If you're new to internet marketing it's hard to know where to begin. There is so much information available and so many tools, techniques and thoughts on how to do most anything. It's good to know that every tool, technique and thought offered online won't provide the results you're looking for. The thing that makes use so uniquely different is the same thing that confuses many people when they get started online. There is no one size fits all solution for new online marketers.
At least there are no rules that are set in stone except the rules of good business practice and common sense. That's about all you can rely on unless you have training and mentorship to help you along the way, All you can do is try to find someone that seems to know what their doing and hope they can give you guidance that makes sense. That's the goal of this post, to give you guidance on what has worked for me.
Here are a few common missteps that new internet marketers make when starting out. While it won't be the end of the world if you do these things, it will make your life a lot easier if you can avoid them altogether. These are mostly bad practices that don't work out if they are repeated over time. Review this information and save yourself some time and headaches by choosing a better solution. Think about how these items may work (or not) for you.
1. No Daily Mode of Operation - What this means is that there is no schedule, no daily routine or income generating activities that happen on a regular basis and the business suffers.
When you're new to internet marketing and you start working on your own business, whether it's full or part time, there's no boss standing over you to say, I need "this" by "this time" and I need "that" by "that time". You're pretty much on your own. So one of the first things to do as a newbie is to make a to-do list that includes at a minimum, the things that need to happen in order for you to earn from your business.
2. No Strategy for Capturing Leads - I see website after website with a little box on the top right side of websites that have "Sign up for My Newsletter" with a field to enter an email address and possibly a name. There's no capture page, no offer (lead magnet), or information on the benefits of joining... just a little box that doesn't tell the reader anything. In the beginning, it's easy to understand why a newbie wouldn't place much value in capturing leads.
Have you ever heard the term "The fortune is in the follow up?" That phrase has never been more true. If you don't have a list, that means unless your reader comes back to your site out of the goodness of their hearts, you will probably never see them again. There are so many distractions these days that keep readers on the move. They forget about your great content in seconds after leaving your page. Readers have to be able to bookmark, subscribe or join an email list to place themselves in a position to have an ongoing relationship with your business.
When you capture their email, you give yourself the opportunity to follow up, build a relationship with the potential customer, generate sales and repeat business. Most people don't buy the first time they land on your page, so unless you are able to build a relationship that shows them you are a legitimate business that does what they say they will do and they can trust you with their credit card.
There are multiple locations that are optimal for placing lead capture boxes on your site. I would try all of them because different people have different preferences. At a minimum, I would say the best places that have worked well for me have been at the middle or end of a post, on the top right side of the page, on the top of the main page and in the footer. Experiment to see which locations work best for you.
3. Not Having a Blog - This is also common, especially with new online marketers who join an organization that gives them a "free" website to sell products. These free websites should never take the place of building your own branded website that promotes you and the items you choose to promote.
When you drive traffic to your company supplied website and not your own, you're making the company wealthy and you're working to promote their interests and not your own. What happens if the company goes out of business? All that hard work and all the leads you generated for that company would be gone with it.
Make sure to have your own branded blog that captures leads and showcases you and everything you bring to the table. You can drive traffic to your company supplied website from your branded website and make just as much income. This also helps to distinguish yourself from all the other reps who are selling the same thing.
4. Not Having a Plan - Many people just start broadcasting on social media without a plan. They plaster picture on their wall or page without thinking of how the items they are posting helps their customers. Without a plan, there is no marketing strategy, no financial goals or results tracking. Everyone just kinda does their own thing.
Without a plan and the proper tools to get the job done, you end up wasting time, resources and energy. It takes you twice as long to do a simple task or you end up missing the boat altogether because you were'nt sure what to focus on. There's another adage that says when you fail to plan, plan to fail.
Take a few moments to create goals and plan for the following: supplies/tools, back ups/emergencies/website crashes, marketing, social media, training and professional development, blogging (editorial calendar) and finances (budget) before you move forward too far.
5. Last but certainly not least... Not Knowing Their Customers - Most people start out with absolutely no knowledge of who they are selling to. They don't know what their customers like, where they hang out, whether they are single or married, what hobbies the tend to like, none of it.
They have done no market research and so they have no idea whether the products and services they are offering would even be of interest to their customers. If they have slow (or no) sales, I would say that prospects and existing customer are not interested or the messaging is off in some way. There again, most new internet marketers just blast their messages out to the masses and hope they will land on someone who likes what they are saying. When starting out most people think their product or service can be sold to most anyone. That is one of the biggest marketing mistakes a new owner can make. Take time to learn as much as possible about your customers and potential customers. In the long run it will help you with product selection, marketing and sales, the heart of your business.
So if you have fallen into any of those traps, it's not too late to dig your way out. The links provided in each section will give you some information on how to shift things in a different direction.
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Here are a few common missteps that new internet marketers make when starting out. While it won’t be the end of the world if you do these things, it will make your life a lot easier if you can avoid them altogether.