Marketing – this one word can either make or break your business. The sooner you realize this, the better. Because other business owners are struggling with their marketing efforts, I’d like to share with you 10 marketing tips that are proven and tested to work. How do I know that these tips work? Simple. I used them myself!
If you’re looking marketing strategies that you can use for your business, then you can use my tips as your starting point. However, before you even start using any of them, I’d like to emphasize how there is no one-size-fits-all marketing strategy for all types of businesses (as you can probably imagine). That said, I urge you to customize my tips based on the important elements that revolve around your business (I.e. your target market, your product, demographics, etc…).
Let’s get this started.
1.) Think inside-out. Establish your website first.
The truth is, people tend to be very judgemental. If they visit your site and see that it is poorly designed, chances are good that they’ll find you less credible and not worth their business. You and I probably feel the same way too. If you aren’t sure about how you’ll feel, then let me ask you – would you do business with a merchant with this kind of website?
I didn’t think so. So before you think about telling others about your website, you have to make sure that it’s already completed or perhaps established to a certain extent. Telling others about your website when it still looks crappy can gravely damage your brand.
2.) Start guest posting
Guest posting is so simple to do there’s no reason why you shouldn’t do it. Even if you haven’t done it yet, you probably have a good idea of how it works.
1.) Look for high quality and niche related sites.
2.) Contact the webmaster and ask if you can contribute to their site.
3.) Wait for their reply.
4.) Send them a well written article according to their guidelines if they say, “sure, send the article over”.
5.) They’ll then post your article with your link in it.
It’s that simple. That’s the gist of the process. Others make it sound like guest posting is rocket science when in fact it isn’t. So you might be wondering, what kind of benefits will you get from guest posting? I’m glad you asked.
1.) It helps you establish your credibility as an expert in your niche – this breeds trust.
2.) It can help bring tons of traffic to your website. This of course increases your chances of converting these viewers to paying customers.
3.) It helps your website rank on search results which is one of the best ways (if not the best) to bring in thousands or even millions of traffic to your site.
4.) You can do it for free. Though other sites might require you to pay.
If you want a comprehensive guide on how to guest post, then check out my article about “The A to Z Guide to Guest Posting That Will Help You Grow Your Blog”. With the comprehensive guide that I wrote, you can start guest posting immediately after you’ve completed reading the guide.
3.) Don’t use all the social media platforms you can get your hands on.
Make no mistake, social media marketing isn’t free. While creating an account is free, keeping your account active and networking costs a lot of time and resources. And if you’re spending your resources on social media platforms where your target audience isn’t prevalent, then your marketing efforts would have been little to no avail. Instead of getting your business profile plastered on all the social media platforms you can get your hands-on, you’ll get better results (while spending less) if you just focus your resources on platforms where your target audience usually hangout. Using 2 – 3 social media platforms (depending on your budget) is a good number to start with.
4.) Do not compromise your web content’s quality.
Thinking that you have to produce fresh content daily is a common misconception that business owners fall for. Publishing 2 – 3 posts weekly is a good enough number. You can even produce 1 post per week if you’re publishing something that’s so comprehensive and thorough. If you publish a long post that’s packed with game changing tips, your readers will love you more than the sites who publish low quality to mediocre posts daily. The key here is to give your readers what they want. We all know that in most cases, people read because they have a problem that they want solved. It’s your job to determine what that problem is and to solve that problem by publishing something that answers it.
The more problems you solve, the more credibility you build as a business. This of course can easily turn your site visitors from simply readers to buyers. Think pull marketing. Creating quality content is one of its core elements so you should never compromise its quality in any way shape or form.
5.) Create a Linkedin account. Start connecting and prospecting.
If you aren’t in the know, Linkedin is the social media platform where professionals and business owners hangout. You won’t see anyone there posting selfies or talking about how awesome their biceps are since the users are more focused on business and career. This is a great place for you to market, connect and establish yourself as an authority by giving expert advice to others. This is especially true since Linkedin just recently released a feature where you can now publish long posts.
With this feature, you can start sharing in-depth advice to your target market and position yourself as an expert in the field. You can easily get referrals and endorsements from other users who can ultimately help you get more customers. Here’s a Linkedin marketing guide that I wrote that you REALLY need to take a look at – Warning: These Out-of-the-Box Linkedin Marketing Tips Are EXTREMELY Actionable and Effective
6.) Allow others to republish your post
Hold on. I know what you’re about to say. You’re about to tell me how this can get your site penalized, right? While you may be correct, you’re also mistaken if you think that’s all there is to it. There’s a proper way of doing this so it won’t damage your site. Think about sites like Search Engine Journal. What if someone contacts you from that site asking permission to repost your content since they liked what you’ve written. Do you just say no? Can you imagine how much of an opportunity you’d have missed if you did that?
Search Engine Journal has over 5 million visitors monthly. If they repost your article with your link in it, this usually leads to thousands of traffic headed to your site. So what exactly do you do? Fortunately for you, if SEJ is the one who contacted you, they already know how to properly repost a content. But if there are other sites who are asking to repost your content, you need to consider these.
1.) You need to tell them to use a rel canonical tag that would tell the search engines to credit the original source of the content which is your site.
* Note – Simply adding a link in the content saying that you are the source isn’t enough. Something like this can still hurt your site. Just ask them to add a rel canonical tag and you should be good to go.
2.) Check their site’s quality just to make sure that it isn’t spammy. If it is, then I suggest you don’t allow reposting.
3.) If their site is of good quality then there’s no reason for you to say no.
Here’s a post a Quicksprout.com that talks about the dangers of other sites reposting your content and what to do about it.
7.) Comment marketing
If anyone tells you that this strategy doesn’t work, I’ll tell you right now that they either haven’t tried it, or they DID try it but didn’t do it the right way. Before you do comment marketing, you need to consider these points.
1.) Make sure that the post/content you are commenting on is relevant to your target audience.
2.) You need to make sure that the website you’re commenting on has a decent amount of monthly visitors. Checking for social shares is also a good strategy.
A good way to determine the site’s estimated monthly visitor is to use similarweb.com.
3.) Make sure that your content provides value to the readers. You’ll never achieve anything if you just add a one liner comment on the post.
4.) Make the readers want to contact you after reading your comment. An effective way to do this is to give a solid advice and add something intriguing at the end of your comment.
Maybe something like this…
“While there are a couple more strategies that we implemented that helped grow our website’s traffic by 3 folds, what I shared above can do you wonders. Contact me if you need more help.”
5.) What I also like to do is add a signature on my comment. This is the signature I use.
This makes it a lot easier for them to contact me. And if they are looking for someone to help them with their writing projects, seeing how I’m a Freelance Writer will help remind them of that need. This then increases my chances of being contacted and offered more projects.
8.) Join groups and forums where your target audience hangout. In short – network.
The strategies I implement on this tip is quite similar to how I do my comment marketing. The websites I frequent on are Linkedin, OpenForum and Inbound.org. I tried joining the groups in Facebook but it just isn’t working for me. You need to show genuine concern for others if you want to succeed in networking. Without it, they won’t see you as anything more than just another person desperately spamming their links. Instead of downright pitching your services, I urge you to ask about their needs first and talk about how you can help them. Offering your help first makes them want to know more about you. It opens bridges and is a good way for you to establish relationships with others.
9.) By using a powerful sales copy, transition your social tribe’s mindset from being a reader to a buyer.
If you’re wondering whether or not marketing on social media platforms is worth the time and resources, you need to consider these points…
1.) There are roughly 1.4 billion Facebook users worldwide.
2.) The amount of time people use in Facebook is roughly about 700 billion minutes monthly.
3.) There is an average of roughly 190 million Tweets made DAILY.
These numbers tell us one thing – people hang out on social media sites and they love being there! And if your customers are on there, wouldn’t it make sense for you to be on social media sites as well?
If you’re new to social media marketing, you need to remember that the main challenge is usually to shift the mindset of your viewers from simply browsing and consuming content, to making them want to buy. Using a landing page coupled with a strong sales copy is the perfect solution for that. It’s important to note that a strong sales copy’s purpose is to get your readers to buy and not to entertain them. Other business owners tend to think that provided the copy reads well and does not have any grammar mistakes, it’ll do well as a sales copy. They can never be farther from the truth. More than not having any grammar mistakes and the write-up reading well, there are usually a couple of sales psychology/techniques used within a well written sales copy. These techniques can be as minute as using a “-” over a “.” or even aligning your copy’s text or not. Some of these points can be quite subtle yet it affects the overall impact of your copy’s ability to convert.
The article 12-Step Foolproof Sales Letter Template by David Frey (Founder of Marketingprofs.com) is by far the best resource I’ve seen when it comes to creating a powerful sales copy.
10.) Repurpose your content to increase it’s mileage.
Because producing quality content can be expensive, you need to get as much mileage out of your published contents. There are a couple of ways to go about doing this. You can turn your written content into videos, Infographics and slideshow presentations (among many others). You can then publish them on different platforms to increase your business’ visibility on the web.
While reading and learning is important, it will all be useless in the end if you don’t apply what you’ve learned. That said, don’t just read and have those “aha!” moments without actually acting on the things that you’ve read which you found valuable to growing your business.
Let’s hear it from you.
Whether you have questions, ideas, or tips about marketing that you’d like to share, don’t hesitate to do so in the comments section below. I look forward to reading your comments.
Photo attribution: Featured image courtesy of jiggoja at FreeDigitalPhotos.net