The internet not only has a great impact on marketing, it has also altered the way in which business is done today. It is important to stay up to date on the latest trends and yet be able to create an affordable internet marketing plan.
Where do we start? All marketing plans focus on measuring success; a focused plan laying strong emphasis on content, promotion and benefits can actually help reap huge business benefits.
Some steps to create an effective internet marketing strategy are:
Defining your customer, understanding the basic demographics of your customer is an important step – Where is he/ she located? What age group he / she belongs to? How much does he/ she earn? What is his/ her spending power?
This will make you recognizable. Know your unique selling preposition. Are your brand and your value preposition crystal clear? Does it stand out in the crowd? Does the logo reflect the image that you want to project? Does your tag line talk about benefits to the customer? Remember it is always about them, never about you.
Create a list of your competitors and identify why each one of them is a potential threat. List down reasons why your product is better and unique, make sure you revisit step 2 at this stage to improvise on your tag line or vision statement, if needed.
Decide where you would want to post your advertisements. Would you want to use the social media sites? Facebook could actually get you a few followers. A LinkedIn group is easy to create and can ensure a focused discussion around your product. Twitter gets you access to voice of customer in very few words.
Would you want to be seen at several places? This would strengthen your visibility and message. Whatever you consider – a social media site, a newsletter or a complimentary website; do make sure you are looking at factors such as traffic, external linkages, quality of current ads on the site etc. Here is an example of how Starbucks is using Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Google as part of their internet marketing strategy.
Consider writing a guest blog post on other sites. Focus on great content that outlines your USP to the reader. Track the responses to your blog post, respond back, make it interactive, let the dialogue begin!
Create a powerful marketing video that contains a keyword researched headline, a clear editorial message and a call to action.
Create a budget now so that you know how much you can really spend. You can now go back and prioritize your advertisements in a way that they fit into your budget. Monitor your results to ensure you are paying for your pay per click advertisements. Many sites swap newsletter ads for similar placement on your site. Evaluate if that is possible.
Tracking and monitoring your advertisements are crucial to the success of your marketing campaign. Pay attention to what is working and what is not, review trends and patterns, track your campaign. Repeat the strategies that you see as successful, and modify (or even remove!) those that do not give the desired results.
A bit of research, knowledge of your target customer and competition can get you there!
It’s just a matter of starting well.
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