Free Marketing Ideas - Get Them From Your Competitors
Internet marketers are notorious for putting the cart before the horse. We learn a new, cutting edge marketing technique and we start itching to implement it. But, as soon as we run to the computer, we realize we don't know what to sell. The business plan comes first. You must define your business before you can market it.
This may sound obvious, but I was recently at a meeting where we were critiquing websites and the most common question was, "What are you trying to accomplish?" or, "Who are you trying to reach?" and the most common answer was, "Hum, ah?" or a variation on that theme.
You can find free marketing ideas everywhere by just observing what others are doing. Just make sure that the people you are observing are the successful ones. But none of those ideas will help you unless you have defined your own business.
Defining your business can be harder to do online than offline because of the greater number of opportunities. Offline you are either a bicycle shop or a tax preparer, but not both... perhaps with a few exceptions (tax preparers are known for cropping up in some of the weirdest locations). Online you can be anything, and as many things, as you want to be. Unfortunately, that is the downfall of many entrepreneurs. You need definition in your business before you can have definition in your marketing.
Once you have defined your business, you can begin to prepare your marketing plan. Again, look for successful businesses in your niche and emulate their marketing. Compile your own list of free marketing ideas by studying your competitors. Go to their websites. Join their mailing lists. Buy a product or two. Find out their strengths and their weaknesses.
Look for following:
- How do they generate traffic? Using search engines can help you discover some of their traffic generation techniques. Do they write articles or press releases? You can also use software tools to check for back links to their site from other sites.
- Do they do any pay-per-click advertising? Again, the search engines can help you find AdWords ads by searching for keywords in your niche.
- Do they have an effective email marketing campaign? If you join their lists, you can study their emails. Some of your competitors may have more than one email list. Join all the ones you find.
- Do they promote through videos or podcasts? The longer you study your competitors, the more you will discover they use.
- Do they have an affiliate program? Affiliates can be the main source of traffic for some businesses.
Become a student of your competition. You could learn more from them than from buying every e-course that comes out; it will help you define your business better. By studying your competition, you may not only discover free marketing ideas, but also markets that may not have been obvious to you before. What you can learn, I know from experience, will be beyond your wildest dreams.
How To Get Keyword Ideas From Your Competitors
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