Advertise! Advertise! Advertise!

In the last post we looked at differentiation–developing products and services that different from what everyone else has. Today we’re going to look at advertising.

Very few people will just stumble upon your website. There are hundreds of millions (even billions?) of web pages out there. A new website is like a restaurant in the desert with no roads to it. You need to build roads to your website.

There are two ways people come to website: 1) type in or 2) link/referral.

Type in traffic is often overlooked by business owners. Every email, business card, print ad—every piece of your marketing collateral—should have your website’s address. If you are selling your services or a product, you want potential customers to know where they can get more information or make a purchase—your website.

Other crucial ways to increase your type-in traffic include offline advertising: signage, newspaper ads, magazine ads, flyers, postcards and any other marketing material. Don’t overlook offline advertising, as it is a key way to grow your online business.

Link/referral traffic comes from online advertising, a link from another website or a link in an email. There are many very good online advertising platforms, including Google AdWords, Facebook ad and many affiliate programs. Plan on investing some of your resources on these. Sometimes they have a huge return on investment; they should not be overlooked.

The point of this blog post is to emphasize that a website without an advertising plan is likely to be underutilized and ineffective. Allocate resources to advertising and carefully monitor results. Reduce or eliminate what is working and refine and expand what is working. Over time, you will have a very focused set of tools to help grow your business.

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