How to Market Your e-Business on a Shoe String Budget
2002 Herman Drost
Here are some of the most
effective ways to promote your online business without
spending a fortune and gaining great results.
To get the best out of these methods, you need to:
Target your market – make sure you are “on target”.
Don’t try to market to everyone.
Promote consistently – start a daily, weekly and
monthly regimen or promotion.
Track your progress - test out different ads. Keep a
record of your marketing plans and which method is the most
1. An Effective Web Site – I put this first,
because even if you get thousands of visitors to your site,
if it is not easy to navigate, doesn’t look attractive and
is not clear in its purpose, you will not have any sales or
a. A heading that immediately
catches the visitors attention
b. A description or sales letter that states (in easy to
understand words), what your site is about.
c. Easy navigation – your visitors must be able to tour
your site with ease
d. Ask for your order or what action you want the visitor to
e. Contact information – make it easy for people to
2. Search engines – If you
wish to get listed, here are some very important things to
a. Have a title that states clearly the benefits of your
site containing some of your keywords.
b. Meta Tag “description” should describe exactly what
your site is about, using your main keywords.
c. Meta tag “keywords” all the keywords that someone may
search on to find your site.
d. First paragraph – should also contain a description
leading into your site using more of your keywords in your
sentences. Make sure you do not repeat the same keywords in
all of your descriptions more than 5 times.
e. Submit to the main search engines by hand (don’t use
automated software because all search engines have different
3. Opt in Newsletter – capture names and email
addresses on your web site for your newsletter to send out
updates, tips, contests etc to your customers. Always offer
something for free in return for their email address.
Plans from $30/Year
Writing articles – Write articles in your area of
expertise, submit them to article announcement lists,
ezine publishers in your niche market. Put the article on
your web site, make your meta tags keyword rich with your
article and submit to the search engines.
5. Classified Ads in AOL and Yahoo
a. These are the best email classifieds on the Net. Create
a catchy title for your ad. You can submit up to 10 ads.
Create each ad with a different heading or submit to a
different category listing.
b. Use a follow up auto responder to create automatic
follow up messages to your responses – one follow up is
hardly ever enough for the Internet Marketer who is easily
distracted or very busy with other things.
c. Change your ad title every 24 hours, so that the ad
stays at the top of the list.
d. Track all your ads, to see how many hits they each get,
then change the ad until you get a winner – then you can
move onto paid advertising.
6. Free Ezine Ads – here’s another way to test
market your ads. Submit to ezines that accept free ads in
return for signing up for their ezine. Here’s an
a. Subscribe to 21 ezines of your niche market – try to
go for ones that publish weekly or biweekly.
b. Track each ad you submit – some will take a while to
publish your ad since they already may have back log of
ads to be submitted.
c. Once you have found those ezines that gave a good
response, then you can use them again in the future.
d. Your next step will be to advertise in low cost ezines.
7. Participating in Forum Discussions
a. Find a forum where your target market visits.
b. Offer friendly advice (don’t advertise), ask
questions, provide helpful information, most of all have
the attitude of helping others, not taking – this will
give you better results and you make friends as well.
c. Leave an email signature at the end of each message,
giving your name, title of your business, web site
address, email address. Visitors to the forum will know
where to look, if they wish to find out more about you.
If you implement these methods on a consistent basis, you
will definitely see an increase in traffic to your web
Herman Drost is a Certified Internet Webmaster (CIW)
and owner of iSiteBuild.com
Site Design, Hosting, Promotion
Author of “Marketing Tips” newsletter.
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