Online marketing is simply defined as using the Internet to market products or services. Online marketing is also known as e-marketing, web marketing, and Internet marketing. Online marketing has a different meaning to many people, but essentially, it is about making, keeping, cultivating, and rekindling relationships.
There are five key components to effective Online Marketing:
1. Awareness. You can have the best product, service and website in the world but if nobody knows about it, what's the point.
2. Communication. Marketing communicates, educates and informs. Getting your message across to potential customers is the key to success. Product and Service information, pricing, videos, testimonials, how to contact you.
3. Connection. Buyers need to know, like and trust you and your organisation, your product and your services.
4. Service. Customer Service accounts for new sales and repeat customers. Your level of service is what will set you apart from your competiters.
5. Sales. Whether you are selling yourself, your products/services, or an idea. Online Marketing builds relationships and help close sales.
The key to online marketing is to maximise relationships and increase awareness. Its the most cost effective method of reaching a greater target market 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Online Marketing utilises a mix of online advertising, Pay-Per-Click advertising, Search Engine Optimisation, email marketing, social media and affiliate marketing to maximise the impact. Marketing takes time and the sooner you start the sooner you get results.
HOW ONLINE MARKETING WORKS
The key goal of online marketing is to maximise relationships, starting with increasing brand, product and service awareness. Online marketing, compared to other types of marketing, has the lowest cost and the highest potential to brand, build, and increase business. How you approach Online Marketing varies based on your target market, goals, management resources, strategy, previous history, competition, and industry distinctions.
Online marketing methods can include online advertising, online PR, paid search, search engine optimisation (SEO), e-mail marketing, social media, and affiliate marketing. To create a maximum impact you need to use a combination of methods regularly. Search Engine Optimisation takes time, but the earlier you start, the sooner you'll see results. SEO is a mix of site architecture, use of content, linking, frequency of content, and popularity.
Blogs are a huge driver for search engine optimisation. The way blogs are coded (their architecture), the frequency of content added to blogs, as well as the linking built into blog content management systems (CMS), make them search engine magnets. Consider including a blog in the overall online marketing strategy to boost awareness, communicate, connect, serve customers, and support sales. A blog can serve as a source of information and become a valuable piece of marketing collateral to help build marketing alliances. Content can include company news, "insider" information about products and events, and core values, all liberally sprinkled with key phrases that best describe the products and services to help boost search visibility.
The power of social media is undeniable. Social media allows millions of people to discuss, review, recommend, and give feedback about an organisation. Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are not merely propaganda tools. These are two-way conversations that support P2P marketing, allowing organisations to listen, understand, educate, and share valuable information about products or services. Social media marketing executed intelligently will save time and money, boosting visibility in search engines and on multiple web channels. For instance, every time a new blog post is created, there are tools that create automatic updates with a link to the new blog post, allowing people to post to the blog and feed it instantly to Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter accounts. One blog post gets immeasurable exposure.
E-mail marketing is a critical web marketing tool. It is also the heart and soul of spam. Don't confuse the two. Use a third-party e-mail management tool. It's more professional and legally compliant. Third-party e-mail management tools help manage contacts, maintain a current database, send e-mail blasts to appropriate groups, design professional-looking messages, stay off of ISP (Internet service provider) blacklists, and use online marketing best practices.
Your work e-mail might be flagged as spam if it's used directly to contact large numbers of recipients. While you might feel you get better results from direct e-mails, sending large quantities from a personal account can cause problems. Building an e-mail marketing program with a third-party management toolwill allow you to sell, serve, and stay in touch.
No matter which online marketing tool you choose, the only constant with web marketing is change. Online marketing works to brand, build, and boost business. It can help support awareness, get a message out, serve and connect with current and prospective customers, and generate sales. No one builds a house without a blueprint. The same is true of web marketing. Building an online marketing plan on a strong foundation is the healthiest approach to ensuring that web marketing works well!