Affordable Internet marketing, or digital marketing, is achievable. But it takes time, patience and hard work! And there are fundamental principles that must be applied.
Keeping marketing affordable isn't only for the small "mom & pop" businesses. Multi-million dollar enterprises usually strive to keep their own marketing and advertising costs as low as possible. Partly to increase ROI, and partly to preserve available cash.
But the reality is, the smaller your business and the lower your budget, the more critical affordable marketing becomes.
Affordable Marketing Does Not Have to Mean "Bad" Marketing
A mistake too many business owners make is in cutting costs in the wrong places and skipping over the essential principles that apply to any effective marketing, affordable or high-end. Fundamentals matter and being affordable does not mean leaving them out.
A rough analogy might be a mega-million dollar Hollywood production bursting with star appeal and massive amounts of CGI that bombs horribly at the box office. Compare this to the indie production created with a thread-bare budget and unknown actors that soars to the top and becomes a surprise hit film.
Fundamental principles of great storytelling and solid cinematography. And this is true for your Internet marketing, as well.
Four Farming Principles for Marketing
If you were to think about farming, and planting in particular, as you work out your marketing strategy, it may occur to you that the similarities are quite numerous. So much of what is done in marketing involves putting out "seeds" and working hard to reap some degree of "harvest."
In keeping with that analogy, we've listed four principles, or practices, in farming that could be applied to marketing and lead generation.
- Know Your Farm. Not every piece of ground is usable. Not every type of crop is feasible. And some farmers have more "farm hands" than others to help with the harvest should it be especially abundant. You need to know your market, your products, and your capabilities to deliver should your efforts take off.
- Prepare your Soil. It would be silly to set off first thing trying to harvest a crop without planting something. And you can't plant without first preparing the ground. Weeds and other obstacles need to be cleared, and the soil broken up and "softened" up. Preparation is essential to ensure successful planting of seed.
- Plant Good Seed Abundantly. Poor seed, if it takes, produces poor crops. Poor lead generation efforts and sub-standard content make for poor seed. In addition, successful farming requires and abundance of seed. Settle with yourself that much of you sow will never take hold. Think volume and frequency.
- Repeat as Needed. (Which is continually!) This is where the biggest marketing failures often occur. Too many owners and marketers stop planting and working the "fields" once some success takes place. The delusion that "We don't need to 'market' right now because we're so busy." is deadly for businesses.
Getting Ready for Your Marketing Harvest
Like farming, there are elements involved that are not always in our control. Despite our seemingly best efforts, the "seeds" we sow may not necessarily be the best quality, or the right type for the soil we are trying to work with.
Sometimes it can be the weather. Economic and market conditions can change on us and, as marketers, we don't have a trusty almanac to give us fair warning.
And the soil we are given, or choose to plant in, may not be the most receptive, the most fertile, or even the most abundant.
However, successful farmers are not successful only because they have good seed, good weather, and good soil. These are necessary, but the most important ingredient is hard work.
A humbling and not-so-glamorous realization for many of us, perhaps, but without it the harvest will not come. Yet, with enough labor and grit and determination, even the meanest of seeds in the thinnest of soils will produce a harvest.
Partners for Your Affordable Internet Marketing
There area a number of terms are used to describe Internet marketing such as "online marketing", "digital marketing", "social media marketing", and so on. All of them more or less mean using your website to market your business.
We prefer to focus on an approach known as Inbound Marketing. What is inbound marketing?
"Inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time." - HubSpot
This content typically takes the form of blog posts aligned with periodic eBooks and even email campaigns. The end result is a cost-effective, multi-faceted marketing strategy that not only attracts ideal leads, but deepens the relationships with customers and clients, while positioning a company as a thought leader in its industry.
Regardless of which term you prefer to use, the approach of inbound marketing holds great promise for your business.
But achieving these objectives with your content marketing strategy takes time. It won't happen with a few blog posts or great ebook. People will need to consume your content for a while before they contact you. Yet, without your content compelling them to contact you, your goals may never be met.
Content and inbound marketing work day in and day out. Once you post a blog article or upload a SlideShare piece, it is always there, working to educate and compel people to become leads. And when they do come to you, they are educated, informed, and much more likely to make the decision to buy.
Get your free Complimentary Inbound Marketing Session to help you make an informed decision or call BroadVision Marketing at 707-799-1238.
And take a moment to download this informative resource entitled"10 Powerful Inbound Marketing Charts" to support your own marketing efforts!