Last week I discussed lots of ways you can market online without having to spend a ton of money. The post got a bit long, so I decided to do part 2 this week so here it is..
17. Make Podcasts and Videos. Microphones and video cameras are cheap nowadays and excellent quality, the payback can be huge. By dispensing great info via voice or video, you’re creating Internet ‘ambassadors’ that can bring you new prospects from places you never expected. BONUS: Someone who joins your list after listening to your podcast or watching your video is far more likely to open and read your emails in the future.
18. Build an Alliance With Non-Competitors. Look for non-competitors who service the same niche you do. Make contact and see about promoting each others products to your own lists, thereby expanding both your sales and your list of new customers and prospects.
19. Build an Alliance With Your Competitors. This works especially well in service niches because successful people have more business than they handle. Plus one competitor might specialize in a certain size or type of project you prefer not to handle and vice versa. When you collaborate with your competitors, you can sometimes surprisingly double your business with very little effort.
20. Add Value. Whether you’re offering an affiliate product, your own product or just giving info away to build your list, add really good value. In the case of an affiliate offer, give away something that enhances the original product. In the case of your own product, give away the first chapter or two as a sample. And if you’re simply giving something away to build your list or as an added benefit to your readers, give them additional resources where they can get even more great information or the tools they need to implement your strategies. Don’t give cheap outdated bonuses as they make you look cheap and outdated.
21. Use Testimonials. Not just testimonials for the specific product you’re promoting, but also testimonials for yourself, your business, and even your methods. For example, you might use the left or right column of all your sales pages and web pages for testimonials from happy customers of all your products. And inside of your sales letters, place testimonials from people who back up what you say, such as experts who’ve done research that corroborate what you’re telling people in your sales message. Never make up testimonials because you’ll invariably get found out out and lose all your credibility.
22. Ask for Referrals. This is one you want to be consistent on. Ask your readers to pass along your emails (make sure there is a link to your sign-up page) ask followers to retweet your messages, and ask fans to “like” your pages and messages. Next, put a referral program in place that rewards your customers for referring new, paying customers. And finally, make it a policy to consistently ask and remind, in a very friendly, gently manner. Remember to always show your immense appreciation for those customers who refer new business your way. They are your bread and butter.
23. Do Teleseminars or Webinars. Teleseminars and webinars are excellent ways to connect with your customers and build your lists. You might do Q and A sessions or present a certain topic. Be sure to give lots of information, and save any product pitches for the very end. If you’re doing the webinar for a joint venture partner’s list, be respectful of the opportunity and make your partner look great for having invited you to speak to their people. You’ll build tremendous rapport with your listeners, and if you’ve presented them with great info, they won’t mind a little product pitch at the end. Most of them will be expecting it anyway.
24. Send Newsletters On A Regular Basis. You might have a list and you might send them offers, but do you send them real news and stuff they can use? If not, you might want to start. By sending them great tips they can use, they will be more likely to open and read your future emails, thus increasing your conversion rates on the offers you do send.
25. Take Your Best Photo. A professional photograph of yourself is something you can use everywhere, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, your websites, article directories, business directories, etc. Build recognition by using the same great photo and it will pay off. Having said that, I personally always use a professional avatar as I don’t really like my mug being bandied about the Internet.
26. Blog. If you don’t have a blog yet then start one and keep it up on a regular basis. Yes, even if you have a website, you should still have a blog because it allows you to better connect with your community and create a personal connection. Plus Google really love blogs, so if you set it up correctly you may also find you get some free traffic from your blog efforts.
27. Use Keywords. If you want to get found and ranked by Google, you need to use the keywords people are looking for and you have a chance of getting ranked on. It’s not always an easy balance, but investing in a good keyword tool and tutorial can help. (Don’t overuse keywords)..
28. Bookmark It. Social bookmarking is a good way to help others find your best articles and blogposts. Join sites such as del.icio.us, reddit, digg, technorati and stumbleupon and then bookmark your best stuff as well as other people’s best articles and blog posts.
30. Post in Forums. This comes with an important caveat. You should always monitor the time you spend on forums or it can eat up your entire day. (I found that out the hard way). But spending 30 minutes a day posting on the best forums in your niche is a great way to increase your visibility. Add a link to your website in your signature and info about your business in your profile. This way when other forum members find your posts helpful, they’ll have somewhere to go to sign up for your list or just get more information about your business.
31. Capitalize on Social Media. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn are great places to find people in your niche, to network and to build your own list. An entire library can be written about using Social Media in your business, so I’m simply adding this one in as a reminder.