Online marketing is often defined as pay-per-click advertising that drives people to specific websites through keyword-targeted messages. These techniques are more direct ways to get people to visit our websites. Here are elements of direct online marketing that we should be aware of:
1. Promotional Content
Unlike informative content, promotional content is intended to provide positive encouragements for people to visit our website and purchase our products. Search engines can’t really differentiate informative and promotional content, as long as we try to make them unique and interesting. Like any other content, promotional content should also be relevant and purposeful, while encouraging users to do specific things. Many of us regularly introduce new services, solution and products, so promotional content can be used to make website looks update and fresher.
2. Keyword tracking
Keywords are used intensively throughout online marketing efforts, so it is important to track them to make sure that they stay relevant. By adjusting accordingly, we should be able to track the performance of our website.
3. PDFs, free Software and other Downloadables
We should be able to offer valuable information to our customers and prospects. White papers, PDFs and free software can keep them interested.
4. Email marketing
Email marketing is probably one of the oldest and simplest forms of online marketing. We could simply encourage existing customers to subscribe to our newsletters to get themselves updated with our new products and services. While this effort won’t directly affect our search engine ranking, it is possible to nurture relationship with current customers.
5. PPC (pay per click) campaigns
PPC campaigns can be very effective for driving high quality target traffic. They are largely consisted of people who are interested with our products and services, so it is possible for us to elicit sales leads. PPC may efficiently kick-start our online marketing effort, depending on our daily budgets. We may choose to have aggressive or modest budget to achieve specific goals. PPC campaign can be adjusted on the fly and integrated with specific analytic tools.
6. Blogs and forums
Many companies successfully integrate sub-domains for their blogs and forums in the official website. Blogs are content-rich platform that can boost our SEO performance. Forums could also enhance communication with customers, while encouraging interactions between them.
7. Direct links
Unlike inbound links that are used by search engines to measure the authority of our website, direct links are aimed to directly encourage people to visit our website. This could be achieved through guest-blogging and other methods. Not only this will improve traffic our website, but could also be seen as a way to boost search engine ranking as well.
8. Online videos
People love to watch videos, perhaps more than reading and listening. By publishing online videos, we could boost our B-to-B performance. Videos can be used to generate traffic and interest among people.
Both SEO and online marketing methods should be integrated into our customer service / marketing / sales mix. SEO can’t work on its own and it should be paired with highly effective SEM elements.
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