Monday, December 24, 2007

Marketing Plans

Most business owners do not have any marketing plans. Marketing plans are very important to have for a business. Marketing is the key to sales. No marketing, no sales, it's that simple. Having a variety of marketing plans going at one time gives you more leverage and more exposure. It also helps you see what is working and what is not working in your marketing campaigns. Having only one marketing plan in action can actually hurt your business. Let's say your marketing plan proves to be ineffective, you must then build a whole new marketing plan and start from scratch. Now let's say you have multiple marketing plans working at once, you now have a variety of results to look at. Then you can pick and choose what works and what doesn't work. Marketing is all about testing/trial and error.

Many business owners make some key mistakes when creating their marketing plans. First they expect their first marketing campaign to be a huge success. Now this may or may not happen but marketing is all about trial and error. You must learn from your marketing plans. You must look and see what worked and what did not work. Then adjust your marketing plans and start a new campaign.This is how you market effectively. It's all about trial and error. Let say you see a certain ad pulling in all kinds of new business. Before you jump the gun and throw your entire bankroll behind the ad, run a couple additional tests to see how well the ad pulls in different markets. You want to do as much testing as possible before you come out with a major marketing campaign. Once you have everything as it should be, take full advantage of your marketing efforts.

Another key mistake I see with many business owners is they have either no way of tracking their marketing campaigns or they do not track their marketing campaigns. Not tracking your marketing efforts is bad for business. You must be able to see what is working and what is not working. Then you can stop spending in certain areas and increase spending in areas which are working.You must track your marketing campaigns in order to produce the most amount of sales for your business. Yes you can still have an effective business without tracking your marketing but it is kind of like cutting a steak with a butter knife.Yes it is possible to cut a steak with a butter knife but you make cutting the steak so much more difficult. Just like not tracking your marketing campaigns.

Building effective marketing plans is vital to building a business. Marketing is a key component to business. You should always have a budget setup just for your marketing efforts. I cannot stress how important marketing is to any business planning to become successful. I would even go as far as hiring a marketing company, if you have no experience in creating effective marketing plans.

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Marketing Strategies

Business owners need to use a variety of marketing strategies in order to build a successful business. Many business owners do not use multiple marketing strategies when building a business. This is a key reason most businesses end up failing. Marketing strategies are essential when building a business. Having one marketing strategy is great but in order to make the most out of your business you should employ lots of different marketing strategies . Your marketing strategies do not have to be complicated, in fact the simpler the better. Having a complex marketing strategy does not necessarily mean it will achieve better results. In most cases the most basic marketing strategies have achieved high levels of success for me. There are many ways to market both offline and online. You should use a combination of both to reach the most consumers. Your marketing strategies should also be tailored towards your targeted consumer base.

Your offline marketing strategies should include flyers, letters, business cards, and drop cards.Flyers are great to pass out at large events, depending on what you are selling. For instance conventions are perfect for flyers. Passing out flyers at ball games, malls, and church events is not really effective unless your product is in line with one of those themes. Finding a convention inline with what you are selling is priceless. For instance if you sell computers, passing out flyers at a convention centered around computers would help you increase sales. Setting up a booth would also help. Sending actual letters to your current customers and local community is also a great way to find new and repeat business. Lastly sponsoring events for your local sports teams, youth organizations and churches is a great way to build a relationship with your local community. Free promotional give always are a great way to gain new customers. Take a look at Mc Donald's they do an excellent job of this with the free toy which comes with every happy meal. And their monopoly game brings in huge amounts of business. The key is to offer people something they want, like a free appliance or something. Promotional giveaways can really help bring new business to you.

Some online marketing strategies are writing press releases. Press releases are a great way to get your business out in the open. Another way to get free publicity although it is not online marketing is to build relationships with your local papers. Having a paper write a story about your business will give you instant creditability and lots of exposure. Using Pay Per Click is also a great way to build your business online. With pay per click you must know what you are doing or have someone who knows what they are doing in order to be effective. You will also need at least a budget of 1,000 dollars a month depending on what keywords you are going after.

These are some very basic marketing strategies but they can be very effective if used properly.
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Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization

Understand Search Engine Optimization

When you are searching on the web for something you want to buyor just search for some information, you go to a handful ofsearch engines out there and type in what you are looking forand receive a ton of different sites to visit. So what if youwant your website or business to show up at the top of the page? This is where search engine optimization comes into play. Search engine optimization, or SEO, is used by onlinebusinesses as a way to increase their chances of being in thetop ten rankings on search engines. Because most web surfersonly look at the top three or five websites listed, being thathigh in ranking increases the possibility of making a sale.Because there are many tricks to using SEO, you may becomeconfused easily if you are not used to it.

Keywords are the most important part of search engine optimization. Otherwise known as tags, keywords are descriptorsof your business or site. The best ways to use SEO is to addkeywords and phrases to your web pages and create back links toyour website so potential customers will be able to find yoursite regardless of whether they use a search engine or not.Search engines use web spiders that search each website andsites connected to it in order to create rankings. While thisoccurs very quickly, search engines actually check millions ofpages checking for sites that are frequently mentioned online.Adding keywords and phrases and adding back links on otherwebsites are easy ways to increase your web presence.

After creating your website, you should conduct research tofind the most popular keywords that people use when looking forgoods and services similar to the ones on your website. Eachpage within your site should include keywords in the content,Meta tags, and in the heading of your page. Choosing keywords isnot an exact science. Since you cannot read the minds of thoseusing search engines, you will need to choose words and phrasesthat are common. Search engines have free tools you can use todetermine which words are the most popular for your website.Let's say your business is selling computer products. Possiblekeywords, or tags, could include software, diagnostic tools,printers, keyboard, mouse, and window operating system. Andthese are just to name a few. The more keywords you purchasemeans more possible hits for your site. And in some cases themore keywords, or tags, that you have, the better the chance isof having your site at the top of the list.

You will have to update keywords each month since thepopularity will chance and words will no longer be used as muchas they used to. Update your web pages when adding new contentor sections of your website. This will help increase the numberof hits you receive. Track your hits to see where they arecoming from so you can have a better understanding of whichwords work the best.

Creating back links is another way to increase your webpresence. Back links are simply links to your web site. They canbe added to your blog, articles you submit to articledirectories, press releases, and other web sites. The more backlinks you have, the higher your search engine ranking will be.Adding keywords to your press releases and articles will alsohelp.

SEO is not difficult to achieve once you get the hang of it.Start by adding keywords and phrases in order to begin usingSEO. Add back links whenever possible so you will gain moreexposure on the web. Track where all of your traffic is comingfrom so you can market in areas that generate the most traffic.

About The Author: Allen Tan is the owner of and,/ and he writes on a variety ofsubjects. To learn more about Search Engine Optimization andhome business tips, Allen Tan recommends you visit: