Internet Marketing Services: What Should You Engage In?

For those new to building businesses online or taking a traditional business to online, internet marketing is equivalent to a mythical beast of elusive nature. Building a website alone is complicated enough even with a web designer working on it, but now internet marketing? Search engine optimization? Social media marketing? Videos? Podcasting? Wait, will the list ever end?

Such as the perplexing questions one will have in her mind if she is not familiar with internet marketing at all. It gets worse when so-called gurus try to bombard with pitches on their services which deliver the world only at cost of $998.238 to make sure you generate $1234.5678 in net revenue a week from your website. With things like this, internet marketing can’t be legit, right?

Fortunately internet marketing is a real deal. A bona fide set of methods which you can use together with traditional marketing strategies to maximize your revenue and deliver cost-effective messages to widest audience possible. But if you are completely baffled about all internet marketing mumbo-jumbo, then you will need to know what internet marketing services you should pursue. Without knowing what will fit your needs and your target market, you will just be wasting your money.

“Know Thy Market, First”

Internet marketing is just like any regular marketing, it deals with people – individuals who have problems and want to solve those by buying your products and services. It only uses Internet to deliver your marketing messages and information to people in your target market plus more. Nothing magical or confusing here.

If you have decided to engage in internet marketing services, you absolutely must know about your customers. You have to know where they go, what they like, what their demographics and sociographics profiles are, which websites they usually go, what social networks they are, what time they are mostly active online, where they are looking for your products, what influence their decisions and… well, you get the picture.

Without knowing your customers, you cannot target and direct any of your marketing efforts, be it traditional or online, to be efficient and effective.

Now that it is clear you need to know about your market first, let’s get down to details about internet marketing services.

“Search Engine Optimization”

Search Engine Optimization (“SEO”) is a process to push your website to be in top 10 spots of first page in search engines when people search for related terms to your business. 90% of internet users use search engines to find information they want. And most of them pay attention only to top 10 results. If your website is in there, you are guaranteed to gain a lot of visitors. This kind of ranking is something you cannot buy. It is a process which an internet marketing professional can help you with.

“Email Marketing”

No, not those spam mails we all hate. There are truly legitimate ways to use email as a marketing tool without being annoying or sending spams. Internet marketing professionals can help you build a list of email newsletter subscribers who are willingly giving their contacts to you to send them emails, and also help you to run regular email newsletter to keep your subscribers updated about whatever information you want them to know. It is similar to warm-approach in traditional marketing.

“Videos Distribution”

Very high percentage of today’s internet usage is in videos. YouTube, Vimeo and alike are very popular for several reasons. It is undeniable that people tend to pay more attention to video contents than texts. Online marketing experts can help you create suitable videos for your business and rank them in search engines, along with distributing those using social networks to attract maximum eyeballs. And speaking of which…

“Social Networks”

Basically social networks are where people hang out online to talk about their interests, daily happenings, post photos they shot or like, share information, news and gossips and generally doing social activities. We all have one. It is pretty certain you know what Facebook is.

Marketers can tap into these social networks to actually increase brand awareness, brand exposure and increase revenues. You need to find if your target market is suitable for which social networking platform. Chances are, you will find them on one or another. Online marketers can help you build campaigns to reach out to them with suitable messages without trying to sell too much.

Using Your Small Business Marketing Tools to Differentiate Your Business

Perhaps the most important quality for your small business marketing materials is that they are different. If you do nothing else right in your small business marketing, at least be different.

Why is differentiation so important? Because, in most industries, there are hundreds – if not thousands or millions – of other businesses that claim to provide the same service or sell the same product as you do. If you don’t differentiate your business from all those others, the chances that you’ll get many customers are pretty slim.

Some common ways to differentiate your business are:

Superior service

Greater product availability

Higher quality

Better performance

Greater durability

Prestige

Technology leadership

Satisfaction guarantee

Lower cost

Faster delivery

More customer support

But even if you are very different than your competitors – you offer superior service, greater durability, or a satisfaction guarantee that beats all others – it won’t matter unless your prospective customers know about it.

That’s where your small business marketing strategy comes in. Businesses have been using their small business marketing strategies to announce how they’re different from their competitors as long as they have been using small business marketing strategies. Think Maxwell House’s “Good to the last drop,” Campbell’s Soup’s “Mmm, mmm good,” or WalMart’s “Always low prices.” Those highly successful taglines not only get prospective customers to remember the company name, but also convey a message about the difference between that company and others.

To make differentiation a part of your small business marketing strategy, you first need to understand your competitors – you can only explain how you’re different from them once you know what they’re like. Learn what your competitors offer, how they differentiate themselves, and – most importantly – what your prospective customers think about them (if you know what qualities your prospective customers see as shortcomings in the other companies in the market, you’ll have a good idea of the market gap you can fill).

Once you’ve decided how you are different from your competitors, you need to tell your prospective customers about it. Building that differentiation into your tagline can be a very effective start. Then include that tagline, along with your logo, on every piece of small business marketing collateral you have. Another small business marketing way to publicize your differences is to write a press release. Explain how you’re filling a need in the market that no other company has filled.

Once you’ve differentiated your company and used your small business marketing tools to publicize your differences, you have to follow through on your promises. If you say that you’re the cheapest – or the highest quality, or the friendliest, or whatever – then you better be just that (nothing turns away a customer like a failed promise).

Internet Marketing Services – What Should You Pursue?

You may often wonder what really Internet marketing is. Well, there have been many definitions formulated by various gurus of Internet marketing. Individuals who have tried out the huge and lucrative business opportunity of Internet marketing also have provided various interpretations of it. Though several such definitions and interpretations have been suggested yet hundreds and thousands of aspiring internet marketers are still in the quest for getting the exact definition of Internet marketing. Such Internet marketing aspirants want to get a clear idea of what exactly they are seeking to get into.

In an endeavor to determine the much wanted exact definition of Internet marketing we can examine some situations. With the question of defining Internet marketing being put forward to some 100 individuals- 99 of them point out to the search engine as the ultimate path finder in this regard. Then one can go to one’s favorite search engine and type in the words “define Internet marketing” and click on the searching icon to give…the results.

In the search results pages the top pages will be the ones displaying information/web pages of marketing veterans established as pioneers of Internet marketing. Such persons have rightfully secured a spot to provide a definition of Internet marketing from their viewpoint. There are, however, the placement ads on search result pages and glancing upon them will reveal another story altogether.

It is with the intention of helping websites get more traffic or hits that most of the ads related with Internet marketing have been set up. Indeed Internet traffic is the lifeblood of any website and the sites thrive on Internet traffic. Now we may combine this concept with the traditional concept of marketing conduction with the Internet acting as the marketing medium here. The following conclusion providing a definition of Internet marketing can be arrived at:

“Internet marketing is an income-generating opportunity dependent on the utilization of interactive technology (via the Internet) to build a dialog with potential clients by connecting with them through quality content about your product and/or service offerings”.

Thus, the interactive technology specified as the “Internet” is to be utilized for fulfillment of Internet marketing. Different Internet marketing services existing are involved in the utilization of the Internet. These are the services which are requisite of the Internet to be able to perform its specific tasks in the capacity of marketing medium between Internet marketers and clients pertaining to them.

In order to keep alive their online business all online entrepreneurs need to familiarize themselves with Internet marketing services. These are the services which are vital for their online business’s development and also for making their Internet marketing careers successful.

Information on some basic Internet marketing services is provided here for you to learn about and familiarize yourself with:

Search Engine Optimization– In order to locate websites and finding useful information on the Web the search engines are used. These are powerful tools used by most Internet users for finding the information they are seeking. Efforts need to be made so as to ensure that your site is appearing on the top pages of a search engine page result. By search engine optimization i.e. optimizing your website by reengineering its contents you can expect to secure better search engine placements.

Indexing– The procedure of submission of your web pages for search engine registration and registration in various Internet based directories is involved in indexing.

Keyword research– The highly searched keywords and key phrases relevant to your online business can be identified by keyword research.

SEO consultation need– Internet marketers who are novices in the field can well invest with an SEO consultant. This is suggested if you wish to receive help in planning the methods of successfully marketing your website.

Use net– The Use net is a fast and efficient method for generating targeted traffic for your website. This involves a worldwide bulletin board system in which there are over 14,000 forums covering every interest group. Everyday this is commonly used by millions of individuals all over the world.

E-mail marketing procedures– An electronic mail is made use of here. This is sent to a list of subscribers who wish to receive updates of your products and services. E-mail marketing is a popular Internet marketing advertising method.

Press releases services– Useful information concerning your online business (website) like site launches, special products on offer or other helpful information are announced through press releases. In order to ensure that more people are attracted towards your site the press releases are carefully drafted.

These are the basic and essential ones among the Internet marketing services. There are various other Internet marketing services available too. In order to be successful in your Internet marketing business you need to carefully integrate any of these in your online business so that the best results are derived.

Small Business Marketing Strategies for Tackling Big Competitors

One of the great challenges facing small business owners is that they must often battle for customers against larger competitors, who can afford to run more advertising, offer lower prices, and who are better established in the marketplace.

And yet some small business owners do it very successfully. How?

There are some proven marketing strategies to use when competing against larger, more established competitors. These strategies have been used successfully by companies of all sizes to drive sales and carve out a sustainable position in the market. They apply to online commerce and traditional small businesses.

Here are details on two such strategies that you can use as a small business owner to help grow your business when competing with larger competitors:

Take the “Alternative” Position

If you are up against the market leader in your business, shift your market position so you don’t compete directly with them on their turf. Become the “alternative” to the market leader – that is, promote and advertise an aspect of your product/service that the leader simply can’t offer. This is a classic marketing strategy that has been used successfully by small companies and major corporations, because it allows you to compete with the leader in a part of the market where they may not be very strong.

Pepsi couldn’t beat Coke at the cola wars, because Coke was viewed as the original cola drink that had no substitutes. That was fine with Pepsi. It let Coke have that territory, and instead marketed itself as the “Choice of a New Generation”. Its marketing appeal and target audience was young and cool – everything that Coke couldn’t be with their more traditional positioning. Pepsi successfully carved out the number 2 position in the market by becoming the primary alternative to Coke, and made billions in the process.

The rule applies to everything from .com companies to local furniture stores. Survey the competitive landscape in your market and determine how you can position your business as the best alternative to the established market leader. Second place in a given market can be a very nice place to be from a profitability standpoint.

Sell what they don’t have – You!

Many small business owners have found success by building their personal reputations as experts in their field, with significant benefits to their small business. They have become the “public face” for their company.

Some large companies have a “public face”, a person who represents the company in the minds of customers (Richard Branson for Virgin is one). But most don’t. As a small business owner, you can effectively represent yourself as an expert in your area of expertise, and drive awareness for your small business in the process.

One of the most effective ways to build your reputation is through the credibility that comes from publicity and media relations activities.

Here are some guiding principles to working with the media as a small business owner:

View it as a relationship – reporters need story ideas and expert sources – you can offer both when it comes to your area of expertise to create a win-win situation

Pitch story ideas about what’s new and what’s changing – the media likes to break news about emerging trends, either in your industry or related to your experience as a small business owner

Strive for repeat business – once a reporter has identified you as a good source of information on a topic, they will keep coming back to you – so ensure that early in your relationship you are available to them and willing to offer help in getting information for them to pull a story together

Having a single person leading the charge to build media relationships and run the company makes it easier to transfer the goodwill that you achieve in the media over to your business activities. This doesn’t work nearly as well for larger companies, so leverage this competitive advantage and take a personal approach to building your business through publicity.

You Can Compete!

Small business marketing is all about leveraging the built-in advantages of being a small enterprise in the battle against larger competition for customers and sales. Establishing your business as an alternative to the market leader in your business, and building personal credibility that can be transferred to your small business are just two strategies that you can implement to help your small business succeed against bigger competitors.