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Marketing on the Internet

The basic steps to take in getting an effective Internet marketing strategy

By Bobbye Brooks and Tonilee Adamson

Internet marketing is a hot topic for just about everyone who is trying to capitalize on the buzz of social media and making money online. What exactly is Internet marketing? Internet marketing was founded by those online entrepreneurs who learned how to make a prosperous living promoting and selling their products and services through Internet channels.

Today, Internet marketing has expanded beyond the “Internet marketer” into the everyday person or business owner wanting to promote their products and services strategically and effectively to a growing global audience.

What are the basic steps to take in getting an effective Internet marketing strategy?  The following tips are designed to help get the most out of your online marketing efforts.

    1. Develop a basic plan

The first step in any good strategy is taking the time to write a basic plan for your business (or whatever you are going to be marketing online). Include your goals, timeframe, budget allocations, and resources needed.

For the marketing strategy, list your ideas for how you plan to use the Internet, i.e., social media, paid ads, online stores, etc.

    2. Monetize your website

To use Internet marketing effectively, the most important component is your website. Your website is your business storefront. If you are marketing your business online, then you must send people to your website to buy your products or services (or you are sending them to another site for purchases).

Make sure your website has a clear “call to action” on the home page, where your visitor can connect with you, either in a purchase or by subscribing to your information. Think of your website as your place of business and design it to meet your customers’ needs.

    3. Create social media campaigns

Social Media cannot be overstated at this point. The top five social media networks that every business should use in Internet marketing include:

•Facebook: Create a Facebook Fanpage for your business, invite your friends to “like” it, and use it to promote your business. Post special deals, business updates, and information about your company. Make sure the icon is on your website home page.

•Twitter: Set up a Twitter page for your business. Invite similar-type businesses to “follow” you and then follow them back. Grow your Twitter list by inviting others to find you on Twitter. Post your website link in all of your communications.

•LinkedIn: Create a business page on LinkedIn and complete the profile information with as much detail about your company as possible. LinkedIn allows for immediate links to other social networks, including your blog page. Use this network to communicate with other professionals and groups.

•YouTube: Set up an account with YouTube and create a Channel for your business. YouTube is now the second largest search engine. Start using videos to promote your business and place them on your channel. Send out the video links through your other social media networks and ask others to “subscribe” to your channel.

•Wordpress: Create a WordPress blog page for your business. As with all of the social media networks, use the same logo, color schemes, and overall look for branding purposes. Write and post at least one blog entry per week and send out through other networks. WordPress will connect directly with most of the other sites, creating instant updates to your other social media networks.

    4. Use the free classifieds

There are several places to post free classified ads for your business. One of the most common is Craigslist. Open a free account on Craigslist and start creating your own ads. Ebay has a classified section that lets you create free ads as well.

Search for “free classifieds” online and several websites will appear. Remember to use your business name as your title and select the best keywords that describe your business niche.

    5. Schedule your posts and updates

Internet marketing is most effective when it is consistently being done. Create a calendar and set up reminders that help you keep your social networks updated on a regular basis. It is a fact that Google is using Facebook and Twitter activity as part of their ranking algorithm. The more you are online, the more attention you receive from the search engines. Stay active and fresh in your updates.

Internet marketing is fast becoming one of the most sought after avenues for reaching audiences around the world. The traditional avenues of advertising are changing daily, which continues to increase the opportunities for everyone at every level.

Having basic knowledge of the Internet and applying a few strategic steps can make a substantial difference in the success of your business.

Bobbye Brooks

Tonilee Adamson

Bobbye Brooks, CEO, and Tonilee Adamson, COO, are the co-founders of Media 4 Women Enterprises, Inc., which works with individuals and businesses to help maximize their effectiveness of Internet and online marketing strategies. They can be reached at 800-992-0369 or through www.media4women.com.


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