Sort of like an advertorial, since I also created an advertisement to go with it (you can see it at the bottom of the file), this was an article to complement their online marketing feature, for which I was also interviewed.
Here is the article I wrote for them titled “Marketing Online verses Offline”
Here is the article I wrote before they had to edit it to fit in their page space. Kinda different, but sorta the same :) I think (it was a long time ago) I have to give credit to my old boss Martin for coming up with the concept behind this article (of comparing online verses offline marketing using these points), but yes, I did the writing.
Going virtual with your marketing plan: parallels and differences
Networking = social applications. Get your face on Facebook, your links on LinkedIn and your tweets on Twitter. Be a person, and an expert, that people look to for advice on your industry. You will get worldwide exposure. Syndicate your blogs, updates, tweets, and diggs etc. to automate your actions at all outlets simultaneously.
Target marketing = blogs and online communities where people engage in discussions, such as forums. If you can’t find conversations specific to your product, be more and more general until you hit the bull’s eye (e.g. if there’s nothing on “mineral makeup”, check “beauty”). Leave a link to your site, but don’t sell. Simply offer advice.
Competitive research = scouting backlinks to see where your competitors are, and then adding your links next to theirs whenever possible. To do this, on Yahoo search for “linkdomain: www.[competitor].com” and click the “except from this domain” button. You will see all the sites linking to that competitor.
Market share = getting backlinks to rank higher on search engine queries. Submit your URL to directories, launch article campaigns, participate in forums, get on Twitter…do whatever it takes WITHOUT cheating or overselling. (You WILL be caught and labeled as spam by search engines.)
Paper ads = pay-per-click ads, which are often word-based and appear only when relevant to a page or a search. These are not annoying pop-up ads! Google AdWords is the most dominant, and the first you should employ.
Signs = keywords. Optimize your site AND your online ad campaign using words and phrases that bring in sales, based on research; don’t just pick adjectives that describe your business. Tools in Google AdWords and Word Tracker will show what search queries people use to find you.
Sales representatives = online affiliate programs. These are third-party operations that run on commission by selling your product through their own e-marketing channels. If their share of the cut is high enough, they’ll work even harder for you, saving you time and resources.
Publicity = article campaigns. On the Internet, people seek advice before they buy. The sales process is longer than in real life. People must trust you first by seeing you are an expert. Give free advice through article distribution sites.
Undercover shopping = meta tag spying. Check out what keywords are in the code of your competitor’s Web sites to make them rank so well. Find out by viewing the source in the Web browser and doing a “find” for “meta tag”.
Store front = shopping cart inside your Web site. Sales should not be the focus of your home page, or you will turn people off. Start with information about your business, then lead naturally to the shopping cart. An e-marketer can find out how long people spend on each page of your site, and can see if your sales lead is working.