Pay-Per-Click, PPC, Not as Effective as Link Advertising

Working within the search engine marketing business, SEM, I’ve heard many theories and statements made with regard to search engine rankings and how best to promote a website to the top of the search engine. From new business owners to individuals who are blogging to their heart’s content, there is much confusion over how to dominate the search engines.

While Yahoo and Google do provides some opportunities for advertising your businesses, products or services, these advertising options should not be used alone. To effectively dominate the search engines, it is important to diversify your internet marketing and advertising campaign.

Link advertising has become increasingly more common in recent years. Unfortunately, many website owners, and bloggers, are unfamiliar with the power of text link ads and, for that reason, I’m going to try to describe why it is better than pay-per-click advertising.

Let’s say you own a pool supply company. When we look at the search engine tools and keyword search reports, it seems that over 30,000 people per month, are typing in the keyword “pool supplies” into the search engines. So, where does your company fall in the ranking of results? Since the search engines generally default to the top 10 search findings, your company, in all likelihood, is not on page one – and probably not on page two or even page three.

But, you say, you’ve been using the “highly touted” Google Adsense and Yahoo marketing programs. Why is your site not reaching these 30,000 Internet searchers? Because pay-per-click advertising is rotational, often in shaded top headers or sidebars of the search engines, it is pretty much luck of the draw in how many people will see your site. While you only pay for people who actually “click” on your search results, the goal should not be to count “clicks”. This is simply a waste of marketing dollars. We can compare that to people driving down the street and you only spend marketing dollars on those who actually drive to your store. This, in marketing strategy, makes absolutely no sense at all.

Instead, you want to advertise and market your company in a way that it returns in a more natural search result. Remember those 30,000 internet searchers who were looking for “pool supplies”? You want to reach them! To do that, it is important to get your website to return into the top 25, and even the top 10, search results. But, how do we do that.

Through a diversification of marketing campaigns, using inbound linking, your website can be promoted through the search engine results. Inbound linking can be static links, rotating site-run links, blogs about your company, even “billboards” attached to high quality sites. The options are virtually endless. While there are many companies that offer reciprocal linking and paid posting services, these services, alone, will not drive your website to the top of the search engines. To achieve optimal results, you must diversify your campaign.

Finding highly regarded search engine marketing, SEM, company is important to your investment in marketing your business. With thousands of internet searchers looking for your business, it is well worth the investment to develop an internet marketing campaign that will reach those same individuals through a more organic search approach. With over 80 percent of all internet searchers choosing to link to sites on page one of their search results, and often never clicking on side bar, pay-per-clicks, link advertising gives you the best rate of return on your investment.…

How Back to School Marketing Can Help Your Business

Inexpensive Publicity
Media attention can be hard for small business owners to obtain. This is one reason you should consider back to school marketing. If you have planned a large community event to distribute free school supplies, that will catch the attention of local media reporters. While the main goal of a back to school event is to get your business in front of customers, you can obtain even more exposure with the media. This could make it easier to get publicity in the future during special events that your business is sponsoring.

It is helpful, especially if you have sent out press releases before and had no response. These documents can be expensive to distribute. A back to school event will allow you to collect contact information of local reporters and contact them again. Due to the school supplies event, you are able to get media attention without paying more money. It is an additional opportunity to gain more revenue in the future.

Long Term Exposure 
Students use school supplies all year round. That means there are multiple chances to expose your business and services to potential customers. Many high school students hang out at their friend’s house and join community organizations. One person that has a notebook with your business logo on it may expose that notebook to dozens of other people during a tutoring session and other activities. That creates long term exposure for your business and more opportunities to gain customers and sales.

Repeat Customers 
By marketing your business using school supplies, this can create multiple sales from individual customers. The long term exposure mentioned in this article will produce interest in your business. Once you have provided a good service to customers, they will remember that and become a loyal supporter of your business. This chance for continuous revenue is worth hosting one single back to school event for local residents. School supplies materials are in demand and it is important to take advantage of the opportunities that small businesses have in this area.

Good Deed 
Many parents cannot afford to purchase all of the required school supplies for their children. This is a good reason to provide free items for students. Just because you own a business does not mean that money should always be the primary focus. Good deeds go a long way and exhibits high character. This can help you personally and professionally, as grateful parents will recommend your business to their friends.…

Five of the World’s Most Unusual, Eco-Friendly Home Furnishings

With all this talk about taking care of the Earth, and learning to efficiently use the world’s resources, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at some inventions that are little known to the rest of the world. There are plenty of us who religiously and meticulously separate our waste materials. But it seems that there are organizations who are taking the “green” movement a little bit farther than the average consumer. In my quest for life’s most interesting conversation pieces, I lucked up on a several different mind-blowing home decorating options (most of which are made of recycleable materials). Mind you, each and every one of these are fully-functional, and in most cases, some of the most beautiful pieces of home art you’ll ever find…

 

  1. A FIREPLACE IN YOUR TABLE – Those not fortunate enough to have a cozy spot in the house for gathering around a toasty fire are finally in luck. Schulte Design is marketing a line of furniture called “Fire Furniture”, with one of the more popular pieces being a small coffee table which has a fireplace integrated into the center of its structure. In case you’re worried about pollutants, do not be. The fire is created with a liquid that is emission and smoke free.
  2. BOOKSHELF…OR COFFIN? – The Shelves for Life, which made their debut at the [Re]Design 06 exhibition in London, are perhaps the most functional bookshelves ever invented. After you’re finished using the shelves to hold your most precious literary items, you can use them to hold your most recently deceased. Yes, the contemporary, multi-slat shelves can be dismantled and re-assembled into a fully functioning coffin.
  3. THE KITCHEN CHAIR– I know what you’re thinking. There isn’t any thing strange about a chair being in the kitchen. But what about a chair that actually doubles as a kitchen? Vestal Design has developed a home décor solution for those with extremely limited space. The DoubleSpace Kitchenette is essentially a chair which can be flipped over (via an internal swivel mechanism) and used as a fully functioning stove.

    The “kitchenette” contains a countertop and two stove burners. It was also designed with a safety feature which will not allow the stove to be operable when the unit is used as a chair. Furthermore, the device is mobile, and can be rolled around at your leisure. Under the assumption that one will never cook and sit at the same time, this unit was developed to conserve both space and energy.

  4. DINING ROOM IN A BOX– This isn’t a reference to a bucket of chicken, or any variation of “boxable” fast food. The MealBox, created by Igland Design is actually a complete dining room set which fits neatly into a cube measuring almost a 1 ½ feet high.

    The furniture itself consists of several jigsaw puzzle-like slats which fit snugly together to form a low coffee table or mini-dining table. The six “chairs” are simply stackable seats which closely resemble foot stools covered in “tush-sensitive” Neoprene rubber seating. This dining room can be taken literally anywhere.

  5. AN IV FOR YOUR HOUSEPLANTS – Green thumb? What’s that? Everyone who has attempted to grow houseplants and failed understands that these lovely greenies need water, sunlight, and lots of happy conversation. Sometimes, we forget to supply the first ingredient.

    But if you happen to have Vitamin Living‘s I.V. Plant Pot, then you shall fear no more the imminent death of your beloved household plants. This contraption is a real I.V. which continually provides your plant with its necessary nutrients. When the clear I.V. bag goes a bit flat, you’ll know that it’s time to fill up your plant’s water supply once more.

As I combed the internet and browsed various sites, I was amazed at exactly how many different kinds of companies there are which are solely dedicated to providing innovative solutions to space and energy conservation. By taking a closer look at how we use our square footage and energy, it’s possible to discover brand new ways of conserving the earth’s resources.…

How to Become an Advertising Freelancer

There are essentially three kinds of businesses in this world: Those that can afford to have an advertising agency handle all their advertising; those that can’t, but can do their own advertising and marketing in-house; and finally, those businesses that can do neither. That’s where an advertising freelancer comes into the picture.

 

A freelancer works on a project-by-project basis. No case too small. The benefit to the business is that they can have the freelancer work with their relatively low ad budget. The freelancer charges either by the hour or per project for their services. In doing so, they can provide professional advertising campaign management with a budget far lower than advertising agencies can feasibly work with. It’s becoming a better option for more and more businesses that simply don’t have the ability to do it on their own.

This creates an outstanding opportunity for advertising professionals who want to break out of the corporate conundrum, and get out on their own. Freelancers enjoy a greater amount of independence and self-determination than advertising professionals who work in a firm. They can take on numerous businesses as clients and have multiple streams of revenue. This means better financial stability for the freelancer.

So, say you’re an advertising pro and ready to cut the agency apron strings. Here are some simple, logical steps to get going:

1. Come up with a marketable name. Some freelancers make the mistake of working as a single person, (“Jane Schmo, Advertising Freelance”). This tends to “shrink” the freelance’s abilities in the eyes of a prospective client. Instead, come up with a professional company name (more like “Schmo Advertising and Marketing”). Present yourself more in the light of a project manager-type that will produce, supervise and manage a company’s ad campaign with the aid of other creative advertising professionals if needed. This will go a long way in projecting your image as an advertising professional who can take on any kind of campaign.

2. Once you have a name, have professional materials made up to build your image. This includes the obvious: business cards, stationery, brochures, etc. But also be sure to include other items such as advertising premiums – such as pens, key-chains, notepads, personalized calendars, and other “schwag”. You want to get your name and image out there and on the desks of the very business owners you want to work for. Image and name recognition is everything in advertising more so than any other segment of business. Get your name out there.

3. Produce an impressive info-pack – Be sure to include a detailed resume and history of past campaigns that you have worked on in your professional career. Be sure to highlight your more successful campaigns, the ones you think your prospects may have come across.

4. Put up a website – This is non-negotiable if you want to be taken seriously as a professional. You MUST have a website with a good, easy to remember domain name. Make sure ALL your materials have your web address. Your website will be your living, breathing resume. Don’t skimp on it, and update it regularly. Put up nothing less than a professional, clean and slick website and be sure to have your burgeoning portfolio on-line for your prospects to peruse at their leisure.

5. Determine your rates – Research your competition and see what the going rates are for the kind of services you will be offering. Price yourself somewhere in the middle. According to most advertising trade publications, freelance copywriters get anywhere from $350-450 per billable hour. Keep in mind that many business owners like to have a good idea of what the total cost of the project will be from the get-go. Look into pricing an entire project to get their business. Just make sure you don’t price too low and end up working way too much for too little.

6. Nobody can do everything great, so make sure your prospects understand that you have other professionals at your disposal. Such as, graphic artists, web designers and other creative specialists, to make their campaign a well-packaged success.

7. Know the ins and outs of on-line advertising! This is the future of advertising, and …

Advertising, Promotions, Marketing and Public Relations Managers

Public relations, advertising and marketing management are highly coveted jobs for the ratio of high wages to freedom of work environment. Those in these positions often can work from home, travel and have an office supplied to them. While many positions require a raw talent for marketing, some of the intricacies can be easily learned for a lucrative career

Job Duties

An advertising, marketing or public relations manager is responsible for the strategy, sales, promotion, pricing, public outreach, development and marketing of a product or company. Advertising managers focus on the ad campaigns and may work with the finance and promotional departments to find the most beneficial advertising campaigns available. A public relations manager is responsible for the design and implementation of public promotions including events on social media, through bloggers and writers and through the broadcast media.

Skills Required

This career path is full of schedule changes and requires an employee to be flexible as well as work under pressure. Anyone in the field of public relations, marketing and advertising must have excellent customer service skills as well as the ability to blend with special interest groups. Long hours, weekends and evenings are sometimes required, as are above average computer and media skills.

Education and Requirements

A bachelor’s degree, preferably in a business administration, is typically required for marketing, sales and promotions manager. In fields that are dependent on knowledge of electronics, a degree in engineering or science is preferred. Required coursework for these degrees include classes in advertising, public affairs, speaking, communications and political science, among core requirements. Many successful promotions, public relations and marketing managers are fluent in multiple languages, and an extensive knowledge of social media is preferred.

Courses Required

Many colleges offer four-year degrees specifically in advertising, promotions and social media. Typical courses required include advertising and society, mass communication, media writing, principles of advertising, digital communication, brand solutions, social networks, search engine marketing and design in media. These courses teach a broad range of current trends in mass media including print, broadcasting and digital media. Technology, sociology and psychology courses are also suggested electives for any position in promotional media career paths.

Outlook and Salary

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field of advertising, marketing, promotions and public relations will continue to grow by more than 13 percent through 2018. In May 2008, the average annual wage for an advertising and promotions manager was $80,200, more than $108,000 for marketing managers and $89,430 for public relations managers.

 
 

Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook, Advertising, Marketing, Promotions, and Public Relations…

Developing Trust in Your Blog Marketing Efforts

Blog Marketing can be further developed by integrating everything you do on your blog with Social Networking. Assuming that you have effectively developed all of the other techniques available when developing your blog this is the place to multiply your efforts. Making it possible for all your readers to easily bookmark and share your information is just one of the ways to do this.

Sites that allow ‘voting’ also give your blog and your products more exposure. Another way is to tie blog posts into sites like Facebook and Twitter. It can be part of your regular process with the Social Media sites. Essentially with the right connections you can get a lot of mileage out of each post. Mileage equals exposure and the opportunity for them to trust you and buy from you.

Just make sure your blog and website is integrated together. In the beginning, all of the different parts of my Blog Marketing were like separate pieces. Once I matched the links, keywords, anchor text, images across my blog, my Social Media, and last but not least my website. This led the customer from one part to the next, from one product to the next, and one sale to the next. If you are in the Internet Marketing business you will want to make it obvious that you are involved across all those areas.

I wanted my blog to be part of an informative and enjoyable process to keep the reader on the blog as long as possible. Either that or I want to make it as easy as possible for them to go right on to making the sale. Even if you only have one or two products or services at this point it is going to reap long term benefits for your sales if you find even a small amount of time to work with your blog every day.

In part it is about trust. The reader is depending on you to grab their attention before they are even a regular reader. Ideally the content on your blog gives them something to think about long after they have left their computer. Even something to think about when they do sit down the next day at their computer.…

Winning a College Sports Marketing Sales Assignment

College marketing majors will likely need to sell something for a course. Many individuals don’t enjoy sales because they’re ineffective at persuasion, dislike communicating with strangers, and/or are terrified at rejection.

I enrolled in a sports marketing course during the spring of 2009. One of the course’s objectives was selling discounted tickets for a professional sports organization. Our professor encouraged project participation as it was a superb opportunity to expand our network and generate communication skills.

I didn’t personally know any fans of the organization. I felt awkward cold-calling folks and attending random churches. Instead of meeting face-to-face with potentially uninterested people, I tried to expand my market potential by utilizing an advertising approach.

I emailed dozens of students about my goal of selling tickets, informing them that they could reply for more information and the ticket order form. I used the bulletin boards in the main building and where I took all of my classes. I completed a sales presentation to one large classroom of students. The main thing, however, was continuously posting advertisements on classified sites, ie Craigslist, in order to reach out to a larger mass. I was reaching out to more people who may have an interest in the specific team or sport when I posted in the sporting events section.

I concluded the assignment with the highest monetary sales, finishing just under $1,000 of total sales.

There were a couple things that prevented me from higher sales totals. Some of the prospects wanted specific seats, but I didn’t have access to which exact seats were available at that moment. I’d have to contact the account executive. I started telling customers no as I thought the executive could be getting weary of my constant contact. 
I went with a foolish and untrue notion and should have postponed such action until he requested I stop contacting him.

I also had no cellphone. After establishing contact with the interested party, I had to communicate through E-mail. Verbal communication would have increased my effectiveness as it made things simpler and quicker.

I was the only student who attempted these strategies. Think outside the norm, use some creativity, and see what happens when conducting a sales or marketing project.…

Women in Advertising

Advertising teaches us from a very young age how to act, dress, speak, and relate to others, especially the “opposite” sex. It is gender construction and stereotypes; it is there to sell us a line. And that line is that you are imperfect. Not only are you imperfect, but it is your duty, as a woman, to strive for an unrealistic perfection that you will never reach. When you fail to reach this imperfection you internalize the failure and see it as your fault, something you did. This contributes eating disorders, low self esteem among women, and even violence against women. Advertising is teaching American women to want to be sexually provocative but to be sexually provocative through the clothes they wear and how they look to the male gaze looking at them. I chose this topic because it affects everyone regardless of age, gender, race, or class and certainly some of those more than others.

Women are vulnerable in a culture that uses them for their body parts. Women are not valued for their actions, their intelligence or what they say, but how they look and how they wear their clothes. They are used to sell products. Their sexuality is exploited to sell, sell, sell. This exploitation in advertising leads to other much more dangerous exploitations such as domestic violence, harassment, child abuse, murder, and rape. Advertising is everywhere and in everything. The image of women portrayed in advertising and the media at large is how we have come to see ourselves “what we take ourselves to be is how we perceive ourselves to be perceived” (Reichert 185). It is so pervasive that women who claim to not be influenced by advertising still find themselves dieting nine months out of twelve and buying expensive cosmetics to cover their wrinkles, dye the gray out of their hair, and dress twenty years younger than they are to appear attractive to men. It is a male construction that only young females are attractive but we buy into it every time we buy that foundation, or promise to lose those ten extra pounds gained over Christmas. We are taught to think that is what we are supposed to do so that is what we do. That’s why I have chosen this topic, its very penetration into the core identity of all women.

 

Advertising has deep roots in America. The first advertising campaign began in the nineteenth century and was used to entice Europeans to come to this wild and foreign country describing America as “The Garden of Eden” (Sivulka 7). Advertising in Europe had its beginning in the 1440’s when Johannes Gutenberg invented the first printing press with movable type in Germany on which the first printed book was the Bible. After that the first form of ads were handbills, posters, trade cards, and newspapers, which were the first mass produced medium. In 1477, William Caxton, a London printer, printed the first printed advertisement in English selling a prayer book. Soon magazines and newspapers picked up ads and carried them into the surrounding community. It was not until the 1700’s that advertisements became the main source of revenue for newspapers and magazines. The first printing press in America was established at Harvard College in 1639 (Sivulka).

Benjamin Franklin founded the Pennsylvania Gazette in 1728 and was the first known American to use illustrations in his ads. He was pioneer in the advertising field using ads on the front page, using white space and headlines. During this period most ads were focused on land, runaway slaves, and transportation. But it was the demand for news about the American Revolution that inflamed newspaper circulation, but also worsened the paper shortage at the time. The Civil War gave rise to a consumer economy and Isaac Merritt Singer’s sewing machine became the first heavily advertised machine made for the American home. As is customary with every war in history America has been involved in women were active in the workforce during the war. In 1870, “1 out of 6 workers were women all young and unmarried with money to spend” (Sivulka 20). Due to this women were the primary consumer’s spending their wartime paychecks. This is …

Advertising Degrees: Benefits of a Top Program

The great thing about having an advertising degree is that advertising never dies, it only transforms. Over the years, advertising has built products, companies, careers, and has transcended the ages. Its written and visual cues have distracted us on billboards, magazines, newspapers, or on the sides of buildings. We’ve laughed, cried, and sung the catchy tunes of the radio ads, the infomercials of television, or the interactive ads on the internet. As long as there has been business and commerce there has also been advertising, and as long as there is still a product left on earth to market, there will continue to be advertising. Talk about job security!

Understanding what comprises a top advertising program can be difficult though. What is it exactly that builds such a program into one that produces successful candidates for the world of advertising? These days a top advertising program must have the capacity to change and stay current with or even ahead of the swiftly moving trends of internet advertising. It must also have the ability effectively to balance a student’s curriculum between the creative aspects of advertising and its business side. It is also the role of a top advertising program to prepare students for the real world through professional networking, internships, mock presentations, and projects that mimic what will be encountered in the workforce.

But you might say to yourself, “I’m talented, with a quick wit and charismatic personality. Why do I need a top advertising program to get a job in the field?” While someone might indeed have a personality fit to the advertising world, there are things a top advertising program can do that will harness those skills and allow someone to more effectively and efficiently utilize their natural talent. Building public relation skills, studying the most recent computer development programs, and taking courses that will prepare you for creating constructive client relationships or developing marketing strategies, can provide an educational background that will allow you to begin an advertising career in higher level executive positions sooner than those without such a degree.

So what types of careers are available to someone with a degree from a top advertising program? The scope and range of career opportunities in advertising are wide ranging and spread throughout numerous industries. The possibilities broaden even further when potential candidates have the educational background with which a top advertising program provides them. Those with more outgoing personalities may opt for a position as a manager in promotions, sales, marketing or public relations, while those less comfortable in the limelight might select a career path that focuses on the creative side such as being a market research, product development, pricing or advertising strategy. In whatever advertising role you may be interested, there is plenty of latitude when it comes to deciding on what is right for you. From account executives to public relations officers to the aspects of development and design of advertising campaigns, promotions, and marketing there are niches for just about any type of personality or background within the advertising field.

Disclaimer:

This article is for informational purposes only. Any action taken by the reader due to the information provided in this article is at the reader’s discretion.…