If you’re selling a digital product, then there is another very effective way to gain a lot more sales and that is to get other marketers to promote it for you. The best way to do this is via ‘affiliate marketing’ and learning about affiliate marketing is important if you want to understand a lot of the conversation you’ll find in marketing forums and elsewhere.
Essentially, an affiliate is someone who promotes an online product in exchange for commission. So, if you sold an ebook for 40% commission, that would make you an affiliate. To do this, you simply use a URL that is unique to you. When someone clicks on that link, they will be redirected via a page that will leave a cookie on their computer and they will be identified as having been sent by you.
One of the great things about SEO is that once you’ve climbed to the top, it doesn’t have to cost you much at all to stay there. The problem is that it can take an awfully long time to get to that point.
PPC meanwhile offers you the precise opposite strengths and weaknesses. PPC stands for ‘Pay Per Click’ and is the main form of advertising online. Pay Per Click essentially means that as an advertiser, you only get charged each time someone actually clicks on one of your adverts. So, in other words, it doesn’t cost you anything to have your advert published on a website – if no one ever clicks on it, you will never pay a cent!
But each time someone does click it, you will be charged X amount of money. This has a lot of handy advantages, as do many of the other features of PPC. So, let’s dive in and take a closer look…
Now it’s time to look at one of the biggest pillars of internet marketing of all: SEO.
SEO is ‘Search Engine Marketing’ and this basically means that you’re trying to get your website to show up in search results. Of course, you’re not going to be able to show up high in every search result and so this is where keywords and targeting come in.
A keyword is essentially a word or a phrase that people are going to search in order to find your site. When people go shopping online, they will almost always start with Google. And when they start with Google, they will begin by searching for the thing they want. Very often, this will mean that they search for something like ‘Buy Hats Online’.
The key to effective social media marketing is the exact same as the key to effective content marketing: providing value.
Unfortunately, this is something that a huge number of businesses have absolutely no idea how to do and that results in some very poorly managed social media.
Take a look at the social media pages of your typical local B2B companies and you will find that they tend to post some rather uninspiring and vapid statuses and posts. You’ll see things like:
“Find out why our contact management solution is the best in the business!”
“Order our EPOS system today to start serving your customers better!”
This is nothing but blatant self-promotion and not even interesting self-promotion. Ask yourself: why would anyone be interested in following that? What are they gaining by reading your posts?
There are many different aspects to good internet marketing, which include SEO, press releases, social media marketing, influencer marketing and more.
Once upon a time, internet marketing could mean simply picking one of these facets – such as SEO – and then trying to spam it until a site got to the top of Google and started getting thousands of views.
Today though, this method just doesn’t work and in fact is much more likely to get you penalized by Google.
Today, the only way to succeed online is by delivering quality and the best way to do that is by updating your blog regularly. This is the central tenant of content marketing and as you will see, content marketing can provide the backbone of your entire digital marketing strategy…
As we saw in the introduction, internet marketing is for everyone and can apply to many different types of business. For the purposes of this book though, we are going to broadly categorize readers into two groups:
– Those with an existing business they want to promote
– Those wanting to set up an online business or make money directly through internet marketing
And for now, we’re going to concentrate on the second group. If you already have a business, this is still worth reading but if you’re in a rush to get to the good stuff, skip through to the section on website creation.
Internet marketing simply entails promoting your business on the web. Any marketing activity that is carried out online is considered ‘internet marketing’ and that includes:
Search engine optimization (SEO)
Social media marketing
These various pillars of internet marketing can each help you to bring more visitors to a website or a blog and that in turn then gives you the opportunity to promote your business and hopefully drive ‘conversions’ (i.e. turning visitors into customers).
Most people are on Pinterest for a reason. You are probably there in the hopes of creating brand awareness and boosting your business. This means sending traffic back to your website or blog. What is the best way to do this? What is a simple way to let Google and other search engines send you lots of targeted, relevant, free traffic?
The answer lies in writing your pin descriptions in a very specific way.
First off, make sure your descriptions are long enough. One study that looked at thousands of pin descriptions shows descriptions with 200 to 300 characters were the most repinnable. You should also use very specific words and phrases to convey your message.
Pinterest provides more referral traffic than any other social media site not named Facebook. As a matter of fact, Pinterest is the #2 referrer of traffic to websites on the entire Internet, not just compared to its social media counterparts. The site passed the 150 million active monthly users mark in late 2016, and is still growing rapidly.
Now that you have some idea about how big Pinterest can be for your business, let’s talk strategy.
Pinterest has done a few things the last couple of years to provide better analytics to business owners. Let’s take a look at a few ways you can analyze your Pinterest presence and marketing efforts, to make sure you are getting the most out of the social media giant.
To some extent, you can tell when people are more likely to be on Pinterest. Data shows that, across all topics and areas of interest, Pinterest traffic is the heaviest between 2 PM and 4 PM on weekdays. You will have the next best chance of connecting with a lot of traffic at nighttime on weekdays, as that is the second busiest period for traffic. These are just averages, however. You need to monitor your own Pinterest account to see when engagement is the highest for your pins and boards.
Understanding when to pin is important. You should also know how frequently you should be pinning to get the best results out of your marketing efforts. Should you pin once a day, several times a day, 3 times a week or on some other schedule? If you pin too frequently, you water down your content and may look like a spammer. If you don’t pin frequently enough, people forget you are there.