There is no way to discuss marketing your Internet business without mentioning the need for a social media strategy. For the sake of this discussion I will assume that you have some understanding what makes up social media but are still searching for a strategy.
I will admit that the internet is filled with experts of every stripe who will gladly share their opinion on the best way to market your website. If you were to take the time to research all their ideas you could walk away having a better understanding of what a social media strategy is. You would also have a major headache trying to make sense out of all your research, as no one ever agrees.
To save you from taking extra strength pain relievers, I have decided to boil those findings down into a pleasant and hopefully easy to understand post on developing a social media strategy.
You might have noticed the posts title. Well the fool proof part is easy you see There are no rules! That’s right no one including myself has the market cornered on how to best market your website.
For those of you who like your answers fast and easy you can leave now. For those who are interested in finding out the whys please continue but be warned we will be talking about common sense!
Here is an example why I say there are no rules. My Internet Business is all about Red Widgets. I have carefully constructed the site to utilize SEO practices. Everything is in place and I’m ready to go.
Darn, your website is also about Red Widgets and you also constructed the site to utilize SEO practices. Now that is not supposed to happen (in my plan). But ding dang that will be the reality, other folks with similar sites. So what do we do?
We come up with a social media strategy to market our sites and hope we can out do the other. To accomplish this a plan must be created and then implemented. Common sense will tell you that we will be using some of the same areas of marketing.
Common sense again…If there was a one social media strategy rules fits all plan, and we both implemented it, how would we defeat one another for getting traffic? That’s easy…I’m smarter then you. (Only kidding)
You see being smarter has very little to do with anything. Knowledge is important but it’s what you do with that knowledge that separates businesses. Book smart will only get you so far, so just stop putting that flimsy road block ahead of you.
Why there is no one size fits all example:
I was talking to another Internet Marketing Coach not long ago and he informed me that if someone was going to use Twitter as part of their marketing, they must tweet 8 times a day. Now he was firm on that 8 times a day. So I asked what is so special about the number 8?
His answer….if you could hear it as a recording…would be the sound of crickets in the middle of the night!
Twitter is one of those free marketing tools (you know I love free) that you use (like every other tool) in a way that works best for you. Lets face it some folks are natural born tweeters…others are somewhat challenged. By the way the I think the #8 was his lucky number. You can pick any number and build a case as why that number works best….for you.
Everyone has access to the same tools, just use them as best you can. Sometimes not knowing that something can not be done is a blessing. Take a look at all the successful folks out there that didn’t realize they weren’t supposed to be successful.
How do you determine the right number of tweets for you? Trial and error, time constraints and writing ability. Simple.
Most folks fall into one of two categories when it comes to implementing their social media strategy.
The first group believes all the hype about how difficult this is, so they place their business in the hands of others. Is this bad? Not if you:
(A) Have the money to spend.
(B) The amount of money (asked for) is reasonable, to you.
(C) Find someone you can really feel you can trust.
If any of one of those three are lacking….don’t do it.
The second group will do the work themselves but they look for the “quick and easy” way. Their problem compounds itself because they do the easiest of things but never on a consistent basis. They fail to see that all their doing is nothing more then dipping their big toe into the social media lake without a strategy. How do they compound the problem?
When they see they aren’t getting much in the way of results, they panic. They look around for a “quick and easy” fix to their problem. They become easy prey to the snake oil salesmen, who promise great results with no work. End result they end up spending monies on programs that are useless.
So what about you? What should your approach be? I’m glad you asked.
(1) Understand the tools at you disposable before you create a social media strategy. It’s not as complicated as folks make it out to be.
(2) Set goals for your internet business. Write them down, be realistic and then cut them in half.
Set your sites high but understand nothing ever goes as planned.
(3) Now develop your social media strategy to fit your strengths. I often hear it said the most difficult and time-consuming pieces are the most effective. Two things to remember when you hear statements like that.
First, there is nothing you are using that is difficult or time-consuming. Like everything else in this Internet World, there is a learning curve, get past it and your fine. A little ways back I did mention folks will do the “easiest of things.” By that I meant they might post a few comments on Facebook (which is easy) but they didn’t give it much thought…no direction.
Second, there should never be just a few pieces to your social media strategy. You must make sure they all work together. If you do, then the plan works and only then will you be effective. No one or two pieces will bring you the results your after.
In conclusion. it’s easy to lose your way in this business world. All you have to do is just relax, use your common sense and develop a social media strategy that makes sense to you….and you will always be on target.Learn More
I get many requests (and I’m grateful) from folks who want to build a website. Creating an Internet Business is one way to make income that can always come in handy. I am a firm believer that no one can make too much money (despite the occupy Wall Street and our present administration beliefs). Matter of fact I have never had a client ask me “How do I limit my income.”
I think it would be safe to assume then, that you being here wanting to know how to build a website, that you are not opposed to the idea of making money.
Where does one begin when considering to build a website? No I am not going to take you through a check list to determine if you are cut out to go into business. Let us just assume you are. You are over 18 years of age you know how to use the Internet and you know that to build a website and running an Internet Business does take work.
The first decision you must make is a simple one. Do you want to build a website or will you pay to have someone do it for you? In other words do you want to throw money down a hole and learn nothing by having it done…or do you want to gain the knowledge and become your own master.
It should be obvious which side of that picket fence I stand on. I feel so strongly on the subject that I tell every client in the first session that my goal is to give them knowledge so they will NOT have to pay someone again. Learn what it takes to build a website. Learn how to market that site and leave your poor wallet closed. Trust me your wallet will thank you.
The first hurdle is figuring out which market you will get into. Again I’m always told “It doesn’t matter what the market is as long as I can make money.” Wrong answer. No doubt about it. Just because I build a website in a particular market doesn’t mean you will be successful in that market as well.
If you lack the interest in the market then everything you do will reflect it and your business will fail. Your website is a living thing that you must tend to, if it is to grow and mature. Lack of interest leads to neglect, end of story.
I should note there are some markets you would do well to stay away from. Which markets? Try staying away from Religion, Politics, Professional Sports, Get Rich Quick, and sites that are solely about Art, Books, Music, Electronics and Travel.
I realize that some of these markets you have seen, heard or have even been encouraged by various Gurus to build a website about.
Have you ever run through deep snow? For those of you in the south an inch of snow is not considered deep. I’m talking running through snow that comes almost thigh high. If you have, you will understand how exhausting and non productive that can be. If not trust me it is not something you want to do a lot of. These markets are like running through that deep snow.
Just a note here…don’t confuse products with markets.
Once you have decided which market you will build a website in…you then have to create a plan of attack. Yes you need a plan before you build a website. You need to know how you are going to attack and overcome the competition (business is a war).
A great part of your plan is to understand how to use keyword phrases. Consider keyword phrases as your ground troops attacking the weakest points of the market. By carefully laying the foundation of your site with keywords you will position yourself for success once you implement your marketing plan.
So is that all you need to build a website, keywords? Of course not there are numerous nuts and bolts that go into building your business. You will need to understand how the internet works, search engines, directories and the not so mysterious SEO to name a few.
What does it take to build a website? Simply put knowledge and a big dose of common sense. If you are serious about getting into an Internet Business and want to build a website, then you should. Before you start…do a little research, write down a ton of questions and then find a mentor who is more interested in you then your money.
Good luck and push ahead.Learn More
If you are an old hand at creating an Internet Business then you can relate with those who are struggling to understand the bits and pieces of information that are necessary in this endeavor.
Why does everyone just assume that folks understand the basic workings of the Internet? Could it be due to the prevalence of the Internet in our lives. After all how hard could it be? Everyone knows the basics. Why it’s just like driving.
Cars are everywhere. We see folks driving everyday, sometimes badly but by the time we are ready to drive we pretty much have it figured out. Heck there are computer games that teach us to drive and fly etc etc. It’s almost second nature to us..sure we need a few instructions but we’re not talking rocket science here. That is the same thought process of folks on the Internet today.
But! For all of you out there that have been driving for years, I have a challenge. You are all experienced drivers so your challenge is to climb up and get behind the wheel of a big rig (18 wheeler). No I wouldn’t expect you to maneuver it..that would not be fair. All I need for you to do is to list the 26 things that you must check…. before you start the truck up. Driving is driving correct?
Well being on the Internet is not the same as doing it. We all have used the Internet before but do we really understand it? I think not.
Today we will be talking about a Search Engine, I will try to keep it simple, so all you experts are excused for today.
Definition of a Search Engine
A Search Engine is a software program (which you probably already knew) that when asked (you type in a word or phrase) will search it’s data base (not the entire WEB) and bring forward those website articles that best fulfill your request.
How does it work?
A Search Engine will use a program (referred to as a crawler) to go into its data base and search the HTML documents it has gathered. It will then use another program referred to as a indexer (which reads the Html documents) then indexes the documents for the results.
OK before you say this doesn’t make sense, put it this way.
1) You go into a Library (Search Engine) and ask for information
2) The Librarian (A crawler) will search through the Library (Search Engine) with the help of an assistant (indexer) who (having no life has read every document there) indexes the results in an order that it feels is relevant to your search.
3) You are then given the results to look through.
Is every Search Engine Equal? Is Google better then Yahoo?
No they are not equal but they generally all work the same. Yes in my opinion Google is far superior as the results (in my opinion) are more accurate because they use different algorithms.
So what is an algorithm? In the context of what we are talking about an algorithm is telling the Search Engine (A) How to determine the relevance of information it is searching. (B) What the steps are on how to accomplish that goal. Perhaps we can talk about Algorithms at a later time.
The goal today was to help you understand not all pieces of the web are difficult to comprehend. Matter of fact there isn’t any piece in the system that can’t be explained in simple terms. One of your tasks when deciding on creating an Internet Business is to make a commitment, that you will understand these parts.
You want to educate yourself, to relieve you of the burden of not knowing. Not knowing kills more dreams then a lack of imagination.
As always I would enjoy hearing from you.Learn More
April 2010 I wrote a post titled 10 Seconds To decide. In it I stressed the importance of presenting a site that was “Simple” yet inviting to the reader. Now I took some heat over that remark (not that I care) actually being accused of being “old hat, out of step and boring” just to name a few.
Now it is true that I can become boring (even to myself) and it’s been a while since I graced a dance floor (so yes I might be out of step) but that wasn’t what was meant.
No I’m afraid there are those who feel that I’m not teaching the up to date flash and dash that is available to trash up your site today. (Oops!) True so true and I’m the first to admit it. After all, I care about making money…don’t you?
What could I possibly mean by those last remarks? Simple really. People mistakenly believe that their website must look a certain way in order to fit the perception of what a “Professional Site” looks like.
Where do folks get these ideas…by joining the pack of course. The pack, those who are easily blinded and led because they like the shinny glittering stuff that litter websites. Once seen they only hear the words of the anointed ones (those who say they are making buckets and buckets of money…but are they?) and so they follow. They drink the snake oil, and dance to the tune of (I must do this and that because everyone else is) and…it’s shinny!
Stop for a moment and consider this. Do you really think the giants of the internet world got where they are today…because they followed?
Moving past all of that I would encourage you to look upon your internet business as a living thing. Let us for the sake of discussion consider it human. Now put your site in the position of being a stranger to the rest of the world.
What happens when you look at a stranger? Do you instantly know this person? No you don’t but you do get an instant sense, a reaction of what you see. You stereotype (not a bad thing to do, despite what the political correctness sheep utter) until you have a chance to strip away or confirm your gut reaction.
Unfortunately you usually don’t get folks taking a great deal of time to get past their gut reaction to your site. They glance…don’t like and they are gone. But what if they take a few moments to really look at the site. What will they see? How will they feel? What will they do next?
First of all you want to make a good impression when folks meet your website. So tuck in that shirt, straighten that tie, comb the hair and smile. In other words make sure your website is neat, clean and ready to impress.
Avoid any and all distractions. You want to engage the visitors not enrage them. Don’t bombard them with annoying flash ads and obligatory video because you think its what the visitors want.
Second be sure that when your site opens its mouth (content) it is able to connect with the visitors. Engage, inform, be humorous, but by all means get your message across.
Thirdly don’t lose sight of the goal. You did not put this website together to impress folks with your grasp of technology or your passion for artsy brilliance. No you put this internet business together to make money.
So stop with all the fluff that helps increase your bounce rate. Present your message as simply as possible.
Do you want to make money? Well do you? Then stop and learn a thing or two about sales. You will find the easiest way to make a sale is to simply present your message in a clear uncomplicated easy to understand way. Do not confuse your visitor with flash and dash as that creates a distraction which takes them off your message.
Bottom line being…”old hat…and simple” never has to add up to boring. If done correctly however it adds up to sales.Learn More