Bulk emails simply aren’t effective. The same goes for a generic message broadcast to all of your Facebook friends. But you already found this out the hard way, didn’t you? It’s okay! Don’t be afraid to harness the power of your friends list, Facebook still provides a valuable resource for the novice internet entrepreneur. The secret to effective marketing is really not a secret at all, it just takes the fishing analogy often used by advertisers and takes it to a whole other level.
For those readers unfamiliar with the fishing analogy it goes something like this. Upon arriving at the lake you find it’s filled with perch, bass, rainbow trout and walleye, but you’re just looking for bass. You can use your pole, and you might catch a bass, but it’s slow going. Or you can use a dragnet and drag the whole lake, you’re going to catch a little of everything but there’s sure to be a bass in there.
The One That Got Away
Bulk emailing and broadcast messages is like trying to catch potential customers with a net so riddled with holes and snags that you end up with tin cans, discarded boots, and rotted tires instead of clients. Many people see a generic broadcast, instantly assume it has nothing to do with them, and ignore it. You could have the best sales pitch on the planet, but if your audience isn’t engaged you’re losing money with every missed opportunity. Try some new lures in your proverbial tackle box.
Pounding the E-Pavement
- Backlinking – You create a high quality article and give it to someone for free, in exchange they allow a link back to your site. Call it fair trade, call it good for business, getting backlinks is one of the fastest and easiest ways to drive traffic to your site. For best results, be sure to use keywords strategically.
- Forums – A good way to present yourself as an expert in your niche is participating in forum discussions dedicated to your niche. Simply add a link to your site as part of your forum signature and start conversing, soon readers will begin to trust your advice, visiting your site as a result and possibly referring friends as well.
- Directory Services – Registering with a directory service such as DMOZ.org will pump up your traffic significantly. Be prepared to work though, it’s not easy to get accepted into the DMOZ directory. There are others, but their authority is less powerful in the eyes of Google.
- Cross Promote – Just as you don’t want to focus all of your marketing in a single avenue, you don’t want to rely solely on the strength of your site, even if it is amazingly awesome. Instead, link your youtube channel to your blog, your blog to your twitter, your twitter to your facebook, your facebook to your youtube – get the picture? Connect your sites to make it easier for followers to connect with you.
- Tweet Not Twit – Have you been avoiding Twitter because all of the nonsensical tweets? Learn from that lesson, then ensure your message is meaningful, focused on your niche, and filled with quality content.
The Bottom Line
We can all agree the ultimate goal is earning money through increased traffic, but that doesn’t happen overnight. The internet is constantly evolving and you must evolve right along with it, anticipating the changes before they come. Back in the early days of the internet you could just sneeze up some content, throw your link on any page that allowed comments, then watch while your search ranking increased. I’m oversimplifying by a wide margin, but really that’s to demonstrate that today’s success is directly related to the amount of effort you put into building your site.
Quality content matters, strategic use of keywords matters, and your pounding of the e-pavement matters as well. Once you’ve settled on a Tumbler, Blogger or WordPress setup that works for you, start building your content, then start mingling with the movers and shakers in your niche. Just like any career, you’re expected to work, the only difference is this line of work tends to be much more fulfilling!
Freelance writer Rachel Cook first established herself as an internet presence in 1996. Since that time she has covered a wide array of genres from video game development to the perfect zombie costume for Halloween, with several interesting stops in between. A self-confessed “information junkie”, Rachel can be found studying the tutorials at www.openwebsitetutorials.com when she’s not writing or making homemade jewelry.