Online Marketing With A Little SEO – Just a Little

September 30, 2010 by  Filed under: SEO 

When I visit customers to talk to them about advertising and branding themselves online, they usually reply, “I have a website”. Well, that’s great, but is a website really enough? There are over a trillion websites on the internet. When I try to explain that in most cases a website isn’t enough. Many times, with the pressure of running their business, they are usually distracted and do not fully understand why I am pressing the point of online advertising. So, if you are one of those customers, I hope that since you are reading this blog, you have a spare couple of minutes to read and think about online advertising.

Your website is your businesses self portrait. It paints the picture of your business and tells the story about what your business does. This is extremely important. Most customers expect a legitimate business to have a website. A website lends credibility and legitimacy to a business. Customers will start returning to that site for more information, as long as there is new and relevant information.

How do you get traffic sent to that website? Well, there’s SEO, Search Engine Optimization. SEO is like tuning up your car, websites also need to be tuned up on a regular basis. When your prospective customer searches for your industry on Google, and your website is listed on page 33, your site is not optimized very well. The goal of all websites should be to show up on the first page of all the search engines. SEO usually involves making sure ‘keywords’ that are descriptive of your business are still being used by your customers. If your customers are now using different keywords to look for your business, their search is no longer relevant to your page, since your keywords do not match theirs.

The main thing that will help optimize your website is CONTENT!! Content is made up of words, videos and pictures. Google will actually scan your website looking for keywords that customers are using in their search. Setting up blogs and writing articles like this one will help optimize your site. We can spend a whole article on SEO, but I wanted to touch on it, just to show briefly how it worked and that it is not always enough to be seen on the internet.

Let’s look at another analogy that will lead us into the importance of advertising online and creating a large presence. If you think of your website as a billboard, and it is not optimized well, then it is probably sitting in the middle of an Arizona desert. How many people are going to drive by on that desert road and see it? Very few! Now a well optimized site will be a billboard on a major 8 lane highway in a city like Chicago, LA or New York. There, a lot of people are going to see it. But that still may not be enough.

Advertising online will create many billboards and allow you to strategically place them geographically and even demographically on the information super highway. Have you noticed a company in your community, that seems to advertise almost everywhere, like the newspaper, they sponsor a little league team, put ads in the back of the church bulletin, at the bus stop and many other places. That company is branding itself by creating a large presence. Because you see it everywhere, you know what they do and when you need their services, it is a high probability that you will think of that company.

A large majority of the American population will use the internet to make their buying decisions. Just like that company you thought of that is creating a large presence in your town, advertising online will complete the same objective but on a much larger scale. Now you will be able to spread your message not just in your town, but throughout your neighboring cities your state or even nationally. The choice is yours. If your main customers are women over the age of 40, there are ways to promote your business just to that demographic. This way, you don’t waste your money, placing your advertisement in front of an 18 year old male. It becomes more cost effective and with the potential for a higher response rate, you are going to make more money!

What options are available for you to advertise online? There are a lot!! I am not going to go over everything. Feel free to contact me or talk to and advertising representative that you know and trust. We can start with what I am doing right now. I am writing a blog. I am filling it with useful information at no cost to you. When it gets posted, it will not only be on my website, but on several other sites too. Those sites include Facebook, Blogger, Squidoo, HubPages and EzineArticles. What I am doing is branding myself as an expert on this subject by giving free advice and placing this article in multiple places on the internet. Once posted, this article will show up on a minimum of seven sites. All of those sites will redirect readers back to my main site, thus driving traffic to where I want it to go.

Pay Per Click advertising is another way that you can direct traffic to your site. There are two main words you need to become familiar with, impressions and clicks. An impression means your ad appeared on a website, giving a customer an opportunity to click on it. A click is when a customer clicks on your ad with their mouse to get more information. Each time a customer clicks on your advertisement, you are charged for that click. Impressions are free.

When you start a Pay Per Click campaign, your advertisement usually consists of two segments. The small ad or attention grabber and second, the website also called a landing page. The attention grabber is just that, a link or banner that appears on another website. It has to show a lot of value in approximately 25 characters and entice a customer to click on it.

Once they have clicked on the attention grabber, they are now looking at your website or landing page. This is where you need to show exceptional value to your customer. Give them that reason to pick up the phone and call, drive to your store, email you or buy from you online. This is your money maker. Give it your customers a reason to do business with you and best of all, refer a friend to your site, because of the quality product or service they received.

Pay Per Click campaigns can expose your business to hundreds or even thousands of different websites. I recently ran an ad and within 24 hours that ad had appeared over 57,000 times. Those impressions did not cost me a dime. They helped brand the business I was advertising.

Now at this point, this article is running over 1,000 words. I like to keep them a little shorter, so I will end it here. Just remember, there are really two rules with advertising, regardless of what medium you are using. The first is advertise where your customers are looking to find your product or service. Second, show great value to your customers. You need to give them a reason to decide to do business with you.

If you know your customers are looking in the advertising medium you have chosen, then that medium has done its job. If you are not getting satisfactory results, then it is rule number two that you have broken. Don’t give up on that medium, change your message and show more value.

Article Source:

Scott Kolsto - EzineArticles Expert Author

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