Internet Marketing – What is the Difference Between Selling and Promoting

How would your mood change if you were out just taking a leisurely walk. Someone gets in your face and rudely shoves a flyer or brochure at you, pushing their agenda. You can’t really pass them without knocking them down. They force you to see or listen to their sales pitch. Are you feeling receptive yet? Hardly. This sounds completely unpleasant and ‘pressure’ like this is never recommended. It does not encourage someone to cooperate with you and quite the opposite they may become ‘resistant’.

stay on the right track
The other obviously totally obnoxious sales strategy is when you answer your phone and either a person or a robot starts shouting a long diatribe about whatever their agenda is – sales, charity, or survey. (who listens). They do not stop as they spill out their script. The only way to stop it is to either just hang up or you literally have to shout ‘Stop! Not interested’ after they ignore all your polite, ‘no thank you’s’. Have these folks put you in the mood to buy in this atmosphere? Closer to phone slamming time especially since more than likely you have gotten several ‘appeals’ of this nature several times every day.

On the other hand, Internet Marketing is very different from other more intrusive mediums for marketing and sales. It is still sales and marketing, but on a very different level. You have the ability to not listen or not read whatever it is without getting in an altercation. Professional Internet marketers actually use a strategy called ‘ethical, permission-based eMail marketing’. This is where you do not contact anyone unless they request it (“opt-in).

The difference between selling and promoting is selling is trying to convince someone they want or need something you have, whether or not they are interested. Promoting is sharing information and then allowing the prospect to make a decision. Approaching someone who has expressed an interest has people coming to you and not you chasing them down. See the different dynamic?

Internet Marketing strategy is to build trust and relationship, by for one thing giving away information for free. Then if the person wants to know more, they come to you because they trust you. They may even feel subliminally that they owe you the business if they are convinced they need or want what you are selling. They appreciate that you tried to help them without any obligation.

When people consider you a winner, they want to know more about what you are doing. It is not you pushing it to where you can cause them to resist just because you are exhausting them. Give them a chance to think even if it requires a call-back. If you insist it has to be right now, then it may be never. Try to conduct a friendly transaction. They say people are much more likely to do business with a friend or acquaintance than just someone out of the blue. Remember to create a friendly atmosphere of trust before you try to sell something.

Use the Power of Search Engines

Search engines (SE) can either make or break your Internet business. You want to do as much as you can to optimize your website and advertising to take advantage of the benefits that the search engines can provide. You also want to take care not to do anything to get on their bad side.

get on board
You have probably heard the saying that ‘content is king’. That means that it is not some technical mumbo-jumbo that you need to learn. You need to provide a steady stream of good, original content (information) for your website visitors. This is what search engines call ‘value’. If you want the SEs to send traffic to your site, be sure that your site has ‘value’.

Even more accurately the saying should be ‘fresh content is king’. When the SE robots ‘crawl’ your site they are looking for new information. Initially when your site was built it was indexed according to the content, keywords, etc. Then they will check back every 30 days or so. If the robots do not detect any new changes, they will just turn around and exit, leaving you at the same place in the index as you were originally.

You should strive to keep your link on the first few pages of their search results. When people go to a search engine and search for your keywords they will see your link, click it and visit your site. (this is what is referred to as ‘free, organic traffic’).

The easiest and most efficient way to make sure you always have fresh content, is to either build the website on a blog platform (like WordPress), add a blog to the website as a page, or even as remote as a ‘backlink’. (a blog on a separate site that you can link to). This is much more simple than to try to change the site code, ads, images, etc. each month to create ‘fresh’ content. Back in the day that is what people had to do to stay fresh! So there was no getting away with having some knowledge of HTML code which can get complicated especially if you are new, or expensive if you have to pay someone to do it for you.

If you are at a social network, business forum or article marketing site, use your domain name in your signature (and hyperlink it) to create a link from there, back to your site. In the SEO world (search engine optimization) your focus as part of promoting your business should be to build hundreds of back-links over time. This is indicative that you are actively engaged in your business, rather than just some website that sits on the Internet collecting dust.

Things to Consider When Designing a Business Opportunity Website

Although there may be some important things to consider if you are designing a business opportunity website, the main focus should be to attract search engines so they will direct traffic to your site. It is also highly relevant to attract prospects that may become customers.

biz op site
With regard to search engines, it is actually best to focus on one niche at least per page if not the entire site. You want to make it easy for your site to be added to their index. That index is very important to any business because this is where people will find the links they have queried.

A swipe file that has a good list of keywords that you can use to help you in creating your content (information and advertising, etc.) is very helpful for defining your focus. “Targeted traffic” is the best kind of traffic as it zones in on your keywords (niche). Targeted traffic focuses on what you have to offer.

One of the main tasks for creating either content or a business opportunity website is keyword research. This is a very important and should not be overlooked. To do this you would take the obvious ‘root’ words that you know of that refer to your business, such as ‘home business’, ‘business opportunity’, ‘affiliate marketing’ and etc., to start with. There are various keyword research tools that you can use online and you can see how to build ‘more keywords from these root words to build your list of keywords.

For example phrases like ‘online home business ideas’, ‘money-making affiliate programs’, ‘best online business opportunity’, use those root keywords and show you a variety of ways to use them in your writing content and advertising. These phrases are referred to as ‘long tail keywords’ in SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

You can use those root words in different ways so that your content doesn’t sound boring or spammy (repeating the same phrase over and over again). With just little twists you can keep your writing interesting (and not get slapped for spamming keywords); and you can actually rank for multiple keywords in the same document.

With some of the better keyword research tools, they will show you more ways those root words are used and how many sites are using them in various formats. You can focus on using the root words in a way that fewer of your competitors are using them so there is less competition for that word or phrase. For example you see that 1000 websites use ‘home business ideas’ but only 500 use ‘ideas for a home business’. See how your chances may be improved with the tiny twist?

If you build your website to include a blog or at least to have a blog that is linked to your website, this makes it much easier to submit ‘fresh content’ to your website. This is an important factor as search engines like ‘fresh’. It is much easier to add a blog post than to try to keep redesigning a static HTML website your site has something ‘different’ that the search engines will re-index. As well, with a blog you can easily add meta “tags”, on the fly for each one of your posts rather than the old-school tedious HTML code.

To have a strong foundation for your business opportunity website or content, you just need to focus on welcoming your human traffic (prospects). For them the site should be easy to navigate with organized menus and site maps so that they can find exactly what they are looking for – ideally in multiple ways, without getting lost in the process.

New Home Business Start-Up – Having Target Goals

If you are really serious about wanting a successful home business, you should start right out being organized. This involves having lists that include tasks and clearly outlined target goals you need to accomplish.

aim for your target
A few tips about making ‘to do lists’: Do not try to put a whole year of tasks on one list. You should ideally have at least three lists – one for now (today or this week for example), one for near future (the month) and one for distant future (6-months to a year for instance).

One reason for this is so that you are not trying to be organized using a list that looks like a complete snarled (scribbled) mess. Every time you cross something out because it has been done* or been cancelled, it gets harder and harder to navigate. Remember you don’t want your lists to become another obstacle. Lists are to help you, not hinder you further by becoming tedious.

Another tip about lists is that you should be realistic. Don’t put something on the ‘now’ list unless you are absolutely sure you will do it today or this week. When you don’t get to it, cross it off and move it to the next list = whether it will be part of the newest ‘today’ list you will create or pushed out to ‘near future’.

A point about not doing what you projected or planned, is that it can get discouraging when you don’t accomplish what you intended. No just once or twice (stuff does happen), but as a rule. If you often do not meet your deadlines, it would be a good idea for you to analyze what is happening to keep you from your target goals.

If you are really sophisticated you might want to look into Gantt Charts. It is really fun if you like to plan in detail. It has charts that show the beginning of a project and what needs to be in place at that time. Then as you go along it lists the dependencies. For example, can’t use the swimming pool until it is filled with water. It outlines how much time and what resources are necessary to accomplish each step of your plan so you can be ready for the next step.

Remember the tighter your plan and the closer you stay to the target, the better the outcome for your business. If you are a born procrastinator, you may find that just having the plan will encourage you to accomplish your target goals pretty much on time.

If you want to be Interesting, be Interested

People communicate through various mediums. Talking is one of the best things there is about having associations. There are relationships with your family, friends and business associates. You would likely talk about different things to different people.

talk talk talk

If you have nothing to say, it is pretty hard to talk! Of course there is always ‘small talk’ for family – what the dog did – what the kids did, etc. Things will come to mind. With friends there are a few more topics that could be discussed including career and romance.

However if you need to write or communicate in some other way to the general public, business peers, etc. then it is probably a good idea for you to read something interesting that you can then later discuss. For example world news and unfortunately that may include extremely negative or problematic issues. Of course best to avoid ‘politics’ and ‘religion’ as they usually include conflict and confrontation. We don’t need too much of that.

However, ‘political correctness’ is the biggest threat to ‘freedom of speech’ that this country has ever experienced and it is a real danger. Next they will tell us what we should be thinking and we will be going out shopping for those tin foil hats so people can’t read our minds.

There is never any excuse to be cruel so right there that covers a lot. People do have the right to their opinion of course; but if it is hurtful in some way you might want to avoid mentioning it at all rather than to judge and thereby humiliate someone as well as yourself.

The point here though is when you have ‘writer’s block’. It is really not about writing. It is about not having any ideas. If you read the news, or a few words in a book, or even an advertisement on a cereal box you are likely to get some ideas. Stay interested in your surroundings so that you will have plenty of thoughts that come to mind that may create an interesting conversation.

Internet Marketing Strategies

There are many different techniques and strategies used for Internet marketing. Some are free, some inexpensive, and some can be a bit costly. At the same time, some are labor-intensive and some more passive. However no matter which way(s) you decide to go with your company, you should remember that the primary Internet marketing strategies involve using search engine marketing in some shape, way or form.

get the truth

You could really say that Search Engines are the ‘gods’ of the Internet. They used to just ‘direct traffic’ – and they still do. However now we know they have so much more power – sometimes for better, sometimes not. In any case it is a very good idea to learn what they ‘like’ and what they ‘don’t like’. You have a great advantage if you have them on your side, and the opposite is also true.

Starting from the time when you are ready to develop your ideas for an online business, the search engines can be very instrumental in helping you find what you need to know. They will show you which way to go and how to go there if you just ask. Obviously they appear to have an unlimited supply of information that can help you all along the way. ‘There is nothing constant except change’, so even after your business is up and running you will still need to consult the search engines periodically to stay on top of ‘what’s hot and what’s not’.

To give you an example of how really dynamic the search engines can be, if you just give then a few key words about your idea, they will send you back an expansion of those ideas, add more ideas, and provide examples and statistics. While even with information things are pretty much ‘trial and error’ on any given day, it is important to do a little research before you invest your time and money.

Search engine marketing can be done for free with a lot of research and ongoing work. However although this may not sound like fun, you will build a solid foundation for your domain if you get this going. It starts with really basic things like doing a little keyword research and over time building a list of relevant keywords. Then you would refer to that list when you are writing content for your blog, or creating an advertisement. You can do this work yourself or pay for ghostwriting or copy writing services using the search engine principles.

This is not difficult although there are more sophisticated issues that are related to this and you may or may not wish to take it that far. This is something that is pretty huge so it would be very much acceptable to start small and incorporate search engine marketing into your other strategies. As you proceed to develop your business, you could add more.

In any case if you don’t have time to do search engine research on an ongoing basis, and you have money, you could pay for various services to be done for you. With that said there is not a lot to be said for ‘submitting your links’ which seems almost useless, and in fact you have to be very careful you don’t sign up with a service that will over-do that concept and get you penalized for link spamming. Don’t get ‘sandboxed’ or be seduced by those big numbers when it comes to this. Search engines always want quality rather than quantity whether you are talking links or content.

Internet Marketing: Neuro-linguistic Programming

What in the world is Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP)? Just a few quick references from Google so that we are on the same page.

Think UP

“NLP means Neuro Linguistic Programming. In other words, it is the way we communicate with ourselves. Neuro means “of the mind”. Linguistic is the study of language. Therefore NLP simply means that you can programme the language of your mind”.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neuro-linguistic_programming

“Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) is an approach to communication, personal development, and psychotherapy created by Richard Bandler and John Grinder in California, United States in the 1970s”.

Now you may ask what on earth does this have to do with Internet Marketing? It can actually make the difference between success and failure – sticking with it long enough to make it or quitting without giving it a chance. One of the most important aspects of being able to succeed with a business is mindset.

Because probably the majority struggle for to find effective ways to generate profit, there is lots of room there to get discouraged, skeptical, and even angry. The answer seems to be to throw up your hands and quit when you don’t know ways to stay positive and have faith so you can carry on!

This process may start way back in childhood. Was there someone that was critical of you? If not an important relationship like family (the worst), even cruel little kids can really give somebody a ‘complex’ after a while. It’s not funny or cute and may permanently damage someone to be ‘bullied’, called names, or to be excluded from ‘the clique’. Kids don’t have consciences or the ability to reason on some levels so the cruelty is actually pervasive and we can’t even blame them.

The point here is that you begin to believe what you are told and you start to tell yourself the same thing throughout your life – you can’t succeed because you are fat, ugly, stupid, etc. You can’t start a business because you don’t know what you are doing, nothing works, you have no money.

The theory is that you build neurological pathways in your brain after these negative messages really become ‘engraved’ and then whenever there is an opportunity to beat yourself up you automatically go down those pathways and end up discouraged and ready to just give up.

The concept of NLP is that if you are aware of this, you can switch those pathways by telling yourself something positive. You can enumerate the many good things about yourself and tell yourself those things instead. Remember any good things you did or achievements you accomplished at any point in your life. It doesn’t matter how small you think it is, just replace the negative thoughts with good, positive thoughts.

Some days can be so dark that your mind will not even allow you to remember ‘better times’. In this case you immediately replace the negative thoughts with something pleasant. What do you like? Do you love the beach? What about the beach is it that you like? Is it the smell and/or sound of the ocean or the fresh air and sunshine? You would then visualize being there and enjoying the experience of being in this pleasant environment.

The point is to replace the dark, negative pathways with positive thoughts that will change your mindset. It is very important to stay positive at all times about your business for many reasons. Remember that the number one reason 95% of Internet businesses fail is that they quit.

Internet Marketing Services

If you are starting an Internet business you will invariably need to learn about the various services that are available to you. There are some that can run on ‘autopilot’ and some are more manual or labor intensive to use. One thing to realize is that even Internet marketing services that are called ‘autopilot’ require some effort to implement and should be monitored by a human.

im services

With that said there is always the option to pay for services, but again, they should be monitored as well. So as not to fall behind, be sure keep up with the industry standards in particular with search engine protocols. What is all the rage one quarter can become poison by the second quarter. That is one reason you need to stay on top of things.

Internet marketing services can actually begin to pay for themselves if you consider becoming an affiliate for that service. Especially because you can give first-hand testimony with your own real statistics as to the efficacy of the service or product, this is very powerful in marketing and advertising. The main point however is to sell the service yourself so you cover your expenses. Keep more money in your pocket by in essence receiving your service for ‘free’.

Since eMail marketing is one of the essential strategies under the Internet marketing umbrella, autoresponders are an essential element to any online business. It can’t be emphasized enough how important this aspect of promoting your business is. Therefore you want to ensure that you use only autoresponders with the best reputations in the industry. This will help you actually get your mail delivered and read. The autoresponder can also provide you with tracking and statistics and many other pieces of critical documentation.

Other important services are for example list builders to help you build a list of prospects that you can send communications to about your products; traffic generation programs to drive traffic to your links; and solo ads which are also related to eMail marketing.

Blogging is also a very important way to drive traffic to your website from the search engines. This is some of the best type of traffic, ‘targeted’. There are various tools you can use to help you build a blog and many applications to enhance it easily without much technical knowledge. Of course you need to use it frequently for it to be any good to you, so this may be one service you want to employ if you are not able to do it yourself.

Related to the latter topic SEO (search engine optimization) is a very important aspect of Internet marketing. Even if you only know the basics it will help you to design your site and your advertising copy. Real basic – research and create a list of ‘keywords’ to use in your blog and advertising content so that the search engines know how to index your site and people can find your link.

Social Network Marketing

Social network marketing is one of the latest in a series of additional avenues available to Internet marketers that can increase their visibility online. Although it seems to be mostly ‘social’ chattering, there is a real potential to promote business on social networks. The concept of ‘networking’ has the perfect atmosphere in this new medium and in fact ‘social’ can translate to ‘professional’ quite nicely.

social network marketing

Some feel that there are other technologies that have a much more focused, more conducive to business environment specifically because it is such a ‘free-for-all’ atmosphere on social networks. If you want to have a focus group or a meeting, there is Skype conference, there are applications like Go to Meeting, or other ways to have a private VoIP web conference room.

Maybe an idea is to meet your friend Charlies’ Aunt Emma on a social network and begin chatting. Then at some point you have a discreet* conversation where you tell her about the glories of having your own home business. If she is interested maybe you invite her to a web conference or group chat to explain the details.

*Discreet – one of the main precepts of ‘networking’ is ‘to know and be known without having an (obvious) agenda’. Don’t insult people by ‘selling’ the first few times you meet them. If you push or rush you may very likely lose a friend and an opportunity. If you take your time and build a relationship it’s much better in both respects.

Creating a casual, natural environment in which to build relationships is conducive to promoting friendships as well as business opportunities. You can find stats that tell you for example a job recruiter is much more likely to consider a candidate who they have met; or who they have an introduction to than just an anonymous person on a message board. Well it is the same thing with trusting someone in a business opportunity. It is very natural to collaborate with someone you know online more so than just some ad that is pushed into their face.

Social network marketing can be a great benefit to many different situations as well as to online business. Again, it can be a natural environment where people can share information. They can promote their various causes and interests to others. Obviously they can reach millions of people online that they probably would not have access to offline.

If we widen our circle of ‘friends’ we are then going to be exposed to more networks of friends and families. It is a really great opportunity if done right. Much like the ‘old-school’ online forums, we are able to communicate with others publically. We can therefore reach a large audience.

If applicable the conversation can become private with the use of instant (chat) and private (text) messaging if you wish to go into more depth and answer specific questions. Instant communications is a great benefit to conducting business. It has none of the difficulties that tedious phone calls, voice mail messages, and email present.

The First Internet Marketing Social Networks – Business Opportunity Forums

Long before Web2.0 and the advent of social networks, one of the best places to network on the Internet was business forums. What is more, in spite of the huge surge in social networking sites, a forum is still more conducive to a focused group discussion.

first social nets = forums

When someone starts a topic or thread in a business forum, with either a question or an observation, this will likely generate a conversation. This conversation can be very informative because people can see both the question and the answer and at the same time see feedback/opinions. The discussion can also get very lively as each person who participates in the thread adds his or her feedback and so on.

A business opportunity forum is still a great place to network and meet people online. You have something in common with them, as far as they are also participating in and promoting business opportunities in your niche and others. Many important alliances can be formed over time through the forum format because of the open and public atmosphere.

These alliances may just be on the level of eventually, discreetly approaching someone to join a program you really like (read: discreetly). Most ideally the alliance may eventually result in joint venture projects. A joint venture is often where business promoters can offer others some benefit or percentage of sales in exchange for promoting a product to their list for you. Another example of a possible joint venture opportunity may be for a developer to partner with a marketer. This can really be a magical alliance that greatly benefits everyone concerned because it gives everybody something they need but don’t have yet.

You may also find that some business forums have sub-forums where they may for example have classified advertising for services that involve marketing, ghostwriting, website development or technical support. If you have been fortunate enough to build relationships in the forum, it will be easier to sell something to people that respect you as a person and trust you enough to pay you for a service that they need. This is versus some anonymous name and number posted on a board.

On a business forum that gets lots of traffic, it is amazing how fast the links are indexed by search engines for all the world to see. It’s actually pretty amazing sometimes. This is not to say that you should ever start posting in a forum just to get your links indexed which is something like being a spammer. You won’t be very popular for long if this becomes obvious, all the way up to and including losing the privilege of having a signature.

However if you actually have value to add to the forum then by all means be sure to add your domain URL in your signature file so that it posts each time you add a comment or start a conversation. Usually affiliate links are not allowed because of ‘too much too soon’ but your own blog or domain would be perfect.