“Online marketing” is a term that encompasses a large area of specialized technological and promotional disciplines to sell products and services via the Internet. With more and more companies moving their advertising budgets from traditional media to online marketing, the game is increasingly becoming more and more competitive. And for most businesses, more and more vital to their bottom line.
More Than a Website
Online marketing is much more than building a website. In fact, as any business can verify after establishing a web presence, that’s merely the beginning of an ongoing marketing and communication evolution that includes publicity, advertising, and sales, and which is continuously refined to engage prospects for the purpose of selling products and services.
Depending upon the sophistication of one’s products or services and therefore how long it may take to move through a typical sales cycle, the process can be as simple as publishing a product description with good photos and copywriting and then advertising it; to something more complex, such as creating and maintaining an online information media channel designed to engage as many types of buyers along as many points of the sales process as possible. For complex and/or expensive products/services, the sooner you can engage a prospect along their research-to-purchase decision path, the more opportunity you create to establish and build a relationship and demonstrate that you are the solution to what they need.
Subsegments of Online Marketing
Although each of the following areas of online marketing comprises its own body of knowledge and expertise, recognize that if you’re going to effectively take advantage of online marketing opportunities, these points need to be contemplated:
♦ Lead Generation
♦ B2B and/or B2C Sales
♦ Email Marketing and Relationship Building
♦ Search Engine Optimization
♦ Search Marketing (PPC and online advertising)
♦ Strategic use of Blogging, Video and Social Media
♦ Affiliate marketing
♦ Web design and usability
The more these points can be practically and strategically implemented, the better your online marketing results will be.