When you are working on marketing your business online, what’s your approach? How do you reach out to future customers? This article takes a look at the thought process of an internet marketer.
In the last ten years I’ve built websites, marketed websites and grown my insurance business through internet marketing. The one question that I’ve always asked myself is, “Where and How can I reach people at Decision Making Time?” The other question would be, “What are those points in life that create Decision Making Time?”
As an insurance agent some points in life would be a young driver getting their license, a couple getting married, someone car shopping, someone buying their first house, a business loan that requires life insurance. Try to think about in an individual or in a business lifetime, what are points of life that create Decision Making Time where your product or service could be utilized? Here is a broad list of possible life events that may drive someone to your business:
- A Birth
- A Death
- A Wedding
- A Divorce
- An Engagement
- The Purchase/Sale of a House
- High School/College Graduation
- The Launch of a New Business
- The Purchase/Sale of a Business
- The Hiring/Firing of a Key Employee
Now that you’ve brainstormed a list of points in life that create a need, you need to search the web for places where people might go or be with that need. As an insurance agent I might want to list my services on a real estate site or a car sales site. I’ll answer questions about insurance in online forums. Still the largest starting point for a consumer is Google. Keep in mind that your future customer could start at Google and go to a real estate site and then maybe see your ad for homeowners insurance. Or they might search Google for homeowners insurance and if you use proper Search Engine Optimization, they will come directly to your site. The thing to remember is that you could have 100 people all looking for the same product online and they will all look for it differently. Thats why I say throw a wide net. Ask your new customers how they heard about you. Ask friends and family if they went online to find your type of product how would they search for it?
Once you have a long list of how people would search for your product or service, what do you do with that information? Maybe you’ll hear of some business directories that you should get your website listed in. Maybe you’ll get some search words and phrases that you can use when promoting your site on Google. And maybe you’ll hear of some competitors doing things that you’re not. Taking all of these points of contact, start placing your business at the best decision points.
Never forget that Internet Marketing is a never ending, also changing task. You can put as much or as little time into it as you want, but it does require work. I suggest reading blogs from some of the internet experts such as Matt Cutts, Vanessa Fox and Michael Gray. Think of Matt Cutts as the face of Google for search. If you want to learn more about changes and the future of search he is the man.
As always I say, even if you don’t plan to do your own internet marketing for your business you should have a basic understanding of what is involved so that you can properly interview an SEO/Internet Marketing firm to do the work for you.
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