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The Importance of Having a Website Marketing Plan

Small businesses need to take advantage of every possible outlet of marketing in order to compete in 2010. The importance of having a website marketing plan is invaluable. Online outlets of promotion cannot afford to be overlooked.

Here are some tips to get you started with your website marketing plan.

Make a promotional video for every aspect of your business. if you are in sales you should make a video outlining all of the advantages your firm presents posted to your website. There is no need for frugality when it comes to video posting. Use other free outlets like YouTube to submit your video to gain free advertising strength for your business.

Set up a blog for your business talking about important issues in your field. Websites are the driving factor for giving your information and product to the public. Having the ability to sell you product or service around the clock is an excellent tool that can improve your bottom line margin. You can post product information, feedback posts, and contact info to your website to separate your company from the competition.

Taking advantage of links to social networking sites can also help promote your small business and help you improve your visibility. Sites like Twitter and Facebook are great choices to start with. Find other people interested in what you have to offer and start to follow them. Get to know them and let them know what you and your business have to offer.

Build a network of traffic and watch your margins increase by the day. it is essential for all businesses to have a successful website to be a competitor in today’s market. But just having a website isn’t enough you have to market that website in order for your potential customers to find you.

That’s why having a website marketing plan in place is essential for your success. The key to making your marketing plan work is consistency. Create a plan and then be consistent with your efforts and you are sure to see results.

5 Steps to a Winning Social Media Marketing Plan

What is the single most important action you can take to improve your chances of success in implementing a social media campaign? Create a well-researched and carefully thought out social media marketing plan, which lays the foundation for executing a winning social media campaign. Although there is no concrete roadmap to crafting an effective social media marketing plan, there are guideposts that can direct you along the way. The following 5 Steps provide the guidance you will need to develop a successful social media marketing plan.

Step 1: Establish Definitive and Measurable Goals. Social media marketing goals include, improving brand awareness, search engine rankings, relevant site traffic, and conversions performance (e.g., sales for a product or service), as well as reputation management and engaging with consumers.

The challenge for some of these goals, such as engaging with consumers, is to make them specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely (SMART). In addition, objectives must be established for each type of social media platform in order to maximize results. The following are examples of SMART goals for four popular social media platforms: blogs, microblogs (Twitter), social networking sites, as well as image and video sharing sites:

Blogs:

  • 20% improvement in the ratio of posts to comments (i.e., visitor’s comments/posts=conversions) within six months
  • 30% increase in total number of unique visitors within six months
  • 20% increase in average number of unique visitors within six months
  • 40% growth in total number of views within six months
  • 10% growth of RSS subscribers within six months
  • 5% growth of RSS feed requests within six months

Microblogs (Twitter):

  • 20% growth in number of followers within 30 days
  • 30% growth in the number of retweets (message amplification) within 30 days
  • 10% increase in click-through-rate (CTR) of the links posted in tweets within 30 days (Hint: Observing which types of links garner the highest CTRs can help you tune your tweets to provide what your consumers with links they are interested in and, hence, further improve your CTR.)
  • 15% increase in visits to Web site from tweet links within 30 days
  • 10% growth in time on Web site from tweet links within 30 days
  • 5% increase in Web site conversions (e.g., sales) from tweet links within 30 days

Social Networking Sites:

  • 20% growth in the number of friends within five months
  • 30% growth in the number of comments within five months
  • 40% growth in the number of posts and comments in discussion groups within five months
  • 20% increase in the ratio of comments on uploaded videos to number of videos uploaded within five months
  • 20% increase in the ratio of comments on photos uploaded to number of photos uploaded within five months
  • 30% growth in the number of comments left on profiles within five months
  • 50% growth in the number of questions answered or asked within five months

Image and Video Sharing Sites:

  • 30% growth in the number of images or videos viewed within four months
  • 20% growth in the number of unique visitors within four months
  • 10% increase in the number of subscribers to your channel or stream within four months
  • 30% increase in the ratio of comments on images or videos to the number of images or videos uploaded within four months
  • 15% growth in the number of embedded links to your images or videos (i.e., links from other sites to your images or videos) within four months
  • 30% increase in average rankings of images or videos by viewers within four months

Step 2: Identify Your Target Market Who is your intended audience (target market)? Where do they hangout on the social Web? How do they participating on these social media platforms? Forrester Research’s “Social Technographics Profile” enables you to use age, location, and gender to identify the type of activity people are engaged in on the social Web, such as create content, critique, collect, spectate, and so on. Depending on what they do, you can determine which social media platform they are likely to frequent. As an example, spectators are not likely to participate in social network like Facebook or LinkedIn, while they might watch YouTube videos and read blogs, but not comment on the posts.

Step 3: Conduct a Competitive Analysis. What are the trends in social media (i.e., which platforms are growing, which are declining?). What needs are not being meet by your competitors? Who will be your main competitors? What are the best practices in social media marketing? Conduct a SWOT Analysis, identifying your company’s strengths, weaknesses, along with the opportunities and threats in the marketplace and economy.

Step 4: Design innovative strategies. Select the optimal social media platforms to reach your target market. Then, construct a specialized strategy for each social media platform to achieve the tailored goals for each platform. Each social media medium has distinctive features and means of communication. For example, a corporate blog strategy will differ markedly from the strategy you use to achieve your goals on social network like LinkedIn. In other words, a one-sized strategy doesn’t fit all.

Hence, you must adjust the following 8 C’s of the Social Media Marketing Mix for each social media platform. Here are some suggestions on how to accomplish this feat:

  • Categorize social media platforms by target market relevancy(i.e., the ones where your target audience resides)
  • Comprehend the “rules of the road” on the platform by listening and learning how to behave, successfully spark conversation, and engage and energize the participants
  • Converse by acknowledging and responding to other users of the platform, always remembering to be a contributor, not a promoter
  • Collaborate with platform members as a means of establishing a mutually beneficial relationships with the platform participants
  • Contribute contentto build your reputation and become a valued member, helping to build the community
  • Connect with the influencers, so you can enlist them to help shape opinions about your product or service
  • Community creation enables you to build discussion forums where consumers suggest ideas and receive customer support.
  • Conversion of strategy execution into desired outcomes (e.g., increased brand awareness, website traffic, sales, etc.)

Step 5: Monitor, Measure, and Tune. Accessing your progress, then tune your marketing plan based on the feedback to optimize goal achievement. Reevaluate and adjust your social media marketing plan to account for the ever changing nature of consumer tastes and the social Web. For example, if the number of viewers and subscribers to your blog are declining, you can adjust your content to more closely match your target market’s interests. If the number of comments on your blog posts is declining, you can adjust your strategy by asking a question at the end of each post that inspires people to respond. In short, planning and executing a social media marketing campaign is a never ending cycle. You should constantly monitor and tune your strategies to maximize the impact of your campaign.

For more information and resources on planning social media marketing campaigns, be sure to visit my blog at www.SocialMediaMarketingResources.info.

How to Create an Info Marketing Business Plan

Creating an info marketing business plan isn’t high on many internet entrepreneur’s to do lists. It’s an absolute necessity, however, for marketers wanting to maximize their efforts. This article should benefit anyone who has an online business, but hasn’t developed a business plan or an individual who is considering starting an online marketing business. Okay, lets get started.

Step 1: Decide Where You Want to Be in 90 Days
It all must start with this step. It’s all wrong to start a business with the goal of just making a lot of money so you can retire one day. This isn’t a measurable goal. It’s just an ambiguous dream that can’t support a strategy. Instead, create a list of goals that are more tangible (e.g. the number of products you intend to create, how many subscribers you plan to have, how much income you want to generate, etc.). These specific goals are not only measurable, they can support the strategy necessary to bring them about.

Step 2: Determine the Action Steps Required to Achieve Your Goals
This step involves the work required to see your 90 day goals become a reality. Depending on your business model, it will probably include creating your components such as a squeeze page, product(s), sales letter, download page, traffic and so on. This step is a bit challenging if you’re just starting out since it’s very difficult to measure the time required to perform all these tasks. You won’t be able to accurately determine the time required to complete these action steps until you do them yourself. There are just too many variables involved. The good news is that you’ll become more proficient and faster over time and will know how long each step takes to complete.

Step 3: Divide Your Action Steps into Daily Tasks
Once you’ve decided all the action steps required to complete your goals, then you must divide these steps into weeks, then days. If you don’t perform this step, and do a little work here and there, you most certainly won’t reach your 90 day set of goals. When you have a list of daily tasks, then all you need to do is consistently complete the work each day.

Step 4: Make Adjustments
This step involves monitoring the time required to complete each action step and make adjustments. For example, lets say that one of your daily tasks is to write and submit five articles each day. Instead of taking one hour to write all the articles, you find that it’s taking much longer, more like two hours, then you need to adjust the time you’re working day or learn to write articles faster.

Actually, you’ll become more proficient performing the action steps in your online business. Just don’t get discouraged. It takes a while to get things going. Hopefully, I’ve provided information in this article that you can understand and implement.