, create a seminar and promote it for your product.  There is some cost here if you do not have the equipment to do so, but you can use online services for next to nothing and get fantastic results.  The word "Seminar" speaks "I must be there" to those who are on the edge of making a decision about your product.

#8:  Build Your Identity - Find high traffic websites having to do with your niche.  Then, once there, build yourself up there.  This may mean interacting in forums, creating guest posts for the website and even submitting articles that they can use on their website to promote your product.

#9:  Keep Updated - Things change online often.  The more ready you are for those changes, the more you will be able to communicate them to your readers.  You also may find a new possible area to market in.

#10:  Be Consistent - With any online business, consistency is what makes or breaks people.  As you consider the many ways that you can accomplish this, it is important to focus hard on creating a daily plan and sticking with it.  For example, post on your blog daily.  Visit forums and blogs daily. 


“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that,
but the really great makes you feel that you, too, can become great.”
~ Mark Twain