The Internet has changed the way just about every industry and niche under the sun does business. It hasn’t changed “business” per se. It’s just changed HOW business is done. The age-old concepts and framework behind sales and marketing will never change. The psychology that powers the whole process will never change, either. What’s changed is the medium.
What that means to you is –
- If you have “wimpy” sales skills, all the technology and design elements in the world will elevate you to mediocrity at best.
- If you’re a 100-pound weakly when it comes to Internet Marketing and Publicity but you’re selling skills are top-notch, you need a simple system to take what you’re doing to the next level. That’s what this article is all about.
So… things have changed, right? The medium has changed. Think about it – in the past, you’d grab a phone book to get the number of a local restaurant if you wanted to make a reservation. Today, you’d Google the name and get the number directly from your laptop, PC, Mac, Handheld device, etc.
This doesn’t mean people are abandoning the Yellow Pages altogether. The other night, my high-speed connection went down and I was without an Internet connection for several hours. I didn’t have the number for my ISP written down or stored in my cell phone. So what did I do? I grabbed a small Yellow Page directory I keep in a kitchen drawer (for emergencies). As amazing as this seems, people still use the Yellow Pages, still read newspapers and magazines… and still use the “dated methods” with one exception. They’re doing it with less frequency, favoring “a few clicks of the mouse” instead.
Yes, people still buy and listen to CD’s. They still insert DVD’s into their DVD players. They’re slowly but surly, however, migrating over to the more convenient methods of digital downloads and streaming video. For increasing numbers of people, this is becoming the method of choice.
Keeping all the above in mind, from a marketing perspective, why would you want to invest your advertising dollars on advertising mediums that are shrinking? Why not place your focus in areas that are growing and showing the greater growth potential over the next several years and beyond?
The answer is fairly simple. They don’t “see it.” Most people have enough trouble dealing with “what is,” let alone anticipating what’s coming around the next bend on the road they’re traveling.
There was a day when the horse and buggy was the preferred method of transportation. I’m sure they found it hard at the time to believe the advent of the horseless carriage (as it was called) could ever be more reliable than the horse (let alone replacing it). After all, horses have been with us since the beginning of time. They’ve taken men into battle, carried them across the Wild West, been used to deliver “express” mail, etc.
Imagine yourself back in those days not knowing how history would play out and all those arguments will make more sense to you. Who could have known Henry Ford would take the process of manufacturing horseless carriages to the next level?
Now, take a look at what’s happening right now. Does technology go backwards? Of course not. It keeps moving forward. It keeps evolving. Take a look at your business, market or industry and tell me confidently you can do business the way it’s always been done and still BE IN BUSINESS “tomorrow.”
If you want to stay in the game, you have to change with the game.
This doesn’t mean you have to chase every new thing that comes down path. Believe me, there will always be a lot of “can’t miss” things coming down the way that turn out to be flops.
Websites, like the original Model-T Ford, have evolved quite a bit since the early 90’s. Design elements, audio and video now work to promote the message in a variety of forms. Think about you, you can now have all the elements of radio, TV and print advertising – all residing on a single domain – www.YourBusiness.com.
It just keeps getting better, too. Rather than having to rely upon expensive direct mail marketing, the INBOX has become the new mailbox. You can reach people with your message – faster and easier than ever before.
Now, before you get all excited about the pros, let’s take a look at the cons.
Your competition can do all the above, too. The ones who are doing it well will eventually break away from the pack.
Since creating my very first website in 1996, I’ve been one of those individuals who’ve changed, developed and grown right along with the Internet. My first site was an online equivalent of the “horseless carriage.” It was loud, didn’t look too good and didn’t get too far without problems along the way. I kept changing, modifying and improving my plans.
All of the time and effort that went into this process resulted in the creation of a system. What’s a system? To me, a system is something that enables you to move forward and make progress without being overwhelmed by “stuff” – while you’re moving forward and making progress! It’s a blueprint. I create them for just about everything. Like you, I find it nice to have a life of some sort patiently waiting in the wings when the workday comes to a conclusion.
My system has been changed and tweaked over the past 13+ years of my time as an Internet Marketer.
If you’re looking for something overly complex with thousands of intricate parts, I’m afraid I may not be the kind of teacher you’re looking for. I’m a big believer in creating and using simple systems – with less moving parts. Here is mine. It can be plugged into and modified to fit just about any business type.
JG’s – Reinvent Your Business Online Blueprint
- Buy a domain with set up a WordPress blog. Forget about “free” blogs. If you’re building a business and are committed to following through, buy a domain for a measly $10-11 bucks. Use a professionally designed template and make sure you logo and contact information are clearly visible.
- Decide who your target market is. Be so specific you could create a character that could be inserted into a novel or movie script. You’re trying to sell a single personality type. Most people do the opposite and seriously dilute the effectiveness of marketing message. Why so specific? Marketing is like hunting. The better you understand the specific habits of the target, the easier it is to capture them. In this case, we want to “capture” their limited attention spans.
- Create a message within the site that brings this type of person “to the table.” Give them enough information to intrigue them, but not enough to sufficate them. Many sites try too hard to impress and make an immediate sale connection. Building trust is the key. Instead, use a two-part system of building trust first… and selling products and services second.
- Offer rock-solid information that PROVES you’re among the very best choices in your market. Ask for their email address in return for – more information, discounts, free gifts, etc. Have a simple “sign-up” form visible from the first page (be it a link or the form itself).
- Target a niche – not the “masses.” In all likelihood, the masses (even your local community) aren’t interested in “your thing.” There is a specific niche, however, that is. Find it, define it, examine it and build your business around it!
By using this five-step process, you’ll be able to accurately gauge interest (as well as the effectiveness) of your sales copy and marketing techniques relative to that particular business, project, etc. If you have a winner, you can develop a much larger site from your mini-site and attract business for years to come. I personally have sites that I’ve developed using this process that date all the way back to the 1990’s.
What most people don’t realize is – nothing is more important than the “message.” It’s like a movie trailer. People see it and decide whether or not to buy a ticket or rent the movie.
Your site is like the trailer. If you want your market to come in, buy a ticket, sit down and watch the show… the easiest way to do so is to follow a simple, easy to duplicate formula like the one I listed above.
If you have any questions about how this can be applied to your own business, contact me to find out about my new “Business Blogging Toolkit Program.” Click here right now…