The Internet is fast becoming a required component in every advertising campaign. So, what is the best way to advertise on the Internet? The answer to that question depends on why you are advertising. Do you want to build a brand, increase traffic or sell a product?
Of course, a successful website requires all three components to be successful, but which is foremost in your company’s business plan? Before we learn about each strategy in detail, let’s review a few basic marketing concepts. Remember, these concepts apply to the Internet as well as brick-n-mortar companies.
• Determine exactly who your customers are and are not. Surprisingly, many website developers do not know who their customers are. Don’t make this novice mistake. If you don’t know, conduct surveys and market research via e-mails, telephone surveys, etc.
• Completely understand your customer’s needs and requirements. In addition, understand their buying habits and tailor your advertising campaigns toward their buying cycle.
• Create a follow-up strategy to insure customer satisfaction. This will increase customer loyalty and back-end sales.
Following are the specific components you need to conduct a successful advertising campaign for building a brand, increasing your traffic and selling a product.
1.) Building a Brand Name and Increasing your Traffic
If you want to build a brand name and/or increase your traffic, here is how to do it:
• Purchase banner space on sites most targeted toward your customers. For example, if you sell financial services, in addition to advertising on financial sites you might consider advertising on gardening, women’s clothing and shopping sites. The reason is that studies have shown women are becoming more of a force in purchasing financial products. You need to broaden your understanding of yourcustomers, and what other products and services they purchase.
• Purchase keyword advertising from the search engines. This strategy will keep your brand name in front of your target audience.
• Conduct an e-zine campaign. E-zine advertising is very successful. E-zines allow you highly targeted advertising with low costs. Most e-zines offer top, exclusive or classified advertising. If possible, purchase exclusive rights to a specific time period. This will increase your success.
• Place reciprocal links on your site. This is a great way to increase your exposure with no out-of-pocket costs.
• Create an offline advertising campaign. Purchase billboard, radio and television advertising. Write articles for business newspapers, or be a guest on radio and television shows.
• Create an affiliate program for your site. If properly executed, this will explode your site across the Internet.
• Give away items from your website. Free sites generate a tremendous amount of traffic.
2.) Selling a Product
If your goal is to sell a specific product, all the above strategies would work. However, the two most productive ways to sell products are:
• Targeted e-zine advertising. Purchase the exclusive space in several e-zines.
• Have a specific sales page for each product. For example, if you are selling a home improvement book, create a sales page that sells only the book. Don’t try to sell hammers, nails and lumber on the same page. Focus on selling the book. Once visitors buy your book, follow-up with additional information on the other products you offer.
No matter what your advertising campaign is, you should always continually test your strategies. If a certain e-zine produces outstanding results, consider increasing your spending in that publication. Always test and retest your advertising campaigns.
Finally, track all of your results. You need to know how your visitors are finding your site. Here are a few sites that offer programs that will help you track your statistics:
Use these steps to create a powerful web advertising campaign and write your own Internet success story.