2013 is here, and for us internet marketers and online business owners, it’s GO TIME!
Now is the best time to really take your business to the next level. Because it’s the new year, you’ll have a lot of motivation around this point in time. Use this motivation to set your business upright, so that in a few months, your work will be focused on managing and sustaining what you set up now.
To help you get started, today we/re outlining what we feel is the most effective internet marketing strategy right now. This is a strategy that accomplishes the following:
• Creates awareness for you, your website/company, and business
• Builds relationships with people of influence in your market
• Builds trust within customers
• Taps into markets that may be impossible to reach otherwise
• Gives you complete control over the customer acquisition process
Sound exciting? It is! Let’s dive in.
Check Your Foundation
First things first, in order for this strategy to work, you need to be offering real, tangible value. Now, I understand that many people just getting into business want to launch something and start making money. But if you’re not offering real value, your customers will be few and far between.
Therefore, take a look at your current business. Ask yourself the following questions:
• Who is my target market?
• What major problems do they have?
• Does my product/service solve these major problems in an efficient and valuable way?
• Who are my competitors in the space?
• How does my product/service provide dramatically more value than my competitor’s?
For best results, write the answers to these questions down right now. You need to know for sure what value you offer to your customers, and why they should go to you instead of anyone else.
Because the easiest way to do business is to stop worrying about selling. Instead, offer value that your customers already want. If you can do this, you won’t have to “sell” to them – instead, you’ll simply have to present your product/service in a way that reveals its true value and your customers will want to buy.
This strategy is centered around this idea. We’re going to be using different strategies to bring traffic to our website – traffic that normally wouldn’t be there. So we need to make sure our product/service provides enough value that it’ll catch these new visitors’ eyes immediately. The best way to do that, by far, is to start with a fantastic foundation – a product that delivers huge value, and does it better than any other product in your market.
A Content-Based Strategy
Once you’ve got the foundation set, it’s time to roll out a new content strategy. Why content? Content is king!
Content is how you present your business. It’s how you get people interested in your product. It’s how you tap into new markets. It’s how you build relationships.
Content is social. By its very nature, it only exists if there are multiple people interacting with it.
This strategy takes two approaches to content:
Content distributed across the web
Content kept on the homepage and shared via social media sites
Content distributed across the web is done so in the form of guest posts and media submissions. This content is responsible for building relationships and gaining access to prime customers that are likely already interested in what we have to offer.
Content kept on the homepage is there for a few reasons. One, consistent fresh content is crucial to a solid SEO strategy. Two, with content on our homepage, we can share it on social media sites and, if it takes root, gain massive credibility within our market.
Relationships are absolutely CRUCIAL to online business. You’re not going to be able to succeed on your own – you need to make real connections and relationships with other online business owners and influencers in your market.
Guest posting is a fantastic way to do this. Why? Because writing content is hard! People who run major blogs and authority sites have to churn out TONS of fresh content, and it has to be valuable! This is no easy task!
With guest posting, we’re doing their job for them. We spend a lot of time crafting a guest post that’s truly valuable, then let them post it for free. In virtually every case, we’ll also get a link back to our own website, which gives us access to a fresh chunk of traffic and SEO authority.
And, if our post provides value to the website’s visitors, we’ll solidify a relationship and be able to work with the owner of that website in the future.
Think of it this way. It’s difficult to get fresh customers to any relatively small online business. But there are people in every market who have already done the work – people who have a huge following that trusts them.
So through guest posting, we can borrow that following immediately, even if we just launched our business yesterday!
From the Blog to Social Media
The second branch of the strategy involves your own blog. Now, if you don’t already have a blog on your website, make one immediately! This is your connection to your customers. And this is how you’ll be able to get new customers.
The idea is simple, but it requires work.
Step #1: Monitor your niche for hot topics or news
You must be aware of what’s going on in your market. Because when you’re aware, you’ll know when there’s a hot topic going around. And when there’s a hot topic, this gives us a chance to make a post about it on our own blog, then submit it to sites where people are already discussing this topic!
Let’s say you run a cat furniture website. Suddenly, there’s news that cat furniture may prevent cats from running away. It’s heavily debated and people aren’t sure what to think.
Step #2: Write a blog article on a hot topic
Now, as an authority, you can post a blog article about it with your own position, then submit it to the sites where you already saw it being discussed.
This practically guarantees you’ll get clicks. And you don’t have to be an expert writer for this (although it certainly helps). Because people will already be looking for news on the cat furniture issue, and they’ll be willing to click anything that’s relevant.
Can you see why it’s so important to start with value? Let’s say we write our post on cat furniture and submit it to a few social media sites. Suddenly, it catches on, and we find ourselves with thousands of new visitors. Awesome!
But this is social traffic – in other words, it’s not traffic that wants to buy something immediately (like SEO). BUT, these people will almost certainly be interested in what you’re selling (they came as a result of cat furniture news, after all). So if you can show them right off the bat that you provide huge value and solve their problems, you’ll likely get a big chunk of sales and some new loyal customers.
So what do I mean when I say “submit to social media sites”?
Well, it depends on your niche. But in general, there are a few websites that are great for these types of submissions. One of my favorites is Reddit. Now, Reddit as a whole is a social network like any other – it exists mainly for entertainment.
However, within Reddit, there are “sub-Reddits”. These are niche communities created by people and exist as a central hub for everything going on in that individual market. So back to our cat furniture example, it would make a lot of sense to submit our article to these types of subreddits:
You get the idea. Each of the sub-Reddit’s above have thousands of people who actively check them. Therefore, submitting your articles to these pages will get you in front of people who are already interested (to some degree) in what you have to say.
There are sub-Reddits for virtually any niche you can think of, so there’s a very good chance there are thousands of people you can get in touch with within your market.
Wrapping it Up
Start with value, then share that value through content. It’s a relatively easy strategy, which is probably why people overlook it. Also, most people aren’t aware of how many social media sites there are to submit content to. These are sites that contain people already interested in what you have to say – you just have to say it!
And don’t forget to also spread content throughout all the top blogs and authority sites in your niche. Doing so in the form of a guest post gains you access to brand new groups of potential customers and builds relationships that will help your business big time!
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