I had written a different post for this weeks online marketing thought, then came across a blog I last posted on in December 2009. While I was actually laughing at my ramblings now, that was a very difficult period in my life.
No money, no credit, house on the verge of repossession, no phone line and worst of all no internet. We are talking rock bottom, the next step was a cardboard box to live in and I couldn’t let that happen.
Now I am not telling you this for sympathy. I certainly don’t need it, everyone goes through rough patches in their lives, I am sure you have too.
What I do want you to take away from this post is the power of using free resources online…
You see, over the years I have made basic websites and money online for organisations I have been part of and companies that I have worked for. I got the idea into my head that I could use this knowledge.
The problem was that I had no money to buy a domain let alone pay for hosting. I certainly did not have an advertising budget! So, I used free resources, Blogger, Squidoo and Hubpages and wrote articles to drive traffic back to them.
At the time, I didn’t know all the technical terms, just that it worked. The cardboard box was recycled and I kept my head above water.
What does this mean for your small business marketing online?
These free sites, such as Squidoo and Blogger are known as web 2.0 properties. Basically, that means that they are dynamic sites and people can interact with them.
They are actually quite powerful tools for online visibility, often they can rank on the search engines in their own right. Include a link back to your website and voilà you have:
a) a link back to your website, we like links back because they help to improve your search engine rankings!
b) Some targeted traffic back to your website from people interested in what you have to say.
Writing articles and submitting to the article directories (article marketing) is a fantastic way of increasing your online exposure. It helps to:
a) Establish your reputation as an expert in your field
b) Provides links back to your website (we like those remember!)
c) Drive traffic to your website from interested people
To successfully use these free resources in your online marketing you do need to remember a very important point. These techniques work well when written as sources of information and not as a sales pitch.
I wouldn’t recommend that you use web 2.0 sites as your sole source of online visibility, but as a tool to increase your online presence and to direct people back to your own website.