Simple Methods to Increase Web Profits

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In this article, I explore how to use some great Online Marketing tools, such as, Email, RSS Feeds, Podcasts, Networks, Affiliate Sales, Viral Marketing and Online Press Releases to bring sales in the door through your website.

Opt In Email

Use your website to mine customer info, then send permission based (Opt-In) email to the clients regarding:  Specials, Discounts, New Product or Services, Newsletters, Blog Posts, etc. Here are some email tips:

Make the Email a Mini Sales Page:  Bulleted; Benefit and Value Oriented; Top Solutions to Customer Problems; Why Do Business with your Company; Why Immediate Action is Advantageous; Directed to Act; Directed Personally; Short Headlines; Use a Value Based, Resource Based Soft Sell Offer; Put Time Limits & scarceness of Products for Special Offers and Discounts, and so forth.

Use Video and Audio Emails:  Try Hello World and Instant Flash Audio to incorporate an added dimension to your Sales Offer.  Consider:  Testimonials, Demonstrations, Instructions, Mini Courses, Tips, Presentations; an Introduction from a Referral; Seminar Clips to build Credibility- there are perpetual possibilities to incorporate video and audio into your Sales Emails to Opt-In customers.

RSS Feeds

Really Simple Syndication. These are internet distribution programs that allow people to send and receive short alerts about a blog post, news story, company update, new podcast post – anything you want to alert your customers about.  You can use RSS to see what your competitors are doing and promoting.  RSS is a great way to stay connected to client and drive targeted traffic to your site.  Works great to promote your Blog, a New Product or Service, or a Special – you get the picture.  RSS is sent automatically, so once it is set-up, it is a cinch!

Reading RSS Programs (Free)

– Reader Google

– RSS Reader

– News Gator

Note:  Internet Explorer 7.0 and later, Outlook 2007, Opera and Firefox have built in RSS Readers.

Providing RSS Feeds on your Website:  Use RSS to Java Script or try 1and1

RSS Tips

– Add Fresh Content via Articles and Blogs and send an Alert.

– You can incorporate Google Ad Sense Advertising into your Feeds.

– RSS Subscribe Icon should be located at the top of your web pages.

– Submit your RSS Feed to RSS directories

– Fantastic tool to use for your website’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

Podcasts

Record audio or video, post to your web server and offer it on your website.  Great Way to offer Industry / Customer specific Resources so your customers can download it on the go and view / listen to it at their convenience.  You could even host your own radio or TV show!

Set-Up:  I recommend the All-in-One Podcast Start up Kit from M-Audio for a reasonable $200. Includes a Microphone, Audio Interface, Editing Software, etc. – the complete set up.

Syndication Feeds:  Distribute your Podcasts as RSS Feeds through:

– Odeo

– Feed Demon

– Feed Burner

Post your Podcast Feeds through Directory Sites, such as: 

– Yahoo Podcast

– I Tunes

– Podcast Alley

Request a Searchable Category on:

– I Tunes

– Podcasting News

– Podcasting – Station

– Podcast Central

Podcast Tips

– Bandwidth is Key.

– No Longer than 30 minutes in duration.

– Promote at top of main pages.

– Definitely us scripts!  Polish it up!

– Give it some personality!

– Promote your Podcasts in your Blog and RSS Feeds.

– Although prepared and scripted, try to be conversational and engaged.

– Don’t sell!  Provide information.  Inform and educate.

The Future – Nanocasts

Narrowly targeted, commercial podcasts using Really Targeted Syndication Feeds (RTS).  Highly niched and segmented.  For more info:  Nanocasting Alliance.

Networking

Online Forums, Blogs and Discussion Groups are great places to Network among your fellow entrepreneurs, establish your brand, get your company name out there, drive more traffic to your website, attract new customers and learn from competitors.  Online networking gives you the opportunity to strategically position yourself as an Expert and help others, while bringing notice to your expertise and company. Social Networking needs to be a major part of your Business Plan going forward if it isn’t today!

Social Media Sites: like Facebook, Twitter, My Space, Squidoo and You Tube are excellent sites to establish a name and to network.  They are fun too!

Twitter is a growing Social Media Micro Blog which can be transmitted and read on a cell phone.  Twitter is an excellent forum not to just network but also send out alerts and updates, as you would with RSS, to your customers. 

Professional Online Networking:  Sites like Linked In and Spock provide an excellent forum to network and cross promote.  Be sure to include your Twitter Contact Info, Blog, Facebook Info and other valuable links from your Company.  This will create an exponential, cross-promotion increase in web traffic.

Forums:  Join some professional forums online to get your name and repute established on the web.  Serve as an Expert on some Forums and answer people’s questions – it will quickly establish your credibility and drive traffic to your site.

Affiliate Sales

You can use Affiliate Programs to partner up with other companies to add value to your product and service offerings, making commissions and other income streams off the sales of these products and services to your customers.  You can also do the reverse; develop an Affiliate Program of your own so others can sell your offerings to their established customers and networks.  I love Affiliate Marketing because once it is set-up; it is a passive generating income, working 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  The key is to partner up with other companies you respect and can offer a customer base you can’t or haven’t been able to target and vice versa. 

Affiliate Programs:  Check out these sites to find affiliate merchants, products and services:

– Clink Bank

– CJ

– Pay Dot Com

Go Viral

Viral Marketing is grass roots, word of mouth marketing and can be a powerful way of generating a lot of online traffic to your website.  E Marketer conducted a study that determined 53% of online traffic comes from other’s recommendations.  That’s over half of all traffic folks!  So what’s the best way to Go Viral?  Simple!  Give something valuable away for free and spread the news of the offer on your RSS, Twitter and other online networks.  Give away a Free Article or Guide in an area you are an Expert.

Online Press Release

Online Publicity and PR is a key component in establishing your creditability and stickiness on the web.  Check out PR Web to ensure your Press Release gets noticed.

About the Article Author

Frank Goley is a business consultant, business turnaround consultant and business plan consultant for ABC Business Consulting. He has been helping companies to succeed for many years. Frank wrote his first business plan over twenty years ago. He is an expert in developing business plans, marketing plans, funding plans, strategic plans, turnaround plans, web marketing strategies, and project specific business plans. Frank is also a business coach and a web development, web marketing and web seo consultant. Frank is the author of a business plan book, The Comprehensive Business Plan Workbook – A Step by Step Guide to Effective Business Planning, and he has over 50 published articles and e-books on business success strategies. He also writes the Business Success Strategies Blog.

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Comments

  1. Britt Hornig says:

    Hey Nice Blog! Just curious, how efficient is website positioning in terms of promoting an offline product or service. I see pages all the time that promote a web primarily based product (ebook, amazon.com etc), but when I wish to promote say a pizza place – is the web an effective means to do that? Are you aware of any examples of this? Anyway, thanks upfront for any help. :)

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