Internet Marketing August 24th, 2007
The internet has come to play an integral role in a successful company’s marketing mix. With the high cost of ad placements, in the past only established companies could afford big budget ad campaigns, which would further torpedo their product, or service into the public eye. Because of this, smaller start-up companies were left struggling to stay in business, without promise of ever attaining a sustainable level of brand recognition.
With the evolution of the internet, search engines, and social networks, these unfairly weighted dynamics are quickly changing, and thanks to companies such as google, and there offline ad initiatives (like Google Audio, Google Video & Google Print), the “little guy” finally has a chance.
With internet ad revenue growing upwards of 30% a year, credit of foresight is due to the integrated internet marketing firms, the first business sector to acknowledge the importance that the internet could play in a business’s strategic marketing plan. Integrated marketing firms have learned to make use of offline media, such as commercials, radio, newspapers, and billboards, to create enough interest in a product or service to drive customers to the company’s website — all at remarkably efficient and reasonable pricing.
As traditional marketing companies continue to link up with online Internet marketing firms, people are taking notice. “The fox is in the hen house and its going to gobble a good portion of this business up before anybody realizes their history,” said Gene Dewitt, President of Dewitt Media Solutions.
Having dominated the internet, Google is eager to move offline, and has developed and test piloted a newspaper ad program that is targeted at small advertisers. With this affordable and easy to manage ad service, Google is attempting to transform adverts into traditional media, striking deals with radios and newspapers, to acquire and sell advertising space.
As a member of a rapidly evolving company who is ready to concoct their own marketing mix, I recommend the following top five points to consider when creating your very own marketing mix.
1. Develop a marketing plan that incorporates both online and offline marketing initiatives. If this is too difficult; consider hiring an integrated internet marketing firm to develop it for you.
2. Develop a site that will retain traffic. Consider the web design, its ease of navigation, and ensure that it is content rich including press releases, blogs, video, and audio players. Not only will these supply the customer with immediate answers, it will keep them coming back.
3. Develop a clear call to action, including a customer contact form on every page. Make it as easy as possible for customers to find you. This will also assist you in developing an interest-focused mailing list.
4. Develop a search engine campaign that will help your site return at the top of search results. Speak to search engine marketing specialists to assist you with deciding the best pay-per-click (ppc) or search engine optimization (SEO) mix for your business.
5. Develop a regular measurement and reporting system, and be sure to be open to reviewing and revising your marketing mix. Google Analytics is free and if you understand them properly (or hire someone to help you understand them) then you will have far more power over your internet marketing mix then ever before.