Everyone has come to the realization that they need an online presence to succeed in today’s business world. But many don’t understand the industry as they have come to understand traditional advertising mediums. As the world shifts their marketing focus from these traditional mediums to new age social media and online advertising techniques, many businesses are being left behind simply because they don’t have the knowledge to keep up. Online marketing through both Search Engine Optimization and Social Media Marketing is the most cost-effective and measurable marketing technique available to businesses. People should not be afraid of this shift, all that Social Media and the internet has to offer should be embraced.
Online Marketing consists of a number of different tactics that businesses can use to increase exposure and leads using the internet. This can simply be paying for advertising on another website or it can be through the use of a number of Social Media websites, Search Engine Optimization, or Pay Per Click Advertising. When advertising on another website, one should consider how related this website is to their business and should gather statistics as to exactly how many click-throughs to expect. The use of Social Media websites such as Facebook and Twitter can prove challenging but can ultimately provide the best results. Since these websites have the ability to attract potential customers based on their interests and region, the odds that you will have the opportunity to market to someone already interested are much higher than with television or newspapers. Social Media websites are the places on the internet where the masses go to keep up with the world. Anyone not considering marketing to this audience is losing out on some 250 million Facebook users. Search Engine Optimization and Pay Per Click Advertising are ways to get your website to the top of the search results. Google alone accounts for 530 million visitors per month.
One of the major advantages to advertising on the internet is the metrics provided. While you have no way of knowing how many people actually view your newspaper ad, there are many ways to measure these numbers. You can see exactly where your potential customers are coming from, how long they are spending on your website, what keywords they typed in to get there, what websites are sending you traffic, you can gauge your following in Facebook Fans and Twitter followers. The ability to understand more about your potential customers gives you the power to change your web presence accordingly and thus improve conversion rates.
If you have not been using the internet to promote your business, ask yourself why? Is it because it’s a scary new world? Is it because you don’t think it is here to stay? Is it because you don’t trust the internet? What changes would allow you to embrace the internet?
If you have been using the internet as an advertising platform, what have the benefits been to your business? What would you like to see changed? How has it compared to traditional marketing techniques that your business has used in the past?
Simon Vreeswijk, founder of Victoria internet marketing firm Stikky Media a division of www.northstudio.com, a web development company, has been working on the internet as a Open Source Web Developer and online Marketing Specialist for over 8 years. Simon also teaches Internet Marketing at the Victoria School of Business and Technology, keeping students and businesses up to date with the latest online marketing practices. When not acting as the fighter for client justice and defender of the faith against the evils of poor online marketing, you can follow Simon’s sailing and hockey adventures on Twitter and Facebook.