Cost Effective and Strategic
Internet Marketing That Works
Strategic Internet marketing can create a new flow of potential customers for your business and create the positive buzz that businesses seek. Use the tips below to launch your cost-effective strategy to Internet marketing:
* Examine Internet marketing efforts for other companies in your niche. This activity will cost you nothing except the time spent doing research. Take notes about what you see working and not working. Time spent examining other companies' websites and marketing efforts can help you develop ideas you would like to try as well as what you believe works and doesn't work. Although many successful companies have a large Internet presence, not all efforts they make to market to consumers will be suitable or feasible for your business. Take notes on what you like when you examine Internet marketing efforts for other companies in your type of business.
* Use the list you've created detailing Internet marketing approaches that appeal to you and identify the least expensive or free ways you can publicize your company. For instance, establishing an Internet presence on a free social media venues may be one of your alternatives and it pays to make sure you create a space for your brand on social media venues such as Facebook and Twitter both of which are some of the most visited sites online. Put your business in front of the web traffic for free!
* Use your established Internet presence to promote your new Internet marketing efforts. If you already have a website and you are adding a blog, for instance, use your website to promote your blog. If you are already on a social media site and you are appearing in an online publication make reference to where consumers can find your contribution to that publication.
* If your industry has associations or organizations for professionals in your field, join those associations and utilize their Internet marketing for your business by contributing to their website or other media. Joining associations often includes the cost of a membership fee but such amounts are typically small and can give you access to larger groups associated with your business with whom you can network.
* Reach out to other businesses in your field and invite their owners to make a contribution to your website or blog about their own similar or related business. Instead of approaching another business with a trade opportunity where you say, "If you include my link, I'll include yours," invite another businessperson to appear on your Internet media as a guest contributor. This offer is more appealing to businesses because you are presenting an opportunity for those businesses to receive some free self-promotion rather than entering into some sort of deal.
* Stay up-to-date about new promotions targeted at local or small businesspeople. Companies that benefit from small businesspeople in the form of granting loans or insurance policies often team up with another service to show their support for small business. For instance, YouTube recently paired up with a financial institution in a campaign for free publicity for small businesses in the form of creating an opportunity for small businesses to tell their story. Videos produced for YouTube are free and allow the business owner to post the video on their own websites so that a single video provides exposure through two different avenues for the small businessperson.
* When you are using free marketing avenues consider spending small amounts of money to make your material professional. Your Internet marketing efforts are designed to increase consumer awareness and attraction to your company. For instance, if you are producing a video it might be worth your time to hire a professional to shoot the short video rather than composing a video that will look like someone's home video.
* Use your Internet marketing goals to reach out to young people. If you have money to spend on creating materials for your Internet marketing, consider posting job opportunities at local high schools or colleges to advertise temporary work for students who can perform a certain task. Offer the young people the opportunity to have their name appear on your marketing material giving them credit for their contribution whether it is as photographer or editor or designer. As a small businessperson you know the importance of establishing a name and you want to offer that same opportunity to individuals whom you work with. Mentoring a young person in your area of expertise will always be of benefit to your business.
* Offer to conduct a job-shadowing or internship opportunity to school placement offices. In today's job market many colleges are under pressure to establish better rates of student employment after graduation than ever before. A school's reputation often includes how well its graduates fair in the job market. These opportunities should also include the feature in which you'd like the school's placement personnel or the students themselves to publicize the success of their experience on the school's website or yours.
* Use the popularity of small business to establish a political connection in your community. Most politicians sing the praises of small businesses today. Use the popularity of being a small business owner to establish a relationship with your local politicians from the mayor to your state legislators to your representatives. Efforts may take the form of establishing an Internet correspondence with the politician or staff, questions about recent activities that affect your business or an invite to respond to an article you're thinking of publishing about the small business climate in your state. Most politicians will respond in some way to constituents, particularly if you identify yourself as a small business owner.
* If you get any Internet coverage in terms of reviews or comments, respond to those views or comments. Most websites that include consumer reviews provide companies with the opportunity to respond for legal reasons.
Strategic Internet marketing does not have to take a huge amount of money in order to be an effective means of getting the word out about your company. Use the above tips to establish your Internet presence with a small budget.