Top 10 Ways to Market Your Business in 2010

As we go into 2010, full of promise and change from 2009, it is time to think about economical ways to market your business in the coming year. In this internet, social media age, the old marketing plans can no longer be copied into the the new plans. Here are our top ten things I suggest that you do:

1. Update your Website – Your website is no longer a brochure for the company. The internet search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo have changed the rules. Your website needs to be searchable, it needs to have outside links refer to its content and it needs to be changed very frequently. If you have not had a major overhaul of your site in the last 5 years, its time to invest in a total makeover. Even if you do not make any major changes, the site needs to be editable by the Marketing Department or the owner. There needs to be a system of updating and changing the site on a weekly or monthly basis and having an easy to use edit tool accessible to the marketing people is a must. As discussed in the next item, the use of keywords is also essential for the search engine.

2. Invest in Search Engine Optimization – SEO is the word of the new decade in the marketing arena. For as little as $200 per month, you can hire a company to make your website land on the first page of any search. They do this by testing your website to make sure it has been optimized, by making sure the keywords are in the right place, by making sure that there is activity outside the website that points to your website such as blogs, news releases, email blast, etc. and they use tools to monitor your website activity. You may be able to do it yourself. There are many books written and being written on the subject.

3. Think About Search Engine Marketing – SEM is the sibling to SEO. When you do a search on Google, there are two distinct parts of the results page. There usually is a couple of listings at the top of the page and there are several listings to the right of the page. These are the sponsored links. If you click on one of the links, the sponsor will pay a click-through fee, usually averaging about $3 per click. The other part of the page is the organic listings where SEO activities dictate the rankings. SEM is done by bidding on the keywords you want to sponsor with the search engines. With Google, you can bid on certain words using their AdWords feature. It is usually a good idea to hire a consultant to place the words for you and to monitor the results. You might also want to design different landing pages within your website for each category of keywords so that when the customer does click-through to your site, where they land is relevant to the search term.

4. Send out Email Newsletters – This is an email world now. Monthly email newsletters are a great way to inform your customers and prospects about your business. You do have to be careful not to come across a selling a product or service too much or people will opt-out of future mailings. Emails that are informative and specific to what your customers want to know are the best types of emails. Occasional promotional postcard email blasts are OK, but do it too often, your will lose the ability to send future emails. Companies such as Constant Contact are perfect for distributing these emails. They have templates available and they monitor the email addresses for bounces and opt-outs.

5. Do a Demographic Profile of Your Customers – How would you like a listing of the companies or prospects that are out there that are exactly like your current customers. Well, it is possible to get this listing by doing a demographics profile of your existing customers. Once this information is put into the system, we can identify a listing of companies and prospects that have the same attributes as your existing customers in your market. This process usually runs around $1,000 to have done, but it will allow you to better target your market with a reduced number of mailed or emailed items.

6. Don’t Forget Direct Mail – Direct mail is still one of the best ways of contacting prospective or current customers. Email filters and the rapid changes in email addresses reduces the overall benefits of doing email only. Using an efficient mailing list such as the one discussed above, greatly enhances your chances that the direct mail item will be read. We also use three-dimensional pieces and personalized url to improve responses rates on our mailings. Personalized url’s (purls) are a great way to get your prospects or customers to go to a website to capture additional demographic information on that customer.

7. Write a Blog – Every company needs to have a blog. The best way to drive people to your company’s website is to have them read your blog. As in the email blast discussions above, blogs should be informative and not promotional in order to capture and maintain a frequent audience. Starting a blog is easy. I started this one by going to Google and typing in “starting a blog”. Don’t worry that it appears that no one is reading the blog. Your readership will expand over time and it will be very beneficial with the search engines. Link your company website, your Twitter page and everything else within your blog. Just remember, link, link, link.

8. Be Active with Social Media – Most people understand Facebook and LinkedIn now. A lot of people do not understand Twitter and its benefits. “I’m sitting on a corner in Winslow, Arizona” does not appear to make a great business tool. However, using Twitter to make an occasional statement about something of interest in your business or industry will get you some followers. On Facebook, having a separate company page whereby people can become fans of your business has its benefits. Cross linking your website, your Blog, your Facebook page and your Twitter page will enhance your readership and your search results.

9. Issue News Releases – Commit to issuing a monthly press release about something of interest that has happened to your business. This can be about a new product, a new piece of equipment, a move or something that one of your employees did. Before your do the first one, you need to develop a contact listing of your local media outlets. Once the news release is written then it needs to be distributed to the local media outlets as well as placing the news release on the wire. Putting the news release on the wire allows the release to be searched by the search engines and catalogued.

10. Go to Trade Shows – Re-commit to going to trade shows. At least plan on getting a booth at the local Chamber of Commerce Business Expo. Trade shows are an inexpensive way to get in front of prospective customers. The use of large format graphics and brochures helps to make your booth pop. Capture business cards of prospects by offering something of value such as a prize or free service.

-Stephen Eugene Adams is the owner of three AlphaGraphics franchise operations in the Phoenix area. His Centers are ranked in the Top 10 AlphaGraphics franchise operations and are rated in the top 100 Quick Print operations in the U.S. He is a graduate of Arizona State University.

Affiliate Marketing – Why You Need to Use Landing Pages

You’ve found your affiliate marketing products, signed up with a program, set up your Google AdSense campaign and planned out your other marketing campaigns.You are all ready to make your fortune promoting affiliate products, right? Not quite. Read on to learn why you need to create landing pages to make your affiliate marketing campaign even more successful.

A landing page is a specially designed sales page where your visitors will go when they click on any link you display, from your paid ads, to your signature file. Creating a landing page for your affiliate products can make all the difference to your bank account.

Would you like to be a super affiliate and be like some of that successful few percent who make tons of cash promoting affiliate programs? Then you need to take the time to make hyper-responsive landing pages for your visitors.

Here are a few reasons you need to take the time to create a great page for each affiliate product you’re promoting.


You are not the only person promoting a particular affiliate product or program. Other people are offering the same thing as you are. How you offer it may easily be the reason the visitor buys from you.


When you are selling an affiliate product, you are likely to only be earning money on a pay-per-sale basis. When you direct a potential customer directly onto your affiliate program’s sales page, you lose the opportunity to contact that person again.


Programs like AdSense no longer let you direct people straight to an affiliate’s marketing page. You need to direct your visitors to your own page in order for Google to let you pay them money to use their program!


With a landing page you have the opportunity to gather a name and email address from your site visitor, usually by offering them a free report, video, audio or ebook, before you send them onto the affiliate site. This means you can contact your prospect again and again with useful information, special deals, articles and other deals on your affiliate product. Many people need to see a promotion up to seven times before they are ready to make a buying decision.

When you create a landing page, you have to remember it’s all about your customer. Your landing page must be crafted to please them and offer them something they want. The purpose of your landing page is to convince your visitor to take action. You choose what action you want them to take and write your ad copy to achieve this goal. You might want them to leave a name and email for follow up or you may be convincing them why they need the product. Either way, you must spend time writing your copy to convince them to take immediate action.

If you spend time creating a top quality, action making landing page, you will achieve more sales conversions and it will ultimately cost you less in advertising, because you will sell more products to less people.

If you don’t have a well crafted, sales converting landing page for your affiliate products, it’s time to create one. Copywriting Secrets will teach you the tricks and techniques used by professional copywriters so you can create the same professional, high conversion sales letters for your site too.

Affiliate Secrets will teach you loads of ways to promote your affiliate programs so you get even higher sales conversions and profits.

Why SMEs Should Invest in E-Marketing

A lot of SME’s (Small to Medium-sized Enterprises) have already embraced the idea of e-marketing, and are welcoming it with open arms. In this post, I am going to tell you why I think that SME’s should invest in e-marketing.

Firstly, a lot of SME’s are tight on cash, and are pouring half of their marketing budget into advertising or direct mail. E-marketing is cheap, and, in my opinion, a lot more effective. Nearly everyone is now using the internet, and that is why companies have started to take advantage of the internet to market their products/services.

The second benefit of e-marketing over traditional marketing is that it is so much easier to track; if you send out an email, you can see who opened it, who clicked which link, etc. If you choose PPC, you can track how many people clicked that. In e-marketing, because you can track your marketing campaigns in more detail, you can see where you are going wrong, and change it.

The third point I am going to discuss with you, before I give you some examples of e-marketing, is the reach of your online campaign. If you were doing a direct mail campaign, for example, how many people do you usually reach? With e-marketing, you have the potential to reach BILLIONS of people; for very little cost.

So, let’s have some examples of e-marketing. First, Social Networking. Social Networking is sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, where you interact with people from around the world, and all of these people are potential customers. The idea of a Social Networking campaign is literally just to interact with your prospects, give people some advice, and direct them to your website/blog.

Which brings us onto our second example; blogging. The word blog originated from web log, and that’s exactly what a blog is. Some people use it as an online diary, others to make money, and others use it as a marketing tool.

Basically, you write posts, and if you are doing it for marketing purposes, you write about your industry, establishing yourself as an expert. Once your readers start to trust you and consider you an expert in your field, then you start including links to your website in your posts.

Educate Yourself About Marketing Online

The Internet has spawned a new breed of entrepreneurs who are edging their way to the top of page rankings to survive their competition. Marketing your goods and services online is beneficial especially if you want to reap a significant amount of profits. Aside from the financial wellbeing that you will receive, there is also the need to have an advanced good marketing strategy to set yourself apart from the rest.

Learn to educate yourself about online marketing, setting up your home business, and making money online. Note that while there are tons of successful online business ventures by using the Internet, there are many companies who have failed in the online business field because of poor advertising strategies and marketing methods. Some even come and go without being at least noticed by potential customers. The reason for such failure equates to ignorance of new marketing trends, importance of marketing online, and understanding the basics when it comes to designing an interesting website sporting the goods and products of a particular business.

Not to worry however, especially if you are a novice in the field of online marketing. You can build your own home online business if you want to by taking some time to research and perhaps signing on some courses available on the World Wide Web. Learning is part of the process if you want to have an efficient and successful online business.

There are also tools you can access online such as software applications that cater to online businesses. These tools include how to build websites, how to search engine optimize your page, spin great web content, drive in website traffic, and creatively design your site to appeal to potential clients. Once you have all the things down pat, people will actually take interest in your business and may return again and again just to avail your services or buy your products.

Educating yourself about marketing online can help you achieve stability and increase your online presence in the Internet. Some of the most popular online marketing options that people sought are pay-per-click advertising wherein you simply select a product and niche market. By just doing this, you ca get a nice commission depending on your product and smart entrepreneurship. Also recognized as affiliate marketing, you can train yourself about the different methods involve to pave your way to marketing online success.

Marketing your services or products does not only entail randomly promoting them on forums, blogs or social networking sites. You got to have an interesting content. Think out-of-the-box to set yourself apart from others who have similar target markets. Write good articles and profile descriptions about your products and services so that customers may bookmark and return to them at a future date.

If you have your own website, put some interesting banners relevant to your topics, put direct links to other sites that you have, or put up RSS feeds as part of your page to have more people subscribe to it especially if they are interested in the services and products that you are providing. Post direct links to your website in forums and blogs to direct some visitor traffic.

Surely, educating yourself about marketing online plays a major role in having a successful business. Learn how to cope against your competition and keep on discovering the latest innovations and trends to keep you on your toes. As it has been said before, education is always key whenever you want to be successful in any field that you choose.