When I first began doing business on the Internet in 1997, I believed a widely circulating rumor that all one had to do to become successful (and wealthy) was to build a Web site.
Well, after doing so and repeatedly making mistakes and failing, I quickly became depressed with online marketing. Being accustomed to accomplishing many, if not most, things I set out to do (except eighth grade Algebra), I figured I had finally met my match. I also figured that I must simply be the only person online not making a six-figure income. Oh, the price of naivete!
Fueling this idea were ongoing unsolicited emails from others who, alternatively, stated they were raking in hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. Some were even willing to (and did) provide "checks" as proof! Today, I'm embarrassed to admit to my naivete, as I now realize that given the right tools virtually anything can be fabricated online.
In an effort to save you from emotional woes, or relieve you of them if you have already encountered them, I am going to provide you with information on how you can realistically garner success online as I have now, successfully, three years later.
And you, likewise, can use these same methods to successfully promote any product, service, or information online as well. So, let's get started.
Prior to beginning your active promotion campaign, initiate a pre-promotion campaign by joining as many online discussion lists relating to your area of business as possible.
You should be able to easily find such lists at "Egroups.com" (http://www.egroups.com), "Topica.com" (http://www.topica.com), "Listbot" (http://www.listbot.com), or a few other lesser-known list groups.
Next, place a reference to whatever you wish to promote within your email signature file so that when you post notices, questions, concerns, or answers to your lists, information regarding your business will automatically post along with it in your signature file
for others to see and, hopefully, acquire what you are promoting within it.
Your signature file reference should contain an attention-grabbing headline along with 4-5 lines of text containing information regarding your business. Review the "Help" section of your email software or manual in order to learn how to set up your signature file correctly.
Pull up your favorite search engine(s) and search for "news sites," "news posts," or any related term. What you are seeking are sites that allow posting of news releases and notices regarding your business, products, services, information, ventures, etc.
These are very detailed and instructional on how to get your information posted within them. One of the most recognizable sites is the Internet News Bureau, which requires a fee. However, there are other sites, many of which are free, as well.
Also, forward news releases to the editors of any online ezines as well as offline magazines, most of which will have Web sites as well. You can also locate most of these through search engines by searching the term "ezine." Popular sites for offline publications include the AJR Newslink at [http://ajr.newslink.org] and Gebbie's Press at http://www.gebbiesinc.com [http://www.gebbiesinc.com.].
If you are familiar with various details of your business (and you should be), consider the idea of providing tips, shortcuts, advice, and any additional helpful information to editors of ezines and magazines.
There are also databanks whereby you can list your articles for other publishers and editors to freely use with the condition that they maintain your byline with your article to insure credit to you. One such databank is at http://www.ideamarketers.com, and there are more.
Ongoing content is the primary need at any publication. At the end of your article, include a notice that is commonly known in the publishing industry as a "by-line." This is actually 2-tools-in-1. First, the content of the article itself, then, the byline containing information regarding your own business, product, service, or information.
Ezine ads are great, as long as their publications contain high enough circulations to warrant the CPM (Cost Per Thousand). However, the drawback is that many readers pass them by, naturally, having more interest in the content of the publication.
Additionally, ads tend to get "lost" in publications that publish a high number of ads in issues. In most cases in the offline publishing world, an ideal CPM rate is 10,000 readers per $1.00 spent. Try for this same ratio in your ezine ads as well. A great resource for advertising in ezines is the Ezine Directory (http://www.ezinedirectory.com).
Love has been involved in business marketing for 17 years and operates several diversified online ventures. See his extensive Web site at http://www.kennylove.net.
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Article Submitted On: June 13, 2000
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