- Reassess your website
Most websites are online brochures and are not generally used for their real purpose which should be to gather e-mail addresses of potential customers. Smart e-businesses manage a database of actual and potential customers and contact them regularly with free, good quality information. By asking visitors to subscribe to a newsletter, or receive a free gift you can capture their name and e-mail address. Your overriding objective is to get relevant visitors to your site and persuade them to give you their contact details.
- Offer good free information not a sales pitch
Whatever your business you are in there is information that you have that could benefit the people on your database. If you sell lawnmowers you could send out gardening tips. We sell sales training and give away free information on selling. The information should be of good quality and add real value.
- Mail on a regular basis
You can contact members of your database regularly with information and offers. This can be at least twice a month as long as the information keeps adding value. It can take at least 7 contacts before you make a sale. The theory is that if they decide to buy what you sell you are the first supplier that comes to mind.
- E-mail signature
Put a message at the bottom of each e-mail you send out. This can help boost traffic to your website. Make your message stand out and keep it simple.
- Viral marketing
The theory is that if it is not your core product, give it away. Then tell the person you have sent it to that they can give it away to friends and colleagues. Look at how You Tube and Face book grew so big. It was by recommendation and word of mouth. If I receive some great information and I pass it on to friends and colleagues I am doing your marketing for you.
- Offer an incentive
If people are prepared to recommend you why not offer an incentive; a free gift, or a special offer.
- Use technology
You can buy programmes that make mailing out by e-mail simple and many of your actions can be automated so you aren’t spending all your time manually e- mailing customers.
- Subscribe to newsgroups
You can post information and write articles that will appeal to potential customers. You can raise issues and add to discussions that will raise your profile. Make sure your web address appears in the footer of every posting.
- Optimise your website
Search Engine optimisation is a way of getting better results on search engines. Most people use Google for searching. Focus on the top 5 Search Engines. Between them, Google, Yahoo, MSN, AOL and Ask account for over 90% of searches made. Make these your priority.
- Put a plan together and stick to it
E-marketing is a continuous process which brings long term results. Allocate time each week for doing this and the sales will follow.