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PostPosted: Sun Oct 21, 2007 6:42 pm    Post subject: Advertising  Reply with quote
How do you advertise? Do you have a budget?
Let us know, and tell us if it works!
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2007 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Here is my basic Online & Offline Overview for everyone. Hope it helps!

Online Marketing

Internet Marketing can seem pretty intimidating at first glance. You may find yourself asking questions such as - What are my options? Where do I start? How does it work? What is a marketing campaign? Virtual Marketing campaign Development has many avenues & possibilities, some still not explored. Here we will cover the TOP 8 Virtual Campaign types widely used throughout the world. Just remember that it takes Dedication, Discipline, Determination along with goal setting & follow-through to succeed in ANY campaign Venture.

1. Search engines
2. Linking strategies
3. Viral strategies
4. Public relations
5. Traditional media
6. E-mail publishing
7. Networking
8. Paid advertising

1. Search engines

Search engines play a large roll in internet presence. I'm sure you have typed a few words in the google or Yahoo search box and clicked enter to find something a time or two. That just goes to show why it is important that your site is indexed properly by the engines so that your site pops up when someone else is searching for a relevant term. A SEO (search Engine Optimization) campaign is an ongoing effort, don't be fooled by the people who think that a quick meta tag & a submission will do the trick.

While your Meta tags & submissions are Very important in this campaign, there is much more to consider. Example: Content Vs. Keyword Density - A mathematical way of measuring how many times One word appears in your content, thus making it a Power KeyWord that needs to be used in your KeyWord Meta tag.

Our site has a few free tools for you to play with in the SEO section. They will help you optimize your site (in a Basic Sense). We suggest hiring a professional once you have a budget for it. Make sure to read through the Articles in the SEO section as well, they will give you a better understanding of what SEO is all about.

2. Linking strategies

Linking Campaigns go along with your overall SEO campaign (an Additional Measure). To keep it simple think about it like this: The more links that point to your website = the more potentials that will visit. Lets keep in mind that the better the site ranks your link is on that points to you, the better responses you will get. This is an Ongoing campaign.

Examples of campaign types: Classified ads, Directory listings, Link exchanges, Articles with your link, testimonials with your link, Etc.

Most people forget about Outbound links & how they hurt you. Lets say that your website is a water bucket, the more outbound links you have on your site = the more holes in your bucket (places for the visitor to leave you). With the water rushing out of your bucket faster for every outbound link, that means you need 2x more inbound links to help keep water in the bucket. Limiting your outbound links is a plus.

The Scorpion Agency Submission Service will auto submit your site to a minimum of 1,500+ Search Engines & Directories.

3. Viral strategies

Viral strategies seem to be a favorite to lots of virtual Campaigners. Viral Marketing got its name from the Virus (a self replicating organism). They key here is to develop/Design a campaign that encourages others to deliver your message for you. Yahoo mail is an example, they provide a free e-mail service with there advertising. Lots of people use Yahoo mail & deliver the yahoo message daily without realizing they are virally marketing for yahoo. Anther example be to have a tell-a-friend option on your website targeted at your visitors, if they like what they read, they can tell a friend about your site Via e-mail from a link you provided for them.

Get creative with this one, there are limitless options available.

4. Public relations

Public relations - getting press coverage. PR is a POWERFUL mode of marketing/Advertising. If you can get a news release picked up by several print or Internet publications youíll get a huge boost in traffic, letting the news articles carry your marketing message. Youíll need to have a truly newsworthy event, contest, article, publication, free service, or no decent publication will consider it news. Coming up with ideas is free to inexpensive (when hiring a consultant). While there are free news release services, expect to pay several hundred dollars to have your news release sent to hundreds of subscribing periodicals.

5. Traditional media

traditional media - news releases & paid advertising. A very effective way to promote your site is to place a small ad in a targeted market publication, offering some portion of an article and pointing readers to your URL or an autoresponder e-mail address to read the whole article. This way your site serves as an online brochure, providing full information to consumers day and night. just make sure that all your companyís literature, cards, letterheads, and envelopes carry your website URL.

6. E-mail Publishing

E-mail Publishing - developing a business website a e-mail campaign is like a wedding without vows, church, dress, paperwork, etc.. The website is the partner who passively waits for visitors to come. While the e-mail campaign is the bold, active partner who goes out to where potentials are and invites them to come visit. Together they make a great couple. Examples campaigns such as: Newsletters, press releases, updates, greeting you cards, surveys, etc.

7. Networking

Networking is a key element in Any business (online or Offline). The local Chamber of Commerce is a great starting point & can help build your business greatly within your community. Networking isnít the fastest campaign, However it is the basis of relationships that will grow your business Via word-of-mouth over the years. (this is a long term "ongoing" campaign)

8. Paid advertising

Paid Advertising is another method that comes up all the time. here are a few examples:

* Banner ads - Basically these are 468x60 pixel static/animated and linked graphic ads that appear at the top of a webpage.

* Paid Listings - while there are free classifieds & directories out there, most of the reputable ones also offer additional exposure services placing you in prime spots of there website for better views
* Sponsorships - longer term paid ads on websites or e-mail newsletters.

* (PPC) Pay-per-Click - Links can be purchased on search engines such as Google & Yahoo, The price per click for the top spots depends upon what your competitors are willing to bid.

* Pay-per-Sale - popularly known as an Affiliate Program. The webmaster or business owner signs up work at home motivated individuals & partnering businesses offering them a % of each sale generated through a tracking system that gives credit to the individual or business that referred the customer.

* Paid ads in newsletters - There are hundreds of thousands of e-mail newsletters, many of which have very cost effective advertising fees. (Note: Opt-in Newsletters have a more targeted market thus reflecting a higher advertising cost)

Offline Marketing - (LSM) Local store marketing

Individual store marketing efforts designed to develop sales opportunities in the area immediately surrounding a particular store.

LSM Includes

1.) Local advertising efforts - Local newspapers, school bulletin advertising, local publications, local communities, etc.
2.) Sales Promotions - Monthly sales promotions & events plus the advertising & sales materials that support them.
3.) Direct Marketing - Distribution of door hangers, flyer's, business cards, direct mail, post cards, etc.
4.) Support or sponsorship of local community & charity programs or events.

This LSM Publication is a working tool. It is the base from which you can customize a store-specific plan to build immediate sales & long-term success. We've included several worksheets to help you in your efforts to constantly improve your local marketing efforts. These can help you & your staff shortcut future planning efforts & maximize their success. Taking the time to understand these worksheets & update them will determine how to best utilize your limited time & budget resources.

Step #1: Identify specific objectives & strategies to meet your profitability goals

Evaluate your stores marketing strengths & weaknesses to determine how local promotions & advertising can help you meet your unit & profitability goals. The following are some questions, which can help in your assessment.

Are you Successfully reaching your best prospect audience?

1.) Have you clearly identified a local profile of your current customer (Age, income, ethnicity, etc.)?

2.) Do you believe that this profile matches the profile of your prospect (Potential Customer)?

A.) How is it similar?
B.) How is it Different?

3.) Are there specific geographic target areas (Zip codes, neighborhoods, etc.) or Target audiences (Caucasian, Hispanic, German, etc.) in which you should concentrate your efforts for greater return?

Historically, has your local advertising worked as well as it could have?

1.) Has it driven immediate traffic into your store?

A.) How has its success been evaluated?

2.) Is your current local advertising message relevant to the audience that you are targeting?

3.) Is your advertising straightforward & easy to understand?

A.) Does it have one primary message?
B.) Are you trying to say too much in a small space?
C.) Does it stand out from other advertising?

Step #2: Identify Opportunities

An Opportunity is defined as something in your trade area that has the potential to create or increase sales &/or awareness for your company. Your trade area is defined as the geographical area surrounding your store where most of your customers live, work or shop. This is the area you should concentrate your local marketing efforts.

Once you have identified likely audience segments & their location, find ways to target them directly.

1.) Use materials/publications that allow you to efficiently target households in neighborhoods where your audience lives.

A.) Church Bulletins
B.) Little League rosters
C.) Local Club rosters
D.) Chamber of Commerce Materials
E.) School athletic program rosters
F.) Use your imagination, there are Thousands of possibilities! Or refer to our Marketing Tips section(s)

2.) Use flyers &/or door hangers to reach your audience where they live &/or shop.

3.) Utilize bilingual materials to reach a larger Hispanic/Russian/German/etc. opportunity audiences.

Determine the best local events &/or charities to support, based on relevance & visibility

1.) Which would be most relevant/meaningful to your target audience?

2.) Minimize the number of events or programs you support, maximize your participation & your visibility.

Leverage the corporate advertising by supporting key Tv & Radio messages in print

1.) New radio spots &/or "Offer" tags will be running in your market to support each monthly promotion.

2.) Matching the newspaper/print message to the promotional radio message will increase your stores opportunity for success.

Step #3: Plan the Program

This will ensure the success of the program. You need to determine what resources you need to empty prior to, during & following the promotion to increase the likelihood of success.

Determine program requirement

1.) People
2.) Marketing Materials
3.) Premiums/give away items
4.) Budget

Evaluate if the costs of the program will result in a decent return on the investment

1.) Pre-determine how much your individual store will be investing in the program, including incremental employee hours & out-of-pocket costs.

2.) Project how much additional business the program will create

A.) Does your projected return equal or exceed the costs?
B.) If not, are there ways that you can economize without jeopardizing the success of the program?

Step #4: Execute the program professionally

1.) Advertise for at least one week prior to & on the days of the promotion

2.) Prepare the staff for the program/promotion

A.) Encourage full participation & commitment; Get staff excited while ensuring that their expectations are reasonable.
B.) Make sure that the staff has seen/heard samples of all advertising & marketing materials.
C.) Ensure that all employees know the parameters of this program &/or promotional offer & can communicate it clearly to customers.

3.) Once you commit to a promotion or other program, follow through on the plan

A.) Make sure that you have all point-of-sale materials displayed 3-5 days prior to the kickoff & throughout the promotion.
B.) Staff adequately
C.) Have any premiums or give away items on hand
D.) Ensure that you have a contingency plan in place, in case you need incremental materials or staffing to fulfill your promises.

Step #5: Evaluate the program (Final step)

1.) During the duration of the promotion, track traffic (Phone & Foot), sales & Coupon redemption.

2.) Evaluate actual results. Compare the time, costs, & efforts associated with the program. Did it pay off?

3.) Include qualitative evaluation as well as quantitative data.

4.) Evaluate & write down specific tactics that worked well or didn't work

A.) What worked?
B.) What didn't work?
C.) Which specific tactics were easy to implement?
D.) Which were not worth the effort?
E.) Which program/tactics created the most sales for the least amount of money?
F.) What can you & your team do to improve the promotion or local advertising in the future?

Author: Eric Lyon - Scorpion Agency
Marketing Consulting - Website Design | Webmaster Mafia Forums
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2007 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Now thats a posting!!
Great read!

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