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June 27, 2012, 6:16 am UTC
The best thing about online marketing is the availability of various tools, each of which in itself is sufficient to bring the result a marketer intends to, but by using only one tool, you might be losing on the opportunity provided by other tools, and use of a single tool for all purposes may not be very cost effective. It is important, for that reason, that you make a judicious use of each tool and get most out of your marketing budget. In this article, I am going to talk about how you can use four major online marketing tools – SEO, PPC, Social media, and email marketing – to that end.
More than three-fourth of the visitors to any website comes from a search engine, hence Search Engine optimization (SEO) is the most basic thing one should consider when brining in new customers or prospect to a website. SEO is free, but it takes time to start delivering results, so one cannot solely rely on this method. On top of that, the constant search algorithm updates make it difficult for some strategy to work.
Seeing the time and effort needed to bring people in the fold, it is worthwhile to analyze the keywords before you invest any energy on optimizing your website for that keyword. Spend as much time on keyword research as you can and move further only when you have a list of solid keywords. SEO may work well to bring traffic, but it is not a good tool to search the effectiveness of a keyword, for that you will need to use PPC.
Although PPC (Pay Per Click) can be used on its own to generate traffic for your website, but this could be an expensive proposition, hence this cannot be long-term, unless you have a very deep pocket, as every single visit to your website will cost you money. In my view, probably the best, and certainly one of the most cost-effective, ways to use PPC in the marketing mix is to use it to check the strength of a keyword you are targeting.
After making a first list of probable keywords, you should spend a small amount on keywords to see how well they convert. This will save you a lot of time and effort, you will otherwise invest in optimizing for a keyword, which will not convert.
SEO and PPC are all good, but none of them has a potential to guarantee repeat visits. The visitors you get from the above two sources are one-time visitors, and once they are off your page, they are gone forever. Hence, you need to devise a plan to hook them to your sales funnel, from which you can slowly bring them to the final stage.
Email marketing works well in this, and to use it to the fullest, you should have a double opt-in lead-capture form on each of your page before you test your keywords through PPC or implement your SEO strategy. The idea from the above two steps should be to get as many email subscribers as possible. People on your list will be your repeat customers.
Although quality of traffic from social media is not always great, social media participation is the most indulged-into activity on the web, so it will not be wise to leave it out of the mix.
You can use social media to build a network of fans, followers, and friends with whom you can share your content. At this juncture, I should tell you that building a huge list of fans, followers, and friends is not difficult and not even desirable. What is more important is to find ways to engage them because one engaged fan is far better than 10 non-active fans. You can use your fans to grow your email list as well.
The above given integration strategy is not the only way in which you can use online marketing tools. There are more than one ways to use each of the tools. You just need to be creative in your selection and aligning it with your website strategy.
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