Your Online Marketing Success in 2009

If you are still uncertain how to approach your online marketing efforts this year here is some practical guidance that will soon have you on your way to success.

1. Have no fear
Now is the time to use the consequences of the recession, embrace the change, build a plan to capitalise on it and approach your team with the attitude of becoming stronger as a result, you will find that the bumpy ride ahead can be more enjoyable and profitable with the positive focus and aggressive approach to tackling the challenge. If you fear the economic change that is upon us, the consequences will be poor results and bad decisions.

2. Stop procrastinating, start producing
If you understand how valuable your time is, then you can account for it. Stop procrastinating due to unwarranted perfection that keeps you from getting started. Don’t set goals so big that you have an excuse to procrastinate. A key point to achieving your goals in life and in business is allowing room to succeed, not room to fail. Master scheduling your day. Learn to break one hour down at a time. Take the time to ask yourself," What do I get paid for?" and focus on those activities more. Turn your efforts into results and turn time into money. Overcome all of those "what ifs" and just get in the game.

3. Spend your time and money where your customers are
Now more than ever is a great time to take a hard look at where your customers are spending there time and money, and then work to align you’re your marketing strategies accordingly. Chances are many more of your customers than you realise are online. Do you have the presence necessary to meet them there?

4. Education is the key to success
Today, with the enormous shift toward online communication, educating yourself about the online space is essential to enable solutions for years to come. The rules of the online environment is forever changing don’t get left behind. Sing up yourself for a good webinar, conference or certification programme, or buy a great book on online media and really get serious about starting the education process.

5. Gear up your analytical tools
We all have web analytic tools to measure what is happening on our website. You might need to consider to purchase a better software system for more relevant analysis, all of us need to improve what, how and why we measure. Therefore there is no better time than now to improve how we measure online success as it relates to company sales, cost saving and ROI.

6. The world of social Networking
Now is the time to take the jump headfirst into social networking. Join some of the social networking sites, set up your profile, build your own group and start the invitation process. If you are not out there making mistakes, learning the protocol and getting a feel for how your brand and personal connection play in the bigger cycle, you will quickly find yourself isolated and on the outside looking in.

7. How to find the best prospects
Effective marketing is really about two basic things: Marketing a product to people who already have a true desire or need to purchase it and positioning yourself as a leader and a solution provider. Understand that online marketing is a business model designed to accrue value and net worth over time. This is a peoples business and the more you learn about people, the more successful you will be. Understand that your prospects don’t give a darn about your company or product. They want financial freedom. Your company is a tool, a means to an end and nothing more. So if you want to build a massive down line and make real money in network marketing, the first thing you need to do is stop spending your cash on trying to sell your business in an up-front pitch. Get your customers to call you first instead of you hunting them down by marketing solutions and be the leader who trains and instructs others.

8. Share and borrow content from others
All of us have some content that’s worth getting out, so we should share it with anyone willing to post it on their site. In the same light we should borrow content from others who have supporting information that will enhance the experience of our website customers. The best way to go about it is to find the top two or three publishers, bloggers, reporters who cover your product and grab an RSS feed. Insert it in the news section of your website and begin to understand the value of the shared-content concept.

9. Budget-conscious searches as a strategy
Low-cost keyword search phrases had a huge spike starting last august. You can benefit with your search engine marketing. Your site can tap into budget-conscious searches by inserting low-cost phrases like "best deal", "highly discounted" or "lowest cost available". Apply this to your paid search ads and to your search engine optimisation efforts in the copy on your site and he cost-conscious shopper will find you on the major search engines. Everyone is looking for a deal, so give it to them.

10. Constantly create new content
How quickly are you able to create new content? The key to success online is to move quickly so that you stay ahead of your competitors. This means creating content for your website, newsletter, blog and product line on a regular basis. One strategy that works very well is to use user-generated content. You might be surprised to find out how many of your customers are more than happy to give insight into their experiences with a product, service or solution that you offer. So why not encourage them to share? With the help of a 30-day trial from one of the many rating/review software vendors, start getting content from your customers. With no additional tech support or manpower hours at your end, you will have expanded your online offerings.

11. Decision making
We’re all uncomfortable when facing questions especially when quite often the only answer is "I don’t know". That is the common occurrence when running a business during this era of constant change, insecurity and challenges. Knowing how to face those questions, how to process them and how to seek help in answering them will be key to your success in running your online business. Taking time to learn how to approach the decision making process- whether alone, or with the help of others- could be the most important decision you’ll ever make.

Hantie Schutte Online Business and Marketing Coach Meet her at:

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