Do you know television took 30 years to reach a mass audience while broadband has taken just three years? According to estimates, by 2010 most people will be watching TV via high-speed internet.
Understandably, internet advertising is becoming a preferred marketing tool for companies which have an online presence. Today almost every company worth its salt needs to have a web presence, and if your website doesn’t stand out in a crowded market, you won’t sell!
As more and more companies jump on to the online marketing bandwagon, this rapidly growing trend has spun two online revolutions:
• Online marketing, especially search engine optimisation and pay-per-click campaigns, is giving traditional offline advertising a run for its money.
What you need to keep in mind is: If you don’t play your online marketing cards right, you stand to lose out on a huge global market that is within your reach.
• A growing number of internet marketing companies are beginning to compete for a share of the huge and rapidly growing online marketing industry.
What you need to keep in mind is: How you succeed in your internet marketing campaign is going to depend to a large extent on how you choose your online marketing company.
Advertisers are increasingly preferring online media over offline media for their advertising and marketing campaigns. The phenomenal success of the search engine Google is evidence of a clear shift from traditional advertising towards online media.
For instance, Google and Yahoo’s pay per click (PPC) campaigns are becoming the preferred marketing mediums for advertisers, who are now setting aside a significant part of their marketing budgets for online marketing.
Google has rewritten the rules of online marketing and promotions. Other leading search engines such as Yahoo and MSN are also coming up with innovative strategies and technologies to make it easier for users to find what they are searching for.
With competition hotting up between the search engines, companies that have an online presence are competing against each other to gain maximum visibility in these search engines.
The result is that internet marketing has moved on from having merely static websites to highly specialised and competitive strategies and Web 2.0 technologies such as search engine optimisation, PPC campaigns, viral marketing, social networking, internet advertising, tagging, blogging, wikis, and more.
Online media has definite advantages
Online media has some definite advantages over offline media in terms of cost, reach, interactivity, targeting the right markets and measuring responses. For instance, pay per click campaigns provide the most qualified leads and are proven to have highest sales conversion rate.
There are several techniques of search engine promotion such as SEO, PPC, Banner Exchange, Link Building, and so on. Let’s have a look at the advantages of online promotions over offline promotions:
1. Online advertising is relatively cheaper. It includes booking ad space in other websites, launching SEO or Pay-Per-Click campaigns, email marketing, viral marketing.
Offline marketing is expensive. It includes printing marketing material, placing print ads in newspapers and magazines, booking ad space in public places, producing and broadcasting television or radio advertisements, dispatching direct mailers.
2. Online advertisements are more interactive and therefore more likely to really connect with consumers.
Offline advertisements are generally not interactive.
3. Online advertisements do not violate the privacy of customers.
Offline advertisements such as cold calling violates your customer’s privacy.
4. Email marketing enables instant business communication whether the customer or business affiliate is across the street or across the globe.
Offline advertisements have a limited reach in terms of distance.
5. Advertising on the internet is not bound by time limits. Marketing campaigns can continue for as long as you want (often at minimal extra cost).
Offline promotions, be it print ads or radio/TV ads are usually bound by time limits.
6. Customer queries can be solved instantly and very cheaply in online media as visitors can themselves look up the website for further information.
This facility is often lacking in offline media, or would require expensive resources like call centre staff to service customer enquiries.
7. Customers can look up online advertisements at their own convenient time.
In offline media determines when a particular advertisement should be broadcast or printed. If you miss it, it’s gone!
8. Search engine optimisation and pay per click is demand driven, as your company’s products and services appear at the exact time when the customer is seeking those services. This means you have a much higher chance of converting a lead into a sale.
Offline promotion is usually interruptive and blanket-targets an audience whether they are seeking your services or not.
9. Online marketing can access millions of potential customers across the globe with just a few clicks.
In offline promotion it is impossible to reach millions of customers at one go unless you have an exceptionally large budget (e.g. a Superbowl TV spot).
Choosing a good online marketing company
A number of highly specialised creative and technical processes are involved in online marketing. You will not achieve the desired result unless you select an internet marketing company that has a thorough knowledge of search engine optimisation, pay per click campaigns, website analysis, web copywriting, keyword analysis, code optimisation, link building, and web analytics.
Before you decide on which internet marketing company to use, make sure the company has a thorough professional and updated knowledge of these specialised skills. Check out their processes, find out how they plan to take on your internet marketing campaign step-by-step, and make sure they give you some form of guarantee for their services.
If you are interested in learning more about the detailed steps in a SEO or PPC campaign, visit http://cokoye.com/search-engine-optimization-discussion-board/
Internet marketing is the hottest and most happening thing in advertising. Don’t miss the boat!