OK, I’ve been talking with you recently (some would say relentlessly) about the 3 marketing pillars for setting up a marketing system that will get you as many clients as you want.
Just to quickly reiterate, the steps are 1) A great “hooky offer’ that you promote on your website to get visitors to stop bouncing off and start opting in 2) A sequence of follow up messages (using the soap opera storytelling strategy) 3) An integrated strategy for driving lots of high quality traffic to your site. (And do yourself a HUGE favor, don’t worry about this step until you have the other two pieces in place.)
So when we think about guerilla advertising ideas for getting traffic, the first thought that pops into people’s mind is Google’s Adwords program. If you had asked me 3 years ago, where’s the best place to start, that’s where I’d go.
However, I wouldn’t recommend it today. Now, don’t get me wrong, I still think Google makes a lot of sense. The problem is that ads are getting increasingly expensive and Google has become terribly rigid in their stance towards marketers. You may have heard of their new “Panda” algorithm that has the SEO world in a topspin. What’s received less publicity is the spin off effect Panda has had on paid search. Numerous advertising accounts have been kicked off the system, and clicks that used to cast a buck now cost $5+.
So, at least for the time being, I’d hold off on advertising on Google unless 1) you really understand how their CPC program works and/or 2) you’ve fully implemented the other strategies I’m about to share. Guerilla advertising for small business really benefits from some of the other options that are available. Here’s where I’d start.
Facebook. There probably isn’t a site out there that collects as much personal information about it’s members as does Facebook. What this means is that you can micro-target a niche for far less than Google charges. Yes, advertising rates for Facebook are creeping up, and they’ll likely continue to do so as they become a public company with the corresponding Wall Street pressure to boost earnings. But, for the time being, this is where I’d start.
Linked-In. If you’re in the b2b space and/or targeting senior level executives, this advertising option is worth adding to the mix. Again, you can target where your ad appears. One of the best ways to niche your campaign is to align it with the groups that pertain to your audience. It’s likely you’ll get a big pop the day your ad initially runs, and then it will taper off. What this means is that unlike other ad venues in which you can largely “set it and forget it”, you’ll need to refresh your ad copy on a regular basis. Ads also tend to be a bit pricey, but remember, it’s the quality of opt-ins that’s the most important, not just building a big list.
Bing. The common misperception is that Google owns all the search traffic. They’re certainly the 500 pound monster in the room, but they’re not the only player. What I like about Bing is that their ads cost far less and you can drive traffic to pages that are primarily designed to capture information on your visitors. (Google hates those types of sites.) This is definitely worth investigating.
Certainly, advertising is only one way of driving traffic to your site and there’s more to it than just deciding where you want to advertise. (Selecting the right keywords to go after is one of the biggest challenges.) Other strategies you may also want to consider include adswaps, affiliate marketing (this can be HUGE if you do it right), eBook syndication, video marketing…lots and lots of options
More about all of that to come.
But, remember…while learning is fun implementation is what actually grows your business.
Mark Satterfield, Gentle Rain Marketing — Author , Marketing Consulting Expert, Lead Generation, Business Development, Marketing Strategy, Get More Clients, Increase Revenue — Click here for his Facebook Twitter LinkedIn YouTube