Marketing in The Mix

With all the PPC and SEO talk around here lately, I felt the need to bring in a bit of Marketing talk to the mix.

The point I want to make is, that if you’re looking at starting your own business, or if you’ve already got one, you can’t afford to look at each item separately – it doesn’t work that way. You need Marketing, and SEO, and PPC.

I know of many excellent SEO brains, that know their stuff inside out, and can virtually work magic in the SERPS, but that alone doesn’t build a sustainable business. On the other hand, just focusing on PPC, can be a way to make big cash online, but it’s an incomplete business model, it’s time-consuming, and it has no exit strategy…

Marketing is the glue that sticks it all together – I say ;o)

Maybe that’s the reason why, very few people talk about it separately… Or maybe it’s just because it’s all regarded as a ‘dirty practice’.

A close friend of mine (SEO guy), actually cringes when I start talking marketing to him. And sometimes I don’t blame him – with the amount of hype that’s going on around…

BUT can you afford to ignore marketing altogether?

A big resounding NO!

So if you have your own business and you’re wondering how to take it to the next level. If you have the SEO/PPC skills, but you need the ‘glue’ to stick them into a nice little business. If you’re allergic to marketing, but you know you need to do it. And if you’d heard of the M word, and would just like to dabble in it a little…

Here is my Marketing / Business for Dummies Compilation

  • Know your strengths – know which of your skills you’re the best at, so that you know what you can give.
  • Have a USP (Unique Selling Proposition) – know what makes you stand out – and if you don’t I suggest that you look hard and find out, because in today’s info overloaded world, mediocre is no longer enough.
  • Know your customer – you know what I mean. We all have ‘customers’ – so know how they think, why they think like that, how often they think, what they think of and so on… Julie made a very good point a while ago – in her post Know Your Fish.
  • Find a ‘hungry market’ – and only then make the ‘food’ to feed it. Many, many people who venture online, create a product they think is needed, and then they go looking for someone to sell it to. Sounds logical to do it the other way around right? Find a need, then create a product that the market wants that will fill that need. Which brings me to my next point;
  • Listen to your market – it’s not enough to find someone that wants cheese. If you don’t find out what type of cheese and why, you may bring them goat’s cheese – and we all know how many people looove that!
  • Think ‘long term’ with everything you undertake. One off quickies are tempting, and we all fall for those sometimes (stop the giggling in the peanut gallery please). But if you think long term, you will be thinking quality. And quality sticks, and makes money, and makes people happy.
  • Choose one channel of marketing, and focus on getting it right, before moving on to the next, and the next. Or you can try and choose complementary marketing channels, to increase your chances. So here’s where PPC and SEO will make a good pair ;o)
  • Count your pennies – no I don’t mean you should become a scrooge. I mean, know your numbers. You would have noticed by now that quite a few of us (if not all the chicks) are fond of our numbers. So know the ones that are important to your business. And then manage by exception – you don’t need to look at the numbers in great detail every single day (unless you’re Lisa or Rebecca icon_surprised-5107382 )), but you should be able to see if things are looking ‘normal’ and if they are not – then you dig in.
  • Network – aaah, here’s one we all love dearly. We love it to such an extent that we’ve now taken to going to events “just for the networking”. But it’s one of the most important aspects to having a successful online existence and business for us, as we don’t have text books to learn from.
  • And last but not least – give, give, give. Give knowledge, give tools, give your time to your online community. Corny as it sounds (and again I can here the giggles in the corner), the more you put out there, the more you’ll get in return. Blogging makes a perfect example of that rule… nuff said!

OK, I’ll round up, before I get stoned off my pedestal of marketingdom (my term BTW).

The bottom line here is, that you can’t be a master of everything (and you shouldn’t try to), but you should be aware of the components that make the whole. Hopefully this will give you some grownding, if you were missing any, and maybe it would have cured some marketing phobics…

Well, I can dream, can’t I…

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