A Step-by-Step Blueprint to Building a Successful Business with Proven Marketing Tactics
If there is one thing that you need above everything else when you start an internet marketing business, it is a marketing plan.
Even if your business is brick-and-mortar and not solely based on the web, a marketing plan should be your number one priority.
It is pretty mind-boggling how many people get into business thinking that they don’t need a marketing plan.
One of the most popular reasons for this seems to be based around the product.
Some people believe that their product is so good that people are just going to buy it without them having to do much at all.
But they aren’t taking into account the fact that if people never find the product – matter how good it is – they aren’t going to use it.
If you don’t have a customer base, then you don’t have anyone to buy your products, and it is a mystery why so many businesses ignore this very simple fact.
They plan out every other aspect of their business.
They spend weeks designing the perfect website, months perfecting their products and even concentrate on things like logos and business cards without sparing a thought for marketing.
READ MORE: SHORTCUT TO CREATING PRODUCTS
One of the reasons that businesses give for this is that they simply cannot afford to do any marketing.
But the truth is, you can’t afford not to do marketing.
There is sufficient evidence out there that marketing almost always gives you a higher return than any money or time that you invest in it.
Some businesses think that they can just figure it out later.
But this is a mistake too, because once you are ready to launch your product, you are losing money every day that you’re not making sales.
So, how do you create an effective marketing plan?
Here are some tips that will help you.
A good marketing plan will make use of the size of the market, the needs of the customer, the competition, and it will include a projection of future revenue.
In addition, a good marketing plan will guide your business to meet future customer expectations.
Also, a marketing plan will include plans for uniform brand distribution and building an online identity that will be instantly recognizable to customers.
Finally, a good marketing plan will be flexible enough to be able to change based upon unforeseen events in the future.
Things Every Internet Marketing Millionaire Does
There are a handful of people out there that are internet marketing millionaires, and the list is growing steadily.
The internet is simply the place to make money and internet marketing is the way to do it.
But what makes these millionaires different from the IMers that are earning a pittance with their affiliate websites and eBooks?
There are five things that internet marketing millionaires do that separate them from the rest of the pack.
Let’s take a look at them:
They Don’t Waste Time
Internet marketers that have had as much success as the handful of millionaires didn’t get there by allowing time.
They see everything as urgent. They promote their products as urgency products.
Psychology has shown that people’s deliberate thought processes are suspended when there is an urgent situation in front of them.
You need to harness that urgency and use it to make money.
They Know the Value of Scarcity
Think about the Bitcoin.
If someone had created the Bitcoin with an unlimited amount that could be mined, it would never have become as successful as it has.
But with only 21,000,000 Bitcoin that will ever be in existence, just owning a single Bitcoin has now become worth thousands of dollars.
They Leverage the Principle of Exclusivity
Think about a red-carpet event.
If you asked ten people if they wanted to go to an exclusive, red-carpet event, half of them will say yes without even knowing what it is.
The fact that it is exclusive, and they have the opportunity to attend is enough.
They Work with the Idea of Reciprocation
Millionaires in internet marketing know that they have to use the value of reciprocation if they want to be successful.
If someone gives you a Christmas present, you feel obligated to get them a Christmas present back.
This can be a very effective strategy when used in marketing.
Giving a customer something for free – even before they buy – will make them want to buy from you even more.
They Commit to What They Do
Finally, internet marketing millionaires know that the only thing standing between them and the success that they want is hard work.
So, they commit to whatever project they are considering and then follow through with that commitment.
They finish each and every project that they begin because they know that fulfilling that commitment is the key to success.
How to Use Influencer Marketing Successfully
When it comes to influencer marketing, many business owners still haven’t gotten on board.
Influencer marketing is relatively new, but the idea of it isn’t new at all.
Influencer marketing has been around ever since advertising has.
Celebrity endorsements are definitely a form of influencer marketing.
But in its current state, influencer marketing refers to internet personalities that may not be celebrities in the traditional sense, but still have a lot of influence over their followers.
Here are some tips to help you take advantage of influencer marketing:
Look for Quality Influencers
When you search out influencers that you can use to promote your brand, don’t base your search on how many followers they have.
People that have very little influence over their audience could have millions of followers, none of whom care much about what the person recommends.
It is better to find an influencer that the audience trusts and listens to with a smaller audience than someone with a huge one that can make little impact with recommendations.
Make Sure You Can Measure Results
When you set up your campaign, you want to be able to measure your results.
Imagine paying influencer thousands of dollars to promote your product and then not knowing if they even posted about you on their platform, or whether anyone responded.
You need to set up a referral link, monitor the influencer carefully and ensure that you are getting your money’s worth so that you can decide whether or not to use them again.
Be Aware of the Timeline
Influencer marketing isn’t necessarily something that happens right away.
In fact, an influencer taking a very subtle approach to promote your product over a period of months will have more success than one that just blasts your website URL over social media for a few days or weeks.
Make Sure the Influencer is Consistent across Platforms
You need to ensure that the influencer is consistently promoting your company over multiple platforms.
The same people follow influencers across all of their social media accounts.
So, if your influencer is promoting you as the best SEO company they have ever used on Twitter but saying the exact same thing about someone else on Facebook, none of the followers that see those posts are going to use either company.
They will know it is a paid promotion and just ignore it completely.
What is Search Engine Marketing (SEM)?
Search engine marketing is a term that refers to paid marketing that you do to promote your website – usually specifically with search engines like Google or Bing.
In the past, this was simply a way to refer to all of the search engine optimization methods that you used, paid and unpaid, but it has become specialized and simply refers to pay-per-click campaigns and other types of search engine optimization that you pay for.
Let’s take a look at the different methods:
PPC Advertising, which stands for pay-per-click, is a business model that uses advertisements on a search engine results page to draw in customers.
Generally, they are on the right sidebar, but they may be in other locations depending upon the search engines used.
PPC works on a bidding system.
The person who bid the highest for a particular keyword is listed as the top search result.
However, there is another form of advertising that you should be aware of, because it uses the same initials as pay-per-click.
It is known as pay-per-call.
It isn’t very popular yet, but it is based upon the number of clicks the result in a call from a smartphone.
These are used in mobile advertising and this may be more popular later.
Another form of search engine marketing is the CPM, which stands for cost-per-thousand impressions.
An impression is whenever a computer screen displays your ad.
Banner ads, sidebar ads and any CPM type of advertisement is based upon 1000 impressions.
You will set up your ad in advance, determining how many times you want that ad to be displayed (in multiples of 1000) and then launch.
The downside of this form of advertising is that you pay whether or not you get a single click.
Search engine marketing is going to become much more popular in the future as the webspace becomes more and more crowded and larger numbers of advertisers fight for the limited amount of space that is available.
However, if you use SEM combined with your regular SEO efforts, you will probably be very successful.
You just want to make sure that you have created the right advertisement, no matter if you are using PPC ads or CPM ads, visual or text.
You need to make that ad compelling and irresistible if you want it to be as effective as possible and worth the cost.
How to Optimize for Local Search
No matter what kind of business you are in, you need to optimize for local search.
Local search is one of the last great untapped resources of search engine marketing and optimization and if you can ensure that you are leading on local search you are going to end up with a huge audience.
So, how do you do that?
There are several things that you can do to optimize your business for local SEO.
Here are some tips:
- Claim your business listing. You would be surprised how many businesses fail to complete this one, very simple step. If you want Google to list you locally, you need to let them know that you are there.
Make sure that you are claiming your business listing for each of your locations.
- Next, you want to be consistent. Having the same business name, address and phone number across the entire internet will be much more effective and inspire trust, plus, the local SEO bots will not get confused by conflicting information and categorize you incorrectly.
- Make sure that you choose the right categories for your business. Most businesses will easily fit into a single category, but some will need more than one. You want to make sure that you know what categories you are listed in.
- Make sure that you use citations. Citations are places around the web where you can list your business – to “prove” to Google that the information is correct. Not only will this give you credibility with Google and consistency with customers, but it will also give your website an SEO boost if you are linking back to your website.
Some of the citation websites that you can lose include the Better Business Bureau, the Chamber of Commerce in your local city or town, any associations that you are a member of, any industry groups that maintain directories and pretty much anywhere else that you can think of.
- Get reviews and testimonials and make sure they are posted on visible sites. It goes without saying that we’re talking about positive reviews here.
Websites like Yelp, Angie’s List, Google reviews and other sites that are listed fairly high in the search engines can make a pretty significant impact on how your customers see you and whether they buy from you.
Everyone uses reviews these days to make buying decisions.
How to Leverage Social Media to Make Money Online
Social media is one of the biggest parts of making money online, and every website you visit for IM advice will tell you to use social media.
But even with all of that information out there, people are still using social media incorrectly.
In this chapter, we’re going to look at some of the best ways to use social media to make money on the internet.
Use “Look-Alike” Ads
This is something that Facebook has started doing to make marketing more effective for their advertisers.
Look-alike ads are ads that are specifically designed for a certain audience.
These ads are matched with the perfect customer and designed so that that customer will respond to them.
Use Instagram Stories
Instagram stories are one of the most underused features of the platform, which is strange considering that it has grown to be one of the biggest social media sites of the modern age.
Instagram is used by everyone because everyone takes pictures, but businesses that combine product images with the Instagram stories feature to see a great deal more engagement and success.
Use the Ad Tools Offered by Linkedin
This resume site has some pretty incredible advertising tools, not to mention lots of groups and ways to target specific audiences.
The ad tools are something relatively new and just one more way that LinkedIn is trying to compete with some of the other social media networks out there.
A couple of examples include the ability to collect leads from the LinkedIn news feed and the ability to use retargeted ads.
Use YouTube to Promote Gated Content
There are a lot of people that use YouTube every day, and uploading your videos is a smart idea no matter what.
But one of the ways that you can best leverage YouTube is to use videos to draw in traffic for gated content on your main website.
Because YouTube is part of Google, there are a lot of advertising policies that most people don’t even consider.
Use Facebook Groups
If you aren’t using Facebook groups to promote your business, then you are missing out on a huge feature on the social media site.
Facebook groups are designed to build communities within Facebook and becoming part of a community means that you have instant rapport and influence with the people within that group.
Ways You Are Losing Customers on Facebook
Are you using Facebook to promote your online business?
Most people do, and they see great success from it.
But even the best internet marketers may not be using Facebook to its full potential.
In this chapter, we’re going to discuss four of the ways that you are losing customers on Facebook if you aren’t taking advantage of those features.
- Putting the image of a clickable button on your cover photo and changing your description to provide a link to your opt-in page is one of the best little-known ways to use Facebook to gather leads.
It isn’t as effective as the more popular ways of using Facebook, but there is no reason not to use it and every reason to start, because it will bring in a few leads.
- One of the most underused features of the Facebook business page is the CTA (call-to-action) feature that Facebook provides.
Facebook allows – and even encourages – companies with a Facebook page to send traffic directly to their website from Facebook or to call them on the phone.
But most people don’t use it.
In fact, most people probably don’t even know it exists.
- The “About” section of your Facebook page is where people go when they want to find out more about your company. It is a great place to put a link to your website or your opt-in page.
Even though people don’t go to that section very often, it is silly not to direct them to a place where you can convert them when they do.
They are already primed to know more about your company, which means the best place that you can send them would be to your own website.
They can look at your products, join your email list and satisfy their curiosity all in one shot.
- The “story” section of your page is another place that is often skipped over by businesses. But you definitely want to tell your story to customers.
They want to know more about you, and this is a great opportunity to turn Facebook fans and casual visitors into buying customers that will remain loyal.
Plus, if you put a link in your story section, then it will become clickable and you can direct them to your opt-in page, your regular website, your products page or wherever you want them to go.
How to Use Instagram to Market Your Products
Instagram has become one of the most popular social media sites, but many companies do not use it for marketing purposes because they don’t understand how to do so.
But Instagram has a whole slew of features that companies can use for marketing.
Understanding how to use Instagram will make your marketing more effective and allow you to reach an entirely new group of potential customers.
Here are some ways to do that:
Many people aren’t even aware that analytics are available with Instagram, but there are some great analytics programs that you can use to optimize your account.
If you can figure out where you are going wrong, then you can take steps to fix the problem.
When you are searching for a tool, make sure that you find something that can show you which posts have the best reach, which ones get the most engagement and what the click-through rate is for each post.
If you have people in your company that are passionate about working for you, then leverage that passion into a live social wall using tools like Tint or Tagboard.
You can aggregate user-generated content to promote your brand and build a community on your Instagram account.
Speaking of user-generated content, you should leverage this tool as much as possible as well.
User-generated content costs you nothing, but it means a lot to the people who post it.
These are your biggest fans and they are creating this content because they believe in your company.
When you use UCG in your business, you are not only honoring them, but also showing other potential customers how great your company is.
Cross-promote your Instagram account with other channels.
This may include some of your own Instagram channels, or you may be able to discuss sharing and promoting with another popular channel.
Another thing that goes hand-in-hand with what we were just discussing is Instagram influencer marketing.
If you have a major influencer that is promoting your brand, you are going to convince a lot of people to try out your products and services.
Just make sure that you prioritize quality over quantity.
Someone that has a smaller following but greater influence will be much more valuable than someone who has a huge audience but not as much of a relationship with them.