So, you’ve got a profitable business idea, set up a realistic business plan and have the support of your friends and family. Now it’s time to let the rest of the world know about your business.
But where do you start? Do you hand out flyers to everyone you meet? Do you buy print advertising in your local newspaper? Buy some air time on your local television or radio station? Arrange to have a full page ad in the local yellow pages of your phone book? Those methods work, but they can be expensive, take a long time to implement and limit your exposure to just your local area.
This is where online marketing comes in. Online Marketing is a numbers game that boils down to one simple rule: Getting your business in front of as many people as possible in your target market.
Here are seven reasons online marketing is one of the best ways to promote your business:
1. Online advertising is immediate: any type of print advertising has to be set up and scheduled; flyers and newspapers may take several days and an ad in your local phone book may not come out until many months down the road.
2. Online advertising can be DIY: you’ve decided to offer your customers a special discount: you can immediately add a coupon and adjust what you need to right on your website rather than having to wait for someone at the print shop or newspaper to get around to it.
3. Online advertising is not just cost effective…it is cheaper: you get more “bang for your buck” online. Rather than having to pay higher prices for print work and distribution costs, you can use the money you save on advertising to invest in product development.
4. Online advertising can be interactive: Instead of just seeing a flat, two dimensional image, you can catch your customer’s eye with audio, visual, and video elements. This engages customers more than just looking at a newspaper ad or flyer.
5. Online marketing can be automated: As an employedpreneur with limited time any system or process you can automate is great. With many free and low-cost online solutions, you can easily find a way to put your marketing on autopilot so that you can reach your audience even while you are working your day job.
6. Online advertising can be easily tracked: If you do any sort of print advertising, the only tangible means of tracking how effective your campaign is, or at least part of it, is to use coupons that the customers have to redeem. Even then, it’s difficult to know exactly who is responding to any of your advertising. Online advertising can easily be measured and broken down into very specific results.
7. Online advertising works: If it didn’t, it wouldn’t be enticing national advertisers to continue to increase their online advertising budgets by twenty-five percent each year!
Quick List: 12 Online Networking Tactics
- Social Networking
- Business Blogging
- Online Ads
- Search Engine Optimization
- Forum Marketing
- Content Marketing
- Article Marketing
- Video Marketing
- Joint Ventures
- eMail Marketing
- Virtual Sponsorships
- Online Directories
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