Author: mathouse

10 Basic Online Marketing Tips

 

What sets you apart from your competitors? What have you done for them to easily locate your business? We live in a digital world with a prominence in technology. One thing that is crucial for any business whether brick and mortar or virtual is a website. A website is key to your target audience and provides viability for your company.

Basic Online Marketing Tips

 

Let’s look at 10 basic online marketing tips to live by and see how you measure up. Here is a checklist to gauge your business model:

  • Choose your company and domain names wisely, it represents your company
  • Your company and domain names establishes your brand identity
  • Choose your hosting company carefully; do you need a basic or an ecommerce package?
  • How is your website appearance? Does it represent your company’s image, product or service?
  • Website tab/header basics: home, about us, service/product, shopping cart (if
    applicable) and contact us
  • There are website tab/header basics, build your site according to the needs of your company and those of your target audience
  • Stay away from flash pages they can not always be read by your audience, SEO or on a cell phone or personal digital assistant (PDA)
  • Create keywords, metatags and search engine optimization (SEO) that are appropriate for your company’s product or services
  • Frequently update your keywords
  • Submit your Uniform Resource Locator (URL) to various search engines
  • Submit frequently, keeping your company and domain names fresh
  • There are several ways to collect audience data; one way is to have a signup page for those that visit your site
  • Signups create an internal database
  • Keep your target audience updated on specials, news or any information that is special to your company
  • Sending emails through your standard email account is acceptable, however, depending upon the volume and frequency it is considered spam
  • If your emails are high volume and frequent consider sending emails through an approved emailing marketing services – Cooleremail or Constant Contact to name a few
  • What is on your site that makes your audience react, get excited and come back for more?
  • Partner with other companies to add exposure for your company
  • How are you validating your company online and setting it apart from your competitors?

 

Postcard Design For Real Estate Agents

A postcard design for real estate agents is a great way to bring business into your real estate agency. People won’t seek you out as a real estate agent if they don’t know about you. The key to success as an agent is getting the word out about your business.

 

A Colorful Postcard Design for Real Estate Agents

postcard design for real estate
postcard design for real estate

Good advertising materials catch people’s attention. You can’t allow your real estate postcard to melt into the background of all the other advertising materials your prospective customers receive in the mail. You want yours to catch the viewer’s attention so that he actually picks it up and reads all the information about your company. The best postcard design for real estate agents is one that makes the customer take a second look.

The key to catching someone’s attention when it comes to advertising is color. If you design your postcard with vibrant colors, it’ll “pop” to the viewer. He’ll be interested enough to pick up the postcard and read all your information. The most important step is catching attention initially.

A good postcard design for real estate agents will place pictures of homes and other pieces of real estate on the front. You want to make it very clear exactly what it is you do. If you depict pictures of classy real estate on the postcards, there will be no question about your company’s purpose.

Top 5 Reasons an Online Business Will Fail

It is the thing today to have an online business. There are people doing everything from running eBay shops to Membership sites. The problem is that most of these businesses will fail, and here’s why:

Top 5 Reasons an Online Business Will Fail
Reasons an Online Business Will Fail
  1. No plan: There is a saying, If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time. The translation of that is there is no plan, goal, or anything to measure if the venture is successful. You might argue sales, but not if you don’t know how much it is costing you to obtain that one sale. By not having a clear plan with a company’s purpose and goals, a company can be blown around by every trend that comes along.
  2. No research: Sometimes it is hard for people seeing money in their eyes to practice due diligence by researching their idea, checking for the competitors, targeting their audience, and how they can make a dent in that market. By not doing the research, a person is flying blind into an area, and may make some mistakes they may not be able to recover from.
  3. No target audience: Anyone who tells you that everyone is their audience, has no idea. Just in marketing basics, different demographics get their information differently. It is unlikely that you will find a a baby blanket advertised in an automotive parts magazine. Why? It’s a different audience. Again, with the arrow analogy, if you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time. As an online business, one of the first things a business must do is get the right traffic to their website. A site can have lots of traffic, but if it not to the people that are going to buy, then the business cannot flourish.
  4. Bad idea: Not to be unkind, but let’s face it some ideas are just plain bad. It may be a case where the idea started one way and by the time it came out, it was not the same. Some ideas are just not viable and lack the staying power.
  5. Bad financing: It is nice to believe that just because a business is online that it will not cost money to start. It does costs money, but it is used differently than a brick and mortar business. Money might be used for marketing as opposed to overhead, for example.

Running a business is one of the most exciting ventures a person can take, if they walk in with the right idea, plan, research, financing, and know their target audience. Without those five pieces, failure is almost guaranteed.

Optin Magic

Automatically collect visitor email from all your sites with optin magic software. This direct marketing tool will help you keep track of who visits your sites, and will compute a list for you for future optin email campaigns. You will be able to learn who is visiting your sites, and break this down into further detail for higher sales and a broader customer base.

Direct marketing has been around for ages, but it is only in the last decade or two that direct email marketing has taken the forefront and surpassed direct mail marketing and telemarketing. There are many good reasons for this. First, direct mail marketing is expensive, and it does not even yield worthwhile results. The response rate is somewhere between one and two percent, which is truly pitiful when you consider the time, effort, and expense that goes into these campaigns.

Optin Magic
Optin Magic

Optin Magic for Higher Sales

Moving onto telemarketing, we really do not even need to delve into this method of direct marketing, do we? This goes without saying, that telemarketing is just simply not a good way to market goods and/or services. Consumers just get plain aggravated when a solicitor calls their home uninvited, and interrupts them in the middle of dinner, a television show, or even sleep-time.

Finally, optin email marketing is the best solution because it is specifically targeted towards consumers who have already expressed an interest in your product or service. Optin magic software can help you better keep track of just who is visiting your site. When you are armed with the correct information, you can market your products better and increase your total sales.

Real Estate Marketing

Real estate marketing is often conducted in person through referrals and at open houses. However, direct mail such as follow up letters and flyers is a great way to stay in touch. Since email is often ignored or labeled as spam, why not go the low-tech way? Believe it or not, direct mail still has incredibly high response rates.

Written Real Estate Marketing

real estate marketing

You can send invitations, flyers, sales letters, letters of introduction, or even brochures about your business. If you run seminars, you can send invitations to them, and also include some complimentary tickets. Be sure to add your contact information in case some prospects want to speak with you further.

While websites play an important role in real estate marketing, they are not your only way to market. Many people like to have written material available in tangible form, such as brochures and booklets. Have some printed to keep on hand in case anybody wants to have that information handy.

You can use postcards to remind people of upcoming events and tell a little bit about them. You can also use postcards to thank people for their business. Corporate greeting cards, with a handwritten note, also make a good impression on prospects and clients. It’s an easy way to stay in touch. Use snail mail in your real estate marketing and you are guaranteed to get good results.

Real Estate Marketing Post Card

Sending out real estate marketing post cards is the best way to help a business grow. Almost all real estate agents are paid on commission. By advertising through postcards, you ensure a certain number of responses. You are also able to target a select group of people who may want to purchase that house you need to sell.

Trying to advertise real estate online is not always the best use of resources. It’s hard to look for a home online because you can’t get a good sense of the house itself–its state of repair, the amount of light that comes in through the windows, etc. But if you send a postcard with a gorgeous photo of the house in question, you can invite people to an open house or show off the home’s best feature(s).

Your average real estate marketing post card is seriously flawed. I don’t know who designs the majority of them, but they won’t catch anyone’s attention. The biggest mistake they make is putting a picture of the real estate agent on the postcard. I know it’s good to see a friendly face, but when you’re spending several hundred thousand dollars on a purchase, you really want to focus on the product rather than the seller. Another mistake most real estate marketing post cards make is putting the agent’s contact information in small, hard-to-read print at the bottom of the postcard. These vital pieces of information need to be printed in a larger font, in a color that’s easy to see.

 

Real Estate Marketing Post Cards Make Money

It only takes one postcard to make a sale, let’s not forget that. For every thousand postcards you send out, you may not even get a single call. But the key is to just keep putting them out. You can never advertise too much, despite what some people may think, especially if you’re on commission. So start advertising today, because your next huge commission could be one postcard away.

Information For Realtors

REALTORS® are generally the second point of contact for individuals wanting to know more about the processes and procedures for real estate transactions. For this reason alone, it is important that REALTORS® have a comprehensive understanding of their state’s laws, regulations and any additional information to help answer questions brought by individuals. An informed REALTOR® is a successful one.

information for realtors
information for realtors

One of the most common questions people will ask an agent is, “How much home can I afford?” A REALTOR® who is informed and valuable to their clients can give a general idea of what the costs are in a typical loan, including the monthly payment and annual property taxes. Although the client will always receive formal financing information from their lender, it is important for REALTORS® to keep up on the information as it pertains to loans and interest rates via various websites, newspapers, and trade magazines that publish this information.

 

Useful Sources of Real Estate Information

One of the most valuable sources of information for REALTORS® would be a recently published book on real estate principles for that agent’s state. In a principles book, a REALTOR® can find out basic information on zoning, home construction and general laws. It is very important for a REALTOR® stay updated on state and local regulations, as there are changes consistently in the legal areas of the real estate field.

REALTORS® may generally think of themselves as salespeople, however a good REALTOR® will be seen as not only a salesperson, but a teacher as well. The process of either buying or selling a home is daunting to many individuals. Once a REALTOR® can demonstrate themselves to be an extensive database of information, they are sure to gain a client’s trust for present and any future transactions

What Did People Do Before the Internet?

I remember the glorious, life-changing day in 1997 when I first got internet access at home. I was in high school, and I had just visited a friend who was chatting online. I don’t know why I found talking to hundreds of strangers about nothing so appealing, but before the day was out I had internet access at my own home.

It would be the understatement of the century to say that our lives have changed dramatically since the internet went mainstream. My generation was fortunate enough to have the internet enter our daily lives as teenagers, giving us a taste of both the dark ages and the age of the “internets,” as George W. Bush might say. Our parents’ generation made it through their teen and child-rearing years without the help of the internet. Those a few years younger than us can’t imagine life without it.

Even though I lived on this earth for 17 years without the internet as a part of my daily life, I still have a hard time remembering just what the heck I did before I had internet access. Before my memories of the pre-WWW world disappear, I’d like to list a few ways people may have spent their time before the internet.

What Did People Do Before the Internet
What People Did Before the Internet

Buying music in stores

Really, people used to do that. If we wanted a single song we bought the “single.” Portable music was available on the Walkman, and it was awesome! Just a word of warning in case you ever come across an old Walkman, kids. Don’t try to shove the headphones in your ears. It didn’t work that way then. Rock the big, bulbous foam headphones externally as God intended it.

Reading newspapers

How old school is that? If instant news was your thing you better be wherever the news was happening. Back in the day, “googling” something probably meant you were sticking funny looking eyes on it. While fun, it wasn’t very effective in a crisis.

Thinking they had a disease…when a doctor told them they had a disease.

That funny looking rash on your ankle was just a rash back then. It wasn’t a symptom of a rare disease that affects approximately 4.5 people in the U.S. each year. If you needed medical advice, you either took advice from your grandma (before the internet you didn’t know it might kill you), or you went to the doctor. The doctor was always right back then, too. You weren’t more of an expert on your condition than he was, so you listened to him (unless Grandma said he was wrong).

Having actual sex with actual humans

If she was really a guy you found out a whole lot sooner!

Watching “viral” videos…

on America’s Funniest Home Videos. Sadly, Bob Saget was your only source of entertainment when it came to viewing stupid things other people were doing. When something funny hit your husband in the crotch and you happened to have your 50 pound video camera rigged up and ready to go, you sent the video straight to Bob for the world to see.

Laughing out loud

Nobody heard a joke and said, “I’m laughing out loud (lol),”or “Gee guys, I’m rolling on the floor laughing (rofl).” See, if you were in fact doing these things, the person you were talking to would have witnessed it. If something was funny, we actually laughed.

Not knowing details of their great uncle’s romantic shenanigans

Social networking has opened up a weird, entertaining, scary, addictive world where you can find out more about a person in 30 seconds than you used to be able to find out in 30 years. You can find out how your doctor likes his coffee and what your grandma does after a night of drinking. (Didn’t know your grandma drinks? You do now!) In the old days, people went to their graves without knowing that their cousin secretly feared toilet paper, or their uncle enjoyed dressing as a woman on Tuesdays.

For the most part, the internet has changed life for the better. I can’t imagine where technology will take us from here, but I can’t wait to find out!

Making the Internet Safe for Children

Image result for Making the Internet Safe for ChildrenThese days personal computers are found in most homes, and internet access is common. Children frequently use this technology online to play games, complete schoolwork, or communicate with friends. Chat rooms and social networking sites are also very popular, especially with teenagers. Yet every parent knows that there are both images and people on the internet that we would prefer our children not come in contact with. So how do parents protect their children online, especially when we cannot always be there?

Making the Internet Safe for Children
Making the Internet Safe for Children

First of all, make sure your children are familiar with both the internet and the house rules. Let them know what web sites they are allowed to visit. Take advantage of parental controls, and turn on pop up blockers. Discuss with them how to deal with unwanted contact on the internet, and what is appropriate for discussion online.

Set your child up an email account, and configure the address book with known contacts. Do not allow them to open email or accept instant messages from people they do not know.

Make sure your child knows to never give out personal information on the internet. Any kind of membership account or subscription service should be set up by the parent to ensure that it is a safe and legitimate site.

Children should also be strongly cautioned about anyone they meet online, whether in a chat room or a site such as MySpace. Again, they should never give out personal information, and should not trust anyone they do not know in person.

Parents should also take an active interest in what their children do online. Keep an eye on what web sites they are visiting, who they are talking to, and what they are doing while on the internet. If you cannot be there to see for yourself, check your cache or question them about their activities. Unless you have reason not to trust them, make sure that your questions are not meant to doubt their honesty, but to make sure they are safe. If they feel like you do not trust them, it could backfire on you. Make sure you discuss anything that you are uncomfortable with as well as any concerns they may have.

The internet can be a wonderful tool, but only in the right hands. We have to teach our children how to use it. As parents, we also have to make sure that our children are always safe. As long as we take the appropriate steps and teach our children to be cautious, they should be able to enjoy a safe and rewarding online experience.

Corporate Merchandise

Consumers get a little sick of corporate merchandise. Everywhere we go, we get bombarded with pamphlets, key chains, brochures, magnets, postcards, and buttons. Most of us throw this stuff away. We don’t read the brochures and we don’t use the key chains. Billions of dollars are wasted every year on ineffective corporate merchandise.

Corporate Merchandise
Corporate Merchandise

For some reason, many marketing executives feel like they have to pump out corporate merchandise. It’s just something companies do. We have to bombard people with buttons and cheap pens so we can increase visibility and acquire new customers. This strategy does work for a number of great businesses. They saturate the public with their promotional items hoping to land a few customers.

 

The Shotgun Approach

This approach, which is often reserved for commercial advertising, is commonly referred to as the shotgun approach to marketing. A shotgun shell sprays out pellets when it’s triggered. The pellets cover a large area allowing you a little more flexibility when it comes to hitting the target. As long as you aim in the general direction of the target, you’re likely to hit it. The same rationale applies to this form of marketing.

If you spray your corporate merchandise all over the public, you are bound to hit a few customers. If you hand out 10,000 brochures, 500 people might read them, and 50 might buy the products and/or services described in the brochure. It’s a numbers game. This numbers game will work in your favor as long as you distribute merchandise that’s inexpensive and easily disseminated.